(UNESCO / Japan Young Researchers' fellowships programme)

Intercultural and Inter-religious dialogue in school projects for and with indigenous people in Argentina and Latin-America

Summary of research carried out: 
Intercultural and Inter-religious dialogue in school projects for and with indigenous people in Argentina and Latin-America

The project, carried out thanks to the UNESCO/Keizo Obuchi Research Fellowships Programme, was framed within the research field of intercultural dialogue, emphasizing the links between intercultural education and interreligious dialogue. The general aim was to define, in education projects for indigenous peoples, the relationship between the uses of the concept of interculturality and the treatment of socio-cultural and religious diversity.

Below, I will detail the activities I carried out during my stay in Berlin.

First, I was able to conduct a review of documents and documentary sources, compiling memories of intercultural school experiences and other sources providing an account of important aspects of the history of intercultural education in Latin America. Second, central to my work was the collection of specific literature dedicated to socio-historical aspects of these education projects, as well as conceptual aspects such as the categories of interculturality, teaching/learning processes for indigenous peoples, knowledge construction, interreligious dialogue and so forth.

The collection of material and bibliographic resources was possible thanks to the two host institutions of the highest academic level in the study of Latin American issues: the Ibero-Amerikanisches Institut (IAI, Ibero-American Institute), with the largest specialized library in the Ibero-American cultural sphere in Europe, and the Lateinamerika-Institut (LAI, Institute for Latin American Studies - Freie Universität, FU), which houses material related to interculturality, interdisciplinarity and gender. During my stay, I also visited other institutions, such as the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Humboldt University), the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin (State Library) and the Ethnologisches Museum Berlin (Ethnological Museum).

With regard to networking with researchers, it should be noted as a matter of principle that the sustained dialogue with my tutors, Dr Barbara Göbel, Director of the IAI, and Dr Teresa Valiente-Catter, research affiliate with the LAI, was of vital importance for the achievement of this project. With Dr Valiente-Catter we are putting together a dossier entitled "Anthropological Perspectives on Indigenous Children in Latin America" to be presented in the journal INDIANA (IAI).

In addition, many of the exchanges took place in the research colloquiums, conferences and other activities offered by the institutes. In this connection, it is worth mentioning the conference I gave in the framework of the master's degree in Interdisciplinary Latin American Studies (FU). The presentation, entitled "Intercultural Bilingual Education in Argentina", enabled dialogue with students. During my stay, I came into contact and met with the following researchers: Prof. Julieta Zurita (Bolivia), Dr Martha Zapata (FU, Berlin), Dr Ingrid Kummels (FU, Berlin), Dr Stephanie Schütze (FU, Berlin), Dr Kerstin Störl (University of Vienna), Dr Annette Hofmann (FU, Berlin), Dr Manfred Liebel (University of Applied Sciences, Potsdam) and Dr Thomas Stodulka (FU, Berlin). Moreover, Dr Manuela Fischer facilitated the examination of the Ethnologisches Museum's South American collections and legacies. All these meetings provided a sound basis for future cooperation.

Finally, I would like to emphasize that the UNESCO/Keizo Obuchi Research Fellowships Programme has enabled me to enrich my professional life, allowing me to learn about new perspectives with which to address the issues affecting the education projects and experiences of indigenous peoples in Argentina and the region.