Latin American, Caribbean, and Latino Studies

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Hampshire College Event: Cuban Scholar book Talk

6:00PM, East lecture hall, Franklin Patterson Hall, Hampshire College

Hampshire College's Cuba Program is pleased to invite the public to a bilingual book reading from Mirta’s latest novel, The Bleeding Wound (Ella sangra por la herida). Translation will be provided by Sara Cooper, Professor of Spanish and Multicultural Gender Studies at California State University, Chico and translator of The Bleeding Wound. Refreshments and hors d'oeuvres will be served.

Short Bio of  Mirta Yañez:
Mirta Yáñez is Hampshire College’s fall 2014 visiting Cuban scholar. Before devoting herself completely to writing, she was a professor at the University of Havana. She is considered one of the most relevant intellectuals of her generation, and has excelled in practically every genre she has tried: poetry, short fiction, novel, and essay. She is a four-time winner of the coveted Critics’ Prize in Cuba.

A brief description of The Bleeding Wound (Ella sangra por la herida):
“A novel of postmodern transcendence and a painful recuperation of memory, with dark humor and irreverence The Bleeding Wound reveals the reality of Cuba—in the heyday of the Revolution and today… Within its complex structure, a concert of diverse voices narrates the compelling sagas of a generation of Cubans who embraced the 1959 socialist revolution in their adolescence, as well as today's twenty-somethings who inherited its boons and its banes. The common question asked throughout the novel is two-fold: where are we now? how did we get here?” - Sara Cooper

Past Events

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

Strong Constitutions: Social-Cognitive Origins of the Separation of Powers

Maxwell A. Cameron

4:45-6pm in Paino Lecture Room, Beneski Building, Amherst College

Sponsored by the Amherst College Political Science Department, the Lamont Lecture Fund, and the Lurcy Lecture Fund

This event is free and open to the public

cameron, maxwellMaxwell A. Cameron (Ph.D., California, Berkeley, 1989) specializes in comparative politics (Latin America) and international political economy.  He recently published Strong Constitutions (Oxford University Press, 2013) and will come to Amherst to speak about it. Cameron’s previous publications include Democracy and Authoritarianism in Peru (St. Martin's 1994), The Peruvian Labyrinth (Penn State University Press, 1997), The Political Economy of North American Free Trade (McGill-Queen's 1993), Democracy and Foreign Policy (Carleton, 1995), To Walk Without Fear: The Global Movement to Ban Landmines (Oxford, 1998), The Making of NAFTA: How the Deal Was Done (Cornell, 2000), Latin America's Left Turns: Politics, Policies and Trajectories of Change (Lynne Rienner, 2010), Democracia en la Region Andina (IEP, 2010), and New Institutions for Participatory Democracy in Latin America (Palgrave, 2012).  As Director of the Centre for the Study of Democratic Institutions he coordinated the organization of the first UBC Summer Institute for Future Legislators. In 2011-12 Cameron was a Distinguished Scholar in Residence at the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies (2011-12) where he organized a colloquium series Aristotle’s idea of “practical wisdom” and its relevance in politics today.

Monday, November 18th, 2013

"Duvalier is Using the Gay Issue As a Diversion for the Poverty and Exploitation"

A History of the Early Years of HIV/AIDS in Haiti and the United States

4pm, 519 thompson hall, umass amherst


Friday, November 8th, 2013

Colonozación, enganche e industria cafetalera. Una mirada comparada sobre Tapachula (Soconusco-México) y Líbano (Tolima-Colombia) (in Spanish!)

3pm in Thompson 519, umass amherst

with Renzo Ramírez Bacca, PhD, Profesor Titular, Universidad Nacional de Colombia

Colonización enganche e industria cafetalera. Una mirada comparada sobre Tapachula( Soconusco-México) y Líbano(Tolima-Colombia)

Monday, November 4th, 2013

An Evening with Daniel Alarcón

7pm in gamble auditorium, mount holyoke college

Daniel Alarcon Poster

Monday, March 4th, 2013

Frontiers/Fronteras/Fronteiras in Latin American/Latin@ Queer and
Sexuality Studies Symposium

9:00AM–12:30PM, 1:30PM–5:00PM in Herter Hall 301, Umass Amherst
Panel 1: State of Political Movements - 9:00AM to 12:30PM

"Queering Indigeneity in the Andes"
Tara Daly, Mt. Holyoke College

It is not altogether common to hear indigenous discourse intersect with queer
discourse in the Andes. In late June 2008, there was a three-day Cumbre social de mujeres in Sucre, Bolivia, a summit that was attended by some 500 women, more than
half who were in polleras, the traditional indigenous skirt. During the summit, there
was ongoing translation from Spanish to both Quechua and Aymara. At the end of the
three days, during the final consensus building process, a heated debate broke out
about the rights of “all women” as to be posed in the new constitution under Evo
Morales. A minority of women, about five in total, argued that “lesbian” belonged under
the umbrella term of “women,” while a large group of women claimed that it was not
time to “complicate the issue” of indigenous and women’s rights with queer
perspectives. This incident reveals the ongoing fraught relationship between the rights
of indigenous peoples, women, and queer populations as they play out in popular
discourse. My talk will trace some of the points of entry to a conversation in the Andes
around the overlaps and disconnects between queer discourse and indigeneity,
touching upon the colonial period and today’s decolonial movements in the Andes.

"The State of/in Movements: Decolonial Justice and Sexual Politics in Ecuador's Citizen Revolution"
Amy Lind, University of Cincinnati

This paper looks at the work that activists from various social movements have done
to resignify key concepts such as family, nation, and economic well-being as part of the work of social, economic, and political transformation in Ecuador. In particular, I
explore ways that both the process of such resignification as well as the
resignifications themselves open up spaces for the coming together of LGBTI, feminist,
migrants' rights, and indigenous struggles in the context of the "post-neoliberal"
Citizen Revolution. I look particularly closely at the ways that queerness play into new
state logics, such as in how "LGBTI rights" are embraced by the state - as in the
appointment of "out" lesbian activist Carina Vance as Minister of Health in January
2012 - while more traditional social movement demands, such as reproductive and
indigenous rights, remain marginalized and mostly "outside" the Citizen Revolution,
and heteronormativity continues to underly state policies and assistance programs.
What is at stake in the state's seemingly contradictory embrace of LGBT struggles and
ambivalent stance towards feminist and anti-racist struggles? I draw out the
implications of this study for Ecuador's proposed post-capitalist and decolonial future,
and for broader discussions of decoloniality and the Left turn in the Américas.

“Trans Participation in Latin American and Caribbean Lesbian Feminist Gatherings”
Pascha Bueno-Hansen, University of Delaware

The debate regarding the participation of trans explosively marked the VIII Latin
American and Caribbean Lesbian Feminist gathering/Encuentro Lésbico-Feminista
Latinoamericano y Caribeño (ELFLAC) in 2010. This rupture resulted in two separate
gatherings in 2012, the EFLAC in Copacabana, Bolivia and the inauguration of the new Encuentro Les/Bi/Trans Feminista in Asunción, Paraguay. After fourteen years of
successful gatherings/encuentros, the regional lesbian feminist movement's
fragmentation demands a reflection on the differing political positions and underlying
external pressures. Those that take a hard-line against trans inclusion, such as the
Peruvian lesbian feminists, are easily dismissed as retrograde in that cling to biological
essentialism. Yet, the story is much more complicated. Besides the spectacular
expression of transphobia, this paper considers the role of funders, power
asymmetries in the circulation of political agendas regarding queer/sexuality, the
influence of national contexts in determining political positions at the regional level,
and the problematic dynamics internal to the ELFLAC.

"We Feel That The Gay Community Can Take Care Of Its Own": Miami’s Politically Charged Movement And The Queer Marielitos' Assimilation, 1980 - 1995
Julio Capó

Capó's paper examines how a newly politicized gay and lesbian community in Miami
linked its own struggle for inclusion and acceptance to the experiences of recently
arrived Marielitos, a new wave of Cuban immigrants purged from the island. The
Marielitos--many of whom the Cuban government deemed "undesirable" and "counterrevolutionary" as a result of their sexual and gender deviancy?-renegotiated
their own identities as queer individuals, Cuban exiles, and transnational subjects torn
between two nation-states that refused to fully embrace them. While their queer
identities secured their exit from the island, an allegiance from their queer "brothers
and sisters" struggling for political legitimacy in the United States ultimately helped
them assimilate into their new home.

Panel 2: State of the Field - 1:30PM to 5:00PM

"The Lives of Lupe/Lupín: A Queer Mexican Story in the Time of Neoliberalism"
Margaret Cerullo, Hampshire College

In our paper we recount the life history of a Mexican hombre/mujer (man/woman)
who was brutally murdered in her home village in 2007. We propose that this story
can best be understood by queering the framework of violence against women or
feminicide and emphasizing the impact of neoliberalism and transnational migration on
the gender order. Attention to the ways in which “queerness” has entered the
vernacular discourses of transnational migration reveals little-noticed dimensions of
the violence of the epochal transformations through which we are all—differentially—

"Engaging Mainstream Social Behavioral Research on Latina/o Sexualities in the United States"
Marysol Asencio, University of Connecticut

Drawing from the 2005-2008 Ford-funded initiative which mapped Latina/o
sexualities research in the social science and behavioral sciences, the talk will focus on the empirical and theoretical limitations in the current state of mainstream Latina/o
sexualities research as a whole. While there has been more interest on the subject of
sexuality across traditional disciplines, a recent expansion of mainstream sexuality and
sexual health research with Latina/o populations, there are also significant gaps in
subjects addressed, the populations studied, a continuing uncritical engagement of
static "cultural" models, and a lack of hemispheric perspectives and exchanges. The
ability to significantly alter the future of state of the field will need to address current
funding streams supporting research, academic constraints, and advancing the
prominence of critical Latina/o and Latin American sexualities scholarship in the field.

"Toward a Representative Bureaucracy: Capacity-building and Sexual Rights Activism in Brazil"
Rafael de la Dehasa

“Capacity-building” has become a mainstay of development and public health discourse and public policy in recent decades, referring variably to an array of often
contradictory goals, expectations and prescriptions, including the transmission of
knowledge, skills or infrastructure; the production of organizational capacities; the
validation and incorporation into policy of local or experiential knowledges; and the
promotion of certain types of subjectivity (e.g. citizen; gay) through practices of self, as
in workshops to promote self-esteem. This paper explores the multi-stranded
genealogy of capacity-building as a technique of governmentality that has transformed
the structure and orientation of sexual rights activism in Brazil. Highlighting pitfalls
and tensions inherent to its realization, the paper locates its emergence at the
crosscurrents of both new left demands for community participation and new right
calls for a retrenchment and reinvention of the state.

"Me Pongo y Me Quito: Articulations of Gender and Sexuality in Latina/o Popular Music"
Micaela Díaz-Sanchez, Mt. Holyoke College

Co-organizers: WGSS and CLACLS, with support from the Five College Council on
Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies and the Horwitz Endowment. Cosponsors include the Sociology Department, Communication, Stonewall Center, and
College of Public Health at UMass, Five College Latin American, Caribbean, and
Latino Studies Council, Mt. Holyoke Gender Studies and Latin American Studies, and
the Hampshire College Feminist Studies Program and Latin@ and Latin American

Monday, March 11, 2013

Poetry Reading with Raul Zurita

4-6 PM, 115 Fayerweather Hall, Amherst College

Raul Zurita, winner of the National Literature Prize of Chile and the Pablo Neruda Prize, is one of the most widely acclaimed and innovative Latin American poets writing today. His books in English translation include "Anteparadise" (translated by Jack Schmitt), "Purgatory" (translated by Anna Deeny), "INRI" (translated by William Rowe) and "Song for His Disappeared Love" (translated by Daniel Borzutzky). Zurita Lives in Chile.

Monday, March 25, 2013

The Bolivian Landless Movement and Indigenous Politics

Mount Holyoke and Hampshire College
Nicole Fabricant, assistant professor of anthropology at Towson University, is author of the recently published book, Mobilizing Bolivia’s Displaced: Indigenous Politics and the Struggle Over Land (University of North Carolina Press).

The election of Evo Morales as Bolivias president in 2005 made him the first indigenous head of state in the Americas, a watershed victory for social activists and Native peoples. El Movimiento Sin Tierra (MST), or the Landless Peasant Movement, played a significant role in bringing Morales to power. Following in the tradition of the well-known Brazilian Landless movement, Bolivias MST activists seized unproductive land and built farming collectives as a means of resistance to large-scale export-oriented agriculture. In Mobilizing Bolivias Displaced, Nicole Fabricant illustrates how landless peasants politicized indigeneity to shape grassroots land politics, reform the state, and secure human and cultural rights for Native peoples.

Fabricant takes readers into the personal spaces of home and work, on long bus rides, and into meetings and newly built MST settlements to show how, in response to displacement, Indigenous identity is becoming ever more dynamic and adaptive. In addition to advancing this rich definition of indigeneity, she explores the ways in which Morales has found himself at odds with Indigenous activists and, in so doing, shows that Indigenous people have a far more complex relationship to Morales than is generally understood.

Monday, February 11th, 2013

The Sense of Sound: Translating Robert Frost into Portuguese

4pm, w.e.b. dubois library, room 2601

Lecture to be followed by a reception.

We are pleased to invite you to the inaugural lecture by CLACLS first Fulbright Brazilian Studies Chair. Prof. Marcus Vinicius de Freitas is professor at the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG), located in Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil, and is presently teaching a course at UMass which reconstructs aspects of the mutual visions between Brazil and the US through the reading of travel accounts, memoirs, scientific reports, fiction, painting and photography produced by American travelers in Brazil, and by Brazilian travelers in the US. The period covered is from 1860 to 1930, crucial to understand how each country entered Modernity. From the Brazilian point of view, America plays a key role as the modern nation that Brazil aims at and refuses to be. Cultural, political, economic, scientific and artistic issues are taken into consideration throughout the course.

Professor de Freitas holds a Ph.D. in Portuguese and Brazilian Studies from Brown
University (2000 – CAPES Fellowship); M.A. in Brazilian Literature from Federal University of Minas Gerais (1990 – CAPES Fellowship); B.A. in Portuguese Language/Luso-Brazilian Literature from Federal University of Minas Gerais (1985). In 2009, he developed a postdoctoral project at University of Campinas, granted by a CNPq fellowship. From 2010 on, he has been Full Professor of Literary Theory at Federal University of Minas Gerais, where he has been teaching since 1992. Marcus Freitas has published 6 books, 14 book chapters, 25 Scholarly Articles; and has also addressed 75 Invited Lectures and Keynote Speeches. Marcus Freitas has received three long term Academic Fellowships (CAPES and CNPq), three long term Research Grants (CNPq), and 15 honors, which includes an Honorary Mention by São Paulo Literary Prize (2009) for his novel Peixe Morto (Belo Horizonte: Autêntica, 2008); the PETROBRAS Cultural Prize and Fellowship (2007) to write the mentioned novel; and Honorary Mention by Jabuti Prize (2002) for his book Hartt: Expeditions in Brazil, 1865-1878 (São Paulo: Metalivros, 2001); and also the nomination as Phi Beta Kappa Society Member (2000). Areas of expertise; Literary Theory; Brazilian Literature; Comparative Literature; Imperial Brazilian History; Modern Brazilian History.