A minor, but key moment in Gareth Williams´ text is when he states, and repeats, that “it is the job of the reader to take stock of, and, if interested, question and strive to advance”. I have underlined the “if interested” part because I believe that in this moment Williams´ is being sincere in letting us off the hook about taking a definitive position with respect to some of the things he has to say. One might very well not be interested in analyzing if John Beverely is right or wrong on deconstructionism and its diminishing of the subaltern´s place in history or if De la Campa is being deconstructive or merely romantic with the deconstructivism, or not, of Roberto González Echeverría. Truly, who gives a %$··))/%·”·. I would love to read those texts and am interested in culture, literature and thought, but honestly, am I supposed to fear that the world would have been worse off if it wasn´t for the left clinging on to the revolution or if it wasn´t for deconstructivists opening up our eyes to nothingness… I mean its pretty bad as it is and both the left and the smart people have been here this whole time, they and there anti-imperialistic, revolutionary or post modern stances are as much a part of the problem as capitalism. Heck, they are capitalistic, imperialistic, frivolous, dumb, and all the things they claim or the rest of the world claims they are not… or am I wrong? …. So yeah, although I´m interested in your fascinating essay, Mr. Gareth, I´m not really interested, at least not for now in questioning it or advancing…

Why not see Beverely´s or Rodríguez´s or Moreira´s comments on a random undergrad student´s mid term exam, for chrissakes, why not analyze that, huh? aren´t these people teachers or are they just ramblers? I mean, what are they saying to their students: “you latinamericanist of the future this and you son of garcía Márquez-juan rulfo-señor presidente that..”

Like my two year old says when we want to leave the playground unexpectedly cause we just realized we have to be somewhere else (we´re late or something): “LET ME WORK!”- it´s her version of “leave me alone”, “shut up, dude”, “chill out, bro”, “sit down, man”.

Or like Sergio in Memorias del Subdesarrollo says about Picasso, only different: easy to write about the importance of studying and thinking all things in terms of Latin America when you´ve got a decent job in Pittsburgh or New Haven or… or…Michigan.


He says:

“what are the chances of forging an intellectual network capable of transforming university discourse on Latin America, rigorously and irreversibly, and therefore of truly challenging a system of domination based on colonial and imperial reasons? Are we able to cease lagging behind in our thought and in the relation between thought, capital, and action? Can we transform Latin Americanist thought, from being a “panoptic search and capture of ‘positions, fixed points, identities’” (45), into a viable preparation for something other than the vociferous conformism of the contemporary cultural studies paradigm?”


I say (taking from the vociferous hip hop group DAS RACIST):

“Sit down, man.”


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1 Response to sdm

  1. Sara says:

    Looks like your reaction was similar to mine! I’m reading Williams again to try to feel more positive… Wish me luck!

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