city view at night  
USF Saint Ignatius and Golden Gate Bridge

Forging ties across the Americas

Welcome, Bienvenidos, Bem-vindo!

October  31, 5:30-7:00, MCL 252

CELASA Lecture: Salomon Lerner Febres

Salomon Lerner-Febres was the president of the Peruvian Truth and Reconciliation commission, who is now directing the Pontificia Universidad Catolica of Lima's (PUCP) Center for Democracy and Human Rights.

OlmecColossal Olmec Art: Curator of Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Kathleen Berrin gives visual presentation of the Olmec Exhibit

On Thursday, March 3, 2011 Kathleen Berrin, curator of the de Young Museum, gave a visual presentation on the currently featured exhibition at the de Young museum, “Olmec: Colossal Masterworks of Ancient Mexico”. The Olmecs, the mother civilization of Mesoamerica, not only developed an impressive iconic artistic style, but also set a foundation of tradition and culture for the later civilizations to follow. In a room filled with interest and curiosity towards this second millennium BC civilization and its impressive iconography, Berrin took the audience through a visual tour of the exhibition. The exhibit in the de Young includes the famous stone heads, thrones, jewelry, masks and various sized figures. The presentation included all of the components involved in the creation of the exhibit; from the preparations for transport in Mexico to the installment in the museum. The de Young Museum will host this fascinating exhibit until May 8, 2011. This presentation “Colossal Olmec Art” was presented by the USF Center of Pacific Rim in cosponsor with The Pan American Society (PASUSF), the USF Center for Latino Studies in the Americas (CELASA), the USF Latin American Studies program and the Fromm Institute for Lifelong Learning.

ArgentinaUSF Welcomes Argentine Delegation

The Pan American Society at USF is extending a warm welcome to an Argentine Business Delegation visiting the San Francisco Bay Area on February 28. Organized as a networking opportunity by Dean Baradello, the event offered a relaxed and friendly atmosphere for corporate executives, entrepreneurs, government representatives, and USF students to interact as they enjoyed drinks and taste treats on a pleasant Monday evening.  The event featured introductory remarks by Honorable Francisco Cabrera, Mister of Economic Development for the City of Buenos Aires, and Mike Duffy, USF Dean of the School of Business and Professional Studies.  It also included brief introductions by representatives of thirteen different Argentine ventures from various the gaming, animation and related web 2.0 areas.

The Pan American Society at USF Celebrates Latin American Independence

Bicentennial_5Pan American Society members joined the Center for Latino Studies in the Americas (CELASA) and the Consuls of Colombia, Mexico, and Chile for a Bi-centennial celebration on Latin American independence.  The event featured presentations by Colombian Consul General Jose Miguel Castiblanco, UC Berkley Professor Margaret Chowning, Stanford Ph.D. student and researcher Marcela Junguito, and USF Professor Julio Moreno.  Following fascinating presentations on the historical and literary impact of independence and its legacy in today’s Latin American society, guests enjoyed delicious Latin American culinary treats at the beat of Colombian musicians.

ClementsHuman Rights Activist Visits USF to Honor 21st Anniversary of Jesuit Martyrs in El Salvador

Dr. Charlie Clements, executive director of Harvard’s Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, addressed a packed house November 16 on the USF campus to mark the 21st anniversary of the murder of six Jesuits, their housekeeper, and her daughter in El Salvador by the U.S.-backed military in 1989. The Pan American Society and its co-sponsors of the event could not have found a more fitting speaker to honor the moral and intellectual memory of the Jesuits’ work to promote peace and justice in El Salvador, as Dr. Clements' own “journey of conscience” led him to refuse participation in the 1970 U.S. invasion of Cambodia during the Vietnam War. He chose to change his life path and become a doctor. Recognizing the same propaganda and justification for involvement in civil conflicts in Central America, Dr. Clements decided to counter the needless violence and provide medical care for the poorest and most vulnerable victims of the Salvadoran Civil War (1980-1992). He entered El Salvador on foot and escaped bombings by the same planes he had flown 15 years earlier in Vietnam, all the while treating sick and injured Salvadorans.

Using both words and excerpts from the 1985 Academy Award-winning documentary film Witness to War: An American Doctor in El Salvador based on his book of the same name, Dr. Clements painted a harrowing picture of the conflict fought in the context of the Cold War that, at its core, was a struggle of inequality. The Jesuits brutally murdered at the University of Central America in November of 1989 were targeted for the philosophical ideals as well as their work on negotiated peace proposals. In the uplifting conclusion of the event, Dr. Clements spoke to how the Jesuits were able to achieve in death what they had not in life. The international shock resulting from the Jesuit killings ordered by a general known to be a close CIA collaborator led to a change in the U.S.’ obstructionist position to a peace agreement. A little over a year later, after the deaths of more than 75,000 and the displacement of hundreds of thousands more, the Peace Accords of Mexico City were signed. Two decades after the atrocities of the civil war, Dr. Clements pays ongoing tribute to the conscience of the Jesuits through his commitment to bettering global human rights. Photo credit: Shaun Calhoun

Pan American Society Members Gather for Thacher Gallery Guided Tour and Evening Reception 

Galleons and Globalization 4

Diplomats, the USF campus community, corporate executives, and other Pan American Society members gathered for a reception and guided tour of USF Thacher Gallery’s latest art exhibit on the evening of October 28, 2010. Curator Father Thomas Lucas S.J., Ph.D. led the fascinating tour, providing both a broad historical overview and specific highlights of the more unique artifacts featured in Galleons and Globalization: California Mission and the Pacific Rim. The Thacher Gallery exhibit features over 125 rare artifacts, all relics of an age of exploration in the Pacific, maritime commercial activity, and cultural and religious interchange. As a testament of an earlier stage of globalization, the artifacts illustrate the linkages between modern-day Spain, Macau, China, Japan, Peru, Paraguay, Mexico, the United States, and the Philippines.  These linkages, as the exhibit shows, led to unique hybridization of ideas, iconography, and materials, emblematized by native American woven baskets featuring Spanish imperial coat of arms, Jesuit art from India with distinct Buddhist influences, and mantones de manila, or Spanish woven shawls, made out of Chinese silk and featuring the Mexican national flag. The Galleons and Globalization exhibit is open to the public free of charge and runs through December 17, 2010.

Susan Katz Presentation
USF Professor Susan Katz Discusses Field Research on Bilingual Intercultural Education among the Shuar in Ecuador

On October 13, 2010, the Pan American Society sponsored a noontime event featuring Dr. Susan Katz, Professor of International and Multicultural Education at the University of San Francisco. Through a Fulbright fellowship, Dr. Katz spent five months earlier this year conducting fieldwork among the bilingual intercultural education system among the Shuar, the second largest indigenous community living in the Amazonian region of Ecuador. She provided a short historical narrative of the Shuar people and outlined the sources of influence on their current education system. Her findings on the cultural, linguistic, and environmental challenges of the Shuar education program and teacher training programs revealed a strong connection to the challenges facing the very identity of the indigenous group. The Pan American Society will be following Dr. Katz’s research as it continues into next year, when she will be leading a group of USF students to Ecuador in 2011.  Photo credit: Shaun Calhoun

Yves Voltaire 2Haitian Professor and Priest Yves Voltaire Speaks on Haiti's Reconstruction for Latest Pan American Society Event

On September 13, 2010, eight months after a catastrophic earthquake hit the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince and surrounding areas, the Pan American Society brought Haitian professor and Catholic priest Yves Voltaire to USF to speak on the challenges and opportunities of re-building the country. Following a harrowing slideshow of the devastation wrought by the earthquake, which measured 7.3 on the Richter scale, Father Voltaire spoke on the natural disaster itself, the historical, economic, and social circumstances that contributed to the Haitian population’s vulnerability, and the process of rebuilding the country. He iterated his belief in educational investments as key to rebuilding Haiti and his own involvement as professor at Haiti’s SUD Aux Cayes Public University in promoting online curriculum in order to make education more accessible and affordable for the hemisphere’s least developed country. Father Voltaire confronted the weight of the task of rebuilding Haiti head-on while leaving his audience with his uplifting observation that tragedy brings about heroes that otherwise would never have been. The Father Yves Voltaire lecture was sponsored by the Pan American Society, CELASA, USF’s Latin American Studies program, and USF School of Law. Photo credit: Shaun Calhoun

marin 2Pan American Society of USF Co-Sponsors Guadalupe Rivera Marín Talk to Kick Off 2010 USF School Year

Guadalupe Rivera Marín, Mexican author and daughter of famed painter and muralist Diego Rivera, packed USF’s Fromm Hall with her appearance on campus August 30, 2010. Rivera Marín opened her hour-long talk by describing her father’s interest in promoting Pan American unity through art to increase awareness and understanding between the South and North. Rivera Marín used the story behind the controversial mural painted in 1933 for the Rockefeller Center in New York, “The Man at the Crossroads” as the center of a narrative that weaved together her father’s life and work in both Mexico and the U.S. She discussed the ideological promise, disappointment, and party pressures that Diego Rivera confronted as a Communist activist. During the question and answer session that followed, Rivera Marín shared her memories of playing marbles with Trotsky, opined about why Nelson Rockefeller had “The Man at the Crossroads” mural destroyed, and explained her relationship with the artist and her step-mother, Frida Kahlo. The Guadalupe Rivera Marín lecture and reception was sponsored by the Pan American Society, the Mexican Consulate, CELASA, the USF Reading Project, and the College of Arts and Sciences.  Photo credit: Shaun Calhoun