Lecture: "Memory Studies in Latin America: Trajectories, Challenges, Futures" by Professor Michael Lazzara, University of California, Davis


Location: Room 200, McKenna Conference Center

This lecture is sponsored by a Mini-Conference Grant from the Institute of Scholarship in the Liberal Arts, the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies

This lecture will address the trajectory, challenges and futures of a new field of inquiry in the humanities and social sciences, memory studies, in the context of Latin American academic work and societies. Professor Lazzara’s publications on memory emphasize that one key aspect that differentiates memory studies in Latin America from memory studies in the United States and Europe is its intimate relationship with society. According to Lazzara, Latin American memory scholars demonstrate a reiterated and sustained commitment to a situated, context-based politics, as a form of intervening in the local. The interest in memory in the Latin American context is not memory for memory’s sake (or a purely intellectual interest in memory as narrative or even as comparatism), but rather in memory as politics and as process. Professor Lazzara’s lecture will look at the productivity of “memory” as a lens through which to do cultural studies work; in so doing, it will explore the multiple convergences among memory, culture, and human rights. It will also discuss how societal actors in different historical, cultural, and national settings construct meanings of past political violence, inter-group conflicts, and human rights struggles.