Department of Spanish and Portuguese
Department of Spanish and Portuguese

La ciudad letrada marica: Prácticas culturales y activismo crítico desde Sudamérica (The Queer Lettered City: Cultural Practices and Critical Activism from South America)

A presentation (in Spanish) by Juan Pablo Sutherland (Gay activist and writer, Chile)

Mon, April 5, 2010 | BEN 2.104

4:30 PM - 5:30 PM

Building on my previous research, which took shape in the anthology A Corazón Abierto, geografía literaria de la homosexualidad en Chile (2001), I will focus in this presentation on a certain South American imaginary that brings together minority writing within the Nation, critical activism, and cultural practices that formed part of the resistance against tmilitary dictatorships in South America at the end of the 1980s and the beginning of the 1990s. I also take into account the cultural tensions that have arisen during the political transitions from dictatorship, in part due to the novel influence of neoliberalism within the emerging South American democracies. My presentation constructs a genealogy of minority politics and its tensions with the reigning market-oriented societies. Likewise, I analize the emergence of identity politics in the 1980s and 1990s, problematizing the political and cultural effects of  the rise of queer studies in South America in local academic institutions as well as among activists within the lesbian, gay and transexual movement.


From this perspective, my presentation reviews the main tensions that traverse queer cultural productions, writings, critical activism and some emblematic performances, which have paved the way for the visibilization of a Nación Marica in counter to the hegemonic powers. I also reflect critically on the arrival of queer studies to the region just as identity politics was booming. Within this framework, I attempt to delve deeper into questions of cultural translation, political alignments, and the deterritorialization of minority cultural practices within the late twentieth-century democratic scenarios in South America.


Finally, my presentation highlights the agency of the imaginaries that were part of the cultural productions in this period, which contributed to the positioning of a critical perspective that could challenge and question the heteronormative regimes. In this vein, I also discuss the re-territorializations performed by minority cultural consumption and its critical relationship with neoliberal projects in South America.

Sponsored by: Department of Spanish and Portuguese and the Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies

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