Where Are the Cities? On Not Excluding (Much More Than) Half of the Latin Americans in Latin Americanist Geography

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Abstract

While Latin America is one of the most urbanized regions in the world, the research interests and publication record of the Latin Americanist geography tradition, particularly from the USA, continue to depict rural landscapes. Cities have received little attention as shown by the close to fifty-year publication history of the Conference of Latin American Geography. In this article I argue that the enduring legacy of Carl Sauer and his Berkeley School of Geography is partially to blame for this. Not only was Sauer openly anti-urban, but also his intellectual descendants are largely the gatekeepers of Latin Americanist geography in the USA. Critical urban theory might hold the key to move us away from this imagined geography reminiscent of a colonial past. Specifically, it offers three distinguishable promises: 1) to fulfill the goal expressed by the editors of JLAG of attracting relevant critical scholarship, particularly by scholars from Latin America; 2) to contribute to urban theory more broadly from the experience of Latin American cities; and 3) to reflect the diverse set voices and experiences of the majority of Latin Americans who currently do not often make it into our publications
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)193-203
JournalJournal of Latin American Geography
Volume19
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2020
Externally publishedYes

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