March 2013 - Conference on the Americas
The 12th Conference of the Americas was held on March 15 & 16 at the Eberhard Center, GVSU Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus. This year's theme was Places, Bodies and Practices in Latin America. The conference is an interdisciplinary forum for scholars and community organizations interested in topics of research on Latin America, including the experiences of Latin Americans in the United States and Canada. The keynote speakers were Dr. Saskia Sassen (Columbia University) who conducted a workshop and gave a lecture on globalization (including social, economic and political dimensions), immigration, global cities (including cities and terrorism), new technologies, and changes within the liberal state that result from current transnational conditions. Cultural anthropologist Ana Rosas Mantecón (Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Iztapalapa) conducted a workshop and gave a lecture on the social impact of cultural access, creativity, and urban cultural policies in Mexico City. Proposals included posters, panels, paper sessions and pedagogies of all kinds, including an Latin@s Art Exhibition. Three local children's dance groups participated at the closing of the conference. The total number of attendees was more than 500 people, including students, faculty, scholars, artists and community members.