Global Studies Forum / Diversity Speakers Series
Crisis and Sovereignty: Posthegemony, Affect, IlliteracyAbraham Acosts (University of Arizona)
Wednesday, September 28
5:30pm in 14E-304

Abraham Acosta will explore the critical stakes of political theory and theories of resistance in a contemporary moment marked by the increasing discordance between contemporary theories of power and the intensified historical contradictions brought about by the neoliberal restructuration of the nation-state. Cultural studies, including the notion of Hegemony, mark increasingly ineffectual attempts to draw meaning from cultural practices and political forms in such a radically transformed environment. In effect, we are seeing older theoretical models pushed to their limits and may no longer provide the secure analytic footing they offered in previous years. Given these conditions, Dr. Acosta will reflect upon several, recently developed, theoretical accounts of power that aim to think beyond the critical and material assumptions of power and hegemony––including the notions of Posthegemony, Affect, and “illiteracy”––as a means to chart a new path and theoretical framework for critical inquiry.

Abraham Acosta is Associate Professor of Latin American Cultural Studies at the University of Arizona. He specializes in literary and cultural analysis, focusing on questions of subalternity, postcoloniality, and biopolitics in the Americas. His research traverses the critical realities of contemporary multilingual contexts, where assumptions of power, knowledge, and capital crosshatch with historical translations of cultural difference. Acosta’s work has been published in such journals as Dispositio/n, the Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies, Social Text, and Critical Multilingualism Studies, and Politíca Común.  His book, Thresholds of Illiteracy: Theory, Latin America, and the Crisis of Resistance (2014) is published by Fordham University Press.