Call for Reviews: CROLAR 9(1): Latin American Futures

What future scenarios are currently being developed in Latin America? How does the region’s historical experience with diverse and durable crises affect thinking about the future in and of Latin America? And what conceptions of temporality characterize such thinking?

 

In early 2019, Jair Messias Bolsonaro’s inaugural speech as newly elected president of the Federative Republic of Brazil outlined a future free from “socialism, inverted values, the bloated state and political correctness”. Bolsonaro’s electoral promise of salvation, authoritarian style, merged Christian values with a neoliberal ideology, anti-Labor Party procedures, and an anti-crime legislative project. Such restoration of antagonistic politics contradicts Francis Fukuyama’s much-cited post-cold war prediction that the global spread of liberal capitalism would ultimately lead to an “end of history” (Fukuyama, 1992). It also demonstrates the deeply political nature of future projects.

 

Neoliberal positions envision Latin America’s “brighter future” as being dependent on its further integration into global markets by deregulating resource extraction (Freedom Lab, 2018). Technocrats, in turn, observe that despite regional governments’ efforts to project future scenarios, “to date, and despite few exceptions, [Latin America] lacks public institutional capacity to coordinate those tasks” (Bitar, 2014); thus, “over 500 years of unfulfilled promises” (Chinchilla, 2019) characterize the regional history. However, more critical voices claim that such stereotyping obscures Latin America’s durable and historically established inequalities (Mirabal and Laó-Montes, 2007). Future thinking, we learn, must be attentive to the historical roots of present crime, violence, and social inequalities.

 

For the upcoming issue, CROLAR invites reviews and review essays on Latin American research, debates, policies and cultural production that address exploratory, conceptual, and epistemological questions towards Latin America’s Futures. Along with academic monographs, edited volumes, and journal volumes, we also invite reviews that examine other formats, such as blogs, fictional literature, or film. In addition, we invite review essays that, with a specific interest, comparatively discuss a set of at least three sources, including academic books, fictional novels and online resources. For our special section “Interventions”, we welcome essays that critically dissect how the current COVID-19 pandemic is being debated. Due to the timeliness and dynamics of the pandemic and related academic debates, these essays could ideally elaborate on diverse online sources. Lastly, we continue publishing reviews that examine works which are off-topic in our section “Current Debates”. Please visit our website for all further information on formats, styles and prior issues: http://www.crolar.org/

 

To contribute to this issue, please send an email to crolar[at]tu-dresden.de, mentioning which work(s) you wish to review. We have also prepared a list of relevant publications, which we are happy to share with you upon request.

 

Timeline

June 30, 2020: Expression of interest (title of work(s) to be reviewed)

July 31, 2020: Submission of first drafts

August 1-October 31, 2020: Review Process

November 1, 2020: Publication

 

References

Bitar, S. (2014) Las tendencias mundiales y el futuro de América Latina. CEPAL, Gestión Pública. Working Paper Series 78.

Chinchilla, L. (2019) Introduction: Latin America. A Pending Assignment. In: M. Binetti and B. Shifter (eds.) Unfulfilled Promises. Latin America Today. Available online:  https://www.thedialogue.org/analysis/unfulfilled-promises-latin-america-today/ (last access: January 10, 2020).

Fukuyama, F. (1992) The End of History and the Last Man. New York: Free Press.

Freedom Lab (2018) A Brighter Future for Latin America? Available online: http://freedomlab.org/a-brighter-future-for-latin-america/ (last access: January 25, 2020).

Mirabal, N. and Laó-Montes, A. (2007) Technofuturos: Critical Interventions in Latina/o Studies. Lanham: Lexington Books.