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Dr Charles Pigott

Dr Charles Pigott

Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellow supported by the Isaac Newton Trust, Centre of Latin American Studies


My research focuses on the indigenous cultures and languages of Latin America, particularly the oral and written literature of the Maya and Quechua. In view of the fact that such cultures often have very different interpretative frameworks to the ‘Western’ academic tradition, I combine the perspectives of several disciplines in order to attain a holistic understanding. The main disciplines I dialogue with are comparative literature, anthropology, linguistics and philosophy, but my work also has relevance to fields such as psychology, sociology and ecology.

Upon completion of my PhD in 2013, I became interested in the parallels between the Andes and Mesoamerica: their historical significance as cradles of civilization; their contemporary indigenous populations who are experiencing similar cultural processes within Latin America; the central importance of nature in the indigenous worldviews. Further research revealed a key ecological similarity: Mesoamerica and the Andes are the world’s top hotspots for vertebrate diversity. Despite these important similarities, I discovered that there are relatively few comparative studies of Mesoamerica and the Andes. This motivated my application for, and subsequent acceptance of, a Mexican government scholarship held at the Autonomous University of the Yucatan, Mexico, where I learned the Yucatec Mayan language, gained expertise in the Maya cultural context, and delivered a 20-hour self-crafted course in linguistic anthropology in Spanish. As a Research Associate of the Zoology Department at the University of Oxford, I also helped in the development of the Ethno-ornithology World Archive, an Internet database of the importance of birds in world cultures.

Key Publications

Pigott, Charles (2016) "Tragedia del fin de Atawallpa", in The Literary Encyclopedia

Pigott, Charles (2014) “Review of Canessa, Andrew (2012) Intimate Indigeneities: Race, Sex, and History in the Small Spaces of Andean Life. Durham & London: Duke University Press”, in AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples 10/1, pp. 89-91.

Pigott, Charles (2014) “Foreign Encounters in the Pallas of Bolognesi, Peru”, in Latin American Indian Literatures Journal 28/1, pp. 28-53.

Pigott, Charles (2014) “The Soqomocho of Huayllacayán”, in Latin American Indian Literatures Journal 28/1, pp. 54-61.

Pigott, Charles (2014) “Ecological Ethics in Two Andean Songs”, in Studies in American Indian Literatures 26/1, pp. 81-109.

Pigott, Charles (2013) “Unity and Difference in Andean Songs”, in Oral Tradition 28/1, pp. 77-102.

Pigott, Charles (2013) “The Lyrical Creation of Community: Song as a Catalyst of Social Cohesion in Andean Peru”, in AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples 9/4, pp. 336-351.

Pigott, Charles (2009) “Cracid Surveys in the Bolivian Rainforest” in Annual Review of the World Pheasant Association 2008-9, p. 32.

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Tri-Continental Tea Seminar: The Politics of Science and Technology in the Global South

Nov 27, 2017

The Consortium for the Global South invites you to participate in the first of its Tricontinental Tea Seminars. This informal series is intended to connect researchers working in different departments and disciplines within the University departments, to share knowledge, and to explore the potential for future collaborative projects.