Contemporary Art and Community Altruism in Oaxaca: Hybrid Agency
This book relates the longitudinal participant observation and analysis of the behaviour of the Oaxacan art community, focusing on the cultural production, interaction and collective action of its members as an integrated sector of civil society.
It presents a theoretical framework that succinctly defines and discusses postmodernism as a globalising force in the development and use of creative expression, the media and communications technology in a postcolonial context. The theoretical investigation is supported by ethnography that ascertains how hybrid political thought and community altruism characterise the behaviour and the aesthetic expression practised by a new generation of Oaxacan artists. Their collective action towards a pacifistic solution to the Oaxaca Conflict of 2006, a six-month socio-political uprising caused by actual and historic conditions in the national, regional and universal Left-Right political duel, is detailed.
The transdisciplinary approach makes the work very relevant for researchers, educators and students of social anthropology, visual communication and media studies, in addition to those interested in Oaxacan, Mexican and Latin American art and culture.
Neil Pyatt is an author, journalist and academic based in Southern Mexico, and recently graduated with a PhD from Loughborough University School of the Arts, UK. His research is based on anthropological knowledge, the study of psychology, and from having clocked up twenty years dissecting the region. His interest in altruism and community action is currently being extended to the study of non-governmental aid given to victims of violence and the media treatment given to cases of human rights abuses in this field.
“This book is a classic that will stand as a record of a major artistic tradition in Latin America, with an international resonance yet to be recognized.”
Arthur G. Miller
Professor in Art History and Archaeology, University of Marlyand
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