Lecture to discuss representation for indigenous peoples of Mexico on Jan. 25

January 13, 2017

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The efforts of the National Council of Indigenous Peoples (CNPI) will be the topic of a lecture by María Muñoz at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 25, in Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, on Penn State’s University Park campus. Muñoz’s lecture, “The Politics of Struggle: The National Council of Indigenous Peoples (1970-1987),” is sponsored by Penn State’s Latin American Studies program, Department of History, and the Interinstitutional Center for Indigenous Knowledge.

“As we face an immediate future of uncertain relations between the United States and Mexico, it becomes increasingly important to understand the recent Mexican past,” said Matthew Restall, Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Colonial Latin American History, Anthropology and Women’s Studies and director of Latin American studies. “Dr. Muñoz’s work shows how indigenous people in Mexico have been finding creative and triumphant ways to participate in national politics and strengthen Mexican democracy.”

Muñoz will discuss how the leaders of CNPI struggled to bring to fruition a national organization that would safeguard the interests of a diverse national indigenous population within the Mexican state. Formed in 1975, the CNPI faced numerous challenges, but helped define the contours of the possible as well as the dreams for what might be.

The CNPI, born within a movement inside a government agency, faced opposition from the leadership of the National Campesino Confederation, charges of ethnic inauthenticity, distrust on the part of other indigenous organizations, and government espionage. “Stand up and fight!” was the slogan of the CNPI, and Muñoz integrated that determined spirit into her book “Stand Up and Fight: Participatory Indigenismo, Populism, and Mobilization in Mexico, 1970-1984.”

An associate professor of history, associate director of the honors program, and a Winifred and Gustave Weber Fellow in humanities at Susquehanna University, Muñoz developed her book by using documents from untapped archives and sources to trace the political history and power relationships of figures central to the cause of the Mexican indigenous peoples. Her research led her to examine the events that led to the first national congress of indigenous peoples, the meeting itself, and the developments after the assembly, including the formation of the CNPI.

For more information on this event, or for questions about accommodations and the physical access provided, contact Mark Mattson, global partnerships and outreach librarian, at 814-863-2480 or mam1196@psu.edu in advance of your visit.

  • woman standing in front of a colorful background

    María Muñoz, an associate professor of history, associate director of the honors program, and a Winifred and Gustave Weber Fellow in humanities at Susquehanna University, will speak about the efforts of the National Council of Indigenous Peoples at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 25, in Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, on Penn State’s University Park campus. The lecture is sponsored by Penn State’s Latin American Studies program, Department of History, and the Interinstitutional Center for Indigenous Knowledge (ICIK)

    IMAGE: Courtesy María Muñoz

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated January 13, 2017