Annual Student Conference

Every year, the students of LASC host a conference featuring panels of graduate and undergraduate students as well as important keynote speakers from the various communities that make up Latin American Studies. Below is information on the upcoming and past conferences. Click on the image to take you to the main conference page for even more information.

QUEER/CUIR AMÉRICAS: Rebels, Counternarratives, Solidarities

Graduate students and advanced undergraduate student submissions from all disciplines are welcome, abstracts due March 15, 2018. The conference is scheduled for May 3-4, 2018, on the University of Maryland campus in College Park (H.J. Patterson 2124), and will include two days of panels, a keynote panel discussion (scholars, activists, and artists), and a music-filled closing reception. We look forward to your participation and attendance.

Call for Papers and Invitation to Participate

Queer (kwEer) ||Cuir (coo-ir) || Cuy-r (kwe-rrrr)

Noun - A person. One whose sexual orientation, gender identity, or behavior does not fit into heterosexual, binary norms. A rebel, an outlaw, a misfit, a dreamer.

Adjective - A way of being. (Un)willfully eccentric, unruly, non-conforming, peculiar, deviant,excessive, unexpected, suspicious, dubious, unfixed, nonlinear, fluid.

Verb - A method. A way of seeing that challenges, counters, subverts, revolts, twists, or transgresses boundaries. To queer is to rethink, retell, disrupt, or disidentify.

Although it defies a single definition, QUEER is an identity, an approach, and a politics. Queering implies alternative action and shifting ideology. Queers may stand outside, beyond, or on the edge of institutions. Queer bodies are often unwieldy, moving against normative ways of being in the world. They question history, social structures, and cultural expectations, organizing their lives through unconventional schedules and routes. “Queer” and “Cuir” are understood in different ways by distinct populations, and thus may be mobilized in unexpected contexts. Through this conference, we seek to foster interdisciplinary dialogues on the queer/cuir currents that flow into, within, and from Latin America.

We approach our inquiry into the Queer Américas through the themes of rebels, counternarratives, and solidarities, and invite conference contributions that reflect these concepts. REBELS encourage us to oppose power and the official stories that come from authorities. They push us to create new stories, imagine possible futures, and shape alternative histories, or COUNTERNARRATIVES in our everyday lives. We look to Latin American histories of rebellion for models of SOLIDARITY, strategies for taking collective action across difference. Envisioning forms of coalition-building that are both local and transnational, and include all who exist outside a dominant majority, our conference theme embraces a hemispheric view of the Americas.

We invite participants to explore elements of the theme in Latin America, the Caribbean, and among Latin Americans and Latinxs living in the United States or elsewhere in the world. We encourage contributions that propose solidarities between disciplines and types of knowledge.

Submissions might relate to the following topics:

● desire, the erotic, sexual identity, and gender expression

● power, inequality, and structural violence

● migration, space, borders, and policing

● citizenship and nationalism

● human and non-human actors

● disability and capacity

● futures and fantasies

● bodies: gesture, movement, and excess

● protest, activism, and resistance (transnational, local, hemispheric, and global)

● performance, arts, and artivism

● historical rebels, outlaws, and disruptive figures

● capitalism, labor, and failure

● alternative education, pedagogy, and teaching methods

Participants may propose:

1. Individual Papers or Panels organized around a common theme with 3-5 participants. Each panelist will have 15 minutes for their intervention, followed by dialogue with the audience.

2. Roundtables organized in advance by a maximum of 5 discussants who will discuss the theme from different perspectives and foster audience engagement.

3. Artistic Performances that share your manifesto, song, poetry, or other creation.

4. Wild Card: Propose a new way of sharing your knowledge that queers the usual conference format.

The conference features a keynote panel with scholars, community members, artists, and activists. It includes graduate and undergraduate student research panels and sessions offering different ways of exchanging ideas. We will provide innovative formats to reimagine the conventional conference session structure as a means of not only addressing queer as a topic, but in order to queer the conference itself.

Please send a 250 word abstract and any inquiries to the Latin American Studies Center at the University of Maryland, by March 15, 2018. Include your name and any institutional affiliations. Indicate the format of your proposed contribution and your A/V needs. We welcome contributions in English, Spanish, Spanglish, Portuguese, French, or Creole. Proposal decision notifications will be emailed by March 30, 2018.

Past Conferences

May 4-5, 2017 - Sanctuary, Refuge, Oasis

May 5-6, 2016 - Hybridity: Examining Processes of Circulation, Collaboration, and Conflict

May 1, 2015 - Making Home: Central American Transnational Communities