14th Annual Student Conference: "Disruption: Destructive & Generative Ruptures in Latin America & the Caribbean"

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Call for Papers
March 15, 2021
Maryland, United States
Subject Fields: 
Area Studies, Chicana/o History / Studies, Humanities, Latin American and Caribbean History / Studies, Mexican History / Studies

Disruption: Destructive & Generative Ruptures in Latin America & the Caribbean


Latin American Studies Center

14th Annual Student Conference

Online / Zoom Webinar

University of Maryland, College Park

April 29 and 30, 2021


Call for Proposals


Disruption: one of the best words to characterize 2020. We can think of it as “the action of rending or bursting asunder; [a] violent dissolution of continuity; [a] forcible severance.”[1] After a year marked by such action, the COVID-19 global health crisis encourages us to consider prevalent and persistent social ills, such as racism and sexism, that upend people’s daily lives. As the pandemic rages, putting into sharp focus the existing inequalities throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, our current situation presents opportunities for us to consider the effects of disruption. While the uncertainty that accompanies major societal upheaval can lead to suppression, where progress made towards addressing societal inequalities is stalled, it can also engender innovation, serving as a catalyst for social and political transformation. In the Americas, activism continues - in the streets and online - with individuals and groups engaging in disruptive practices, hoping to create new possibilities and futures. In this conference, acknowledging both its generative and destructive qualities, we seek to explore the detrimental effects as well as the productive possibilities of rupture.


This theme encourages us to consider the following questions: how have those marginalized by race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, class and religion in Latin America and the Caribbean engaged in the theory and praxis of rupture? In the midst of disruption, what methods have marginalized individuals and groups employed to temper or magnify the ramifications of the break? In the wake of disruption, how have they picked up the shards of shattered lives and livelihoods to persevere and rebuild? What possibilities are now imaginable because of the legacies and histories of disruption? How has disruption  prevented other possibilities for social change from being realized? What hegemonic structures appear dangerously sound and able to withstand the disruptive efforts for progress and change? What are the historical discontinuities that have shaped and continue to shape Latin America, the Caribbean, and Latinx and Caribbean communities in the United States? How has rupture and disruption informed conceptualizations of time and space in Latin America, the Caribbean, and in Latinx and Caribbean communities in the United States? What new visions of disruption have emerged in the 21st century?


For this virtual conference, we welcome a wide variety of contributions including those that disrupt established academic conventions regarding methods and styles of presenting.  We encourage the submission of creative, innovative, and unconventional presentations.  Topics may include but are not restricted to:


  • Protest, resistance, and revolution
  • Activism: feminist, decolonial and Indigenous; online and in digital spaces
  • Movements for social justice
  • Methodologies: of disruption, of care and healing, of joy
  • Transnational alliances
  • Disruptions across time and space
  • Imagining alternative futures (utopias and dystopias)
  • Disruptions throughout history and legacies of disruption in contemporary activism
  • Legacies of conquest and dispossession
  • Rewriting and reframing hegemonic narratives
  • Hegemonies: white supremacy and systemic racism, policing and state violence, neoliberalism
  • Anti-Blackness
  • Gender and sexuality
  • Trauma
  • Performance, art and creative expression
  • The impacts of quarantines, stay-at-home orders, lockdowns and social/physical distancing

We invite participants to explore elements of the theme in Latin America, the Caribbean, and among Latin Americans, Latinx and Caribbean people living in the United States or elsewhere in the world. We  encourage contributions that propose solidarities between disciplines and types of knowledge.

The conference features a keynote panel with scholars, community members, artists, and activists. It includes graduate and undergraduate student research panels and innovative sessions offering  different ways of exchanging ideas.

Proposal Guidelines:

 Abstract no more than 250 words

  • Up to 5 keywords
  • 50-word biography of presenters (indicate affiliation)
  • Indicate the format of your proposed contribution: individual paper, panel, roundtable  discussion, artistic performance, screening, or any format.
  • Describe your audio-visual needs
  • Describe your accommodation needs


We have extended our deadline. Please submit your proposal by March 15, 2021 to lasc@umd.edu


The virtual conference will take place on Zoom webinar. We welcome contributions in English, Spanish, Spanglish, Portuguese, French, or Creole.  Proposal decision notifications will be emailed by March 23, 2021. Inquiries may be sent to the  Latin American Studies Center at the University of Maryland, lasc@umd.edu.

Contact Info: 

Latin American Studies Center, University of Maryland, College Park

Contact Email: