The #Multicultural State: Counter-narratives from migrant youth living in Buenos Aires

by María V. Barbero

(This work first appeared on Youth Circulations on November 11, 2018. Read the original here with photos)

Promotional material produced by City Government for “Buenos Aires Celebra India.” Source

Buenos Aires is multicultural. Buenos Aires is cosmopolitan. Buenos Aires is welcoming and inclusive. Buenos Aires is a city of migrants. These were the messages I heard from state officials while conducting research in Buenos Aires during 2016 and 2017.  Such narratives circulated through the city government’s monthly cultural programing—programing that attracts thousands to iconic parks and streets to eat ethnic food and to celebrate immigrant communities: Buenos Aires Celebra Colombia, Buenos Aires Celebra Italia, Buenos Aires Celebra Paraguay, and so on and so forth. This programing is complemented by commemorative events organized by the national immigration office at the city’s historic museum of immigration.

This robust programming resembles what Lugones (2014)  calls “ornamental multiculturalism,” or a multiculturalism that “reduces non-Western cultures to ornaments to be enjoyed touristically,” while ignoring and obscuring structures of power. These events each generate colorful flyers, professional photographs, short videoclips and hashtags through which the message of an inclusive, multicultural state are circulated via Facebook, Twitter, and government websites.

Yet amid these messages is another, also incredibly robust scene of cultural production, one assembled by migrant youth living in Buenos Aires. This scene involves theater performances, books published with carton and fabric scraps, and radio programing. It is multicultural, multilingual and transnational, and it creates an alternative to the state’s ornamental multiculturalism. It does not shy away from analyzing power relations and deliberately enlists culture as a vehicle for resistance.

…read more on youthcirculations.com

Become a Neos Reviewer!

Neos is looking for volunteers to peer-review article submissions! We are currently in the process revamping our database of reviewers and require you to opt in!

Neos is a bi-annual publication of the Anthropology of Children and Youth Interest Group (ACYIG) of the American Anthropological Association (AAA). This publication consists of peer-reviewed short articles as well as editor-reviewed feature pieces.

Neos relies on the work of many volunteers, including the editor, assistant editors (copy editor, layout editor, and more), the ACYIG communication team, and a multitude of advisory board members for both Neos and ACYIG, and, importantly, article reviewers!

If you are interested in the peer-review process, willing and able to review one or two short articles (~1000 words!), have great attention to detail, and can respond within a short turnaround, you would be a great asset to Neos!

Please sign up to become a reviewer here: http://bit.ly/acyigvolunteers.

View the current issue of Neos here: http://bit.ly/neoscurrent.

NEOS OCTOBER 2018 EDITION NOW AVAILABLE!

  • The October 2018 issue of Neos is now available for your reading pleasure at http://acyig.americananthro.org/neos/current-issue/.

    Some highlights:

    • New! Special topic section: Child and Youth Displacement
      • The Securitization of Refugee Youth: Ethnographies of Political Violence and Displacement (Marisa Ensor (Georgetown U))
      • Education for the Nambian Jul’hoansi – At What Cost? (Velina Ninkova (U of Tromsø))
      • Urban Conflict Violence and the Health of Young People in Northern Ireland: A Call for Perspectives in Cooperative Dialogue (Rosellen Roche (Ohio U))
      • And many more!
    • Childhood and Empathy “Training”: After-School Programs’ Contribution (Scarlett Eisenhauer (UCLA))
    • Taking Sides: Reflections on Activist Research with Brazilian Rural Youth (Melinda Gurr (Syracuse U))
    • New board member introductions
    • NEW BOOK AND FILM ANNOUNCEMENTS Let us know what you think! Share your reactions in a Letter to the Editor at [email protected].

     

Open Call for Special Issue Proposals: CHILDHOOD

Childhood

A journal of global child research

Open Call for Special Issue Proposals (click here for the full call)

The Editors of Childhood welcome proposals for a special issue to be published in 2020. Proposals are due by 1 November 2018.

Childhood is a major international peer reviewed journal and a forum for research relating to children in global society that spans divisions between geographical regions, disciplines, and social and cultural contexts. Childhood publishes theoretical and empirical articles, reviews and scholarly comments on children’s social relations and culture, with an emphasis on their rights and generational position in society.

For full guidelines click here.

 

CFP: RETHINKING CHILD AND YOUTH MARGINALITIES: MOVEMENTS, NARRATIVES, AND EXCHANGES

CFP: RETHINKING CHILD AND YOUTH MARGINALITIES: MOVEMENTS, NARRATIVES, AND EXCHANGES

Anthropology of Childhood and Youth Interest Group (ACYIG) Biennial Conference

March 7-9, 2019 

Rutgers University—Camden, NJ

Co-Sponsored by: AAA Anthropology of Children and Youth Interest Group, Department of Childhood Studies (Rutgers-Camden), Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice (Rutgers-Camden), and The Graduate School (Rutgers-Camden) 

In a world centered on adults, ‘childhood’ as a social category is marginal. Such marginality makes complex tracks on child and youth bodies, psyches, relationships, and spaces. Existing research on children and youth has expanded our understanding beyond a binary and static reading of their lives by framing the multiple sources of marginality as active sociocultural processes that are embedded in—but are not overdetermined by—enduring effects like structural violence, capitalism, racism, homophobia, and nationalism. This scholarship compels us to pay attention to the movements, narratives, and exchanges that mark these processes of making, breaking, and negotiating marginalities.  This conference aims to rethink child and youth marginalities in generative and creative ways that situate young people at the center, and that resist their dehumanization, whether through criminalization or romanticization.

Continue reading CFP: RETHINKING CHILD AND YOUTH MARGINALITIES: MOVEMENTS, NARRATIVES, AND EXCHANGES

Call for Neos Submissions – Special Section on Child and Youth Displacement

ACYIG is now soliciting submissions for the October 2018 issue of Neos. We are accepting submissions on a rolling basis between Monday, August 13 and Friday, September 7. The final deadline for submission is Friday, September 7. If possible, please notify me of your intent to submit by the start of the rolling period (August 13), so that I can identify peer reviewers in a timely manner. You will be able to find this call on our blog site shortly. In the meantime, you can also refer to it here. All material should be sent to me at [email protected].

Continue reading Call for Neos Submissions – Special Section on Child and Youth Displacement

Playing with Risk: ACYIG Blog Module

By Scarlett Eisenhauer (UCLA)

“Risky Play” has been finding its way back into the mainstream discussion – some arguing in favor of pushing back against overly safe environments that lack experiential learning opportunities for risk management. As anthropologists (other disciplines and professions as well!) that work with children and youth, we should be quick to raise a red flag: this is a topic ripe for empirical inquiry, not just idealized beliefs. We would like to invite you, dear ACYIG community, to weigh in on the subject in our first blog module with a series of blog posts on the subject of “Risky Play.”

An introductory blog post poses some possible lines of investigation – questions that anthropology and other social sciences are well- suited to answer – and some preliminary thoughts on the subject by Scarlett Eisenhauer and Dori Beeler.  Additionally, Julia Fleming reviews a documentary film “The Land” to weigh in on the issue.

We invite our readers to engage in this module and look forward to a continuing discussion on the subject with both formal and informal responses, comments, thoughts, and data interpretations!

For detailed information on submitting to our blog, please reference the blog submission guidelines document. Please contact Sara Thiam at [email protected], ACYIG Content Coordinator for Blog and Social Media for more information.

Risky Business

By Julia Fleming (Case Western Reserve University)

Imagine an expansive outdoor space dedicated solely to child’s unadulterated play. It is by no means contemporary or state of the art: it is just a portion of hilly, muddy land with a small stream running through it, confined by a tall wooden fence. An abundance of objects intended for the entertainment of children are scattered around. These objects, however, are not the typical objects you would think of when you think of outdoor children’s play. They are unconventional, seemingly random items, ranging from metal shelters, to an old rowboat, to cardboard, to manikins, and much more. This space exists in Wales, and it is called The Land. It is one of the hundreds of “adventure playgrounds” that can be found throughout the United Kingdom and Europe.  A group of filmmakers found interest in this specific adventure playground, decided to make a documentary about it, and aptly named “The Land”. This film offers an intimate perspective on the spontaneous, risky play that is encouraged at the playground.

(Bognar, Reichert, & Davis, 2015)

It also addresses many stimulating issues, such as “What should play be?” and “Is risk necessary for a child’s development?” The film made me reconsider what I previously thought about risk in child’s play. It helped me realize that personally, I think children are very protected, perhaps too protected, when it comes to play, risk, and exploration here in the United States, and that this should change.

Continue reading Risky Business

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