The Politics of Knowledge in Latin America

LAS 6938

Day/time: Fridays 12:50 - 3:50 pm
Location: Grinter 376

Class description

"The Politics of Knowledge in Latin America" is a graduate seminar aimed to discuss how politicians and institutions utilize, and even weaponize, ideas to shape societies. Our secondary questions will be: How do politicians use knowledge to dictate policies, to define crime and governance, to limit civil rights of particular social groups? How do they use it to model educational systems and prohibit cultural manifestations? And—of course— how do politicians use knowledge to privilege the same social groups already in power?  

In order to address these questions, we will have to discuss the imbrication of knowledge with race, class, gender and sexuality, and other related topics as well the tension between the idea of one single Knowledge and the coexistence of several knowledges. In sum, this seminar is aimed to understand our ideas of “world” and "progress" from a different vantage point.  

To achieve this, we will be reading theoretical texts on the construction and socialization of knowledge, alongside literary texts, to arrive to particular past and contemporary examples of conflict between different sectors of the society and the goals dictated by governmental institutions.  


Luis Felipe Gómez Lomelí
Center for Latin American Studies