Hemispheric New York Events

Hemispheric New York features special programs, such as EMERGENYC (EMERGENYC), lectures, film series, conferences, and performance workshops, some of which are exclusively for members, and some which are open to the public at large. Below are upcoming and recent events.


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The Potency of Indigenous Bibles and Biographies: Mapuche Shamanic Literacy and Historical Consciousness

Ana Mariella Bacigalupo | SUNY Buffalo
Friday, October 24, 2014
2–4 pm

Mapuche oral shamanic biographies and performances—some of which take the form of “Bibles” and shamanic literacies—play a central role in the production of indigenous history in southern Chile. In this article I explain how and why a mixed-race Mapuche shaman charged me to write about her life and practice in the form of a “Bible.” This book would become a ritual object and a means of storing her shamanic power by textualizing it, thereby allowing her to speak to a future audience. The realities and powers her “Bible” stores can be extracted, transformed, circulated, and actualized for a variety of ends, even to bring about shamanic rebirth. Ultimately, I argue that through their use and interpretation of this “Bible,” Mapuche shamans in southern Chile expand academic notions of indigenous history and literacy.