The Impact of WALLS

This event is free and open to the public

 THE IMPACT OF WALLS: Experiencing Borders in

East/West Germany, Israel/Palestine, & U.S./Mexico

Monday, February 13, 2017
5:30pm Reception
6:00pm Discussion

Click to watch the entire discussion online

First Amendment Center
free parking available on-site
1207 18th Ave South
Nashville, TN 37212

Join us for a panel discussion regarding the impact of WALLS. Panelists will discuss the Berlin Wall between East and West Germany, the wall that separates Israel and Palestine, as well as the proposed wall for the U.S./Mexico border. This event is free and open to the public. RSVP on Facebook

Discussion Panelists

Helmut Smith
Director of Max Kade Center for European and German Studies
Vanderbilt University
Helmut Walser Smith is a historian of modern Germany, with particular interests in the history of nation-building and nationalism, religious history, and the history of anti-Semitism. read more

Samar Ali
Adjunct Professor of Law, Vanderbilt University
Attorney, Bass Berry & Simms
Samar Ali is an expert on the intersection of national security and international economic development. At Bass Berry & Sims, Ali focuses on cross-border investments, transactions, immigration and compliance. read more

Mr. Mark K. GormanGabriella Sanchez
Assistant Professor of National Security Studies Institute
University of Texas – El Paso
Gabriella Sanchezan Assistant Professor of Security Studies and Associate Director for Research at The University of Texas El Paso’s National Security Studies Institute. Her research and teaching interests involve the social ecology of transnational organized crime, of border crossings and human mobility efforts, and of bottom-up resistance and insurgent movements. read more

(Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

View this event in the Vanderbilt News

This event is sponsored by the Vanderbilt University Max Kade Center for European Studies, the Center for Latin American Studies, the Robert Penn Warren Center & the International Studies Legal Program at Vanderbilt Law School

Haiti Week

Haiti Week

 February 2-10, 2017

Thursday February 2

12:10-1:00pm Lunch Talk by Dr. Franck Telemaque (Chief of Surgery at the State University Hospital, Port-au-Prince): “Impact of Foreign Aid on the Haitian Medical System Buttrick Hall 123
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 7:00-8:00pm  Lecture by Dr. Franck Telemaque: “International Development Aid in Haiti: Lessons Learned” Student Life Center Board of Trustees Room
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Friday, February 3

12:00pm – 1:00pm Lecture by Dr. Meehan “Popularizing Hydroponics as Climate Change Adaptation in the Caribbean” sponsored by the EOS Environment Project and the Department of Anthropology

Monday, February 6 

12:10-1:30pm Kreyol Class (Open to All); Buttrick Hall 123
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Wednesday, February 8

6:00-8:00pm LACS Cooking Class: Haitian food at Demo Kitchen of the Vanderbilt Recreation and Wellness Center
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Friday, February 10

12:10-1:00pm Lecture by Dr. Millien “Separating Haiti’s First Conjoined Twins: Healthcare in Haiti” lunch provided

Haiti Week is hosted by the Center for Latin American Studies and the Vanderbilt Institute for Global Health


What Makes Quality Coffee?

What Makes Quality Coffee? The Center for Latin American Studies along with the Jean & Alexander Heard Library are teaming up with CREMA, Coffee Roasters to answer this question. Join us for a coffee reception featuring live music by the Vanderbilt Jazz Combo. William Hempstead, the Lifetime Achievement Awardee of the Specialty Coffee Association of America, will discuss the rise of Third Wave coffee and the impact that it has had on producers in Guatemala and around the world.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Vanderbilt University Library Community Room
419 21st Avenue South
Nashville, Tennessee

5:00-5:30pm Coffee and Jazz Reception featuring the Vanderbilt Jazz Combo
5:30-6:30pm Talk by William Hempstead

This event is FREE and open to the public.

RSVP on Facebook

Add to: iCalendar  •  Google Calendar  •  Outlook

Parking information available here:

Latin American Images Photo Competition

Congratulations to the Winners!

1st Place “Eternidad” by Chelsey Dyer
2nd Place “Gorditas de Horno” by Elsa Mercado
3rd Place “Dignity in Protest” by Carwil Bjork-James
People’s Choice Award “Maya Ixil Women, Guatemala” by Miguel Cuj

 laipc-poster-2016-002The annual Latin American Images Competition continues to grow year after year. Vanderbilt students, faculty and staff were invited to submit their favorite original photo taken in Latin America. Fifty-one submissions representing 17 countries were entered to the competition this year.  The panel of judges selected the top twenty photos which have been printed and displayed in the Buttrick Hall atrium for one week between January 11-20.

Award Reception

The winners were announced at a reception on Thursday, January 19 at 4:30pm in the atrium of Buttrick Hall.  Cash prizes were be awarded to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places. The public was invited to vote for their favorite photos on social media. The photo with the most ‘likes’ was chosen as the People’s Choice Award. This event was free and open to all Vanderbilt faculty, staff, students and visiting scholars.

For the third year in a row Alma Paz-Sanmiguel coordinated all facets of the competition. Ben Tran (Asian Studies) and Candice Amich (English) were selected as the judges for this year’s competition.

View all this year’s submissions on our Facebook and Instagram social media pages.

Facebook @VanderbiltCLAS
Instagram @Vanderbilt_CLAS


Register Now for K-12 Teacher Workshops

The Center for Latin American Studies at Vanderbilt seeks to expand awareness and knowledge of Latin America in K – 16 settings.  CLAS works with the Tennessee Department of Education to award continuing education credit to teachers for their attendance at professional development.

menino-23Dinner and a Movie: Menino 23
Tuesday, February 7                                                  add to calendar 
Join CLAS for Dinner and a Movie to celebrate Black History Month! Enjoy a warm meal while watching Menino 23, a film exploring the enslavement of fifty black and mulato boys in rural Brazil during the 1930s. During that time, local elites in Brazil bought into Nazi and Fascist regimes and even subjected victims to racist experiments. Two of the surviving boys, now in their 80s, share their stories for the first time. CLAS Assistant Director Dr. Nicolette Kostiw will lead a discussion exploring how fascism, Nazism and scientific racism play out in Latin America, as well as possible avenues for classroom application.

clas_face_whiteExploring Latin America through Digital Gaming: Lessons from Second Language Acquisition and Interdisciplinary Approaches (online)
Wednesday, February 8                                         add to calendar
The study of Latin America is relevant and meaningful for all disciplines. Simply put, articulating the cross-curricular connections that exist within the study cultivates learning that is both meaningful and enduring for learners. While these strengths certainly merit the efforts required to plan and execute interdisciplinary content involving Latin America, the execution of this endeavor is complex.  In this webinar, we aim to address this complexity by exploring, evaluating, and experiencing digital games that promote interdisciplinary inquiry related to Latin America. We will discuss research regarding the transformative power of digital games in the world language classroom and how that research relates to other disciplines, and we will dissect various digital games that feature interdisciplinary connections that are relevant to the region.


Numbers and Graphs: Integrating Latin America in Any Classroom
Friday, March 3                                                        add to calendar
Come explore how to implement real-world data from Latin America into any classroom! CLAS is partnering with the Latin American Public Opinion Project (LAPOP) to bring public opinion data in Latin America to your classroom.  Through years of polling in most of the countries of Latin America, LAPOP has developed a treasure-trove of databases of public opinion information about varying viewpoints across Latin America. LAPOP is the leader in cutting-edge methods and best practices in research on opinions and behaviors with respect to democratic governance, economic well-being, health, security, education, etc. Dr. Mariana Rodriguez will introduce teachers to LAPOP’s methodology, data collection process, and ways to access and bring the data right into your classroom.   Teachers from Hillsboro High School will share how they used LAPOP data to plan and teach a PBL unit on Social Justice in their Spanish, Math, History and Social Studies classrooms.

Math experts and Social Studies teachers alike will find value in LAPOP’s data and discover interdisciplinary ways to bring Latin American content to your classroom!


Afro-Latino/Afro-Francophone Cultural Heritage: Embracing Diversity across Disciplines (online)
Wednesday, March 8                                                         add to calendar
As the diversity of the United States continues to rise, educators’ classrooms are ideal settings for examining diverse perspectives and intersections of identity. With five times as many enslaved Africans being trafficked to Latin America than to U.S. colonies, there are many historical, cultural, social, and economic comparisons between the United States and Latin America.  This webinar provides an overview of how educators can engage all learners through culturally responsive lessons. The presenter will use Afro-Latino/Afro-Francophone research as a bridge to engage diverse learners. This presentation will be multidisciplinary, and will have relevance for all disciplines. Webinar participants will leave with a wealth of resources and ideas to implement the next day.

qrcode-37961893#TechCLAS: Teaching Latin America and World Language Using Technology
Wednesday, April 12                                                       add to calendar
This workshop is designed to teach effective ways to incorporate technology into the world language classroom. The workshop will be taught through the lens of Latin America and participants will participate in a mini lesson designed for a high school level world language class.  Led by members of the CLAS Teacher Advisory board, this workshop will explore various technologies and how to incorporate them into the classroom. The workshop will conclude with time to create a #TechLesson and share ideas with fellow educators. Even the teacher who is uncomfortable with technology will walk away confident and ready to use some tech in class!

Brazil-Flag-Free-Download-Wallpaper-1920x1080Somos Nós: Brazil on the Move
June 19 – 23, 2017
K-16 educators of any discipline and grade-level are welcome to apply to attend this intensive institute. Throughout the week, participants will work together to develop interdisciplinary curricula, which they can bring back to their schools to teach and share with colleagues. The focus of this year’s workshop will be diversity and the environment. Sponsored by The University of Georgia, Vanderbilt University and Tulane University. Hosted this year by The University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia.

teach-laAdditional Summer 2017 Programs
Many member institutions of the Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs (CLASP) also offer national and international summer institutes that are open to, and welcome participation from, teachers across the country. For more information on upcoming national and international summer programs, click here.


Additional FREE Resources for Teachers

La Camioneta Glendale projectCurriculum Resources CLAS offers downloadable lesson plans, multimedia materials and other resources to help teachers incorporate Latin American content into their classrooms. All materials are available to teachers free of charge. Lesson plans, curriculum units and PowerPoint presentations may be downloaded here.


lending libraryLending Library CLAS maintains a comprehensive collection of books, lesson plans, multimedia materials and other resources to help teachers incorporate Latin American content into their classrooms. All materials are available to educators free of charge. To borrow books, films or multimedia materials, please visit the lending library webpage.


Guatemala Culture BoxCulture Boxes CLAS has travelling “culture boxes” filled with cultural artifacts for a hands-on experience for students and teachers.  These boxes are available for check-out and use in classrooms. To see photos and descriptions of the items in these boxes, click here.



Regina Jose Galindo


COMUNIDAD Performance

Regina Jose Galindo
Click to view invitation

Internationally renowned Guatemalan performance artist Regina José Galindo invites the Latinx community of Nashville to join her in the creation of a new performance piece. The creation of “Comunidad” relies on the simple act of coming together in solidarity to experience the power of community.

This powerful community-affirming performance will take place on Saturday, November 12th on the football field of the Vanderbilt Stadium. Participants – hopefully, in the hundreds – should arrive at 10am to meet the artist. A celebratory lunch for all participants will follow.

Please RSVP on Facebook to confirm your spot in the performance piece. We will send you updates and reminders as the big day approaches. Thank you for your interest, participation, and support!

Itinerary of Events:

Wednesday, November 9 Studio VU Lecture, 6:00 p.m., Wilson Hall Room 103
Thursday, November 10 Space 204 Reception, 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m., E Bronson Ingram Studio Arts Center Room 204
Saturday, November 12 “Comunidad” Performance, 10:00 a.m., Vanderbilt Stadium RSVP on Facebook

Regina José Galindo

(b. 1974), an internationally recognized performance artist, Regina José Galindo was born in Guatemala and lives in Guatemala City. Her work explores the universal ethical implications of social injustices especially those related to racial and gender discrimination. She has received major international awards for her body art, including the Golden Lion award at the 2005 Venice Biennale for a young artist under 35, the Grand Prize at the 2011 Biennial of Graphic Arts in Ljubljana, and a 2011 Prince Claus Award. Her work is included in important collections such as the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City; the Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art in Turin, Italy; Daros Latinamerica Collection in Zurich, Switzerland; the Blanton Museum of Art in Austin, Texas; MEIAC in Badajoz, Spain; the Museum of Contemporary Art and Design in San José, Costa Rica; and the Pérez Art Museum Miami.

Galindo is the most widely recognized member of a group of young women poets and artists who, in response to the amnesia of Guatemala’s post-dictatorship culture in the late 1990s, turned to performance art as a means of recovering cultural memory. She composed her signature work ¿Quién puede borrar las huellas? (Who Can Erase the Traces) in protest of General Efraín Rios Montt’s 2003 presidential candidacy. Wearing all black, Galindo walked barefoot from Guatemala’s Constitutional Court to the National Palace, carrying a white basin of bright red human blood.  Every few paces she would dip her feet into the bowl, leaving the trace of her bloody footprints. The eloquent procession testified to the living memory of genocidal war crimes, precariously memorializing the dead left in Ríos Montt’s wake.

In a more recent performance, La Verdad (The Truth), Galindo read from the testimonies of dozens of Maya Ixil women who witnessed atrocities committed by the armed services during the civil war. Seated at a small wooden table with a microphone suspended near her mouth, Galindo read from the translated transcripts of the April 2013 trial charging General Efraín Ríos Montt with acts of genocide. Facing the audience at the Centro Cultural de España in Guatemala City, Galindo’s reading was repeatedly interrupted by a male dentist who crossed the stage to anesthetize her mouth. Her speech, which began resonant with restrained pain, grew increasingly slurred and inaudible over the duration of the seventy-minute performance.


Clarice Lispector Translated: A Conversation with Katrina Dodson

A Conversation with Katrina Dodson, Translator of The Complete StoriesDodson-3

October 10, 2016 — Vanderbilt University proudly presents a conversation between award-winning translator Katrina Dodson and Professor Earl Fitz on Clarice Lispector’s The Complete Stories (New Directions, 2015). From one of the greatest modern writers, these 85 stories are gathered from the nine collections published during Lispector’s lifetime. The collection comprises, for the first time in any language, all the stories that made Lispector a Brazilian legend: from teenagers coming into awareness of their sexual and creative powers to housewives whose lives are shattered by unexpected epiphanies to old people who don’t know what to do with themselves. Lispector’s stories take us through their lives — and ours.

Winner of the PEN Translation Prize and the American Translators Association Lewis Galantière Award, Dodson holds a PhD in comparative literature at the University of California, Berkeley. Her work has appeared in such varied and revered publications as Granta, McSweeney’s, and Two Lines. Moderator Earl Fitz is a Professor of Portuguese and Spanish at Vanderbilt, and has studied Lispector’s work extensively. This promises to be a unique event and will be followed with an exclusive book signing with our guest. This event is sponsored by the Program in Jewish Studies, the English Department, the Center for Latin-American Studies, and the Robert Penn Warren Center at Vanderbilt University.

The conversation will take place on October 24th, 2016 at 7 PM at The Curb Center for Art,
Enterprise and Public Policy in the Workshop Room, located at 1801 Edgehill Avenue in Nashville.
Parking is available at the corner of 18th Avenue South and Edgehill Avenue.
Ben Tran

Praise for Dodson’s translation:
“The Complete Stories is a dangerous book to read quickly or casually because it’s so consistently
delirious. Sentence by sentence, page by page, Lispector is exhilaratingly, arrestingly strange.”
-Terrence Rafferty, New York Times Sunday Book Review
“Thirty-eight years after the Brazilian author’s death, Katrina Dodson translates her work, which
flips a writer’s maxim in making the mundane philosophical.”
“Her early work already reads like the mature productions of most writers. Each story demands such
attention. Lispector never repeats a subject or an approach except to push it further. Moser, in his
introduction, calls her a ‘female Chekhov,’ but Lispector is no one so much as the fullest version
of herself.”
-Joanna Walsh, The National
“Mystic intelligence and charm, perfectly unhinged sensibility.”
-James Yeh, Vice
“You could call Lispector’s stories telegraphs from the flames of hell, but that would discount how
innocent and funny they could be. Manna from the shtetl? Prayers at the high-rise window before
the tranquilizers kick in? You will not be disappointed if you read The Complete Stories. It might
even become your bible.”
– Benjamin Anastas, The New Republic

Social Venture founded by CLAS Director Ted Fischer wins $15,000 prize

Ted Fischer leaning on railingNutriPlus, a social venture founded by Ted Fischer, director of Latin American Studies and professor of anthropology, has won a Stephan Schmidheiny Award from the VIVA Trust in the Social Innovation category. The award, a $15,000 prize to benefit the winning project, recognizes enterprises that have produced significant improvement in people’s lives. More than 500 projects competed this year.

NutriPlus produces a peanut-based pediatric nutrition therapy called Mani+ (MAH’-nee ploos) for the benefit of the 50 percent of Guatemalan children who suffer from malnutrition. “It is an honor to receive this recognition on behalf of all of the students and colleagues who have worked on this project over the years,” said Fischer. “There is far greater demand for our life-saving Mani+ product than we can meet in Guatemala—malnutrition is endemic across large parts of the country. We will use the award money to buy a new mixer and increase our capacity. Every child deserves a fighting chance in life, and Mani+ helps give poor Maya kids in highland Guatemala that chance.”

Mani+ is unique because it’s sourced and produced right in Guatemala. It’s a truly farm-to-table approach that not only addresses a grave humanitarian need for those who consume it but also provides economic opportunities for the farmers and technicians who produce it—and ultimately for the vendors who will sell it.

Mani+ is the result of years of interdisciplinary research by Vanderbilt anthropology, business, nursing, biological sciences and education students and professors. And this year, Mani+ has shared its talent with Vanderbilt in return: Lead nutritionist Miguel Cuj, himself a Maya born in raised in the highlands, began a master’s program in Latin American Studies at Vanderbilt this fall. “We have exposed our students to global health and international experiences working on this project in Guatemala, and it is beautiful that it has also helped us recruit some of the best talent in Guatemala to attend Vanderbilt for their advanced studies,” said Fischer. “This two-way street illustrates the remarkable impact Vanderbilt has had in Guatemala.”

NutriPlus’ cofounder is local philanthropist and music business leader Steve Moore, founder of Middle Tennessee nonprofit The Shalom Foundation and former Country Music Association CEO. The foundation’s Guatemala City headquarters houses Vanderbilt’s Guatemala field office.

The VIVA Trust was founded by Swiss industrialist Stephan Schmidheiny to bring business and philanthropy together to promote sustainability and equality in Latin America through innovation and entrepreneurship.

by Liz Entman | Aug. 23, 2016, 4:03 PM

Media Inquiries:
Liz Entman, (615) 322-NEWS

Read the original article on Research News @ Vanderbilt

VIVA Press release (Spanish)

Brazil Week 2016

Brazil Week Poster 2016

Monday 9/12

Talk by James Wright and Marshall Eakin “Brazil After Dilma”
12:10pm • Buttrick Hall 205

Cheese and Wine Reception to welcome our colleagues from São Paulo
4:30pm • Buttrick Hall Atrium

Tuesday 9/13
Presentation by FIA undergraduate students on Brazil. Lunch will be provided.
12:10pm • Buttrick Hall 123

Futebol Tournament
4:00pm • Currey Law (in front of Wilson Hall)
Teams from around campus compete for the honor and  glory of winning the Brazil Week Cup. Teams form on site.

Wednesday 9/14
Film Screening: “Últimas Conversas” followed by a discussion.
5:00pm • Buttrick Hall 103
The late director Eduardo Coutinho sits down and talks with young Brazilian students in his last documentary. Filmmaker Eduardo Coutinho, 2015, 89mins.

Thursday 9/15
Lecture by Edilza Sotero (Brown University): “Mulheres em Movimento: Women, Displacement and Action in the Flows of the African Diaspora.”
12:10pm • Buttrick Hall 206

Friday 9/16

Churrasco/Brazilian BBQ Dinner
5:00pm • Buttrick Terrace

Capoeira Presentation by Balança Capoeira
6:00pm • Buttrick Terrace