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Bringing Latin American popular art out of the margins and into the center of serious scholarship, this book rethinks the cultural canon and recovers previously undervalued cultural forms as art. Juan Ramos uses decolonial aesthetics, a theory that frees the idea of art from Eurocentric forms of expression and philosophies of the beautiful, to examine the long decade of the 1960s in Latin America-- time of cultural production that has not been studied extensively from a decolonial perspective. Ramos looks at examples of antipoetry, unconventional verse that challenges canonical poets and often addresses urgent social concerns. He analyzes the militant popular songs of nueva cancion by musicians including Mercedes Sosa and Violeta Parra. He discusses films that use visually shocking images and melodramatic effects to tell the stories of Latin American nations. These art forms, he argues, appeal to an aesthetic that involves all the senses. Instead of being outdated byproducts of their historical moments, they continue to influence Latin American cultural production today.
Decolonial Approaches to Latin American Literatures and Cultures engages and problematizes concepts such as decolonial and coloniality to question methodologies in literary and cultural scholarship. While the eleven contributions produce diverse approaches to literary and cultural texts ranging from Pre-Columbian to contemporary works, there is a collective questioning of the very idea of Latin America, what Latin American contains or leaves out, and the various practices and locations constituting Latinamericanism. This transdisciplinary study aims to open an evolving corpus of decolonial scholarship, providing a unique entry point into the literature and material culture produced from precolonial to contemporary times.