Newsletter, September 2015


Arts and Humanities Civic Engagement


Cultural Agents is an interface between academic learning and civic engagement. The Initiative promotes arts and humanities as social resources.


F O L L O W on F A C E B O O K
F O L L O W on T W I T T E R
F O L L O W on I N S T A G R A M



  • WHEN:  September 9-11, 2015
  • WHERE: Harvard University
  • WHAT: Pre-Texts Training for RLL and other interested graduate students as part of the curriculum development initiative Pre-Texts for Teaching Literature and Culture through Art Making, sponsored by DRCLAS.
  • September 9: 4-8pm, Room K354, Knafel Building (1737 Cambridge Street)
  • September 10-11: 3-7pm, Materials Lab, Harvard Art Museums (32 Quincy Street)
  • Red Carpet: A Possible Form of Affective Politics
  • WHEN: Tuesday, September 15, 2015 at 7pm
  • WHERE: Thompson Room, Barker Center, Harvard University
  • WHAT: As part of the Cultural and Humanitarian Agents Seminar, Alejandra Ballón, with Kimberly Theidon of Tufts University, will speak on her book Memorias del caso peruano de esterilización forzada (2014) and her work with Alfombra Roja. In recent years her research and artistic practice have focused on social issues of public health and women’s rights in Peru. For more on Alejandra’s work, please visit:
  • Website:
  • Blog:
  • Facebook:
Alejandra Ballón, “LIMA: Basta de impunidad. Esterilizaciones forzadas
son un crimen de lesa humanidad.”

  • Federico Finchelstein (The New School) 
  • WHEN:  Tuesday, September 29, 2015, 1-3pm
  • WHERE: Harvard University, room TBA
  • WHAT: As part of the Hispanic Seminar Series and the course Artes en movimiento, Federico will offer the lecture “Lugones y Borges.” His talk will address his book El Mito del Fascismo. De Freud a Borges (The Myth of Fascism. From Freud to Borges).
  • Field Trip to Portsmouth African Burying Ground Memorial Park 
  • WHEN:  November 5, 2015, time TBA
  • WHERE: Leaving from Harvard University
  • WHAT: Please join the Cultural Agents Initiative and Sandra Arnold (Fordham University) on a field trip to the African Burying Ground Memorial Park in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. This important trip will invite participants to consider the complexity of memorialization and reconciliation in relation to historical and current racial inequity. If you are interested in attending this event, please email us at
  • For more information on Sandra’s Burial Database Project of Enslaved African Americans, see:
  • For more information on the African Burying Ground Memorial Park in Portsmouth, see:

General News: Pre-Texts 

Following this summer’s workshops, Pre-Texts is now also being implemented in Colombia’s Department of Antioquia, Uganda, new sites in Greater Boston, and at Emory University in Atlanta. Pre-Texts continues to thrive in Coahuila, Mexico and a comprehensive study of the impact of Pre-Texts is being undertaken at many of our sites, including Coahuila.

On November 6th and 7th, our colleagues in México will come to Harvard University to share their work with Pre-Texts. We hope that you will be able to join us!

United Somali Youth: Cambridge, MA

The Cultural Agents team is thrilled to continue its work with the United Somali Youth this academic year on the campus of Harvard University. Please read a recent story on the USY program, its Executive Director Said Ahmed, and our collaboration with this amazing group of youth:

Prospect Hill Academy: Somerville, MA 

With the support of Prospect Hill Academy’s OST Program Director, April Slater, Pre-Texts sessions will be offered at the Early Childhood and Upper Elementary Campuses as part of its after-school offerings this academic year. We look forward to sharing stories from our work with PHA.

General News: Cultural Agents

This academic year, we will bring an inspiring group of Cultural Agents to Harvard University, which will include guests such as Luis Camnitzer, Antanas Mockus, and Alejandra Ballón. These events will be part of the
Cultural and Humanitarian Agents Seminar–sponsored by the Mahindra, the Connectionists and Facilitators: Cultural Agents Coin Words–sponsored by the Weatherhead Center, talks connected to Professor Doris Sommer’s class Artes en movimiento, the Hispanic Seminar Series, and the curriculum development initiative Pre-Texts for Teaching Literature and Culture through Art Making–a Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, Harvard Arts Museums and Cultural Agents collaboration that is sponsored by DRCLAS.

Please see our calendar on the Cultural Agents website for more information on our upcoming events:

Featured Story

Through the writing of Daniel Alarcón and photos by Aníbal Martel, “Se buscan demócratas en la cárcel más peligrosa del Perú” tells the story of how prisoners at Lurigancho have collaborated and used creativity to improve their living conditions. Lurigancho is the largest prison in Perú and is notorious for its lack of official regulation.

To read this fascinating story, please visit:


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Harvard University
Cambridge, MA 02138

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Cases for Culture Cultural Agents Department of Architecture Doris Sommer Italia Launch Videos Mental Health Opportunities Partners Pre-Texts Rennaisance Now Social Equity
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by Rodriguez