2015: Subjects of and for Central American-American Studies


This LSGS workshop, "Subjects of and for Central American-American Studies," mapped the broad conceptual parameters of Central American-American Studies and explored them through history, cultural and literary studies, and humanistic social sciences, as well as interdisciplinary frameworks. Engaged with this transnational U.S. population, "Subjects of and for Central American-American Studies" aimed to proceed with the critical baton of academic conversation started after the historic 2012 Teresa Lozano Long conference at The University of Texas at Austin on “Central Americans and the Latino/a Landscape: New Configurations of Latina/o America," and the summer 2013 special issue of Latino Studies on "U.S. Central Americans: Representations, Agency and Communities." Questions that were worked through included: what is "Central American-American" (and the very language that names it), how is it brought into view, what is its past and future, how is it dialoguing with Latino/a Studies, and are there new geographic sites and analytic nests of possibilities? The speakers for this event were: Arturo Arias​, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Professor in the Humanities at the University of California, Merced, on "TransMayas Transitioning: Vicissitudes of Racialized Indigeneities When Crossing the Line”; Maritza Cárdenas, Assistant Professor of English at The University of Arizona, on “Re-cognizing the Politics and Production of Central American(-American) Identities”; Cary Cordova, Assistant Professor of American Studies at The University of Texas at Austin, on “Marking Space: Interpreting Central American-American Spaces in the U.S. Landscape”; Kency Cornejo, Assistant Professor at the University of New Mexico on “Exposing The Criminalization of Central American (-Americans) Through Contemporary Art”; Kirsten Silva Gruesz, Professor of Literature at the University of California at Santa Cruz on “Ante / Anti- Martí: Irisarri and the Backward Futurity of Central American (Latino) Studies”; and Claudia Milian, Associate Professor of Romance Studies at Duke University, on “The Mesoamerican Corridor, Central American Transits, and Latino/a Becomings.”