Festival of Scholars

An annual celebration of research, scholarship, and creativity

Spanish Latin American Literatures and Cultures Presentations

Date: Thursday, May 2, 2013
Time: 12:25pm - 2:05pm
Location: Soiland Humanities Building, Room 110
Description: The Latin American Cultures and Literatures session includes the presentations of the research completed by undergraduate students in Spanish 405, Latin American Culture and Civilization course. The presentations will be in Spanish. All are welcome!

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Student Abstracts at this Session

Student(s):
Evan Craft

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Fighting Human Trafficking in Latin America

The explosion of globalization and expansion of communication have helped the world in many ways. Unfortunately, with the invention of the internet and globalization comes the growth and evolution of the pornography industry and prostitution. Apart from the discussion of morality and ethics regarding prostitution, this study is an investigation focused on bringing to light the connection between Human Trafficking and its undeniable link to pornography, child prostitution, and human slavery. Human Trafficking has recently been brought to the forefront of world news and there are many things that are still hidden within this industry. The research in this article focuses on Latin America, specifically the countries between Colombia, Mexico, and the Caribbean, which are a huge source for the black market. Governments in each country are trying to create laws and implement programs to teach public safety and eradicate slavery once and for all.




Student(s):
Ana Garcia

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Descubriendo la Economía Expresiva en "La Creación"

This presentation explores the definition of “economic expression” through Roberto Lopez Moreno’s text, “La Creación.” In this short story, a garbage man searches through a landfill to find a doll. He justifies his actions and disregards the unpleasant situations he endures, all for his goal of obtaining something that is solely his. The story is layered with meaning that digs into the very existence of "man." This interpretation goes from Biblical allusions to day to day lessons that serve promise for future endeavors.




Student(s):
Ana Gil

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Juveniles in Gangs of El Salvador; Factors and Motivations

The purpose of my research study is to go more in depth and learn some of the reasons and conditions that lead youths to enter the violent and dangerous gangs in El Salvador. The gangs from El Salvador, also known as maras, and the violence coming from them have become a publicized topic in the media; however, not much is known about young members of these maras. It is important to see the motivations of these youths to better understand the problem. Through my research and presentation, I will show the other side of the gang problem in El Salvador by informing what societal factors influence some young Salvadoreans to join the maras.




Student(s):
Bexy Gomez

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Mexico's Chinese Diaspora

The purpose of my research is to study the diaspora of Chinese populations in Mexico throughout the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Chinese men and women have created many sales and marketing advances in the western hemisphere, yet there also exists a significant rise in the cultural influences of Chinese communities in major Mexican cities such as Mexico City, Guanajuato, and Guadalajara. My methods include researching Mexican newspapers, interviews, and news reports, as well as international sources, and discussing the growth of Chinese business in the country, bicultural families, piracy, and Chinese cities.




Student(s):
Leah Griffith

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Religious Festivals and False Saints in Latin American Culture

From the early days of the arrival of the conquistadores, religion has had an enormous impact on the culture of the people in Latin America. Religion has formed the social structure throughout history particularly with its influence in the educational system. Through the years, the influence of the Catholic Church in society combined with indigenous traditions of the ancient people took a new form in the appearance of festivals. Celebrations of local festivals, individual to each country, play a great part in the Latin American calendar, making religion a central aspect of the typical citizen’s life. With this great dedication to higher beings, ideas are apt to transform and some saints were created as a mental construct. This essay discusses the major impact that religion has had in the form of festivals and false saints in Latin American countries.




Student(s):
Diana Hernandez

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Traditional Regional Folkloric Dances in Latin America

Although each country has something that sets it apart from the rest of the countries in Latin America, the countries also have a similar history that can be seen through the traditional regional folkloric dances for which each country is known. Most people may overlook the dances or not try to make the connections that can be made. Latin American countries do share a similar history and seeing the connections can be used to better understand the countries today. Through journals, videos, personal interviews, and peer reviewed articles, we take a look at the similarities between the countries and the importance of realizing the similar history they all have.




Student(s):
Selene Manzo

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Free Public Healthcare: Peru and Paraguay

Public healthcare in third world countries is not only unreliable but difficult to access as well. Transportation also poses a challenge to many people making it even more difficult to access and afford public healthcare. My research deals with issues regarding the public health care system in Peru and Paraguay. According to some critics, the decisions made by the institutional representatives should be by people who truly care for the community’s well-being as opposed to the current politicians. I present options on how, according to the critics, health care in those countries can be improved, and what politicians and institutions can do to make it easier for the people to access such a service.




Student(s):
Daniela Ochoa

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Traditional Beverages of Latin America

The purpose of my research was to study the traditional beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, of multiple Latin American countries. These traditional beverages not only make a great contribution to the country’s economy, but they also play a very important role to the specific culture of that country as well. I identified the different influences that these beverages have on their specific country's culture. My methods included researching peer-reviewed articles on traditional beverages and their influence on Latin American culture. Through these methods I was able to identify the different influences these traditional beverages have on their country.




Student(s):
Karina Villeda

Faculty Mentor:
Dr. Eva Ramirez
Ritual Dances of Latin-American

Dance has been an essential component to cultures since the beginning of time. It is much more than a mere element of entertainment. One of the central uses of dance has been found to be in that of ritualistic ceremonies. In many of the Latin-American cultures ritualistic dances are practiced in traditional ceremonies. Understanding these dances and their importance allows for a unique and profound insight into these cultures. This presentation, based on academic research, opens the world of ritualistic dance in current Latin-American cultures and explains their significance in those cultures.




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