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Recovering Lost Footprints: The New Mayan Narrators

Arturo Arias, University of California, Merced

September 18, 2019 · 12:00 pm · 216 Aaron Burr

Program in Latin American Studies

“Recovering Lost Footprints” will trace the key characteristics of the new and recent fiction by Mayan authors in Central America, the Yucatan Peninsula and Chiapas, highlighting their epistemic dimensions and ontological implications. These narratives, written in both the authors’ native languages and their Spanish translation, are primarily organized around racialization, an end-result of the Spanish invasion, and they therefore dramatize how indigenous bodies were disciplined, how they were treated as commodities to be bought and sold, and how these issues have spilled into political life, both in the past and in the future. At the same time, they demonstrate how, despite having absorbed a degree of Westernization and becoming empowered by educational gains, they have yet never renounced their spiritual and communitarian practice, instrumentalizing them ethically to improve social conditions and decolonize nature through new practices of non-anthropomorphic affect.

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