Subaltern Sombrero Studies: Underclasses Get Notice
Latin American subaltern studies are in vogue, the meaning of "subaltern" having been enlarged since its origins in Asian studies and description as "history-from-below.'"Whether social history was a sufficiently descriptive term and subaltern studies simply a more flashy way to describe such investigations could be argued. In any event, in regards to the study of Latin American "minorities" (is any group, given the continent's enormous variety, really a majority?), the subject still encounters a number of self-imposed, if diminishing, constraints that academia, in the past, has masochistically assumed: gender blinders, practical illiteracy where the indigenous peoples and religious groups (and their influence) are concerned, and an almost deliberate ignorance of the considerable influence of the underclass on history .
Paul J. Rich. "Subaltern Sombrero Studies: Underclasses Get Notice" Journal of Interamerican Stuides and World Affairs.Summer 1997 (1997).
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/paulrich/52