17/04/20 SLAS2020 keynote lecture

Post-Development in Latin America
Maristella Svampa, Universidad Nacional de la Plata

Connecting society-nature proposals with indigenous and feminist perspectives
Today, we live in a context of deepening neo-extractivism and the commodification of nature. This socioecological and civilizational crisis challenges us to think of alternatives to dominant neo-extractivism, toward post-development, based on the valuation of other views of nature, of relational languages, and other ways of inhabiting the territory. My proposal is epistemic and political. First, I propose to reflect on the scope of relational approaches to the society/nature connection, associated with social struggles and civilizational alternatives, called the Indianist perspectives (Rights of Nature), as well as popular feminisms in America Latina (the relation body-territory). Second, I return to the contributions of a vast field of disciplines identified with independent critical knowledge, which accompanies and reflects socio-environmental struggles in Latin America, in order to achieve a “dialogue of knowledge”. This dialogue includes not only affected communities, but also a connection with other concepts developed in the global North, such as the socio-ecological transition, degrowth, and the Green New Deal. Finally, it is necessary to ask what it means to think about these challenges in the context of the end of the progressive cycle and ‘rightening’ of Latin American governments. In the region, the threat of a backlash is expressed through a virulent reaction against the expansion of rights, include particularly those demanded through feminisms, the defense of diversity, indigenous peoples and environmental rights.


AMSTERDAM 17 - 18 April 2020

SLAS 2020 will be an opportunity for explorations of any aspect of Latin American Studies, from any disciplinary and theoretical perspective. We have an optional conference theme that speakers are invited to address, which is: Mind the gap: Strengthening connections in Latin American Studies. The choice of topic comes from a need we feel to address the current climate of increasing exclusion and inequality, as well as antagonism and polarization (on a global scale), which have intensified different kinds of distances within and beyond the region. +INFO


    08/05/20 CEDLA LECTURE

    Fifty public standpipes: Local politics and water struggles in Barranquilla, Colombia
    Tatiana Acevedo Guerrero, IHE Delft Institute for Water Education

    Throughout the late 1980s and 1990s, the Barranquilla World Bank Project aimed to expand water supply to the southwestern sector of the city, populated mainly by low-income communities. Anticipating the duration of the works, the project included a short-term solution: it would install fifty public standpipes during the first months of implementation. This talk tells the story of the WB project and the fifty public standpipes - which were never built. Its purpose is to analyse how water/power distributions have been reworked and consolidated, highlighting tensions triggered by the project at the national and local level. It evidences the messiness of electoral politics and the complexity of political parties (their competing interests, and the fact that these changed over time). This is of interest as it focuses on electoral politics, a subject rarely touched by the political ecology literature, where water policies’ implementation is frequently portrayed as a process of imposition of a set of measures by an essentially uniform group of political/economic elites. Tatiana Acevedo Guerrero argues that, throughout the project, different and heterogenous governments, regulatory agencies, political parties, electoral movements, unions, and business groups, engaged in confrontations and negotiations about different imaginations of the city.

    TIME: 15:30h
    VENUE: CEDLA, Roetersstraat 33, Amsterdam, Lecture room 2.02 (second floor).
    REGISTRATION: This event is free and open for all to join!