March 25, 2021
Last week, the LACA course “Take My Breath Away: A Cultural History of Air in Modern Latin America’s Imagination and Literature” taught by Professors Erica Durante and Felipe Martínez-Pinzón moved into a truly hybrid format and took a breath of fresh air outdoors.
While some students attended the class together sitting on the Staar Plaza lawn of the Watson Institute, others participated in the class remotely on Zoom, with one course instructor teaching in-person and the other online.
Mexican writer, novelist, essayist and academic Margo Glantz, who joined the class through Zoom from Mexico City, brought fresh air and new thoughts to the class discussion, which focused on the creative power of air as a key element in fashion design and representation of the female body.
Among other practices and objects expanded/contracted by air, Frida Kahlo's corsets and the braids worn by María, the romantic heroine created by Jorge Isaacs, figured prominently in our conversation with Glantz. Her guest lecture focused on the semiotics of air as an original element at the heart of many fashion accessories and creations embedded in the history of Latin American women and contemporary feminist movements in the region.