A colleague once said to me, ‘‘A book will break your heart.’’ Although the
written book has broken my heart many times over, the book’s many
unwritten texts tell a story of deep and fulfilling connections with col-
leagues, family, and friends who have enriched a decade of my life and
work. First and foremost, this project would not have been possible were
it not for the generosity of the women of mec who took me into their
lives, work, and world and taught me so many valuable lessons about
solidarity, justice, and the power of collectivism. Though confidentiality
does not permit me to thank the women of the mec collective by name, I
am honored and humbled to tell their story and can only hope that these
pages do it justice. The woman I call Sara Rodríguez deserves my deepest
and heartfelt gratitude. Her courage, commitment to social justice, and
tireless e√orts give me hope for the possibility of a more equitable world.
The research for this project was funded by a Fulbright Study Abroad
Fellowship, the University of California Humanities Institute, the Uni-
versity of California Pacific Rim Research Program, Soroptimist Inter-
national, and Sigma Xi. Generous financial support for the writing of this
book came from the University of California, Davis, and The College of
William and Mary.
There would be no book without Gül Ozyegin. She read countless
drafts of the entire manuscript, providing comments and feedback with
sisterly patience and love. During the long revisions, she pulled me back
from the brink of despair many times. Diane Wolf believed in this book
well before it was written and has always believed in me even when I lost
faith in myself. Kate Slevin deserves my warmest thanks for keeping this
project and myself afloat during the years it took to write this book. Her
reminders to be ‘‘kind to myself’’ mattered in infinite ways. Michael
Lewis and Tom Linneman consistently awed me with their good-natured
willingness to read the manuscript—again. Ronald Köpke’s unflagging
encouragement kept this project alive through these years. This book has
benefited from his intellect, his frank criticism, and his unwavering gen-
Previous Page Next Page