Patrick James has joined the LACC team as our new Public Services Assistant!
Patrick James grew up in North Carolina, where he attended Appalachian State University and studied cultural anthropology. Following undergraduate study Patrick pursued a Master’s in Latin American Studies at The University of Florida. His thesis focused on a genre called The Tropical Gothic, which emerged in Cali, Colombia during years of heightened violence in the context of Colombia’s armed conflict. This genre is oriented toward political critique and mobilizes figures such as vampires and zombies as tropes that channel the sense of socio-political unrest and terror present in Colombia at the time. Patrick explores how the Tropical Gothic allows for the expression of the otherwise unspeakable; violent war-time experiences that resist direct articulation. In another step, Patrick addresses the topic of ethnographic composition in violent contexts with this line of thinking in mind, suggesting that attunement to artistic forms might help social scientists better relate that which they observe in the field. Patrick’s interests include Spanish language literature, especially the work of Roberto Bolaño, along with ethnography and psychoanalysis related to violence in Latin America.