Radical Arts: Literature, Visual Art, Theater, and Film in the Americas This course examines intersections of artistic production and radical politics in the Americas from the 1930s to our present. It addresses literary, visual, and performing arts in a wide array of media and genres, including novels, testimonio, essays, manifestoes, theater, street art, poetry, song lyrics, graphic arts, murals, and documentary and experimental films. It examines cultural productions in relation to the sociohistorical contexts from which they emerged, including, in many cases, the social and political movements with which they were explicitly aligned. Topics addressed include: revolutionary politics and culture in Latin America, liberation movements in the U.S. and their aesthetic dimensions, socialist feminism, anticolonial critique, representations of state violence and counterrevolution, radical pedagogy and its influence on the arts, and dystopian aesthetics.
Introduction to Latinx Cultural Studies This course offers a broad introduction to the study of U.S. Latinx literature and culture. We will read poetry, short stories, manifestoes, testimonios, plays, novels, and essays. We will also examine visual art, including poster art, murals, and performance art. In each instance, we will study this work within its historical context and with close attention to the ways it illuminates class formation, racialization, and ideologies of gender and sexuality as they shape Latino/a/xs’ experience in the U.S. Topics addressed in the course include labor, state violence, racism, revolutionary nationalism and internationalism, multiracial feminism, immigration, queer kinship and sexuality, U.S. imperialism, and the study of literature and visual art as they relate to antisystemic movements.
Culture and Power
Modernity, Colonialism & Race: Views from the Global South
Race, Space and Writing: Seminar on Latina/o/x Literature
Literature, Art, and Theater Across the Latino/a/x U.S.
Topics in the Study of Class, Race, and Empire in the Americas This course takes an interdisciplinary, transnational, and historical materialist approach to studying class struggle in the Americas since the 1970s, in the contemporary historical phase characterized by globalization and neoliberal capitalism. Significant attention is given to theories of racism and racialization, (neo)colonialism and imperialism, and national self-determination. We will also address the functions of capitalist states, examining, in particular, questions of law and state terror, militarized accumulation and the military-prison-industrial complex, migration policy and borders, and low-intensity democracy. Other units in the course focus on forms of self-defense and popular power enacted by the continent’s subordinated classes in the context of neoliberal capitalism. In this vein, we will study recent antisystemic movements, as well as social movement theory. Other topics and debates addressed include those pertaining to imperialism and transnational class relations; extractivism, enclosure, and primitive accumulation; indigenismo and debates between Marxists and indigenists; the rise of human rights politics; the history and political thought of the EZLN; and neoliberal multiculturalism. While we will carefully attend to the role of nation-states and nationalist ideologies in the historical processes we examine, this course is organized to help us understand how contemporary class struggles take place at transnational scales, and how their dynamics can be illuminated by a hemispheric approach to social and cultural analysis.
Anti-Imperialist and Decolonial Thought in Latin America: From Revolution and Development to New Social Movements and the 21st Century Left
Engaged Art from Latin America to L.A. MFA seminar
Image credit: Still from Holy Mountain (1973) by Alejandro Jodorowsky