Monday, April 20, 2020
Stimson Hall, G-01
204 East Ave., Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
This talk explores ways in which notions of visuality are interconnected with epistemological frameworks of race/ethnicity/nationality and space/territoriality/borders by analyzing Juan Martín Hsu’s film La Salada (2014). By taking as its focus the borderscape of La Salada – the large informal market located in the south of Buenos Aires – that arose from the harsh neoliberal restructurings during the 1990s and the growing waves of migration to the Argentine capital from neighboring countries (e.g., Bolivia), as well as from East Asia (e.g., South Korea), Hsu’s film calls our attention to the intimate connections between the workings of global capitalism, the multiplication of different forms of labor, and the heterogenization of borders. The combining and intersecting of differential geographical scales (the national, the transnational, the local, the global) and the biopolitics of migrant labor (race/gender/sexuality) that the film depicts, complicate not only notions of national territory and identity, but also an understanding of the economic (e.g. neoliberalism, market, finance). Where do we locate and how do we visualize migratory spaces and border zones? How do these spaces suspect dominant narratives of global capitalism and labor? Moreover, how do we understand the relations between biopolitics and geopolitics in the context of global capitalism? Specifically examining the contacts and exchanges between “Asia(ns)” and “Latin America(ns)”–which provide the main narrative technology of Hsu’s film– sheds light on the ways in which human bodies complicate the dominant discourse that reduces “Asia” and “Latin America” to mean national economies.
Junyoung Verónica Kim is Assistant Professor of Visual Culture/Media, and Latin American Culture and Literature, in the Department of Hispanic Languages & Literatures at The University of Pittsburgh. Both transregional and interdisciplinary in scope, her field of research includes modern and contemporary Latin American literature, Latin American and Korean cinema, cultural studies, critical race and gender studies, and immigration history. She has published articles on Latin American literary studies, Asian-Latin American literature, Korean immigration in Argentina, the Global South project and Transpacific Studies, as well as on the impact of globalization on New Wave Latin American cinema. She is on the editorial board for the book series “Historical and Cultural Interconnections between Latin America and Asia” for Palgrave Macmillian. Her book in progress, Asia-Latin America: Transpacific Studies and the Disciplinary Politics of Knowledge, explores the cultural and migratory flows between Latin America and Asia by looking at literature, cinema, and Asian immigration history in Latin America. Currently, she has also started working on a new project tentatively titled The Korean War and Transpacific Intimacies: Labor, Biopolitics and Chemical Diasporas that undertakes an exploration of transpacific relations of labor, militarization, and solidarity that arise during the Korean War.