“The Future of the U.S.–Mexico Borderlands”
The current U.S. practice of building walls between this nation and Mexico is historically unprecedented. It is also contrary to multiple manifestations of integration and hybridization that characterize interactions between the two nations, including the inevitable “Latinization” of the U.S. population. Through a consideration of past and present “psychogeographies” of border residents, Dear concludes that the borderlands have long been a separate space between Mexico and the U.S., even foreshadowing the emergence of a “third nation.”
Michael Dear is a newly-appointed professor of City and Regional Planning at UC Berkeley’s College of Environmental Design. He has just completed a multi-year 4,000-mile trip along the U.S.–Mexico border and uses this experience to reflect on the current and future status of the line between the two countries.
Monday, August 31, 12:00 – 1:15 pm
554 Barrows Hall
“The Normalization of Post-Transition Democracy in Chile?”
President Michelle Bachelet’s administration has been a roller coaster ride. After numerous crises, the president has achieved record approval ratings despite rising unemployment and the economic downturn. Still, despite this popularity, there is widespread dissatisfaction with democracy in the country: the political mechanisms that smoothed the country’s transition to democracy are now hindering its development. This talk will discuss the new post-transition status quo, which could be described as the “normalization” of Chilean politics.
Kirsten Sehnbruch is a Senior Scholar at the Center for Latin American Studies. She also works as a consultant to the Chilean government on a range of issues related to labor market policy and writes a column for La Tercera, the Santiago daily.
Monday, September 14, 12:00 – 1:15 pm
CLAS Conference Room, 2334 Bowditch Street
Metaphors and Myths in News Reports of an Amazonian “Lost Tribe”
In May 2008, striking photos and accompanying stories of an Amazonian “Lost Tribe” found their way into an array of international news sources. However, some of these organizations soon dismissed the notion of a tribe unknown to civilization as a hoax. The photographer’s explanation that he had sought to protest illegal logging makes it easy to write off the story as one more cautionary tale. However, it is also possible to see the case as proof of the ongoing power of long-existing metaphors. These metaphors and their competing uses in environmental issues are the focus of this talk.
Candace Slater is Professor of Spanish and Portuguese at UC Berkeley. She has written extensively about Brazilian popular traditions and about the literary aspects of environmental themes.
Monday, October 5, 12:00 – 1:15 pm
554 Barrows Hall
"The Home Court Advantage: Sustaining Regulatory Bargains in Latin America"
During the 1990s, Latin American governments privatized utilities and many other types of infrastructure that had traditionally been operated by the public sector in the context of sweeping neoliberal “state reform” programs. This talk will examine the circumstances under which privatized, regulated water utilities in Latin America have both yielded improved services and remained politically viable in the long run.
Alison Post is an assistant professor in the Charles and Louise Travers Department of Political Science and in the Global Metropolitan Studies program at UC Berkeley. Her research focuses on Latin American political economy, the politics of regulation and urban politics.
Monday, November 2, 12:00 – 1:15 pm
554 Barrows Hall