Silvia Rivera Cusicanqui is a renowned Bolivian sociologist and intellectual linked to the Indian Katarista and the coca-growers movements. Invited as a lecturer on the Independent Studies Programme (PEI), in this session she shares her recent research on the sociology of the image and the Eurocentrism of the discourse intrinsic to the construction of the contemporary European subject.
Silvia Rivera Cusicanqui is part of the self-managed Colectivx Ch'ixi collective. She was a senior lecturer in Sociology at the Universidad Mayor de San Andrés de La Paz (UMSA), where she is currently an emeritus professor, and visiting lecturer at the Universities of Columbia (New York, USA), Austin (Texas, USA), La Rábida (Huelva, Spain), Jujuy (Argentina) and the Universidad Andina Simón Bolívar de Quito (Ecuador). Together with other intellectuals, she founded the Andean Oral History Workshop (THOA) in 1983, with which she worked on themes of orality, identity, and indigenous and popular social movements, mainly in the Aymara region. In recent years, she has promoted the El Tambo Colectivo space, a cultural centre in La Paz that seeks to unite theoretical knowledge with manual and environmental work.
Rivera Cusicanqui’s work addresses the continuity of the logics of domination of indigenous identities and cultures, even in contexts where there has apparently been a formal recognition of the diversity and value of the indigenous. She has authored several books, and has made videos and films, both documentary and fiction. In foregrounding the combination of languages, she has worked as an essayist, documentary maker, art critic and exhibition curator.