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This seminar is devoted to developing a better understanding of the region, presenting current research and thinking in disciplines that range from anthropology to economics, history, human rights, political science, religion, literature, and the arts. In addition to scholars affiliated with the academic community, speakers are invited from the private sector, international organizations, and governments. The seminar, whose membership also reflects a broad range of disciplines, offers the framework for a lively exchange of ideas on Latin America, its past, present, and future.

Peter Winn

Sara Pan Algarra

Meeting Schedule

09/21/2023 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
Joint meeting with (771) An Illegible Relation?: Black/Indigenous Being and a Study of Hemispheric Racializations
Ashley Ngozi Agbasoga, Gallatin School of Individualized Study at New York University


Abstract: Discourses on racialization throughout the Americas are often described in opposition to each other: U.S. racial understandings are often understood into the Black/white binary; in comparison, Latin American racial formations are placed into a spectrum of racial identifications. However, this configuration crumbles through conversations on lived experience, embodiment, and crossings across spatiotemporal terrain. Utilizing ethnographic and archival work, I ask: How do Black/Indigenous understandings of relation interrupt not only the (re)production of dichotomous spatial-racial logics but also present us with an alternative way of understanding race throughout the hemisphere?

11/30/2023 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
Argentina: Elections and Politics
Victoria Basualdo, Latin American Social Sciences Institute (FLACSO)

Jordana Timerman, Open Society

02/15/2024 Faculty House, Columbia University / Zoom
7:00 PM
China and Latin America's Political Economy: Obstacles and Opportunities
Barbara Stallings, Brown University


The eruption of China into Latin America is one of the most surprising and important changes of the 21st century. Professor Barbara Stallings was one of the first US experts on Latin America to realize its significance and to study it. Unlike most US experts she has lived and taught in China, Latin America, and the US. She has also researched and written some of the best accounts and analyses of China and Latin America. Her performance as a Speaker is not to be missed.

03/07/2024 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
Technology, Design, and Memory in Chile: The History of Project Cybersyn
Eden Medina,


In this talk, Eden Medina, Hugo Palmarola, and Pedro Ignacio Alonso will discuss the recent exhibition they curated, How to Design a Revolution: The Chilean Road to Design, that opened at the Centro Cultural La Moneda to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the military coup. The exhibition included the first full-scale, functional reconstruction of the cybernetic operations room from Project Cybersyn, an initiative begun by the socialist government of Salvador Allende to improve the management of the Chilean economy through new data, communication, and computational capabilities. This talk will share the history of Project Cybersyn, how interpretations of this history have changed over time, and how the reconstruction of the room has furthered historical understandings of the project and its context. It will also discuss the process of reconstructing the operations room for public display, how the history of Project Cybersyn forms part of a larger story of Chile bringing together design, democracy, and socialism, and how these stories of design are shaping public memory of the Allende period fifty-years after the military coup took place.

Respondent: Hugo Palmarola,

Respondent: Pedro Ignacio Alonso,

04/04/2024 Faculty House, Columbia University
7:00 PM
The Landscape of Violence in Venezuela: A Focus on Policing and Women's Responses
Maria Veronica Zubillaga Gabaldon , Universidad Simón Bolívar

Respondent: Rebecca Hanson, University of Florida