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Action as deferment: Anzaldua’s conocimiento as critical thinking (pp. 36-49; DOI: 10.23692/iMex.17.3)

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Dr. Marisa Belausteguigoitia Rius

Marisa Belausteguigoita completed a PhD. at the University of California at Berkeley. Full Professor at the School of Humanities at UNAM. She analyzes the relationship between critical pedagogies, artistic and juridical practices from the perspective of gender studies, focus on women’s access to justice. Director of the project Mujeres en Espiral: sistema de justicia, perspectiva de género y pedagogías en resistencia / Spiral turns: perspectives from gender, justice, and  pedagogies in resistance. Mujeres en Espiral is an academic, artistic and activist initiative that fosters women’s access to justice. Her latest publication is Critical Terms in Caribbean and Latin American Thought: Historical and Institutional Trajectories (2016) in collaboration with Yolanda Martínez San-Miguel and Ben Sifuentes-Juauregui (Rutgers University), translated into Spanish in 2018 by Revista de Critica Literaria Latinoamericana (RCLL).

In this article I focus on a pedagogical notion inspired by Anzaldua’s ‘left hand maneuvers’ as critical thinking, which I call Tilting Pedagogies. Tilting Pedagogies are left hand maneuvers – connecting critical operations – that cross over to meet social urgencies as a way to incarnate theoretical thought inside the classroom. Tilting pedagogies represent those notions, actions and maneuvers that allow us to ‘incline’ – tilt – from academia to social urgencies, from Spanish to English and vice versa, from northern to southern epistemologies, from final to deferred signification and towards the classroom as a critical space. These operations dwell between urgency and deferment of final meaning. I use inclination in its double meaning: as a tendency, a preference, rather an incitation and as an act of bending and leaning. In short: inclination as an incitement to tilt towards interruption and deferment, as two actions that are necessary to read theory not only as a local frame, but to interconnect it with other active forms of knowledge. This is what Anzaldua’s conocimiento produces: incitation to tilt, interrupt and bend over.

En este artículo trabajo con la noción de ‘left hand maneuvers’ – maniobras zurdas –, de Gloria Anzaldúa. Releo esta noción como Pedagogías de la Inclinación (Tilting pedagogies) con el fin de encarnar teóricamente maniobras estratégicas, que inclinan (tilt) hacia el lenguaje bilingüe, las urgencias sociales, la interrupción y el pensamiento crítico como un proceso fronterizo (entre lenguas, entre lo visual y lo escritural, el norte y el sur y entre sexualidades, identidades raciales, de clase y de género). Analizo el trabajo de Gloria Anzaldúa como una incitación al pensamiento crítico en el salón de clase y como un acto de inclinación hacia el cruce, la interrupción y la vinculación con las urgencias sociales.