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Lecture Series "The (Re-)Invention of Latin America: Myths of Conquest and Civilisation" started with a lecture by Stefanie Gänger and Barbara Mittler

Poster announcement of the lecture series "The (Re-)Invention of Latin America: Myths of Conquest and Civilisation"

Poster announcement of the lecture series "The (Re-)Invention of Latin America: Myths of Conquest and Civilisation"

News from Apr 26, 2022

On April 21, 2022, in the framework of the lecture series “The (Re-) Invention of Latin America—Myths of Conquest and Civilisation“, Barbara Mittler (PI of the Joint Center's project "Epochal Life Worlds: Man, Nature and Technology in Narratives of Crisis and Change") gave a lecture together with Stefanie Gänger (professor of Modern History at Heidelberg University) on the topic "CONQUISTA Rethinking Global History through Artistic Renderings".

The lecture series “The (Re-) Invention of Latin America—Myths of Conquest and Civilisation“

Organized by the Käte Hamburger Kolleg CAPAS (Center for Apolcalyptic and Postapocalyptic Studies), the Worldmaking Kolleg in Heidelberg’s CATS (Center for Asian and Transcultural Studies) and Global History at Heidelberg University, the Lecture Series “The (Re-) Invention of Latin America—Myths of Conquest and Civilisation“ takes the epochal moment of the Conquista as its starting point: 2021 saw the 500th anniversary of the demise of Tenochtitlan, capital of the Aztec empire, which fell to the European invaders after a long siege, in 1521, and became Mexico City. Only a few years later, in 1533, the Inca capital Cuzco also fell. These cataclysmic events in World History have been the cornerstones of various myths of modernity: the “Conquest”, the annihilation of indigenous cultures but also of the hallmark of “modernity“ and “civilization“. 

The lecture series considers artistic takes of these “epochal events" in literature, music, film and theatre, offering a series of dialogues on the how the apocalyptic moment of “Conquest” and the ensuing colonization of Latin America – a cataclysmic period of social, religious, epidemiological and environmental upheaval on a global scale which led to the establishment of the modern “World System” can be read in different ways. 

In taking artistic rendering seriously, it discusses counterhegemonic approaches to “re-inventing” the Americas, which need not be read as having been re-born from the ashes through the civilizing impact of the Europeans. 

Bringing various disciplines – especially history and literary studies – into a transdisciplinary dialogue with artistic renderings in literature, film, theatre and music, the lecture series seek to further both our understanding of the events of the late 1400s and 1500s and their role in the ‘grand narrative’ of European supremacy. The lecture series hopes to contribute to writing different, alternative histories of conquest and colonization—not just in Latin America, but in the world at large. 



April 21 2022 (Stefanie Gänger & Barbara Mittler, Heidelberg | Moderation: Robert Folger) 

CONQUISTA Rethinking Global History through Artistic Renderings


May 5 2022 (Gabriela Ramos, Cambridge | Moderation: Stefanie Gänger)

Conquest, Bodies and Places


May 19 2022 (Laurent Binet, Paris | Moderation: Barbara Mittler)

CIVILIZATIONS (2019) A Conversation


June 9 2022 (Richard Drayton, London | Moderation: Stefanie Gänger)

The Partition of the Americas and the Making of Modern Europe


June 23 2022 (Robert Folger, Heidelberg | Moderation: Barbara Mittler)

Colonial Imaginaries and Imagined | Colonization: Abel Posse LOS PERROS DEL PARAÍSO (1983)


June 24 2022 (Niles Attalah, Santiago de Chile | Moderation: Robert Folger)

REY (2017)  Film Screening & Discussion [ 9 - 11PM @ ATRIUM MATHEMATIKON (BERLINER STRASSE 41 - 49)]


July 7 2022 (Philipp Weiss, Wien | Moderation: Barbara Mittler)

DER LETZTE MENSCH (2019) A Conversation


July 21 2022 (Rojo Córdova & Jazzael Sáenz, Mexico | Moderation: Robert Folger)

TERRORTICHTLÁN  – CRISÁLIDA (2021) Performance & Discussion [ 7 - 9 PM @ CATS Greens)


More information available on the LSF course page



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