January 31, 2003 – Carlos Monsiváis: “Will Nacionalism Be Bilingual? Notes on a Cultural War”

Friday January 31 / 12 PM / Oakes Mural Room

Carlos Monsiváis is one of Latin America’s foremost cultural critics, and has been for many North Americans the source of some of the most acute and trenchant commentary on Mexican politics, U.S.-Mexico relations, and contemporary Mexican cultural practices. He is the author of Amor Perdido (Lost Love), Escenas de Pudor y Liviandad (Scenes of Frivolity and Shame), Entrada Libre (Free Entry), and Rituales del Caos (The Rituals of Chaos). Mexican Postcards, an English translation of essays on topics such as Latino hip hop, Dolores del Rio, boleros, and melodrama, was published by Verso in 1997. Sr. Monsiváis’s paper discusses post-NAFTA Mexico and questions of cultural nationalism.

“It’s not a bad joke to declare that in the era of postnationalism we live in Post México, a country that survived nationalism, but not the necessity of saving a common language, a common culture, an obligation of social justice. In Post México we face the same problems, but we select the traditions we need, and we decide to survive a racist and overwhelming globalization. In the time of post, Post México is a still a nation, and a cherished one for its people. Post México gringo y querido, as the ancient song declares.”
—from “Will Nacionalism Be Bilingual?”

Participants in the seminar should complete the readings in advance. Readings are available at the Center for Cultural Studies. For campus mailing of readings, please contact Stephanie Casher at scasher@cats.ucsc.edu.

Sr. Monsiváis’s visit to Santa Cruz will also feature a talk in Spanish, “El otro crimen del Padre Amaro,” sponsored by the Chicano/Latino Research Center, on Thursday, January 30, at 4 PM in the Stevenson Fireside Lounge. The Spanish-language talk is on the recent controversial Mexican film, “El crimen del Padre Amaro,” which will be screened on the evening of Tuesday, January 28. Contact the Chicano/Latino Research Center for screening details, clrc@ucsc.edu.