July Theme: Latin America

In a year crowded with international events like the Olympics—and yes, the 2012 U.S. presidential election—it might seem appropriate to repeat last July’s Global and  International Studies theme, but instead, we’d like to broaden the relevance by narrowing the point; focusing our attention on one “corner” of the world and showing how Latin American influence plays a prominent role in global affairs, let alone its proximate effects on the United States.

With Sunday’s results of the Mexican general election, we have already looked to commentary from journalist Jo Tuckman, author of the newly published Mexico: Democracy Interrupted, a timely investigation of the seemingly intractable issues of corruption, drug wars, and poverty in Mexico since the 2000 presidential election.

For literature’s sake, we take a closer look at the work of Uruguayan poet Delmira Agustini and the cross-cultural importance of modernismo in Cathy L. Jrade’s new biography, Delmira Agustini, Sexual Seduction, and Vampiric Conquest.  And this year’s publication of Eduardo Corral’s Slow Lightning marked the first Latino winner in the Yale Series of Younger Poets—a book that “grants summer’s best gifts—wisdom, life […] in abundance,” according to Junot Díaz in Entertainment Weekly.

The eminent historian John Lynch brings together a career of research and writing to present New Worlds: A Religious History of Latin America, covering the Latin American people’s reception of Christianity from the Spanish Conquest and the arrival of evangelists to the dictators and repressive regimes of the twentieth century.

A traveling exhibition titled, “Caribbean: Crossroads of the World,” has opened at three venues in New York to praise from Holland Cotter at the New York Times, who calls it “the big art event of the summer season.” Now open at El Museo del Barrio, the Queens Museum of Art, and the Studio Museum in Harlem, the show is accompanied by a catalogue available from YUP later this year, with 500 color images depicting the full range of modern and contemporary Caribbean art from the Haitian Revolution to the present.

All this amidst your regular books news, contests, interviews and roundups. We hope your summer is as much a fiesta (Cuban or otherwise) as ours is soon to be!

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