The University of Iowa

Charles Adams Hale (1930-2008)

The Charles A. Hale Lecture in Latin American Studies at the University of Iowa is sponsored by the Latin American Studies Program (LASP), International Programs, the Department of History, and the Department of Spanish and Portuguese.  The Charles A. Hale Lecture brings distinguished scholars from a range of disciplines to the University of Iowa to share their knowledge and research.  The lecture nurtures teaching and scholarship in the field of Latin American Studies and builds connections among faculty, students, and community members interested in Latin America and U.S. Latinos.

popular cosmopolitanism Cinema, Genres, and Mediation in Mid-Century Mexico with filmstrip

Popular Cosmopolitanism: Cinema, Genre and Mediation in Mid-Century Mexico

September 23, 2021 | 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. (CDT)

Ignacio Sanchez

Ignacio (Nacho) Sánchez Prado

Jarvis Thurston and Mona Van Duyn Professor in the Humanities at Washington University in St. Louis, Professor of Spanish, Latin American Studies, and Film and Media Studies. (View bio)

The study of film in so-called semi-peripheral countries, strong enough to develop national industries, but not fully able to compete with the dominance of Hollywood and Western European cinemas, is often caught in an impasse. Cinema from Latin America and other regions of the Global South is often cajoled into the emphasis of their cultural specificity, or as sites of resistance or radical politics. This approach is oftentimes reductionist, a projection of critical voluntarism unable to understand these industries in their complexity. Based on a book in progress, this talk puts forward an idea of “popular cosmopolitanism” to understand the intersections of mid-Century Mexican cinema into the aesthetics and politics of emerging world cinema maps, as represented by three genres: literary adaptations, noir and thrillers and horror. Through films featuring the comedian Cantinflas and the wrestler El Santo, noirs that engage critically with the U.S. tradition and the Mexploitation horror traditions, this talk proposes a model to read film products that are usually overlooked by critics and distributors alike, given that they do not fit either stereotypical ideas of Mexicanness nor the expectation of resistance and radical politics

This virtual zoom webinar is free and open to the public.

Register here


Past Lectures

Francisco A. Scarano (University of Wisconsin-Madison) - September 24, 2019
"Blending Puerto Rico into Latin American History"

Maurico Tenorio-Trillo (University of Chicago) - September 18, 2018
"History's Autobiography"

Ann Twinam (University of Texas at Austin) - October 12, 2017
Pardos, Mulattos, and the Purchase of Whiteness in the Spanish Indies

Mary Louise Pratt (New York University) – October 29, 2015
"Linked In, Left Out, Uplifted, Downloaded:  The Ecology of Language in a Globalizing World"

Joseph D. Straubhaar (University of Texas at Austin) – October 16, 2014
“The Iberian Pre- and Post-Colonial Roots of the Latin American Television Regional Market: The Case of Brazil”

Rolena Adorno (Yale University) – October 3, 2013
"Public Festivals and Performative Feasts: Aztecs and Allegory in Baroque Mexico"

Barbara Weinstein (New York University) – April 26, 2012
"Race, Gender, and Brazilian Regional Conflict: the War of São Paulo, 1932

Pablo Piccato (Columbia University) – May 5, 2011
Nota Roja: Justice in the Golden Age of Mexican Police News

Steve Stern (University of Wisconsin-Madison) – March 4, 2010
The Paradoxes of Truth: Reckoning with Pinochet and the Memory Question in Chile and World Culture, 1989-2006

In Memoriam

Professor Charles A. Hale (1930-2008), a specialist in Latin American history, was a faculty member at The University of Iowa from 1966 to 1997.  During his 30-year teaching career, he served as Assistant Chair of the Department of History from 1970-1973 and Chair of the department from 1977-1980.  A founding member of the Latin American Studies Program (LASP), he directed the program for two terms, from 1982-1984 and 1989-1991, and co-directed the program from 1994-1996.  Professor Hale was an authority on Latin American liberalism and intellectual history. His three books were Mexican Liberalism in the Age of Mora, 1821–53 (Yale University Press, 1968), Transformation of Liberalism in Late 19th-Century Mexico (Princeton University Press, 1989), and Emilio Rabasa and the Survival of Porfirian Liberalism (Stanford University Press, 2008).  His work garnered some of the highest honors for historical scholarship in the United States and Mexico. He was inducted into the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle in 1983 and the Mexican Academy of History in 1985.  His first book was awarded the Sahagún Prize from Mexico’s National Institute for Anthropology and History, and his second received the Bolton Prize from the U.S.-based Conference on Latin American History.  On March 3-4, 2006, the Department of History and the Latin American Studies Program, in conjunction with International Program, held a Latin American History Symposium: “Liberalism and Its Legacies” to celebrate the work of Professor Charles A. Hale.


Other tributes to Charles A. Hale

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in a program, please contact Amy Green in advance at or 319-335-1433.