For Immediate Release—Friday, Oct.13, 2006



Mary E. McCrank

Media Relations Officer

(585) 245-5516


SUNY Geneseo's Anthropology Department to Present

"El Da de los Muertos" "The Day of the Dead" Oct. 19

GENESEO, N.Y.—The State University of New York at Geneseo's anthropology department will present a lecture by Susan Aberth, assistant professor of art history at Bard College, on "El Da de los Muertos" ("The Day of the Dead") at 4 p.m. Thursday, October 19, in 214 Newton Hall. The talk is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided. 

Aberth's talk will focus on the fixture in Mexican society, whose face is unforgettable and goes by many names—La Catrina, la Faca, la Huesuda, la Pelona (Fancy Lady, Skinny, Bony, Baldy)—and is not considered a trendy fashion model, but LaMuerte—Death. The Day of the Dead, Nov. 1, is a traditional celebration in Mexico when citizens honor their deceased relatives. All Saints Day (Nov. 1) and All Souls Day (Nov. 2) are marked throughout Mexico by intriguing customs, colorful adornments and lively reunions at family burial plots, the preparation of special foods, offerings laid out for the departed on commemorative altars and religious rites.

Aberth received her bachelor's degree from the University of California, Los Angeles, her master of arts degree from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University and her Ph.D. from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Bard College is located in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. She is author of "Leonora Carrington: Surrealism, Alchemy and Art " (Lund Humphries, London and Turner, Madrid 2004) and exhibition catalogues "Csar Menndez" (1998), "Williams Carmona" (1999), and "La Belleza y la Fuerza: Latin American Art" (2001). In addition, she was a contributor to "An Encyclopedia of Twentieth Century North American Women Artists and the St. James Dictionary of Latin American Artists."

The New York Council for the Humanities is sponsoring the talk. The council, a private, not-for-profit organization works to ensure the presence of the humanities in the cultural life of New York state. Since its launch in 1983, the Council's Speakers in the Humanities program has linked distinguished scholars with diverse audiences through the presentation of lectures on a broad range of topics.

For more information, contact Ellen Kintz, professor and chair of the anthropology department, at (585) 245-5277.