Oral Presentation Session - Invited Status Awarded
Invited by: Society for Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology
Of interest to: Practicing and Applied Anthropologists, Teachers of Anthropology in Community Colleges, Students
Primary Theme: Indigeneity
Secondary Theme: Race
This panel seeks to bring together scholars of the Amazon and Andes to rethink how the configuration of gendered and racialized bodies among indigenous populations in South America is negotiated, contested, and enfigured through the everyday politics of indigenous language use. The negotiation of ideas of gendered and racialized subjectivities has long been a focus among scholars of indigenous populations in Andean and Amazonian South America (Canessa 2012, Harris 2000, Chernela 2003, McCallum 2001, Murphy and Murphy 2004). Many insights into the relationship between indigenous identities and idealized gendered subjectivities are informed by histories of colonial contact, where ideas about gendered subjectivities have been shaped by ideologies of racial hierarchies and racial miscegenation (Rappaport 2014, Weismantle 2001). These racio-gendered negotiations take new forms today as histories of inter-indigenous contact, indigenous revitalization, and the influence of global indigenous identities become more prominent among indigenous communities in South America. Yet what role does indigenous language use play in the continued negotiation of gendered, racialized, indigenous bodies?
This panel will re-examine the social processes that enfigure, negotiate, and contest the intersectionality (e.g., Crenshaw 2011) between racio-gendered subjectivities by investigating the role that indigenous language plays in managing identity categories. How do everyday practices of indigenous speakers either support or challenge local ideologies of an indigenous-gendered identity? How have histories of indigenous contact with other indigenous and non-indigenous populations and languages complicated discourses about indigenous and gendered means of self-classification and identification? How are intersubjective experiences shaped by the indexical linking of racial and gender classifications with interactions and performances that are evaluated as more or less indigenous? By looking at different cases through the Andes and the Amazon, this panel’s focus on indigenous language practices and ideologies will highlight the challenges of understanding the fraught and tense relationship of racial and gendered subjectivities among indigenous populations in South America.
Canessa, Andrew. 2012. Intimate Indigeneities: Race, Sex, and History in the Small Spaces of Andean Life. Duke University Press.
Chernela, Janet. 2003. “Language Ideology and Women’s Speech: Talking Community in the Northwest Amazon.” American Anthropologist 105 (4): 1-13.
Crenshaw, Kimberlé W. 2011. “Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex: A Black Feminist Critique of Anti-Discrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory, and Anti-Racist Politics.” In Framing Intersectionality: Debates on a Multi-Faceted Concept in Gender Studies, edited by H. Lutz, M. T. Herrera Vivar, and L. Supik, 25-42. Surrey, England: Ashgate.
Harris, Olivia. 2000. To Make the Earth Bear Fruit: Essays on Fertility, Work and Gender in Highland Bolivia. ix, 251 p. London: Institute of Latin American Studies.
McCallum, Cecilia. 2001. Gender and Sociality in Amazonia: How Real People Are Made. Oxford: New York.
Murphy, Yolanda and Robert F. Murphy. 2004. Women of the Forest. New York: Columbia University.
Rappaport, Joanne. 2014. The Disappearing Mestizo: Configuring Difference in the Colonial New Kingdom of Granada. pages cm. Durham: Duke University Press.
Weismantel, M. 2001. Cholas and Pishtacos: Stories of Race and Sex in the Andes. Women in Culture and Society. University of Chicago Press.