EVENT Mar 07
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The Aesthetics of Excess: Reconsidering Surplus in Latin American Imaginaries (Panel) (NeMLA)

Boston, MA
Organization: Northeast Modern Language Association (NeMLA)
Event: NeMLA
Categories: Postcolonial, Hispanic & Latino, Comparative, Genre & Form, World Literatures, Adventure & Travel Writing, Children's Literature, Comics & Graphic Novels, Drama, Narratology, Poetry, African & African Diasporas, Asian & Asian Diasporas, Australian Literature, Canadian Literature, Caribbean & Caribbean Diasporas, Indian Subcontinent, Eastern European, Mediterranean, Middle East, Native American, Scandinavian, Pacific Literature, Miscellaneous
Event Date: 2024-03-07 to 2024-03-10 Abstract Due: 2023-09-30

Since their foundations, Latin American societies have attempted to remove from their territories any individual considered surplus in their populations. These surplus subjects were marginalized based on an array of systems and ideologies, most of which were inherited from their former colonizers. Concerned that these marginalized subjects would contaminate the national body and/or impede the state from progressing, politicians, intellectuals, and artists took it upon themselves to propagate aggressive campaigns against them. Such campaigns employed essays, literature, and other cultural artistic productions to convince their compatriots of the supposed danger that these surplus individuals represented for the nation.

Nonetheless, not all artists and intellectuals used their talents towards this endeavor. Latin American literature and culture are filled with examples of artistic productions portraying the nuances between the process of rendering these subjects surplus and the actual profit from their presence in these territories. Through their forms and contents, these literary and cultural productions critically engaged with the aforementioned campaigns to change local and international people’s imaginaries about these individuals and their existence in these lands. This panel, thus, aims to provide a forum to shed light on some of these literary and cultural productions that, through their aesthetics, introduced a nuanced version of these surplus subjects in these societies. We are specifically interested in literary and cultural texts that interrogated and subverted the hegemonic, monolithic discourses about these surplus subjects.

We seek paper proposals in Spanish, Portuguese, or English. Please submit an abstract of 250 words maximum to Danielle Dorvil at ddorvil@sarahlawrence.edu and Sahai Couso Díaz at sc42@williams.edu no later than September 30th, 2023.


Danielle Dorvil