The Caribbean is a privileged place to think about Latin America, as it embodied many of the cultural, social, political, and economic theories that emerged in the context of Twentieth Century Postwar - Cold War era. The maelstrom of those years in Latin America helped configure much of the academic knowledge of that era. However, taking on many of the challenges and transformations in Latin America during the first two decades of the 21st century requires us to adopt a global perspective. Integrating local and transnational ideas and fostering awareness of new cultural, social, political and economic movements allow us to fully comprehend Latin Americas’ past and present. Working with issues in the realm of the environment, gender, indigenous peoples, technology, religion, and the Latinx diaspora have opened doors for new voices and scholar whose voices we have begun to hear from.
Although aware that planning processes in an organization are a cooperative effort of all its members, envisioning Pitt’s Center for Latin American Studies towards its 60th anniversary provides me a base for sharing my vision and goals as roadmap to guide the Center to fulfill Pitt's Global Path. We will promote new knowledge and life changing research by tackling the most pressing issues of current Latin America and the growing Latinx transnational communities.
This presentation will address issues aimed at showing my vision and goals for the Center such as: 1) interdisciplinary experience and across disciplinary programs as a key driver of the strategic approach to Latin American issues and its transnational communities; 2) experiential learning and research opportunities in Latin American and with Latinx communities to advance new knowledge and life changing research; and, 3) partnerships that deepen the Center's offerings and financial resources.
Eliseo R. Colón Zayas is a professor and researcher at the School of Communication of the University of Puerto Rico, which he chaired from 1999 to 2013. He holds a B.A. from Duquesne University, earning his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh. He has been a visiting professor and lecturer at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de São Paulo (Fulbright Research-Scholar), the Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, the ITESO (in Guadalajara, Mexico), the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, the Universidad de La Plata in Argentina and the Universities of A Coruña, Sevilla and Málaga in Spain. Some of his books include: Matrices culturales del neoliberalismo: una odisea barroca (2013) and Medios Mixtos: Ensayos de Comunicación y Cultura (2013) .