This podcast series surveys the unique ecosystem of contemporary scholarship and art being generated by scholars and creatives in New England who are working in Latin American and Caribbean Studies. Episodes in the series address topics such as knowledge production and technological adaptation in the Global South;  trans activism and feminism in transnational perspective; indigenous perspectives on the cosmos and the capitalist state; and processes of cultural hybridization though migration and South-South relations. Join us for a fascinating set of conversations from thinkers and innovators crossing boundaries and expanding the frontiers of Latin American and Caribbean Studies.

John Galante

John Galante is a historian of Latin America and author of On the Other Shore: The Atlantic Worlds of Italians in South America during the Great War. His current project is on meanings of “Latinness” in comparative historical perspective.

Joseph Aguilar

Joe Aguilar is a fiction writer and author of the book Half Out Where. He focuses on Chicano literature and speculative fiction. He is also the editor of the literary magazine Hex Literary, which publishes fantasy and science fiction.

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List of Episodes

Episode 1

Joe Aguilar and John Galante on the making of Crossing Fronteras

In this introductory episode, co-hosts Joe Aguilar and John Galante review the creation of the podcast series Crossing Fronteras. Topics include the curation of a diverse slate of guests; surprising throughlines that connect these conversations; and challenges and opportunities that arose while making the series.

Joe Aguilar & John Galante

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Episode 2

Eden Medina on the role of science and technology in Chile’s political history

Eden Medina, an historian of science and technology, addresses relationships between technology and politics in her work on Project Cybersyn, a radical computational experiment by the 1970s government of Salvador Allende, and her upcoming project on the use of forensics in the search for truth and reconciliation. She also reflects on approaches to AI in teaching and learning at a STEM university.

Eden Medina

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Eden’s Bio

Episode 3

Javier Puente on Peru’s central highlands, identity politics, and dynamite

Javier Puente discusses historical relations between indigenous communities and the state during Peru’s internal armed conflict, theories of underdevelopment, and future projects on dynamite and El Niño. He also considers the pitfalls of identity-based epistemologies in academic research and the dangerous appeal of authoritarianism in the Americas.

Javier Puente

Smith College

Javier’s Bio

Episode 4

Macarena Gómez-Barris on extractivism’s threats to humans and the more-than-human

Macarena Gómez-Barris, an interdisciplinary scholar, speaks on decolonial advocacy and creative expression in indigenous activism, and alliances formed among peoples and between human and more-than-human subjects in opposing extractive capitalism. She also discusses how greater attention given to perspectives from the Global South might further reshape considerations of knowledge production, learning, community, and activism in higher education.

Macarena Gómez-Barris

Brown University

Macarena’s Bio

Episode 5

Aarti Smith Madan on Argentinian intellectuals and afro-Brazilian street art

Aarti Smith Madan, a scholar of Latin American literature and spatial humanities, maps the trajectory of her interests in nineteenth-century Argentine nation-builders, gauchos as literary subjects, and histories of South-South interactions through connections between Argentina and India. She also outlines her research on the manifestations of Afro-Brazilian consciousness in street art, artistic identity, and social media.

Aarti Madan

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Aarti’s Bio

Episode 6

Carmen Jarrín on the joys and hazards of trans art and activism in Brazil

Carmen Jarrín engages in a conversation about ethnographic research on trans and travesti creators and activists in Brazil’s artivismo movement as they contend with violence and right-wing nationalism. Carmen connects this work to earlier investigations of plastic surgery, biopolitics, and relationships between gender, beauty, and national identity in Brazil.

Carmen Jarrín

College of the Holy Cross

Carmen’s Bio

Episode 7

Ginetta Candelario on feminist histories of the Dominican Republic in transnational perspective

Ginetta Candelario addresses historical feminist advocacy and resilience in the Dominican Republic, transnational solidarities forged by shared feminist and Black experiences around the Americas, and distinctions between knowledge production in advocacy and scholarship. She also discusses her editorship of the leading intersectional feminist journal Meridians and the use of terms like “Latinx.”

Ginetta Candelario

Smith College

Ginetta’s Bio

Episode 8

Carlos Odria on improvisation and notions of fluidity that influence his music

Musician and scholar Carlos Odria talks about heavy metal, Brazilian jazz, Daoism, the picado technique, migration from Peru, and other influences on his improvisational, hybridized, and fluid guitar-playing style. He also reviews the ethnomusicology research he conducted on urban tambores groups that transformed his perceptions of cultural production in metropolitan Lima.

Carlos Odria

Worcester State University

Carlos’ Bio

Episode 9

Ramón Rivera-Moret on comparative cosmologies and using multiplicities in storytelling through film

Filmmaker Ramón Rivera-Moret discusses turning his fascination with astronomy into a film project that has taken him from scientific observatories to Lakota spiritual ceremonies to visits with a shaman and fisherman using the stars in northern Peru. He also reflects on ways film school in Paris, Pier Paolo Pasolini, and his grandmother’s letter writing have influenced current and planned projects about his native Puerto Rico.

Ramón Rivera-Moret

Rhode Island School of Design

Ramón’s Bio

Episode 10

Koichi Hagimoto on Transpacific modernity and ethnic Japanese writers in Latin America

Koichi Hagimoto, a literary scholar of Transpacific studies and comparative anti-colonial resistance movements, discusses his conception of Transpacific modernity. He also outlines his recent work on cultural and political relationships between Japan and Argentina, and his considerations of the literature and racial identities of people of Japanese descent in Latin America.

Koichi Hagimoto

Wellesley College

Koichi’s Bio