2013 Theme


May 17-May 22, 2013
Indigenism, Pan-Indigenism and Cosmovisionism: The Confluence of Indigenous Thought in the Americas

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The study of the social and political thought of the indigenous peoples of the Americas in the 21st century is witnessing a renaissance. The 58th Annual Meeting of the Seminar on the Acquisition of Latin American Library Materials (SALALM) will explore the variety of ways of thinking, imagining and acting within these communities, including concepts and insights on nature, art, ecology, time, space, ethics, ethnicity and the cosmos/universe. We are interested in exploring the array of verbal, visual, discursive and dialogical narratives, as well as their collective agency at the local, communal, transcommunal and global levels.

Learning about indigenous cultures will enhance our duties as librarians. The exploration of these ideas, concepts and insights will help us in developing the depth and breadth of our collections. It will also guide us in designing the logistics of collecting, documenting and preserving primary as well as secondary sources of information, data and knowledge related to indigenous peoples.

Throughout the Americas, indigenous movements, activists and intellectuals have, over the centuries, used sophisticated strategies and tactics in the production, distribution and application of knowledge to address problems at various levels of their experiences. These levels and units of analysis range from the local to the regional and transregional spheres of activity.

Indigenous thought in the Americas will be examined at the micro, meso and macro levels. At the micro-level, indigenism concerns the issues and problems of historiography, ideology, epistemology and, at the communal level, hyphenation (dual ethnic identity such as native-American). At the meso-level, pan-indigenism relates to the comparative ideological, historiographical and epistemological issues and problems of indigenism transcommunally. Cosmovisionism deals with the interpretation of nature and life itself vis-à-vis shared topics of concern such as religion, politics, ethics, and moral principles.

SALALM 58 will serve as a forum to examine, debate and share views about the nature, value and relevance of indigenous thought and action in the postmodern world.

Key topics for discussion will include but are not limited to:

- Issues, problems, levels, prospects and contexts of indigenous thought and action in the Americas

- The oral, visual, and written traditions of indigenous thought

- The works of classical Andean thinkers such as Guaman Poma de Ayala, El Inca Garcilaso de la Vega, the Mayan activist Pedro Balcúmez and the Navajo leader Manuelito

- The variety of conceptions of time and space among indigenous peoples throughout the continent

- The nature, function and relevance of indigenous epistemic communities in the Americas

- How pan-indigenous networks engage in the exchange of ideas and strategies via internet and other forms of modern communication

- The roles that indigenous and non-indigenous peoples play in the reshaping of today’s world

- The logistics of collecting, preserving and processing the wealth of knowledge embedded in various indigenous epistemic communities throughout the Americas


The SALALM 58 conference is co-hosted by the University of Miami Libraries and Florida International University Libraries. The meeting will be held at the Westin Coral Gables Hotel on May 17-May 22, 2013. Registration for the conference will begin in January 2013.

Interested participants, presenters and panel organizers should contact Martha E. Mantilla, SALALM President (2012-2013) with proposals. Please include your name, institution, contact information, proposed title and abstract. The deadline for receipt of proposals is February 1, 2013.

Martha E. Mantilla – E-mail: martham@pitt.edu

Librarian, Latin American Studies and Eduardo Lozano Collection

171 Hillman Library - University of Pittsburgh - 3960 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA. 15260 USA

Voice: (412) 648-7734 Fax: (412) 648-7713

For local arrangements and exhibits queries contact:

Meiyolet Mendez - E-mail: meimendez@miami.edu
Education & Outreach Librarian (History, Latin American & Caribbean Studies, Modern Languages & Literatures) Education & Outreach Coordinator for the Cuban Heritage Collection University of Miami - Otto G. Richter Library - Coral Gables, FL 33146
Voice: (305) 284-2040 Fax: (305) 284-9848

SALALM Secretariat: Tulane University; The Latin American Library; 422 Howard Tilton Memorial Library; 7001 Freret Street; New Orleans, LA 70118-5549; Phone: 504-247-1366; Fax: 504-247-1367; Email: salalm@tulane.edu