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Demetria Martínez Papers

Identifier: MSS-586-BC

Scope and Content

This initial part of Demetria Martínez' collection is composed primarily of news clippings documenting her involvement with the Sanctuary Movement in New Mexico. There is some biographical material, as well as articles written by Ms. Martínez, and a folder with news clippings and reviews relating to her publications Mother Tongue and Three Times a Woman.

Material added to collection December 2023 containing recorded interviews of Luis S. Martínez (Demetria's grandfather) and Teodoro Martínez (Demetria's father) along with music recordings collected and edited by Dr. Enrique Lamadrid.

(See note below in "Additional Description" for information on unprocessed material in this collection.)


  • 1988-ongoing


Language of Materials

English Spanish

Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of CSWR material is allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for compliance with all copyright, privacy, and libel laws. Permission is required for publication or distribution.

Biographical Information

Demetria Martínez was born in Albuquerque, NM on July 10, 1960. She graduated from Albuquerque High School in 1978 and received her B.A. from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University in 1982. While at Princeton, Martínez took courses in religious social ethics at Princeton Theological Seminary. She began writing poetry after graduating from Princeton. Martínez' writings contain a mix of personal and political themes, focusing heavily on the sanctuary movement to aid Salvadoran refugees and on interpersonal relationships. In 1987, Martínez was indicted on charges related to smuggling Central American refugees into the United States. In 1988, she was acquitted of those charges.

Martínez began working as a journalist in 1980 with a summer internship at the Albuquerque News. She was a reporter-intern for Time, Inc. in 1981. She worked as a writer for the Albuquerque Journal from the mid-1980's until the late 1980's. In the mid- 1980's, she also began working for the National Catholic Reporter. In 1989, Demetria Martínez' first collection of poetry, Turning was published. Some of her other writings have been published in various anthologies, including Three Times a Woman, After Aztlán, Latino Poets of the Nineties, Las Mujeres Hablan, Voces: An Anthology of Nuevo Mexicano Writers, and Infinite Divisions. Her first novel, MotherTongue was published in 1994 and won the 1994 Western States Book Award for Fiction. Other books include, two collections of poetry, Breathing Between the Lines and The Devil’s Workshop; short stories, The Block Captain’s Daughter; and a collection of essays, Confessions of a Berlitz Tape Chicana. Demetria is currently living in La Cienega, New Mexico with her wife, Camilla Bustamante, and is working on a collection of poems - Acts of Furtherance.


1 box (.26 cu. ft.)

Related Material

Hispanic Writers Collection. Center for Southwest Research, University Libraries, University of New Mexico Albuquerque Center for Peace and Justice Records. Center for Southwest Research, University Libraries, University of New Mexico Cynthia Farah Writers of the Southwest Photograph Collection Addition 1. Center for Southwest Research, University Libraries, University of New Mexico

Unprocessed Material

Inquire with reference staff for access to unprocessed material, 6 boxes, B3-3A. Researcher required to sign Request For Unprocessed Archival Material form.

Demetria Martínez's journals restricted until 2060.
Finding Aid of the Demetria Martínez Papers, 1988-[ongoing]
Processed by B. Silbergleit
©2000, ©2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • June 28, 2004: PUBLIC "-//University of New Mexico::Center for Southwest Research//TEXT (US::NmU::MSS 586 BC::Demetria Martinez Papers)//EN" "nmu1mss586bc.sgml" converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository

University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131