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Heterogeneous Critique; A Proposal from a Latin American(ist) Point of View



Dr. Friedhelm Schmidt-Welle (Ibero-Amerikanisches Institut PK)


Friday, January 26, 2018 - 4:30pm


Pigott Hall (Bldg. 260), Room 252




Heterogeneous Critique; A Proposal from a Latin American(ist) Point of View


By introducing the concept of “heterogeneous critique”, I propose a theoretical and methodological framework and an alternative to universalist approaches in literary and cultural criticism, approaches which even include the trend to apply Anglo-Saxon postcolonialist positions on Latin American cultures. I will analyze the decline of universalist theory exemplified by the crisis of literary history and the emergence of a new regionalism in Latin American cultural critique which tries to overcome the invisibility of local theoretical production, and differentiate diverse forms of postcolonialisms according to their local contexts. I therefore propose the creation of a relational concept which considers that the so-called periphery is constitutive for the self-concept of the so-called center and for the process of transmodernity.

Dr. Friedhelm Schmidt-Welle studied Latin American Literature, Comparative Literature, and History at the Free University, Berlin, and the University of Pittsburgh. He received his PhD in Latin American Literature (thesis on Juan Rulfo and Manuel Scorza). He is now a researcher on Latin American Literature and Cultural Studies at the Ibero American Institute in Berlin, Germany. Schmidt-Welle taught Latin American, Comparative and German Literature at universities in Chile, Germany, and Mexico. From 2008 to 2010 he hold the Wilhelm and Alexander von Humboldt Distinguished Visiting Professorship at the College of Mexico (El Colegio de México) and the Mexican National Autonomous University (UNAM). During Summer Term 2010 he was Harris Distinguished Visiting Professor at Dartmouth College (USA). He has published extensively on Latin American and European Literature, Film, Cultural Studies, Literary Theory, and Postcolonialism. Among his recent books are: Multiculturalismo, transculturación, heterogeneidad, poscolonialismo. Hacia una crítica de la interculturalidad (2011); Culturas de la memoria. Teoría, historia y praxis simbólica (2012); La historia intelectual como historia literaria (2014); Nationbuilding en el cine mexicano desde la Época de Oro hasta el presente (2015, with Christian Wehr); MicroBerlín. De minificciones y microrrelatos (2015, with Ottmar Ette, Dieter Ingenschay, Fernando Valls); y Perú heute. Politik, Wirtschaft, Kultur (2016, with Iken Paap).
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