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Eric Hoenes del Pinal, 2021-10-18

Identifier: HV-HO0003

Scope and Contents

Dr. Eric Hoenes, Assistant Professor in Religious Studies at UNC Charlotte, describes his life experiences as an immigrant in the United States, his connections to his country of birth, and his educational and professional path. Dr. Hoenes outlines how he immigrated to the United States as a child from Guatemala in 1983 to escape the violence of a civil war. He relates the harrowing experience of his uncle, who fled Guatemala to escape persecution, but also his own consistent connection to his country of birth. He describes how his family first moved to Washington D.C. and then settled in San Francisco, California. After completing his BA at Boston University Dr. Hoenes studied for his PhD in Anthropology at the University of California San Diego. He discusses how Guatemala became a major focus of his research and his interest in the various languages that are spoken there. He relates how he worked at New York University before moving to Charlotte, North Carolina where he joined the faculty of the Religious Studies department in 2010. He describes a brief but impactful period of work at the University of Arkansas before getting a tenure track position at UNC Charlotte. Dr. Hoenes speaks at length about Charlotte as a place to live, how culturally international the city has become, and his appreciation of ethnic grocery stores and restaurants. He notes his connection to local historian Tom Hanchett, who co-wrote an article with him about local foodways. Dr. Hoenes discusses what he would like to see at UNC Charlotte to better serve the Latinx community, including more intentional outreach to Latinx populations in local high schools, more representation of Latinx populations at an administrative level, and a more significant focus on National Hispanic Heritage Month on campus.


  • Creation: 2021-10-18


Language of Materials

From the Collection:

The material is in English

Conditions Governing Access

Original audiovisual materials are closed to patron use. Please contact Special Collections to request the creation of use copies for particular items; requests will be accommodated when possible. The remaining materials are open for research.

Biographical Note

Eric Hoenes was a 46-year-old man at the time of the interview, which took place over Zoom in Charlotte, North Carolina. He was born in 1975 in Guatemala. He was educated at Boston University and the University of California San Diego and was employed as a Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.


51 Minutes

Repository Details

Part of the Oral Histories, J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives, UNC Charlotte Repository

Atkins Library, UNC Charlotte
9201 University City Blvd
Charlotte NC 28223 United States

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