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Race and Indigeneity

Lent 2018 Seminar Programme and Readings

The dates, times and locations of each seminar are available on the teaching schedule for this module.

Seminar 6: Race and Gender in Brazil: Bus 174 (Laurie Denyer Willis) 

This seminar brings together an attention to how race and gender are intertwined, with a focus on race, masculinity, and ‘favela’ life in Brazil’s cities. We consider how race and gender are mutually constructed within and outside of favelas and how men – and women – negotiate their identities. Themes will include intersectionality, the racialization and criminalization of bodies and sex, the impacts of violence on men’s lives, along with the ways that gender, race and nation intertwine. We will consider these questions in the context of the much criticized notion of Brazil as a so called ‘racial democracy’. To bring all these issues together, we will screen the Brazilian film Bus 174 before the seminar, and then in the seminar discuss how these issues relate to both the film and the readings. The guiding question is: How do race and gender impact conceptions of oneself, ‘the other’, and belonging in contemporary Brazil?

Essential reading:

  • Thornton Dill, Bonnie and Zambrana, Ruth Enid (eds). Emerging Intersections: Race, Class and Gender in Theory, Policy and Practice. Forward and Chapter 1 (Moodle)
  • Perry, Keisha-Khan. 2013. Black Women Against the Land Grab: The Fight for Racial Justice in Brazil. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. ​
  • Penglase, Ben. (2010). "The Owner of the Hill: Masculinity and Drug-trafficking in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil." The Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology, 15:2, 317-337 (Moodle)
  • Roth-Gordon, Jennifer. (2009). "The Language That Came Down the Hill: Slang, Crime, and Citizenship in Rio de Janeiro." American Anthropologist, 111:1, 57-68 (Moodle)

Seminar 7: Mestizaje and the everyday life of racism (Mónica Moreno Figueroa)​

In this seminar, we will reflect on the ‘logics of mestizaje’ (mixture) and how such logics organise the experience of racism amongst mestizo/national populations in Mexico and Latin America, which are always in tension with indigenous, black and other racialised groups and imaginaries. Using an intersectional analysis that considers race and gender as vital in the experience of racism, as well as a perspective on institutional racism, we will explore the variety of ways that pervasive, everyday racism enable the reproduction of social inequalities.

Essential reading: (all on Moodle)

  • Martínez Novo C (2013) "Racismo, amor y desarrollo comunitario." Íconos-Revista de Ciencias Sociales  (4): 98-110
  • Martínez Novo C (2004) "'We Are against the Government, Although We Are the Government': State Institutions and Indigenous Migrants in Baja California in the 1990s." Journal of Latin American Anthropology 9 (2): 352-381
  • Moreno Figueroa MG (2008) "Historically Rooted Transnationalism: Slightedness and the Experience of Racism in Mexican Families." Journal of Intercultural Studies 29 (3): 283-297
  • Moreno Figueroa MG & Saldívar E (2015) "'We Are Not Racists, We Are Mexicans': Privilege, Nationalism and Post-Race Ideology in Mexico." Critical Sociology
  • Saldívar E (2011) "Everyday Practices of Indigenismo: An Ethnography of Anthropology and the State in Mexico." The Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology 16 (1): 67-89

Extra reading:

  • De la Cadena M (1998) "Silent Racism and Intellectual Superiority in Peru." Bulletin of Latin American Research 17 (2): 143-164
  • De la Cadena M (2001) "Reconstructing Race: Racism, Culture and Mestizaje in Latin America." NACLA Report on the Americas XXXIV (6): 16-23​
  • Essed P (2002) "Everyday Racism." In: DT Goldberg & J Solomos (eds) A Companion to Racial and Ethnic Studies. Malden and Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, 202-21
  • Knight A (1990) "Racism, Revolution, and Indigenismo: Mexico, 1910-1940." In: R Graham (ed.) The Idea of Race in Latin America, 1870-1940. Austin: University of Texas Press, 71-113 (Moodle)
  • Lancaster RN (2003) "Skin Color, Race, and Racism in Nicaragua." In: J Stone & R Dennis (eds) Race and Ethnicity. Comparative and Theoretical Approaches. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 99-113 (Moodle)
  • Martínez Novo C & de la Torre C (2010) "Racial Discrimination and Citizenship in Ecuador's Educational System.: Latin American and Caribbean Ethnic Studies 5 (1): 1-26
  • Moreno Figueroa MG (2010) Distributed Intensities: Whiteness, Mestizaje and the Logics of Mexican Racism. Ethnicities 10 (3): 387–401
  • Moreno Figueroa MG (2011) Naming Ourselves: Recognising Racism and Mestizaje in Mexico. In: J McLaughlin, P Phillimore & D Richardson (eds) Contesting Recognition: Culture, Identity and Citizenship. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 122-143
  • Moreno Figueroa MG (2012) "'Linda Morenita': Skin Colour, Beauty and the Politics of Mestizaje in Mexico. In: C Horrocks (ed.) Cultures of Colour: Visual, Material, Textual. Oxford and New York: Berghahn Books, 167-180 (Moodle)
  • Moreno Figueroa MG (2013) "Displaced Looks: The Lived Experience of Beauty and Racism." Feminist Theory 14 (2): 137-151
  • Wade P (2009) Race and Sex in Latin America. London: Pluto
  • Wade P (2010) "The Presence and Absence of Race." Patterns of Prejudice 44 (1): 43-60

Seminar 8: ​ Race, Gender and Education in a mestizo context (María ​Moreno Parra / Gisela Carlos Fregoso)

This seminar explores race, gender, and education in Latin America. In the first part, the seminar will explore the tensions between race and gender by focusing on the experiences of indigenous women across the region. Through various case studies in Central America and the Andes we interrogate issues such as indigenous justice, social and political movements, public policies, and indigenous women’s capacity to navigate multiple forms of oppression and the politics of identity. The guiding question of the first part of the seminar is: In a wider mestizo context, what challenges do indigenous women face in advancing their own agendas and rights?

The second part of the seminar focuses on how race became invisible in policy making that aimed to reduce inequalities in Mexico. The first reading shows how, in the Mexican mestizo context of the 20th Century, race was invisible for policy makers. Instead, they employed the concept of culture in different areas such as education, where the notion of “intercultural policies” became influential. As a result, new modes of racial dynamics against indigenous populations in higher education emerged. The concept of diversity is a good example of this: at the time that a new imaginary of a “plural Mexico” was emerging, new ways of conceptualizing difference in racial terms were also coming to the fore, as the second reading demonstrates. So the guiding question of the second part of this seminar is: In a mestizo context such as Mexico, in what way did multiculturalism allow the repositioning of new political subjects, but at the same time redefine new and more subtle ways of exercising racism?

Essential reading:

  • Hernández Castillo, R. Aída. 2017. "Multiple Dialogues and Struggles for Justice: Political Genealogies of Indigenous Women in Mexico, Guatemala and Colombia." In Multiple Injustices. Indigenous Women, Law, and Political Struggle in Latin America, pp. 67-122. Tucson: The University of Arizona Press. (Moodle)
  • De Marinis, Natalia. 2017. "Intersectional Violence: Triqui Women Confront Racism, the State, and Male Leadership." In Demanding Justice and Security. Indigenous Women and Legal Pluralities in Latin America​. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press.
  • Picq, Manuela. 2010. "Trapped Between Gender and Ethnicity: Identity Politics in Ecuador." In R. Coate and M. Thiel, ​eds, Identity Politics in the Age of Globalization, pp. 31-56. Boulder: First Forum Press. (Moodle)
  • Saldívar, Émiko. 2012. "Apuntes críticos sobre etnicidad y diferencias culturales." In Alicia Castellanos Guerrero y Gisela Landázuri Benítez (coord.)​, Racismos y otras formas de intolerancia de Norte a Sur en América Latina, 49-76​. México. Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana. (Moodle)
  • Mato, Daniel. 2016. "Indigenous People in Latin America. Achievements, Challenges and Intercultural Conflicts." Journal of Intercultural Studies 37:3, 211-233. (Moodle)

Extra reading:

  • Canessa, Andrew. 2012. "Sex and the Citizen." In Intimate Indigeneities. Race, Sex, and History in the Small Spaces of Andean Life, pp. 244-280. Durham: Duke University Press. (Moodle)
  • Espinosa Miñoso, Yuderkis, Diana Gómez Correal and Karina Ochoa Muñoz, eds. 2014. Tejiendo de otro modo: Feminismo, epistemología y apuestas descoloniales en Abya-Yala. Cali: Universidad del Cauca.
  • Hernández, Aída and Andrew Canessa, eds. 2012. Complementariedades y exclusiones en Mesoamérica y los Andes. Abya Yala, British Academy and IWGIA
  • Radcliffe, Sarah. 2015. "Women, Biopolitics, and Interculturalism: Ethnic Politics and Gendered Contradictions." In Dilemmas of Difference. Indigenous Women and the Limits of Postcolonial Development Policy, pp. 193-224. Durham: Duke University Press.  (Moodle)
  • Speed, Shannon and R. Aída Hernández. 2006. Dissident Women. Gendered and Cultural Politics in Chiapas. Austin: University of Texas Press.
  • Terre Espinosa, Carlos de la. 1996. El racismo en Ecuador: Experiencias de los indios de clase media. Centro Andino de Acción Popular.
  • Zapata Silva, Claudia. 2008. “Los intelectuales indígenas y el pensamiento anticolonialista.” Discursos/ Prácticas, no. 2. sem 1, 113-140. (Moodle)

Seminar 9: Art and the Making of Indigeneity in Mexico (Alanna Cant)

This seminar considers the ways that arts, crafts and other forms of material culture have been central to the production of racial and ethnic categories in Mexico. Immediately after the Mexican Revolution (1910-1920), the state heavily promoted the idea that Mexico was a proud and strong nation because it was born from the mixture of two great cultures: Spanish and Indigenous. This ideology of mestizaje became an important theme for artists in the early- to mid- twentieth century and remains so today. At the same time, cultural elites began to consume the handicrafts (artesanías) of indigenous groups as a way to symbolically connect with what they saw as authentic traditional cultures. Today, arts and crafts remain a significant aspect of the identities and economies of many indigenous groups, while indigenous and other actors may use the symbols and forms of indigeneity to call for political change. At the end of the session, students should have a good understanding of how historical and contemporary practices of art production and collecting contribute to understandings of race and ethnicity in contemporary Mexico. They should also have an appreciation of how art markets impact these processes, as well as an understanding of how art has been used as a political tool by different kinds of actors. ​

Essential reading: (these readings are all on Moodle)

  • López, Rick A. 2010. Crafting Mexico: Intellectuals, Artisans and the State after the Revolution. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, Chapter 2: Popular Art and the Staging of Indianness, pp. 65-94
  • Coffey, Mary 2012. How a revolutionary art became official culture Durham: Duke University Press. Chapter 3: “The Womb of the Patria” pp. 127-167 [nb: you can stop reading at the end of the section ‘Muralism and Mesoamerican Aesthetics’ on page 167]
  • Wood, William Warner. 2008. Made in Mexico: Zapotec Weavers and the Global Ethnic Art Market. Chapter 3: “Selling Zapotec Textiles in the ‘Land of Enchantment’” and “The Zapotec Industry” pp. 77-114. (on Moodle)
  • Cant, Alanna 2016. The Art of Indigeneity: Aesthetics and Competition in Mexican Economies of Culture Ethnos 81(1): 152-177
  • McCaughan, Edward 2012. Art and Social Movements: Cultural Politics in Mexico and Aztlán. Durham: Duke University Press. Cambridge University [nb. We will be focusing on the case study of the COCEI, the Zapotec indigenous rights movement; below are the relevant sections of the book – apologies for the fragmented reading!] ‘Signs of the Times’ (p. 1-9; 15-16); ‘Representation without representation: sexual tensions in the Zapotec imaginary’ (p. 83-93); ‘From the ‘non-Western’ margins of the nation’ (p. 115-123); ‘Toledo’s Singular Legacy’ (p. 147-151)

Seminar 10: Growing up 'indigenous' in Amazonia and the Andes in the 21st century: policies of biculturalism, ontologies of difference 
(Franç​oise Barbira-Freedman​)

In contrast with the culture of shamanism in which race relations are virtually inverted and redeemed in the Latin American popular imaginary, this second lecture addresses how children grow up ‘indigenous’, looking at how indigeneity is constituted from birth as warranting ‘development’ from outside, while being affirmed implicitly from within communities. While present-day health and education programmes of ‘interculturality’ in Amazonia and the Andes overtly support cultural difference, following a postcolonial trend of ‘indigenismo’, schools and health posts are ambivalent spaces in which parents and children negotiate their indigenous identities in everyday life. Themes include the making of Amerindian personhood as distinctive, the politics of primary education and primary health care and the emergence of indigeneity over ethnicity as an analytical concept to denote ontologies of difference. The guiding questions are: how are tensions between embodied, oral and implicit cultural norms of indigenous socialization and the discourse of indigeneity reconciled? Are there shared features of indigenous personhood in Amazonia and the Andes? What is the relevance of politics of place or territory to the affirmation of indigeneity in the fluid social ‘mestizaje’ of the poor at the grassroots?

Essential reading:

  • Dean, Bartholomew (2014) “Identity and Indigenous Education in Peruvian Amazonia”, Indigenous Education, pp.429-446
  • Mignone, J. et al. (2007) “Best Practices in Intercultural Health: Five Case Studies in Latin America” Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine 3(31) (Moodle)
  • Radcliffe, Sarah A. (2002) “Indigenous women, Rights and the Nation-State in the Andes”, in N. Craske and M. Molyneux (editors) Gender and the Politics of Rights and Democracy in Latin America. Palgrave, pp.149-172 (Moodle)
  • Rahman, Elizabeth (2016) “Integrational Mythscapes and Infant Care in Northwestern Amazonia’, in S. Pooley and K. Qureshi (eds) Reproductive Cultures: Kinship, Social Practice and Inter-Generational Transmission, Oxford: Berghahn (Moodle)

Extra reading:

  • Barbira Freedman, F.  (2016) ‘Amazonian Couvade: Soul Nurturing Fathers’. Special Issue on Infant FeedingOxford Fertility and Reproduction Studies Group, Spring 2016
  • Cortina, R. (2013) The Education of Indigenous Citizens in Latin America, Columbia University Press. Chapters 3, 5, 6  (Moodle)
  • De la Cadena, M. (2010) ‘Indigenous Cosmopolitics in the Andes. Conceptual Reflections beyond “Politics”. Cultural Anthropology 25(2):334-370
  • Dinerstein, A.C. (2015) The Politics of Autonomy in Latin America: The Art of Organising Hope. Palgrave Macmillan. Introduction and Chapters 2, 6, 9 (Moodle)
  • Gonçalves Martin, J. (2015) ‘Reproductive Health Care and Indigenous Peoples in Venezuela’ in S. Guideon update to (2014) Gender, Globalisation and Health in a Latin American Context, Palgrave Macmillan
  • Gow, P. (1991) Of Mixed Blood: Kinship and History in Peruvian Amazonia.  Oxford: Clarendon Press. Chapters 5, 7, 8, 9 and Conclusion (Moodle)
  • Gow, P. (1989) ‘The Perverse Child: Desire in a Native Amazonian Subsistence Economy’, Man (n.s) 24:299-314
  • Leinaweaver, J. (2008) The Circulation of Children: Kinship, Adoption and Morality in Andean Peru. Duke University Press. Chapters 1, 5 and 6
  • McCallum, C. (2001) Gender and Sociality in Amazonia: How Real People are Made. Oxford: Berg.  Chapters 1, 2, 3 (Moodle)
  • Mercer, R. (2015) ‘Policies, Politics and the Rights to Child Health in Latin America’ in Archives of Disease in Childhood 100:566-569
  • Radcliffe, S. (2008) ‘Las mujeres indigenas ecuatorianas bajo la gobernabilidad multicultural y de género’ in Wade, P. et al (eds) Raza, Etnicidad y Sexualidades. Ciudadanía y multiculturalismo en América Latina.  Bogotá: Universidad Nacional de Colombia (Moodle)
  • Stephenson, M. (2008) ‘Savage Emergence: Toward a Decolonial Aymara Methodology for Cultural Survival’ in Branche, J (ed) Race, Colonialism and Social Transformation in Latin America and the Caribbean. Florida U. Press, pp.195-221 (Moodle)
  • Sheper-Hughes, N. (1992) Death without Weeping: the Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil. University of California Press
  • Swanson, K. (2010) Begging as a Path to Progress: Indigenous Women and Children and the Struggle for Ecuador’s Urban Spaces. University of Georgia Press. Introduction and Chapters 2, 3, 4 (Moodle)