LAC 50th Anniversary Alumni Weekend - September 2015

LAC 50th Anniversary Alumni Weekend - September 2015

Friday, 18 September 2015 - 4:30pm to Sunday, 20 September 2015 - 4:30pm

Come and join your professors, fellow alumni and bailemos hasta el amanecer!

Registration and bookings have now closed!

Please note all Saturday lectures will now be held in the Nissan Building, St Antony’s College, 62 Woodstock Road, OX2 6JF

Two horizons enclose our lives: Looking back at 50 years, looking forward to 50 more



16.15 – 17.30   Presentation: Latin American Gems in the Bodleian Collection: Ancient Mesoamerican Manuscripts

Codices Collection at the Bodleian Library, Weston Library Lecture Theatre:


Virginia Lladó-Buisán, Head of Conservation and Collection Care, Bodleian Libraries, “Technical study and preservation of early Mexican manuscripts at Bodleian Libraries”

Professor Maarten Jansen, Leiden University and Mrs Gabina Aurora Pérez, Leiden University, “The New Fire Ritual in the Selden Roll: religious meaning of an historical event”

Dr Halbert Jones, St Antony’s College North American Programme “The Mexican Manuscripts in Social and Historical Context”

At Bodleian Libraries, we have a duty to preserve our collections, in order to guarantee their permanence and stability for present and future generations of scholars. We are also committed to studying our collections and to providing access to them for researchers worldwide. The Bodleian Libraries’ Conservation and Collection Care team were awarded a grant from the Cultural Heritage Advanced Research Infrastructures, Synergy for a Multidisciplinary Approach to Conservation/Restoration (CHARISMA). The grant enabled us to use a mobile laboratory for instrumental analysis (MOLAB) to characterise the colours present in the Libraries’ five pre-Hispanic and early colonial Mexican pictorial manuscripts: Codex Laud, Codex Bodley, Codex Selden, the Selden Roll, and Codex Mendoza. Due to the fragility of the codices, very little work had been done in the past to assess their materials and composition. Yet it is these very aspects that are critical to understanding the nature of these documents, their construction and their durability. It is our goal to set up a preservation plan for these manuscripts, at the same time that we produce and enable others to conduct technical studies to learn more about the pictorial techniques and materials used in them, answering key questions concerning both the history and the making of these codices, and minimising the unnecessary handling and piecemeal analysis of these unique items. Virginia Lladó-Buisán and Professor Maarten Jansen will explain these processes and their outcomes in this first session.  Dr Halbert Jones, an historian of Mexico and the director of the North American Studies Programme at St Antony’s College, will discuss the historical significance of the manuscripts in the Bodleian’s collection, situating them in the context of the pre-Columbian and colonial societies that produced them, describing the world they depict, and reflecting upon their meaning in contemporary Mexico.

17.30 – 18.00  Self-Guided Viewing of Manuscripts

Weston Library, Broad Street; and Divinity School, Old Bodleian Library, Broad Street, OX1 3B

Alumni and guests are invited to view the manuscripts discussed in the first session at their leisure.  The Codex Mendoza will be available for viewing in the Marks of Genius Exhibit at the Weston Library and the Selden Roll will be displayed in the Proscholium at the Divinity School.

This is a rare opportunity to view two famous witnesses for the Native American cultures of 16th-century Mexico. Due to their fragility and the light-sensitivity of their pigments, neither manuscript is suitable for long-term display. Codex Mendoza which has only been on display since March 2015 will be returned to secure storage at the end of September, so this represents a last chance this year to view this exceptional document.  The format of the Selden Roll makes it difficult to display in its entirety, and this small exhibition is the first time in many years when as much as half its narrative will be on show.

18.30 – 20.00  Alumni Weekend Reception, Blackwell Hall, Weston Library



Academics associated with the Latin American Centre over its 50 years will reflect on three issues of historic and contemporary relevance in the region: growth and equality; governments on the left; and violence. These brief presentations will be made in roundtable format with opportunity for discussion. Saturday’s events will be held at St Antony’s College newest lecture theatre in the Investcorp Building designed by Zaha Hadid and opened just a few months ago.

10.00 – 11.30   Seminar: Is Latin America’s economic model working?

Nissan Lecture Theatre, St Antony’s College, 62 Woodstock Road, OX2 6JF

The current Latin American economic development model, based on primary exports rather than industrialisation, and reduction of inequality through universal welfare provision rather than structural change, appears to be relatively successful in terms of growth and stability. However, neither productivity nor employment is growing – in sharp contrast to the Asian model. Optimists might point to Australia as a paradigm; pessimists to the lack of competitiveness in the global economy. This session will discuss the sustainability of this model and possible scenarios for the next decades.


  • Professor Edmund Valpy FitzGerald, Emeritus Fellow of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre
  • Ms Rosemary Thorp, Emeritus Fellow of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre
  • Dr Diego Sánchez-Ancochea, Fellow of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre
  • Dr Timothy Power, Fellow of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre-Brazil Studies


  • Mr David Gallagher, Alumnus of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre, Fellow of St Antony's College and lecturer at the Latin American Centre from 1968 to 1974; Chairman and Founding Partner of Asset Chile S.A.

14.30 – 16.00  Seminar: Has Latin America shifted to the Left?

Nissan Lecture Theatre, St Antony’s College, 62 Woodstock Road, OX2 6JF

In the last fifteen years, left-leaning politicians and political parties have successfully contested elections at local and national levels across Latin America. This phenomenon, popularly known as the 'Pink Tide' or the 'Left Turn', has generated considerable interest and attention. However, the left in Latin America has a long history, and the current electoral success of left parties is partly a product of a long process of political evolution. The purpose of this panel is to explore the historical development of the left across the region to the present day.


  • Mr Alan Angell, Emeritus Fellow of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre
  • Dr John Crabtree, Senior Member of St Antony's & Affiliate member of the Latin American Centre
  • Dr Fiona Macaulay, Alumna of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre; Senior Lecturer at the University of Bradford
  • Professor Leslie Bethell, Emeritus Fellow of St Antony’s College and founding Director of Oxford’s former Centre for Brazilian Studies 1997–2007


  • Dr David Doyle, Fellow of St Hugh’s College & Latin American Centre

16.15 – 17.45  Seminar: Is Latin America the most violent region of the world?

Nissan Lecture Theatre, St Antony’s College, 62 Woodstock Road, OX2 6JF

Latin America has been referred to as "the most violent region of the world" even after its shift from violent and repressive authoritarian rule to democracy. It has faced drug-related violence, gang-related violence, femicide, disappearances, and police abuse. The region has experimented with innovative efforts in ending violence, such as the peace talks in Colombia, truces with gangs in El Salvador, and promoting truth commissions and trials to end impunity for human rights violations in Argentina, Chile, Peru, and Guatemala. The panel will explore the effectiveness of ending violence and establishing citizen security in the region.


  • Professor Leigh A Payne, Fellow of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre
  • Professor Eduardo Posada-Carbó, Alumnus & Fellow of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre; Professor of History and Politics, Latin American Centre
  • Dr Kevin Casas-Zamora, Alumnus of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre; Senior Fellow and Director of the Peter D Bell Rule of Law Program at the Inter American Dialogue
  • Ms Julia Zulver, Alumna of St Antony’s & Latin American Centre; DPhil candidate


  • Mr Laurence Whitehead, Affiliate of Latin American Centre; Fellow of Nuffield College

18.00 – 19.30  Drinks Reception to Celebrate Latin American Centre 50h Anniversary

St Antony’s College, Combined Common Room, 62 Woodstock Road, OX2 6JF

Dinner, St Antony's College

St Antony’s College, Dining Hall, 62 Woodstock Road, OX2 6JF

Mr Malcolm Deas, the first Fellow of Latin American History and Politics at   St Antony's College and former Director of the Latin American Centre, will address the guests.

Dinner will be followed by music by Ran Kan Kan, Oxford's 20 piece Cuban big band (for St Antony’s/Latin American Centre alumni and guests only).



10.00 – 11.30  Discussion: What is the future of Latin American Studies?

St Antony’s College, Pavilion Room, 62 Woodstock Road, OX2 6JF

Latin American Centres were founded in the US and the UK during the Cold War. Since 1965, when the University of Oxford became an official UK Centre, other Latin American programmes have closed or changed direction. The University of Oxford remains the only Centre focusing exclusively on social science analysis of the region. This Sunday morning discussion will consider the continued relevance of Latin American studies in the contemporary era and particularly in the UK and Europe, the challenges, and the opportunities to overcome those hurdles and maintain a strong Centre for the next 50 years.

A panel discussion with reflections from:

  • Professor Leigh A Payne, Director, Latin American Centre
  • Professor Margaret MacMillan, Warden, St Antony’s College
  • Professor Roger Goodman, Head, Social Sciences Division
  • Mr Malcolm Deas, Emeritus Fellow, Latin American Centre
  • Professor Joe Foweraker, Emeritus Fellow, Latin American Centre
  • Professor Andrew Hurrell, Affiliate of Latin American Centre, Fellow of Balliol

12.00 – 13.30  Latin American Centre Anniversary Asado

St Antony’s College, Quad, 62 Woodstock Road, OX2 6JF