Rethinking Trans-Pacific Ties: Asia and Latin America

LASA and EANLAS are jointly organizing an international congress on Feb. 15– 19, 2022. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2022 LASA-EANLAS Congress will be held as a fully online Congress.

The exchange of goods and people between Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) dates back roughly to the 16th century, and from the mid-19th century, the arrival of large-scale Asian immigrants and laborers into the LAC region gave further impetus to the cross-cultural exchange and multicultural identity constructions that followed. Further beyond the migration, the encounters between Asia and LAC through multiple points of contact across time and space are diverse enough to incorporate such issues as Orientalism and Occidentalism in the Hispanic world and Asia, and the trans-pacific exchanges that disrupt the boundaries of singular notions of identity.

In the modern history, both Asia and LAC have traveled the bumpy road toward economic development, political stability, social cohesion, and cultural diversity. The footsteps of the two regions present both shared similarities and distinct uniqueness. However, interactions were largely hindered by the tyranny of distance.

Partnership between Asia and LAC have reached a turning point in the 21st century. Asia has emerged as the LAC’s second largest trading partner whereas this dynamic relationship has significantly increased LAC’s strategic and economic importance to Asia. The key pillars of integration initiative on diverse trade patterns, sustained investment, and cooperation partnerships are leading the way in strengthening and balancing the relationship. Rich cultures of both regions also have interacted intensively. Brazilian Army of BTS has become so passionate when they sing the entire song with BTS at the concert. Perhaps there’s no better literary works describing the life of Chinese migrants in the mid-19 century California than Isabel Allende’s novel.

Both regions have large domestic markets. Despite strong economic development, both still have large populations living in poverty and inequality. Both regions also have unique strengths in natural resources, industry, or services. Building on these complementarities, countries will continue to underpin interregional relationship.

Asia and Latin America are among the world’s most fascinating laboratory of social science and humanities. They have many useful lessons to share. Asia has shown a remarkable resilience and rapid economic development despite a series of global economic crisis. Latin America and the Caribbean has gained political autonomy and has diversified its international relations and its markets, but still faces great challenges in the field of development and social equity. Asia and LAC have also recently confronted the dual challenges of a global economic recovery and policy uncertainty stemming from the aftermath of post COVID-19 pandemic crisis.

In the light of this critical juncture, this brave new initiative is made to bring together two regions’ academic assets, to exchange ideas that address the same problems from different perspectives. Hereby, LASA and EANLAS jointly open a venue for both intensive and extensive intellectual dialogue in the following three tracks:

  1. Asian and LAC relations
    The track will cover a wide range of topics on trans-Pacific relations from political, social, economic, business to cultural dimensions.
  2. Asian and LAC, Comparative Studies
    The track promotes comparative studies on both regions from diverse academic backgrounds.
  3. Asia and LAC intellectual encounters
    The track accepts scholarly works on Latin America by researchers from diverse regions of the world, especially Asia, in any field of humanities and social sciences. Asian studies by scholars based in the Americas are also welcome. It promotes Asia-LAC intellectual encounters to further networking.

Submissions and Panels

You are invited to submit an individual paper or session proposal (panel, workshop, or roundtable) addressing any topic related to one of the program tracks. The most important part of LASA-EANLAS will be the sessions, which will take place during the five days of the Congress and will be comprised of submissions selected through this call. We invite the submission of both fully formed sessions and individual papers addressing all areas of the three tracks listed above.

All proposals must be submitted to the LASA secretariat via the online proposal system from September 20 to October 20, 2021. 

The AAS Secretariat will be closed on Monday, May 27 in observance of Memorial Day