April 11, 2014
On Thursday, April 17, Hampden-Sydney College hosts a panel discussion featuring author Yuri Herrera; Dr. Alfonso Varona, Assistant Professor of Spanish; and Dr. Kenneth D. Lehman, Squires Professor of History. This discussion is entitled "The War on Drugs in Mexico: Fiction & Reality".
This panel's will focus on exploring the complexity of drug trafficking and its social and political outcomes in Mexico, as opposed to the fictional allusions that the media presents. Yuri will reference his book, Kingdom Cons, which is being read by Hampden-Sydney students in Dr. Alfonso Varona's Latin American Literature course. Students will hear Yuri expand on the ways his work incorporates literary and historical perspectives of Mexico's war on drugs and the ways in which this particular topic has created a new, narrative subgenre of modern literature.
Daniel Alarcón, author of At Night We Walk in Circles says, "of the writers of my generation, the one I most admire is Yuri Herrera." Writer Francisco Goldman, author of Say Her Name, comments that, "Yuri Herrera is Mexico's greatest novelist."
Yuri Herrera is a professor and author of the award-winning novels Trabajos del reino (2004) and Señales que precederán al fin del mundo. He attended the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) where he received his BA in Political Science. Yuri later went on to the University of Texas at El Paso to earn his MFA in Creative Writing, and his Ph.D was awarded by the University of California at Berkeley. He won the Premio Binacional de Novela Joven 2003 for his novel Trabajos del reino. The text analyzes the relationship between power and artistic, creative freedom, and it received the Otras voces, otros ámbitos prize for the best novel published in Spain in 2008. Trabajos del reino has been translated into English, French, German, and Italian; its English translation is known as Kingdom Cons. Yuri has taught creative writing and Latin American literature at the Universidad Iberoamericana and the University of North Carolina-Charlotte. He is currently working at Tulane University as a visiting professor.
Sponsored by the Lectures and Programs Committee, the Modern Languages Department, and the History Department, Herrera's lecture begins at 7:00 PM at 4th Floor, Bortz Library. This event is free and open to the community.