Syllabus – “Globalizing Latin America: Time-Spaces, Actors, and Debates”

Master of Arts Global Studies – Global and European Studies Institute – University Leipzig

Seminar: Weekly, Wed. 15:15 -16:45 Uhr. Start: October 13, 2021

Lecturers: Agustina Carrizo de Reimann – Carolina Rozo

Since its “discovery,” Latin America has played an ambiguous role in the Western imaginary. Unlike “the Orient,” Africa or Oceania, the macro-region has been regarded by both Europeans and Americans as somewhat “backward” than as radically different (Lomnitz 2001:127). The course aims to identify the structural conditions and tackle the strategies that have encouraged and challenged Latin America’s (own) divergent integration under the global condition. After the introductory session, which will discuss the relationship between Global, Area Studies, and Latin American academic production, we will deal with “time-spaces of globalization”: regional and transregional orders established through colonization, nineteenth-century independence movements, and Latin America’s positions in the twentieth-century global conflicts. The second block will focus on “actors of globalization.” We will scrutinize discourses and theories of dependency and global governance from a multidimensional perspective by looking at political movements and international organizations coming from and intervening in the macro-region. The selected readings on global markets of violence, migration, and transnational communities will allow us to address further orders and disorders of globalization. The third block will introduce central debates driven by critical global and Latin American scholarship, bringing the discussion to a theoretical level. Following the arguments of transformative global studies, we will revisit the concept of coloniality, alternatives for decolonizing knowledge, the possibilities and limits of the “global south” as both political and conceptual framework.

The joint reading and discussion of case studies and theoretical explorations aim to provide an overview, which will allow students to identify divergences, interconnections, and parallels within Latin America and concerning other regions. Furthermore, the critical treatment of political and academic discourses endeavors to stimulate reflection on the impact of power asymmetries on both globalization and the knowledge produced about it.

Recommended readings

  • Lomnitz, C. W. (2001). Deep Mexico, silent Mexico. An anthropology of nationalism. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
  • Olstein, Diego. “Latin America in Global History: An Historiographic Overview.” Estudos históricos 30 (2017): 253–72.
  • Nilsson, Manuela, and Jan Gustafsson, eds. Latin American Responses to Globalization in the 21st Century. International Political Economy Series. Berlin: Sringer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg, 2012.


13.10, I. Introduction to the seminar

20.10, II. Latin America in Global studies

  • Brown, Matthew. “The Global History of Latin America.” Journal of Global History 10, no. 3 (2015): 365–86.
  • Further reading: Hensel, Silke. “Außereuropäische Geschichte – Globalgeschichte – Geschichte Der Weltregionen Aus Der Perspektive Einer Lateinamerikahistorikerin.” H-Soz-Kult, 02.12.2017.

27.10, III. Time-Spaces of globalization: The Age of Revolutions in Latin America

  • Sanders, James. “Atlantic Republicanism in Nineteenth-Century Colombia: Spanish America’s Challenge to the Contours of Atlantic History.” Journal of World History 20, no. 1 (2009): 131–50.
  • Further reading: Brown, Matthew. From Frontiers to Football: An Alternative History of Latin America Since 1800. London: Reaktion Books, 2014.

3.11, IV. Time-Spaces of globalization: Latin America and the First World War

  • Rinke, Stefan H. The Demise of a World. In: Latin America and the First World War. With the assistance of Christopher W. Reid. Global and international history. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2017, 195-225.
  • Rinke, Stefan H. Nation and Trans-nation. In Latin America and the First World War. With the assistance of Christopher W. Reid. Global and international history. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2017, 226-255.

10.11, V. Actors of Globalization: Latin America’s Revolutionary Left movements (1960-1970)

  • Rey Tristán, Eduardo. “5. The Influence of Latin America’s Revolutionary Left in Europe: The Role of Left-Wing Editors.” In Toward a Global History of Latin America’s Revolutionary Left. Edited by Tanya Harmer and Alberto M. Álvarez, 199–226. University of Florida Press, 2021.
  • Further reading: Nash, Andrew. “Third Worldism.” African Sociological Review / Revue Africaine de Sociologie 7, no. 1 (2003): 94–116.

24.11, VI. Actors of Globalization: Agents of global governance

  • Deciancio, Melisa, and Diana Tussie. “Globalizing Global Governance: Peripheral Thoughts from Latin America.” Fudan Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences 13, no. 1 (2020): 29–44.
  • Reinold, Theresa. “The Causes and Effects of Hybrid Anti-impunity Commissions: Outline of a Research Agenda.” In: Global Cooperation Research Papers, no. 26 (2020).

1.12, VII. Actors of Globalization: Global entrepreneurs of violence

  • Hristov, Jasmin. “Pro-Capitalist Violence and Globalization: Lessons from Latin America.” In The Routledge Handbook of Transformative Global Studies. Edited by S.A.H. Hosseini et al. Routledge, 2020.
  • Stiles, Thomas S. “Unintended Exports: The Globalization of the Mara Salvatrucha.” In Latin American Responses to Globalization in the 21st Century. Edited by Manuela Nilsson and Jan Gustafsson, 134–48. International Political Economy Series. Berlin: Sringer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg, 2012.

8.12, VIII. Actors of Globalization: Migrants and transnational communities

  • Robinson, William I. Latin America and Global Capitalism: A Critical Globalization Perspective. Johns Hopkins paperback edition. Johns Hopkins studies in globalization. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2010.
  • Araújo, Natalie. “Cosmopolitan Revolutionaries: Masculinity, Migration, and Gender Performativity in Latin American London.” Masculinities and Social Change 9, no. 1 (2020): 1–27.
  • Gruner-Domic, Sandra. “Transnational Lifestyles as a New Form of Cosmopolitan Social Identification? Latin American Women in German Urban Spaces.” Ethnic and Racial Studies 34, no. 3 (2011): 471–89.

15.12, IX. Debates: Modernity, Globalization, and decolonization of knowledge

  • Mendieta, Eduardo. “Remapping Latin American Studies: Postcolonialism, Subaltern Studies, Post-Occidentalism, and Globalization Theory.” In Coloniality at Large. Latin America and the Postcolonial Debate. Edited by Mabel Moraña, 286–306. Durham [u.a.]: Duke Univ. Press, 2008.

5.1, X. Debates: “Global South” as a heuristic frame

  • Grovogui, Siba. “A Revolution Nonetheless: The Global South in International Relations.” The Global South 5, no. 1 (2011): 175.
  • Schneider, Nina. “Between Promise and Skepticism: The Global South and Our Role as Engaged Intellectuals.” The Global South 11, no. 2 (2017): 18.

19.1, XII. Students’ Presentations

26.1, XIII. Students’ Presentations

2.2, XIV. Final Discussion

Students’ obligations

For each session, students are expected to read in-depth and contribute actively to the discussion of the readings. Participants will be asked to post summaries, insights, further questions, and interesting material in the course’s own Padlet.

Students will choose the evaluation mode between an oral presentation, a written summary, and an essay. The oral presentation (max. twenty minutes long, individual or in groups) should introduce and deal with a related topic or case. Speakers will provide 48h before the session a one-page long handout and submit a written summary no longer than 2000 words by 28 February 2022.

Alternatively, students may submit an essay by 28 February 2022, no longer than 3500 words.

Consultation hours: Wed., 14-15 h

CfP: “Disrupciones de las democracias latinoamericanas. Fuentes y dinámicas de los conflictos actuales”

3ra Conferencia de Transiciones Latinoamericanas, Junio 25-26, 2021, Leipzig (Alemania)

Coloquio de Estudios Latinoamericanos – Leipzig (CEL-LE), Graduate School of Global and Area Studies (GSGAS), Research Centre Global Dynamics (ReCentGlobe), University of Leipzig

Nota de les organizadores: La conferencia sera presencial. Sin embargo, se aceptarán contribuciones virtuales (paneles, ponencias) y, en el caso de ser necesario, se cambiará a formato digital, dependiendo de la evolución de la pandemia en el 2021. Les participantes serán informados a tiempo. ¡Cuidense y esperamos poder verles el proximo junio!

With the turn of the century, Latin American democracies seem to have entered a new phase of intense fluctuation. Political, economic and cultural developments have been disrupted by precipitous crises and countermovements, such as Argentina’s political and economic collapse in 2001 and its contested process of restoration, the rise and violent fall of Evo Morales in Bolivia, the peace agreement in Colombia, Chile’s ostensible stability and the recent protests against its economic inequality and state violence.

In cooperation with the GSGAS and the ReCentGlobe, the CEL-LE invites researchers to explore the roots and dynamics of recent disruptions in Latin America from a global perspective. As disruptions, we understand moments of disordering, whose outcomes and meaning are yet unforeseeable. Disruptions might be temporary disarrayments but may also anticipate structural change and advancement towards new political and economic orders. Based on this understanding, we aim to explore and relate both potentially destructive and productive impulses emanating from fluctuations, turmoils, and hindrances faced by the subcontinent since the 2000s.

The conveners invite researchers in the humanities and social sciences, and especially young scholars – Ph.D. researchers and Post-Docs – working on or interested in Latin America to address and discuss the following questions: Which are the main conflicts that Latin America has faced in the last decades? How do they relate to each other? What are the roots of these disruptions, and what impacts do they have at the regional level? How are the Latin American political regimes and communities responding to disruptions? How do disorders in Latin America relate to current challenges to democracy in other world regions?

The conference invites scholars from different academic fields who are currently working on the following topics:

  • Challenged democracies: illiberal state and non-governmental actors, such as Bolsonaro and the role of Pentecostal Church in Brazil, parliamentary takeovers in Brazil and Bolivia, creeping authoritarianism in Venezuela and Nicaragua, the role of military and police forces in political crises in Bolivia and Chile
  • Violent democracies: police brutality, forced disappearance and femicides in Mexico and Argentina, political repression in Bolivia, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Nicaragua, and Venezuela
  • Transregional migration crisis: Venezuela emigration, Colombia’s change from sender to receiver, Mexico as Latin America’s northern border
  • Politics of ecological crisis: extractivism in the Amazon, privatization of water resources in El Salvador, illegal burning of protected areas for property projects and crop plantations in Argentina
  • Disruptive media: Oligopolies, state regulations of the press, fear-mongering by the media, political uses of media coverage of elections and protests
  • Democratic disruptions in Transatlantic Perspective: Political disruptions, civil discontent and disobedience, and democratic backsliding in a transregional perspective

We welcome proposals for individual presentations or panels. We ask those interested in participating to submit abstracts for individual presentations (max. 250 words) or panel proposals (max. 200 words) before February 28th, 2021, in English, Spanish, German or Portuguese.

We plan different panel formats:

  1. Keynote roundtable (online/onsite)
  2. Conference panels (online/onsite)
  3. Workshop panels moderated by experts, where participants can discuss research circulated beforehand (online/hybrid)

Conference languages are English and Spanish. The conveners will try to accommodate the language wishes of invited speakers. However, speakers might be asked to change the language of their presentation to accommodate the panels.

Conference registration fee: 30 Euros (On-site participants). Depending on funding possibilities, we will support travel and accommodation expenses for some participants requiring financial assistance. Virtual participation is free of charge.

Contact: cel-le(a)

Grupo de Estudio Digital América Latina: “Mercados de violencia”

During the Winter Semester, the Colloquium for Latin American Studies at Leipzig University (CeL-Le) will take as a starting point G. Elwert’s concept “markets of violence” for exploring the following questions: Under which conditions does the use of force generate profit? How does violence change the benefits and, thus, the behavior of political and economic actors over time? Building on case studies, we will look at the interconnections between diverse actors and how these are articulated through violence, for instance, in the context of colonial expansion, nation-state building, guerilla wars, drug trade, migration, and media coverage of conflicts in Latin America.

Cel-Le is a space welcoming students and researchers of different disciplines like history, sociology, anthropology, political science, cultural studies, and global studies (to name a few). All members of the Leipzig community researching on Latin America or interested in the region are welcome to attend and to discuss academic topics of current relevance, as well as undergoing research (for example, chapters of master or doctoral thesis, research papers, conference presentations, etc.).

Up to two papers or presentations will be discussed per meeting. The presenters will have to circulate them a week beforehand, and a colloquium member will prepare a comment to kick off the discussion.

For registration, please send an email to cel-le(a)

Recommended readings: Eckert, J. (2004). Anthropologie der Konflikte: Georg Elwerts konflikttheoretische Thesen in der Diskussion. Bielefeld: transcript.

Acta de la 2. Conferencia Transiciones Latinoamericanas: Procesos de reconfiguración

por Ansgar Engels, Universidad de Leipzig

CEL-LE is a study and research group initiated in 2019 by 4 scholars (Carolina Rozo, Agustina Carrizo de Reimann, Daniel S. León, and Karen Silva Torres) with the purpose of strengthening Latin American Studies at the University of Leipzig. With this aim, Cel-Le organizes the annual conference “Latin American Transitions”. During the three-day event, junior researchers and experts from different academic backgrounds in social sciences and humanities reflected on and discussed past and present processes of reconfiguration in Latin America. The debate was guided by the questions: When and where do we identify turning points leading to processes of reconfiguration in the subcontinent? How have local, regional, national, and transnational actors contributed, adapted to and challenged processes of recomposition?

In the afternoon on the 17th of October, the conference started with a welcome meeting and the participants proceeded to watch the opening film Cómprame un revolver within the frame of the film festival Lateinamerikanische Tage.

Panel inicial sobre reconfiguraciones populistas.

On October 18th the first panel about populist reconfigurations moderated by KAREN SILVA TORRES (Leipzig) began with a historical outline of the refugee regime in Brazil presented by VINÍCIUS CRUZ CAMPOS (Oldenburg). Campos focused on the refugee regimes under different Brazilian governments in the 20th century. He drew the conclusion that populist policies endangered the refugee regime that was established in Latin America through the Cartagena Process in the year 1984. The discussion turned from Brazil to the case of Peronism in Argentina. JULIA FIERMAN (New York) addressed the function of emotional discourse as a central component of the Peronist ideology. In her interviews with militants of the kirchnerismo, one branch of Peronism, interviewees stressed their emotional attachment to core values like compañerismo (comradeship), social justice and love as a way to define the essence of the movement. ESTEBAN MORERA APARICIO (Tübingen) delivered a theoretical definition of populism. The main problem, as he argued, is to make populism an operational analytical category. Building on Ernesto Laclau’s approach, he pointed out the need of considering the horizon of future expectations to generate political demands, since political communities are built precisely because of future and not past expectations, as these expectations are used to justify political actions. To exemplify the devastating consequences that populist policies have caused in recent times, MAGALY SANCHEZ (Princeton) analyses the “catastrophe” of Venezuela. For Sanchez, the process of the destruction of the Venezuelan society is without precedent. She sees three principal elements: the relationship between the state and the society, the humanitarian collapse and the massive migration. In the course of the regime of Hugo Chávez, populist policies gradually progressed into authoritarianism. According to Sanchez, the Venezuelan political regime is not a failed state but a network of criminal alliances sustained by dysfunctional criminal economies. In the following discussion, participants explored further the different approaches to the dynamics of populism and explored the possibility to compare diverging cases, such as Argentina or Venezuela.

The second Panel about national reconfigurations chaired by DANIEL LEÓN (Leipzig) started with a closer look at the presidential elections in Mexico of 2018. LUIS EDUARDO LEÓN GANATIOS (Guanajuato) investigated the interplay between the three coalitions and their corresponding most important issues: corruption, economy, and delinquency. For example, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, the current Mexican president, made not the concern over criminality connected to the voting blocs of the rich and middle classes his main electoral issue, but corruption. In the second presentation, MARGARITA CUERVO (Munich) explained the reconfiguration of the National Army of Colombia under new political circumstances. The Colombian Army enjoys a big prestige in society and in comparison to other Latin American countries it can acquire a lot of public funding. Although reform of the military was not planned in the light of the FARC agreement, inside the army the idea arose to adopt new tasks beyond the internal focus on public order. The Colombian Army has aimed to export its security expertise like conflict management. Still, it should be questioned what kind of security products the Colombian Army actually means to export. The last contributor to this Panel, RAFAEL CASTRO (Hamburg), reflected upon the ideological components in the reconfiguration of Colombian foreign policy. Methodologically, Castro proposed a poststructuralist approach and introduced the example of the government of Ivan Duque. Castro pointed out that the situation in Venezuela acts in the discourse of Duque as a way to create antagonists and oppositions. The Colombian president brands the regional organization UNASUR as ideological and “Venezuelanized”, meanwhile he proclaims the opponent institution PROSUR to be pragmatic and more flexible. During the exchange of ideas after the presentation, participants discussed the ideological implications of the claims of professionalism and pragmatism in political discourses. In addition, the participants deliberated about the differentiation between corruption and criminality.

The third Panel addressed cultural reconfigurations in Latin America chaired by AGUSTINA CARRIZO DE REIMANN (Leipzig). FLORIAN GRAFL (Munich) proposed to examine processes of social reconfiguration during the period of independence by means of analyzing the national sketch collections of Cuba and Mexico. Grafl compared the national sketch collections of these two countries with its predecessor in Spain to indicate differences and similarities in using stereotypes and manners to construct national identities. ARIANE KOVAC (Bonn) referred to the cultural reconfiguration triggered by evangelical communities in the former civil war region Ayacucho, Peru. The rise of evangelical churches during the conflict was directly related to the absence of the Catholic Church, as well as their ability to supply a new community identity. Regarding the remembrance of political violence, Kovac highlighted that the forgiving perpetrators were a distinguishing feature of evangelical believers. In this way, also former perpetrators, who joined these churches, were able to redeem their sins. The discussion to this panel addressed both on the construction of target groups by national sketch collections and the methodological challenge posed by the analysis of pictures. Regarding the role of pentecostal churches in Latin America, participants discussed their growing significance as an electorate power and elaborated on the issues of violence, women, and ethnicity within pentecostal movements.

Foro: Migración y transformaciones en América Latina

The second day of the conference concluded with an open forum for a broader audience on the topic of migration and transformation in Latin America chaired by Magaly Sanchez. After a general introduction by Sanchez about how the global phenomenon of migration in the 21st century differs from the 20th century, MARIA GABRIELA TROMPETERO (Bielefeld) talked about the massive flow of Venezuelan migrants to Colombia. She stated that currently there are approximately 1, 4 million Venezuelans living in Colombia. In view of this migratory wave, a new migration law based on the Cartagena Refugee Regime was enacted, allowing extension of the right to asylum. This strong response of the Colombian State marks for Trompetero an exemplary model of how to deal with problems caused by massive migration. FRANZISKA BARTH (Berlin) referred to the impact of migration processes in the Sierra de Zongolica, Mexico, on family constellations and gender roles. Mostly men from this poor region migrate in search of job opportunities to the USA and Canada. However, the goal is always to go back to their homes with enough savings. Barth could show that, in the absence of their men, women take more responsibility for the households and their communities. As a consequence, women have started to undermine the patriarchal system of this region. In her presentation, INDI-CAROLINA KRYG (Hamburg) argued for the need to consider migrants as political actors and not to victimize them. Based on her interviews with Central American immigrants in three cities in Mexico, she displayed the diversity of political participation on account of the immigrants. In the discussion afterward, the audience pointed to the paradox of the discrimination of the Central American immigrants in Mexico in view of Mexican migrants’ comparable experience in the US. All keynote speakers underlined the fact that migration has been foremost an enrichment for receiving societies.

On the last day of the conference, the 19th of October started with the panel dedicated to the analysis of alternative strategies of local actors in conflict situations. The panel was organized in cooperation with Ph.D. Students from Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt and members of Zentralinstitut für Lateinamerikastudien (ZILAS). THOMAS FISCHER (Eichstätt), who chaired the panel, introduced the broad definition of conflict, on which the presentations built, and their approach “from the bottom up to the top”. JIMENA SALAZAR (Eichstätt) began by outlining the socioecological conflict caused by the contamination of water reservoirs by illegal mining industries in the region of Andahuaylas, in the second poorest region in Peru. Against the threat posed by the family-owned mining companies to the survival of farmers’ communities, social organizations have become active. Salazar analyzed the role of the state and juridical pluralism in these rural communities within the context of the negotiations between 2011 and 2017. MAXIMILIAN GÖRGENS (Eichstätt) introduced the case of indigenous resistance against the destruction of the Parque Nacional Isiboro Sécure in Bolivia. Based on the theory of frame alignment from David Snow, Görgens chose a qualitative approach by conducting various interviews to investigate the specific problems of this conflict. Despite Evo Morales’ identification with the indigenous cause, “development” remains a threat to the Bolivian nature reserve and is deepening the internal division within local indigenous communities. During the discussion, participants exchange ideas about the role of the researcher and her/his responsibility to establish a relationship based on trust with the informants. Furthermore, the relationship between law and disorder and the concept of the state were also addressed.

The challenges for indigenous resistance also affects the digital realm, as ULRICH MORENZ (Eichstätt) described for the case of activists of the Minga in Cauca, Colombia. Morenz looked into the strategies to legitimize and delegitimize the indigenous protest movement. In the current media landscape of Colombia, there is a high concentration of the mainstream media in the hand of a few companies which are not representing the interests of the indigenous people. For that reason, the activists’ social media campaign during the blockade of a crucial traffic center was very important. NATALIA VELASQUEZ (Eichstätt) examined another example of how to develop new strategies to overcome socio-political conflicts in Colombia. For this aim, she referred three cases in the department of Santander. Considering the peace treaty with the FARC, Velasquez defined the actual phase as “post-treaty” and not “post-conflict”, since new agents have been entering the scene as new conflicts are arising. The inhabitants of Santander, who want to leave the conflict behind, emphasize their will to stay in the territory and to have a dignified life. As key points of her research, she highlighted the significance to engage in collective actions, to analyze the issue of delegitimizing armed combatants and the intersection of distinct dynamics on local and territorial levels. Participants debated the role of social media in the present conflicts and pointed to the need to further investigate the impact of Twitter on the perception of indigenous activism. The role of Venezuela came back as a relevant example of the process of social reconfiguration in the study introduced by Velasquez. Also, the capacity for mediation between municipalities and the government in Colombia was discussed.

The speakers of the fifth Panel introduced and discussed the topic of access to resources, resistance and international dependency chaired by RALF LEITERITZ (Bogotá). DANIEL LEÓN started by addressing the stability of the authoritarian regime in Venezuela and depicted it as a case of survivalist equilibrium, shaped by the alliance of the regime with the military in a time of low oil prices. When the stakes of holding the power increased in 2014 the regime eliminated “expensive” partners while the coercive apparatus guaranteed its support for the government by means of repression. Now the costs for a political exit of the chavismo are too high with the effect that the survivalist equilibrium is the best rational choice for the regime. With the purpose of taking a comparative approach to Venezuela’s dependency on oil, MOHAMMAD REZA FARZANEGAN (Marburg) discussed the link between oil income and the middle class in Iran. Using econometric tools and based on historical data from the last decades, he developed a model that defines the effect of the oil income on the development of the middle class and foretold a positive response to an oil shock for the middle classes in the future. Farzanegan concludes that oil income generates a positive outcome for the middle classes. During the discussion, the participants exchanged their ideas about the consequences of the oil business for political institutions, such as taxation policies and the role of neoliberal reforms in the face of a crisis. Considering the dramatic situation in Venezuela it was also questioned whether the concept of political order should be applied to the current regime, and disorder should be used instead of political order. In addition, it was discussed which other significant economic variables besides oil should be considered for the analysis of Venezuela. 

The conference closed with a final discussion on the transition process of Latin American research. The conveners opened the debate by asking the keynote speaker MATTHIAS MIDDELL (Leipzig), why Latin-America remains underrepresented in the field of the Global and Area Studies. Middell pointed first to the fact that there are not many Latin American experts working with a global perspective. From his point of view, it seems therefore necessary that Latin American researchers engage more actively in transregional studies and that further decolonization from the influence of the US-American social sciences takes place. Furthermore, Middell argued that Latin American universities have to build broader networks and develop their capacities to organize in the field of Global and Area Studies. The discussion then turned to the political engagement of scholars. Middell pointed to the general dilemma faced by researchers willing to contribute to the political discussion, their need to take funding and how this can challenge personal and intellectual independence. Thomas Fischer argued that, despite the risks, researchers nowadays are compelled to engage in the public debate and that Latin American experience may be an inspiring example for this purpose; for instance, in order to understand the dynamics of multicultural societies in Europe and of social movements looking for alternatives to the hegemonic capitalist society. For this aim, researchers must as well reflect upon their place of enunciation, in order to prevent unproductive eurocentrism. The lack of professors dedicated to the study and research of Latin America at the University of Leipzig was described as a significant setback for both the study of the global condition and the deconstruction of the production process of academic knowledge.


The 3rd conference on Latin American Transitions convened by CEL-LE will invite scholars to discuss, “Disruptions of Latin American Democracies: Roots and dynamics of current conflicts.” The conference will take place in October 2020.

Forum: Migration and Transformation in Latin America

In addition to four discussion panels, this year’s conference will feature an open keynote roundtable entitled „Forum: Migration and Transformations in Latin America“, organized in cooperation with the film festival Lateinamerikanische Tage.

Since the conquest, migration has been one of the most significant factors for political, social and economic transformations in Latin America. Currently, the Venezuelan migration crisis have presented anew Latin American countries with serious challenges. The Coloquio de Estudios Latinoamericanos en Leipzig (Cel-Le) invites interested participants to address together with scholars these and other key issues relating to the history and present of Latin America. The presentations will be held in English, but comments and questions may be in German or Spanish.

Windward Pass (April 30, 2005) – Haitian migrants wait to be evacuated from a 50- foot sailboat by U.S. Coast Guardsmen in the Windward Pass. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Dependable (WMEC 626) intercepted the vessel, removed 132 migrants, and repatriated them back to Haiti. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Public Affairs Specialist 2nd Class John Edwards (RELEASED)

2. Conference “Latin American Transitions. Processes of reconfiguration”

The image of instability and violence commonly associated with Latin America disregards the socio-cultural longevity and geopolitical continuity that has characterized the region over the last two centuries. In this context, crises have alternated with periods of cultural, political and economic reconfiguration. Processes of recomposition have been, however, polyvalent, i.e. they have had different functions, forms, facets, and outcomes. This year’s conference proposes to explore diverse, past and present processes of reconfiguration in Latin America. How have local, regional, national, and transnational actors contributed, adapted to and challenged recomposition? And more generally, how have agents and structures promoted or countered continuity within processes of reconfiguration? In order to address these general questions, invited scholars from Latin America, USA, and Europe will discuss key issues, such as the rise of populism, the struggle for resources and the roles of local actors and their strategies in conflict situations. In this way, we aim both to foster interdisciplinary exchange and to look at Latin American transitions from a global perspective.

In addition to four discussion panels, this year’s conference will feature an open keynote roundtable entitled „Forum: Migration and Transformations in Latin America“, organized in cooperation with the film festival Lateinamerikanische Tage.


For further information, please check the  Programa Conference Latin American Transitions_190930

or contact us at cel-le(at)


Wednesday, 5-7 pm

Place: Centre for Area Studies – Nikolaistr. 6-10. Strohsackpassage

Room 5.27.

Start: 16.10.2019

What is Latin America? And what are the social, historical, economic and political contexts that have constructed over time localities, countries, sub-regions and the region itself? What are the historical roots and developmental effects of socio-political processes in the region such as populism? These are some of the questions that the Colloquium for Latin American Studies at Leipzig University, or CEL-LE (its Spanish acronym) aims to answer.

Based on the interests and needs of its participants, CEL-LE organizes regular activities where to discuss academic topics of current relevance, as well as undergoing research on, or related to, Latin America (for example, chapters of master or doctoral thesis, research papers, conference presentations, etc). It is a space welcoming students and researchers of different disciplines like history, sociology, anthropology, political science, cultural studies and global studies (just to name a few).

During the Winter Semester of 2019/2020, the colloquium will focus on the past, present, and future of populism in Latin America. During the first few sessions, we will discuss seminal texts on the topic of populism. We invite interested participants to share their approach to the topic, as well as to forward their own works or suggested texts for discussions on any other phenomena related to Latin America.

Up to two papers or presentations will be discussed per meeting. The presenters will have to circulate them a week beforehand, and a colloquium member will prepare a comment to kick off the discussion. All members of the Leipzig community researching on Latin America or interested in the region are welcome to attend.

For registration, please contact us!


  • Roberto García Jurado (invierno 2012) Sobre el concepto de populismo. Estudios 103, vol. x.
  • Sebastian Mazzuca (2013) “The Rise of Rentier Populism.”Journal of Democracy 24(2): 108-22.
  • Laclau, E. (2007). On populist reason. London [u.a.]: Verso.
  • Comaroff, Jean (2011) Populism and Late Liberalism: A Special Affinity?
  • Wehr, Ingrid (2006). Die theoretische Aufarbeitung des Third Wave Blues in Lateinamerika: ‘Bringing the citizen back in’. Forschungsjournal Soziale Bewegungen, (04)

CfP: Conference Latin American Transitions: Processes of reconfiguration 17-19 October 2019, Leipzig

Coloquio de Estudios Latinoamericanos – Leipzig (CEL-LE)
The Graduate School of Global and Area Studies, University of Leipzig
Chair for Comparative History/Ibero-American History (University of Leipzig)
Lateinamerikanische Tage Film Festival

The image of instability and violence commonly associated with Latin America disregards the socio-cultural longevity and geopolitical continuity that has characterized the region over the last two centuries. In this context, crises have depicted periods of cultural, political and economic reconfiguration. Processes of recomposition have had both devastating and beneficial consequences for different communities and regions. These processes are polyvalent, i.e. they may have different functions, forms, facets, and outcomes. For instance, the processes of national reconfiguration after the “third wave of democratization” in the late 20th century led to reinforce the rule of law in Peru, but also to the return of militarism to Brazil and Venezuela.
This year’s conference proposes to explore diverse, past and present processes of reconfiguration in Latin America. When and where do we identify turning points leading to processes of reconfiguration in the subcontinent? How have local, regional, national, and transnational actors contributed, adapted to and challenged recomposition? And more generally, how have agents and structures promoted or countered continuity within processes of reconfiguration? Addressing these general questions requires analysis at different levels, of different cases, and from different approaches. To foster rich interdisciplinary discussions, the conveners invites scholars, especially junior researchers, from different academic backgrounds in social sciences and humanities.

This year’s conference will feature a keynote roundtable entitled “Populist (Re)configurations? Past, present and future dynamics in Latin America”. The following three international experts will discuss the above topic from sociological, historical, and anthropological perspectives:
➢ Prof. Dr. Magaly Sanchez (Princeton University)
➢ Dr. Esteban Morera Aparicio (University of Tübingen)
➢ Dr. Julia Fiermann (Columbia University)
We are also happy to announce that Cel-Le will collaborate for this year’s conference with the film festival Lateinamerikanische Tage, which celebrates its tenth anniversary in Leipzig. At least two of the conference’s events will be co-hosted by both organizations.

For individual presentations (max. 250 words) or panel proposals (max. 200 words. 3-5 presentations), please submit abstracts before August 19, 2019. Conference languages are English and Spanish. However, prospective speakers can present their presentation proposals in English, Spanish, German or Portuguese.
Contact: cel-le(at)
Conference registration fee: 30 Euros.