Left-wing Exile in Mexico, 1934-1960


Starting Grant (StG), SH6, ERC-2012-StG

Project acronym: LEFTMEXILE3460

Project: Left-wing Exile in Mexico, 1934-1960

Researcher (PI): Aribert Johann Heinrich Reimann

Host Institution (HI): Universitaet zu Koeln, Germany

Start date: 2013-04-01, End date: 2018-03-31

Summary: «This ERC Starting Independent Researcher Grant will support the research of one PI and two post-doctoral researchers towards a transnational and transdisciplinary history of left-wing exile in Mexico between the mid-1930s and the late 1950s. During this period, Mexico witnessed the arrival of tens of thousands of political refugees from Europe and later a smaller number of émigrés from the U.S.. Mexican authorities not only actively welcomed these communities of exile but encouraged and supported their political and cultural activities to establish Mexico as an arena for left-wing internationalism. Outside agencies, such as right-wing European governments, the Comintern, and the U.S.-American FBI and OSS/CIA were actively engaged in monitoring and influencing these communities in Mexico. The researchers will draw on new source materials from the Comintern Archives, Mexican state and university archives, and the U.S. National Archives and the Hoover Foundation alongside the rich collections of European archives to prepare studies that cut across the conventional orientation by source provenance, national perspectives, or disciplinary specialisation. The aim is to arrive at a topographical understanding of exile as a political practice manifested in meetings, lectures, political publications, and interventions in domestic Mexican and world political discourse, mechanisms of a transfer of knowledge in education policies and the transnational public sphere, cultural representations of the émigrés’ engagement with their host nation in literature, art, and architecture, in music, photography and painting, and prevailing perceptions and constructions of ethnicity and gender. The results of this research will be presented at two project workshops and one international conference. The project will generate three monographs and one edited volume with contributions from leading international scholars.»


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