Latinx Counterpublics

deadline for submissions: 
October 30, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
Latinx Studies Association Biennial Conference / University of Notre Dame / July 15-18, 2020
contact email: 

In the U.S. public sphere, Latinxs are often reduced to mere numbers—to checkmarks on census forms, data points in demographic surveys, and statistics about economic sectors. However, Latinxs cannot be contained in these quantitative frameworks; through our experiences at the thresholds of the Americas, we have developed distinctive approaches to individual and collective life. With the U.S. public sphere in a “time of crisis” (to invoke our conference’s theme), this panel seeks new scholarship on Latinx counterpublics—on the social networks that have taken shape as Latinxs have looked at, listened to, and engaged with media. In the theoretical tradition that extends from Nancy Fraser to Michael Warner to José Esteban Muñoz, this panel centers on an open-ended provocation: How have Latinxs participated in (or been excluded from) the U.S. public sphere, and how have we created (or turned our backs on) our own counterpublics? Beyond that, this panel raises a series of historical questions: How have Latinxs employed elite aesthetic forms (like the novel and the lyric), and how have we experimented with popular practices (such as crónicas and corridos)? How have Latinxs appropriated old media technologies (from the pen to the printing press), and how have we invented new communication strategies (like el paquete semanal)? How have Latinxs reinforced existing identity categories, and how have we drawn new lines of belonging? How have diasporic webs sustained relationships across space and over time, and how have deeply-rooted communities rallied around site-specific concerns? Finally, how do the preceding inquiries reveal possibilities and/or problems in media studies, performance studies, print culture studies, and other intellectual formations? 

Please submit a 150-word abstract and a brief bio to Carlos Alonso Nugent (carlos.nugent@yale.edu) by October 30th, 2019.