Requirements for the Latin American Studies Minor
To get a minor in Latin American Studies, take:
Courses offered in Spring 2021:
Courses for the LAS minor include the following courses. These courses are not offered every semester:
For all options see Latin American Studies Minor.
Earn credits by participating in our faculty-led or customized Study Abroad programs:
Spend May 2019 in Costa Rica (3 weeks)
GEO 3080 - Geography and Culture of South America. South America. This course studies the natural and cultural landscapes of South America. Special attention is given to the geographical identity and cultural diversity of the region. Topics include environmental issues, colonial history, natural resources, industrialization, geopolitical contexts, transportation, agriculture, population patterns, urban growth and migration. 3 Credit hours
HIS 3260- Modern Latin America. Survey of Latin America from Independence, including the nineteenth century struggle between liberalism and conservatism, the Mexican Revolution, popularist and authoritarian paths to development, the Cuban and Central American Revolutions, and the recent rise of neo-liberalism.
WLS 3300 Hispanic Film
Descripción del curso: Es una introducción al cine de artistas latinoamericanos, españoles, y latinos. Sirve para desarrollar las habilidades críticas e interpretativas que fomentan un aprecio por las películas. Se enfatiza una exploración de algunos temas importantes en el estudio de las culturas latinoamericanas y españolas. No es una clase de cinematografía, sino que se usan las películas para comenzar y desarrollar discusiones sobre temas culturales. El formato de la clase será principalmente discusión en clase y en grupo, con algunas conferencias. Pre-requisito: WLS 3000 (gramática avanzada). Recomendado: WLS 3050 (conversación) u otra clase avanzada.
WLE 3025 Women in the Hispanic World.
This course explores the contributions of Hispanic women to literature, the arts and politics in the Spanish-speaking world from the colonial period to the present. Students will read original work by women, as well as critical essays written about them. Students will also be introduced to scholarship on gender, race, class and national identity. (Course taught in English—no proficiency in Spanish language required.)
SOC 2840 Racial and Cultural Minorities
Course Descriptions Catalog: The causes and consequences of prejudice and discrimination; the effects of majority and minority status for intergroup relations. Detailed: This course is designed to introduce students to the study of minority groups and group relations from a sociological perspective. Throughout the course we will discuss and apply various theoretical perspectives that address racial, ethnic, and cultural group experiences and intergroup relations; explore evidence of prejudice, discrimination, and privilege; identify social dynamics influencing categories of and perceptions regarding various subordinate groups across time; examine historical and contemporary experiences of various subordinate groups as a consequence; and explore the implications prior and current perceptions, and lived realities may hold for the future of racial and ethnic group experiences and relations. In general, the course is designed to 1) enable students to identify how racial, ethnic, and cultural group categories—as social constructs—influence everyday life, and 2) support the development of a sociological imagination to explain and understand these influences, their causes, and their consequences.
WLS 3500 Hispanic Short Story. This course focuses on short story narrative of both Latin America and Spain from the late 19th to the 20th Century. Students will examine a wide range of authors across the two continents. The discussions in class will include both primary textbooks as well as photocopies provided by the professor. Other materials that will be included are videos, movies, and web pages. Class meetings will consist mainly of class and group discussions based on readings, and Internet searches made by the students. Class will be conducted in Spanish. Prerequisite: WLS 3000, WLS 3520 recommended. Dr. Carlos Amaya
GEG 3070 Geography and Culture of Middle America.
This course studies the natural and cultural landscapes of Middle America including Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America. Special attention is given to the geographical identity and cultural diversity of the region. Topics include environmental issues, colonial history, natural resources, industrialization, geopolitical contexts, transportation, agriculture, population patterns, urban growth and migration.
WLS 4650 Latinx Identity and Cultural Diversity.
What does it mean to be Latina, Latino, o Latinx? What exactly does it mean to live as a child of immigrants? This course explores a selection of thought-provoking films and texts from a variety of literary genres, including fiction, poetry, essay, and autobiography with the purpose of exploring how Latinxs articulate, live, assert, and express their own sense of identity. Class will be conducted in Spanish. Prerequisite: WLS 3000. Dr. Vanesa Landrus
WLS 3540 Race and Gender in Spanish American Literature.
This course examines the dynamics of identity construction of the black and female subject in Spanish America from the early colonial period to the end of the nineteenth century. We will study the evolution of racial and gender constraints as seen through legal documents, chronicles, religious literature, poetry, newspapers and magazines. The course focuses on how black and female bodies were categorized and constructed within specific political and cultural contexts by colonial and nineteenth century authorities and other intellectual sectors of the population. We will explore how these subaltern subjects destabilized the political and social order in their search for freedom and power. Dr. Vanesa Landrus
ENG 3903 "Becoming the Beholder: Women Writing Women's Lives"
ENG 3903 will explore the power of language and visual arts to critique structural oppression and empower feminist resistance. In particular, we will pay attention to texts that explore the relationship of feminist thinking and activism to the body. Students enrolled in this section of ENG 3903 will engage significantly with the feminist art exhibition scheduled in the Tarble Art Galleries on campus this fall. Course texts may include: Julia Alvarez, In the Time of the Butterflies; Gloria Anzaldúa’s Borderlands La Frontera; Ana Castillo’s So Far from God; Louise Erdrich’s Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse; Laura Esquivel’s Like Water for Chocolate; Gayl Jones’ Corregidora; Cherríe Moraga’s “Heroes and Saints”; Jacqueline Woodson’s Brown Girl Dreaming and selected essays, poems, and short stories. ENG 3903 counts toward the Women’s Studies minor. 50% or more of the course materials in this section will be by authors who identify as Chicana, Latina, Latin American, or Caribbean; therefore, this course will count as an elective toward the Latin American Studies minor.
ENG 4850 Third World Literatures: ¿Y los otros?: Remembering and Identity in Latin American Literatures.
In this course, we will cast a critical eye upon the term “Third World Literature” and explore a variety of exciting literature often obscured by the shadows of the United States/North America, Britain, and Western Europe. We will study primarily Latin American and Latino/a literary and cinematic narratives (novels and films) that will broaden our understanding of the complicated ways in which identity—both personal and national—have developed in the late twentieth century and early twenty first century. In particular, we will consider the innovative strategies that Latin American and Latino/a writers use to address problems of existence, political strife, and nationhood—from the excitingly bizarre literary experiments of “magic realism” to the current re-invigoration of gritty social realism and crime fiction, mystery narratives. These literary experiments illustrate a new generation of global voices from Latin America, the Caribbean, and Latinos/as in the U.S. responding to everything from life in the USA, to the brutal legacy of political dictatorships in South and Central America, to the ongoing culture of drug cartel violence.
Central to all these explorations will be a set of thematic questions: How do these writers imagine new conceptions of the self/identity? How are personal issues of love, romance, and family altered? And most importantly, just what is “history,” and how do narratives of the past affect us? Open to majors and non-majors. A great course for future teachers and anyone interested in gaining a more in-depth global perspective. Dr. Robert Martínez
ENG 3903B Women, Literature, and Language, post-1800: Crossing Borders, Writing Lives
Instructor: Jeannie Ludlow, Ph.D. (ENG/WST)
“[T]he Borderlands are physically present wherever two or more cultures edge each other, where people of different races occupy the same territory, where under, lower, middle and upper classes touch, where the space between two individuals shrinks with intimacy.” Gloria Anzaldúa, “Preface,” Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza. ENG 3903 will explore the power of languages to break down barriers and enable resistance. In particular, we will study texts that explore the experiences of those who live on or cross over borders: im/migrants and refugees; queer, trans, and nonbinary persons; people with disabilities; and those who live or work on the margins of dominant society. ENG 3903B is an elective in the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies minor. 50% or more of the course materials in this section will be by authors who identify as Chicana, Latina, Latin American, or Caribbean; therefore, this section will also count as an elective toward the Latin American Studies minor.
HIS 4850 History of Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean.
This course covers the history of Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean Islands from the pre-contact period to the present day. This course will cover the political, cultural, and economic shifts that altered the region and gave it is present shape. Key topics will include the colonial history of the region, the rise and fall of the Atlantic Slave trade, the Cuban revolution, US involvement in Central America during the Cold War, the drug trade, and the historical shifts in immigration. No prior knowledge of the subject matter is required. Dr. Mark Dries