Newsletter 2004
Indoamerican Literatures

     Dr. Park offered his course on Indoamerican Literatures again this spring. In this Special Topics class Dr. Park incorporates various texts that comprise the unique indigenous literary production of the Americas. Working from pre-colonial texts (Mesoamerican codices or, ‘painted books’ as some academics have called them), through non-traditional texts (textiles from Central America and knotted cords from the Andean region), to present day poetry of the Quechua and Mapuche speakers to the south, this course develops the concepts of ‘alternate literacies’ in the Americas. It explores the multi-layered narratives and poetry of indigenous cultures both living and deceased, through the lens of post-colonial and linguistic criticism (the ‘representation of the other’ and issues of power). This course also presents the intensely cross-disciplinary nature of this growing area of research in Spanish America, drawing from anthropology and archaeology, linguistics and literature, botany and chemistry, mathematics and astronomy.