Michigan State University
Michigan State University
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Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and American Cultures
Department of Writing
Rhetoric & American Cultures


Alexandra Hidalgo

Assistant Professor

Graduate Faculty

Office: 265 Bessey Hall

Email: hidalgo5@msu.edu

Twitter: @SabanaGrandePro

Google Scholar





Research Areas

Film and Video Production, Documentary, Cultural Rhetorics, Feminism, Immigration, Social Media, Digital Spaces and Publication


Alexandra Hidalgo was born in Caracas, Venezuela and immigrated to the States at the age of 16. That experience has fueled her interests in gender, race, immigration, and memoir, which she explores through alphabetic writing and video scholarship and through her work as a documentary filmmaker. Her first feature documentary Vanishing Borders, the story of four immigrant women living in New York City and transforming their communities with their work, is currently screening at universities and festivals. Her current documentary project is the William and Santiago Documentary Series, a number of short and feature documentaries featuring the lives of her two sons and their relationship to each other. Her video book Cámara Retórica: A Feminist Filmmaking Methodology for Rhetoric and Composition is forthcoming with Computers and Composition Digital Press. She co-founded and is the editor-in-chief of agnès films, a website that supports the work of women and feminist filmmakers. 


Ph.D., English, Purdue University, August 2013
West Lafayette, Indiana
Primary Area: Rhetoric and Composition
Secondary Areas: Digital Rhetoric (Film and Video Concentration), Public Rhetoric

M.F.A., Creative Writing – Fiction, Naropa University, May 2004
Boulder, Colorado

B.A., Philosophy, Ohio University Honors Tutorial College, June 2000
Athens, Ohio

Representative Work


Teta (25 minutes, 2017) http://tetadocumentary.com/
This short documentary tells the story of my journey nursing my youngest son, Santiago, for twenty-two months. Teta uses my narration and the footage shot by my husband to portray the ups and downs of nursing a baby as a working mother of two. As the film shows Santiago go from his first nursing session minutes after being born to his last as a walking and talking toddler, Teta illustrates the transcendent emotional bond created by nursing, not only between mother and child but between all members of the family. I am currently submitting it to film festivals.

William and Santiago Simultaneous (5 minutes, 2016) http://williamandsantiago.com/
This short documentary asks a question millions of parents ask themselves: just how alike are my children? I filmed my sons reaching the same milestones during the boys’ first year of life and placed them side by side on the screen so audiences can see how the boys’ individual journeys mirror each other. Besides providing a meditation on how siblings grow up, the film is a joyful look at what it’s like to make sense of the world for the first time.

Vanishing Borders (90 minutes, 2014) http://vanishingbordersfilm.com/
This feature documentary showcases the lives of four immigrant women living in New York City, who transform their communities with their work. The film provides a personal and complex portrayal of immigration in contrast to the abstract and generalized representations often found in the mainstream media.It has screened at seven film festivals, seven universities, and been featured on various press outlets.

Scholarly Publications

“Family Archives and the Rhetoric of Loss.” Provocations: Reconstructing the Archive. Eds. Patrick Berry, Gail E. Hawisher, and Cynthia L. Selfe. Logan, UT: Computers and Composition Digital P/Utah State UP, 2016. Web. http://www.presenttensejournal.org/editorial/vol-5-2-special-issue-on-race-rhetoric-and-the-state/

“Vanishing Fronteras: A Call for Documentary Filmmaking in Cultural Rhetorics (con la ayuda de Anzaldúa).” Enculturation: a Journal of Rhetoric, Writing, and Culture 21 (2016). Web. http://www.enculturation.net/vanishing-fronteras

“Introduction to Race, Rhetoric, and the State Special Issue” with Donnie Johnson Sackey. Present Tense: A Journal of Rhetoric in Society 5.2 (Fall 2015). Web. http://www.presenttensejournal.org/editorial/vol-5-2-special-issue-on-race-rhetoric-and-the-state/ 

Selected Courses Taught

WRA 805: Histories and Theories of Rhetorics
WRA 891: Academic Memoirs Across Media
MI 211: Documentary History and Theory
WRA 225: Introduction to Multimedia Writing: Digital Video Composing
WRA 260: Rhetoric, Persuasion, and Culture
WRA 360: Visual Rhetoric
WRA 260: Rhetoric, Persuasion, Culture