Hungry for concrete: the aesthetics of Amerindian modernity from children’s perspectives
|Dates:||10 November 2014|
|What is it:||Seminar|
|Organiser:||School of Social Sciences|
|Who is it for:||University staff|
|Speaker:||Dr Camilla Morelli|
Children and youth constitute the largest demographic of most Amazonian populations, and yet their voices, thoughts and perspectives received little or no attention in the regional literature.
I engage with this lacuna by highlighting the imaginations and lived experiences of indigenous Matses children in the Peruvian rainforest. My aim is to analyse how young Amazonians contribute to ongoing processes of socioeconomic transformation in the region, and how their ways of acting and being are opening up, or closing off, certain possibilities for the future of society.
By proposing an investigation into sensorial, kinaesthetic and non-verbal realms of cognition and expression, I discuss how Matses children learn to desire - or literally ‘bunquioe’, to be hungry for - the nonindigenous world of cities, concrete, electric light, television, clothing and so forth, while they move away from the lifestyle of older generations.
This will demonstrate that children do not passively reproduce the world of adults, but actively shape the environments wherein they dwell and set up the ground for new forms of life.
Accordingly, I argue that an attention to childhood within contemporary societies is not only essential to scientific knowledge, but has clear implications for policy and development.
Dr Camilla Morelli
Organisation: University of Manchester
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