University of Pittsburgh
March 16, 2004

Pitt's Fourth International Conference in Latin American Cultural Studies to Be Held March 18-20

Conference explores the colonial legacy of Latin American and Caribbean nations
Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH—The crises facing many Latin American and Caribbean nations are intrinsically tied to their colonial legacies of economic exploitation and social and racial injustice. This important connection will be explored in a conference, titled "Race, Coloniality, and Social Transformation in Latin America and the Caribbean," taking place from March 18 to 20 at the University Club, 123 University Place, Oakland.

"One of the premises of the conference is that for the millions of marginalized and disenfranchised Latin Americans the only way out of their predicament is through creative change and transformation of the socio-political structures that determine their quality of life," said Jerome Branche, Pitt assistant professor of Latin American literature and cultural studies and a conference coordinator.

Conference participants will address such topics as the Zapatista rebellion in Mexico, the troubled history of Haiti's dictatorship, the recent democratic successes achieved by the indigenous movement in Bolivia, and the efforts to dismantle racism in Brazil, among others.

Martinican poet, novelist, and philosopher Edouard Glissant will be the conference's main speaker. Glissant will give a lecture, titled "Creolization: Some Considerations" at 7 p.m. March 18. Other notable speakers include Sara Castro-Klaren, a professor in the Department of Romantic Languages at Johns Hopkins University; internationally renowned Peruvian anthropologist Luis Millones, professor emeritus of Universidad Nacional San Cristóbal de Huamanga and professor of the Literature Doctorate program of the Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos; and Mexican political scientist Carlos Montemayor.

The conference is being sponsored by Pitt Associate Provost for Research George Klingzing and Pitt's Africana Studies program, Center for Latin American Studies, University Center for International Studies, School of Arts & Sciences, Cultural Studies Program, and Department of Hispanic Languages and Literatures, as well as the Roggiano Fund. In addition to the scholarly presentations, the free conference, which is open to the public, includes a book sale and exhibition featuring materials by the International Institute of Ibero-American Literature.

To view the complete conference program and list of participants, visit

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