Latin American Studies (LATAM)

LATAM-180 Introduction to Latin American Cultures

Fall and Spring. Credits: 4

Examines the confrontation, assimilation, and transformation of Amerindian, African, and European cultures in Latin America from the sixteenth century to the present. Focuses on the processes in which distinctive self-images emerged in the region and how these images have been challenged and changed over time. Uses films, literature, and folk traditions to complement scholarly analysis of the emergence of a New World mentality.

Crosslisted as: HIST-180
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Multicultural Perspectives
L. Gudmundson, A. Pitetta

LATAM-217 Portuguese for Spanish Speakers I

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

This course is specially designed for students who are proficient in Spanish or another Romance language. This previous knowledge will be drawn upon to promote fast and solid acquisition of linguistic skills in Portuguese. Course conducted in Portuguese. Upon successful completion of the course, students should be able to: interact with other students and the instructor in Portuguese; describe and compare people, places, and things in Portuguese; communicate future plans in Portuguese; narrate and understand past events in Portuguese; offer and understand advice and directions in Portuguese; give and understand opinions in Portuguese; and hypothesize in Portuguese.

Crosslisted as: SPAN-217
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
F. Cunha
Prereq: SPAN-201 or placement test.
Advisory: Permission of instructor if you have proficiency in other Romance languages.
Notes: Students with proficiency in other Romance languages should seek permission of the instructor.

LATAM-227 Portuguese for Spanish Speakers II

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

The goal of this course is to offer students sophisticated linguistic tools that will allow them to interact and communicate in Portuguese in socio-cultural contexts that go beyond their immediate personal experience and daily life. The course is designed for students who have previous experience with Portuguese and are already familiar with the majority of the grammatical structures of the language. Through the use of authentic written texts, videos, and songs, students will broaden and deepen their reading, writing, listening, and speaking abilities in Portuguese.

Crosslisted as: SPAN-227
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Language
F. Cunha
Prereq: SPAN-217.
Notes: Course taught in Portuguese.

LATAM-243 Introduction to Latin American Politics

Spring. Credits: 4

Why has Latin America struggled to achieve democratic stability? Why is it the region of the world with the highest economic inequality? How have the periodic political and economic crises allowed for creative experimentation with policy alternatives to create a more equal and sustainable social order? This course examines the political and economic evolution and transformation of Latin America from the time of the European conquest until these very days, with a particular focus on the 20th century. It will also analyze how these general trends took specific shapes in each of the 7 countries studied: Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Chile, Venezuela and Bolivia.

Crosslisted as: POLIT-243
Applies to requirement(s): Social Sciences
C. Fernandez Anderson
Restrictions: Course limited to sophomores, juniors and seniors
Advisory: Politics 106 (Comparative Politics) is recommended.

LATAM-260 Afro-Latin America: From Slavery to Invisibility

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

Exploration of the history of Afro-Latin American populations since Independence within and outside the nation-state. We will question why and how to study those whose governments define them not as peoples of African descent but as part of a mixed-race majority of Hispanic cultural heritage, who themselves may often have supported this policy, and who may have had compelling reasons to avoid official scrutiny. Readings include early twentieth-century Latin American racialist theorizing; research using census, economic, criminal, and marriage records; autobiographical works, and analysis of race in textual and musical representations of peoples, regions, and nations.

Crosslisted as: HIST-287AF, AFCNA-241AF
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Multicultural Perspectives
L. Gudmundson

LATAM-277 Caribbean Women Writers

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

Comparative examination of contemporary women's writing in the Caribbean. Emphasis will be on their engagement with issues of history, cultural articulation, race, class, gender, and nationality, including exploration of their formal procedures, individual moods, regional particularity, and general impact as writers. Rosario Ferré, Ana Lydia Vega, Julia Alvarez, Edna Brodber, Maryse Condé, Simone Schwarz-Bart, Jean Rhys, Beryl Gilroy, and Rosa Guy are among those whose works we will review.

Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Multicultural Perspectives
D. Mosby

LATAM-287 Topics in Latin American Studies

This course studies significant problems relating to Latin America in greater depth from the perspectives of appropriate disciplines. Some topics may be cross-listed with other departments.

LATAM-287DE Topics in Latin American Studies: 'Rethinking (Under)Development in Latin America'

Fall. Credits: 4

When and how did the notion of "development" emerge and spread? Why does nearly every country now aspire to it? What stigmas and hierarchies does the term "under-development" imply? Throughout Latin America, such terms prove highly problematic not only with respect to the material reality they purport to describe but also as a framework for understanding place, time, and selfhood. In this course, students rethink conventional wisdom about "underdevelopment" through the study of writers, filmmakers, and painters from Latin America working at different historical junctures of the twentieth century.

Crosslisted as: CST-256
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities
L. Gudmundson

LATAM-287RP Topics in Latin American Studies: 'Sexual and Reproductive Rights in Latin America'

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

Since the 1990s Latin America has witnessed increasing societal and political debates over sexual and reproductive rights. Issues such as abortion, gay marriage, transgender rights, sexual education and assisted reproductive technology have risen to the top of some countries' agendas after decades of silence, taboos, and restrictive or non-existent legislation. The course aims to provide a survey of sexual and reproductive rights in the region as a whole while at the same time highlighting the disparities that exist within it. The course analyzes the multiple factors behind the current policies focusing particularly on the role of women and LGBT movements advancing more liberal legislation.

Crosslisted as: POLIT-255RP, GNDST-250RP
Applies to requirement(s): Social Sciences; Multicultural Perspectives
Other Attribute(s): Speaking-Intensive, Writing-Intensive
C. Fernandez Anderson
Advisory: Previous coursework in Latin American Studies and/or Gender Studies recommended.

LATAM-288 Modern Mexico

Fall. Credits: 4

An analysis of the modern Mexican nation-state organized around three major themes: the conflictive yet symbiotic relationship with the United States, from the war of the 1840s through NAFTA most recently; the succession of reformist and revolutionary upheavals in 1810-1821, 1856-1867, 1910-1917, the 1930s, and again today, seeking to resolve both problems of the colonial past and new conflicts traceable to the very reforms generated by earlier political and social struggles; and the meaning of Mexican nationality from different ethnic, gender, and class perspectives. Readings include autobiographical and literary works, historical studies, and films.

Crosslisted as: HIST-288
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Multicultural Perspectives
L. Gudmundson

LATAM-289 Slavery in the Americas

Spring. Credits: 4

A course, organized topically rather than geographically or nationally, that offers a comparative analysis of African American slavery as a dominant social system in Brazil, the Caribbean, and the U.S. South. Topics include: why slavery?; sugar and slavery; historical demography; culture and the law; kinship and family; long-run economic development; patterns of race relations; master class and racist ideologies; resistance to slavery; and abolition and its aftermath. Readings include historical and anthropological studies, as well as a major documentary collection on slavery in Brazil.

Crosslisted as: HIST-289, AFCNA-241SA
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Multicultural Perspectives
L. Gudmundson

LATAM-295 Independent Study

Fall and Spring. Credits: 1 - 4

The department
Instructor permission required.

LATAM-374 Latin American Cinema: Beyond the Farm and The Factory

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

How do labor relationships and the social construction of what work means affect our lives as well as our communities? How do they contribute to shape our identities? In which ways can our gender, sexual orientation, race, social class or migratory status define our working possibilities? How do the concepts of marginality and informality emerge to identify the precarious Latin American labor conditions? Through Latin American films, students will problematize the idea of service, worker, industry, classic and non-classic work, sexual and affective work, and child labor, among others.

Crosslisted as: GNDST-333FC
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Multicultural Perspectives
A. Pitetta

LATAM-386 Central America: Reform, Reaction, Revolution

Spring. Credits: 4

This seminar explores the diverse experiences of Central American nations in the twentieth century. From a common basis in an export-oriented agriculture, social and political alternatives ranging from social democracy to recurrent military rule, neofascist regimes, and revolutionary socialism have emerged in the isthmus. The course uses materials ranging from autobiography and literature to historical and anthropological studies to understand how this came to be. In addition to national cases, we consider the unique experiences of the area's indigenous and Atlantic-coast peoples within and outside the nation-state framework.

Crosslisted as: HIST-386
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities; Multicultural Perspectives
L. Gudmundson
Restrictions: This course is open to Juniors and Seniors.
Prereq: 8 credits in Latin American Studies or related field.

LATAM-387 Special Topics in Latin American Studies

LATAM-387HR Special Topics in Latin American Studies: 'Human Rights Abuses and Accountability Mechanisms in the Southern Cone of Latin America'

Spring. Credits: 4

During the 1960s and 1970s military coups brought authoritarian regimes to power in the Southern Cone (Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Uruguay). Human rights movements emerged demanding information about victims of torture, executions and disappearances which became the way military regimes attempted to eliminate dissent. What accounts for the different role these movements in the transition and consolidation of democracy and the rule of law? Did they take part to the same extent in the design and implementation of accountability mechanisms to prosecute those responsible for the abuses? We will answer these questions through the analysis of academic readings, movies, and primary sources.

Crosslisted as: POLIT-364
Applies to requirement(s): Social Sciences; Multicultural Perspectives
Other Attribute(s): Speaking-Intensive, Writing-Intensive
C. Fernandez Anderson
Advisory: Previous coursework in Latin American Studies and/or Comparative politics recommended.

LATAM-389 Agrarian America: Sugar, Cotton, Coffee, Bananas, and Wheat

Not Scheduled for This Year. Credits: 4

Explores societies generated in the Americas by several widely distributed export crops. Multinational and cross-cultural comparisons holding constant the crop itself allows a focus on the possible variations by time and place in each commodity's technologies, labor systems, farm sizes, and social structure; their political and social dynamics; the problematic features of capitalism in agriculture, or if, how, and when do peasants become farmers and farming agribusiness? Particular focus on family and household relations under so-called "peasant to farmer" agricultural transitions and environmental implications of single-crop and export agriculture.

Crosslisted as: HIST-389
Applies to requirement(s): Humanities
L. Gudmundson
Restrictions: This course is open to Juniors and Seniors.
Prereq: 8 credits from Latin American Studies or related field.

LATAM-395 Independent Study

Fall and Spring. Credits: 1 - 8

The department
Instructor permission required.