Latin Americanists Convene at UW-Eau Claire

Barbara Arnold

Latin America, which makes up 13 percent of the earth’s surface, covers 7.4 million square miles from Baja California to Tierra de Fuego. On Oct. 12-13, approximately 60 Latin American scholars from the U.S. with origins in Cuba, Mexico, Spain, Peru, and other locations, will transform the Davies Center at UW-Eau Claire into a veritable buffet of Latin American culture, language, and socio-political and socio-economic movements. The conference, “The Role of Latin American Studies in Breaking Barriers and Bridging Divides,” is organized by the North Central Council of Latin Americanists. Friday evening will feature keynote speaker Marcena Gómez-Barris, chairperson of the Department of Social Science and Cultural Studies and director of the Global South Center at the Pratt Institute in New York. She will present ideas from her 2018 book “Beyond the Pink Tide,” which explores the perception of a turn towards left-wing government in Latin American democracies. Thirteen panel discussions, conducted in either Spanish or English, are free and open to the public and cover a diverse range of topics, including race and ethnicity; teaching Spanish for the health professions; poetic reconstruction of urban spaces in the Caribbean; recent history and context of Nicaragua; use of technology for the development and preservation of language; development and the environment; collective mobilization and political engagement of Latinos in the U.S.; and more. For details about sessions open to the public, visit https://tinyurl.com/NCCLAatUWEC.

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