Planning the conference from the Circum-Caribbean, but always having the insular territories of the Greater Caribbean on mind, constitutes an interesting and somewhat different challenge. The voice “Caribe” evokes the Indo-American origin that today identifies the region we study. However, it also recalls the subsequent appropriations, interpretations and accounts of the European colonizers, used to subjugate and wrest humanity from the original peoples who inhabited these territories. The city that will reunite us in 2019, Santa Marta, combines both the history of European colonization in its city, and the indigenous presence in the highlands of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta that surrounds it; the mestizo, black and Afro-descendant presence; and the Caribbean Sea that links this continental territory with the great insular region. The conference’s central theme –The Caribbean in Times of Tempest. Ethnicities, Territorial Resistances and Epistemic Poetics– takes shape amidst diversity. A diversity of cultures, of ways of knowing, of expressing oneself and of facing the hurricane winds that leads to societies open to difference, inclusive and respectful of the environment, in the midst of global, continental and local tensions.
The Caribbean city of Santa Marta, capital of the Magdalena Department, is located in the lands of the Tayrona ancestral culture. Founded in 1525 by the Spanish conqueror Rodrigo de Bastidas, it is the oldest city in Colombia with a historic downtown of great beauty and architectural richness.
The Universidad del Magdalena and the Universidad Nacional de Colombia will host the Conference, with a wide thematic variety including: Nature, Culture and Spirituality in the Caribbean; Afro-descendant and Indigenous Ethnicities in Struggle for the Defense of the Territories; Art, Literature and Poetry in Caribbean Emancipatory Thought; Integration of the Caribbean Archipelago between Continental and Island Territories; and Culture of Peace in the Caribbean.
The Conference, which will host a Film and Audiovisual Festival, has the support of the Banco de la República (the Colombian Central Bank), the Gold Museum, and the Quinta de San Pedro Alejandrino, the place where the Liberator Simón Bolívar spent his last days, recreated by García Márquez in his book “The General in his Labyrinth”.
We await you with the joy of their music, rich in textures, such as cumbia, vallenato, bullerengue, and puya, which mixes various rhythms of indigenous, African and Spanish influence, as well as their dance traditions that are shared throughout the Caribbean coast.