Narrating Contemporary Mexico: An Interdisciplinary Approach

deadline for submissions: 
September 30, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
NeMLA 2021
contact email: 

Laura Pavón (Graduate Center, CUNY)

Matteo Cantarello (William & Mary) 

Two centuries after its independence (1821-2021), Mexico still plays a pivotal role in the Western hemisphere. Because of its relationships with both Latin American countries and its northern neighbor, Mexico emerges as a key nation for hemispheric and global contemporary issues such as migration, international relations, and transnational crime. Furthermore, the country’s prolific cultural panorama represents a crucial locus of enunciation, borrowing from Walter Mignolo, to question the status of colonial, post-colonial, neo-colonial, and de-colonial practices that interest not only Mexico but the entire hemisphere. To give an example, feminist thought in Latin America, which has its roots in US-based Chicana feminism among other influences, is one such locus of enunciation that illustrates both the arrival and (re)signification of cultural phenomena in Mexico, and their transmission to other parts of Latin America.

This panel invites contributions that discuss the critical role Mexico has had in recent years from different perspectives and using distinct approaches. The goal is to analyze and discuss contemporary Mexico through the lenses of race, gender, national versus regional identity, language(s), or aesthetics, to name only a few. The interdisciplinarity approach of this panel will cast light on a bi-directional trajectory, outward and inward: while we will explore the bridge-making position of Mexico in the Western hemisphere, at the same time we will scrutinize Mexico through its own narratives.

Examples of questions and topics this panel will consider are:

· Aesthetics: of violence, race, gender;

· Racial, gender, linguistic, religious issues;

· Colonial, post-colonial, neo-colonial, de-colonial approaches;

· Migration, organized crime and narco-traffic, discourses of violence;

· Extractivism and environmental approaches;

· Intermediality, digital archives

In line with the multi-perspective and interdisciplinary approach of the panel, we welcome contributions from literary studies, cultural studies, film and media studies, women’s and gender studies, environmental humanities, and public humanities.