Welcoming Speakers From Honduras; Chiapas, Mexico; and Guatemala for Fall Events

Written by Karen L. Bystrom
September 28, 2018

Seattle University’s Central America Initiative co-sponsors three important presentations this fall.

October 15, 2:15-3:15, p.m., Pigott 103

The Silencing of Dissent: How Freedom of the Press is Threatened in Honduras

Jennifer Avila spent six years at Radio Progreso, an essential bulwark of freedom of expression in an increasingly hostile environment for journalism, before co-founding Contra Corriente in 2017. While at Radio Progreso, she directed Guardiana de los Ríos (about the defense of rivers led by Berta Cáceres), No Se Van (about the whys and hows of migration), and Libertad Tiene Nombre de Mujer (about women organizing to protect community territory). Her award-winning work has been shown in international film festivals, and has represented a crucial documentation of the ways U.S. and Honduran policy from deportations to mega-projects have affected the most vulnerable Hondurans.  Jennifer’s talk is part of a regional tour sponsored by Witness for Peace Northwest. Seattle University co-sponsors include International Studies, Latin American Studies, and the Central America Initiative.

October 17, noon-1:55 p.m., Harding 143

Our Voices, Our Future: How Indigenous Women are Shaping Social Movements on Both Sides of the Border

Two speakers from Chiapas — Amalia Hernandez, a Tseltal leader, and Marisela Garcia, a supporter of indigenous women’s rights — join Colleen Echohawk, Chief Seattle Club; Brooke Pinkham, Seattle University School of Law Center for Indian Law and Policy; and Christina Roberts, Director, SU's Indigenous Peoples Institute (IPI).  The panel will be facilitated by Diane Tomhave, Program Coordinator, IPI.  This panel is part of the outreach work of One Equal Heart.  Seattle University co-sponsors include the Indigenous Peoples’ Institute and the Central America Initiative. Online registration available.

November 6, 10:15-11:15 a.m., Garrand 110

How to Stop a Dam with Indigenous Resistance

Maya Mam community leader José Gómez speaks about indigenous environmental activism in Guatemala. He is a representative of the Association of Communities for Development and the Defense of Land and Natural Resources (ACODET). This talk is part of the Network in Solidarity with the People of Guatemala (NISGUA) who has provided human rights accompaniment and strategic advocacy support to ACODET for many years and is organizing this tour to lift up their important work defending their ancestral lands against the imposition of the Xalalá megadam, which if constructed would displace multiple communities, the majority indigenous Maya.  Seattle University co-sponsors include International Studies, Latin American Studies, and the Central America Initiative.

Learn more about the Central America Initiative. For more information, contact Dr. Serena Cosgrove.