(Un)Contained Latin American Studies: Borders, Archives, and Vessels Humanities 265ABC (2020-2021) Core Grad Course with Dr. Rachel O'Toole

Department: Latin American Studies

Post Date: March 12, 2020

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(Un)Contained Latin American Studies: Borders, Archives, and Vessels
Humanities 265ABC (2020-2021) Issues in Latin American Studies Course code: 28671
Dr. Rachel O’Toole (History Department) rotoole@uci.edu

A year-long foundation workshop on Latin American Studies, the course provokes us to ask who and what contains the peoples of the Americas? The course surveys the history, the geography, and the economies of Latin America while encouraging participants to deconstruct the legacy of area studies logic. By exploring how people of Latin America theorized, negotiated, and resisted, we will interrogate disciplinary methods of literary studies, history, anthropology, political science, sociology, legal studies, and performance theory to ask ourselves: What makes sense about Latin America to Latin Americans?

Fall 2020: Borders & Contagion

Rooted in the documentary work of filmmaker Dr. Mael Vizcarra (Emory University) from Tijuana (Mexico), in the fall we will interrogate scholarly, political, and historical borders as well as the people, ideas, and spirits who crossed.

October: Who says it is Latin American Studies?
November: Everyday Boundaries and Borderlands
December: Contagion and Containment
Image from Dr. Mael Vizcarra film, La Línea

Winter 2021: Archives & Freedom

In the winter, with the visit of literary scholar Dr. Sara Johnson and historian Dr. John Marquez, we will investigate how archives can be reclaimed by those who are filed away by the state, the police, and the church.

January: The Law and the Making of Counterarchives
February: Revolutionary Blackness
March: The State: Paper Archives, Truth Commissions, and Shifting Wikileaks
Image “Festival of Our Lady of the Rosary, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, ca. 1770s,” by Carlos Julião (Courtesy of Slavery Images Database)
Spring 2021: Vessels & Containment
In the spring, with the visit of Dr. Mary Weismantel (Northwestern University), we consider how archeologists, anthropologists, and curators cannot contain queer identities, scientific knowledge, or natural forces that surge throughout the Americas.

April: Moche Sex Pots and Queer Identities:

May: Whose Science?: Population Control, Epidemic Disease, and Good Death
June: Water Wars: Floods, Famine, and Climate Change
Image: Larco Museum, Peru, Moche, 200 – 600 A.D.

The class will meet three times a quarter for three hours each meeting with our first meeting on Friday, October 2 at 1 p.m. (location to be announced). During each quarter, we will discuss and present the readings, films, and multimedia sources. Participants will engage as presenters or commentators during the symposia of invited guest scholars. Students will write short essays responding to the readings, compose extensive annotated bibliographies, write longer papers based on original research, develop a teaching module, or a combination of these options.

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