Accessibility Navigation:

Latin American Studies Courses

General Course Listings

Sub CRSE Title
AFR 120 Afro-Latin America (= LAS 120)
AFR 235 The 1959 Cuban Revolution (=HIS 362, =LAS 235)
AFR 300 Afro-Cuban Feminisms (=LAS 300)
AFR 360 History of the Caribbean: Race, Nation, and Politics (= LAS 360, HIS 360)
ANT 205 Ethnic Relations and Social Media
ANT 208 Early Cities and States
ANT 227 Environment and Culture in Latin America
ANT 251 Mesoamerican Civilizations
ANT 253 Latin American Society and Culture Today
ANT 321 Borderlands, Identity, and Rights
ANT 323 Human Rights in Latin America
ANT 327 Religious Pluralism in Twenty-first Century Latin America
ANT 341 Globalization
ANT 354 Art and Writing of the Ancient Maya
ANT 356 Art, Myth, and History of Ancient Central Mexico
ANT 371 Ethnographic Writing and Research
ECO 234 Latin American Economic Development
EDU 350 Latino(a) Education in the United States
ENV 284 Latinxs and Environment (=LAS 284)
HIS 162 Latin America to 1825
HIS 163 Place & Nation in Modern Latin America
HIS 259 US Latino/a History
HIS 264 The Digital Mexican Revolution
HIS 360 History of the Caribbean: Race, Nation, and Politics (=AFR 360, =LAS 360)
HIS 362 The 1959 Cuban Revolution (=AFR 235, =LAS 235)
HIS 364 Race, Sex, Power in Latin America
HIS 465 Colonialism and Imagination in Early Latin America
HIS 466 Migrations and Immigration in Latin America
LAS 101 Introduction to Latin American Studies
Prerequisites & Notes

(Spring)

Instructors
Staff

LAS 101 is an interdisciplinary introduction to the study of Latin America.  The class draws on expertise of Latin American studies experts from across the faulty.  Important areas of study include theory, cultural production, history, and contemporary politics and society. 

The course is a requirement for the Latin American Studies major and minor.
 

LAS 120 Afro-Latin America (= AFR 120)
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Benson

From Mexico to Brazil and beyond, Africans and people of African descent have fought in wars of independence, forged mixed race national identities, and contributed politically and culturally to the making of the Americas.  Even though Latin America imported ten times as many slaves as the United States, only recently have scholars begun to highlight the role blacks and other people of African descent played in Latin American history.  This course will explore the experiences of Afro-Latin Americans from slavery to the present, with a particular focus on Haiti, Cuba, Mexico, Brazil, and Colombia.  In doing so, the course seeks to answer questions such as: What does it mean to be black in Latin America? Why has racism persisted in Latin America despite political revolutions claiming to eliminate discrimination? What are the links between blacks in Latin America and the United States? How have differing conceptions of "race" and "nation" caused the rise and decline of transnational black alliances between U.S. blacks and Afro-Latin Americans?  All course readings will be in English and will include memoirs, films, and first-hand historical documents in additional to scholarly books and articles.  

Satisfies a requirement in the Africana Studies major (Geographic Region: Latin America/Caribbean).
Satisfies a requirement in the Latin American Studies major or minor.
Satisfies the cultural diversity requirement.

LAS 220 Politics and Economics of Brazil (= POL 344)
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
B. Crandall

Treatment of political and economic change in modern Brazil.  Focus on inequality, violence, environmental protection, and US-Brazil relations.  Course includes historical background from 1946 forward.

Satisfies the Social-Scientific Thought requirement
Meets the Cultural Diversity requirement

LAS 222 The Political Economy of the Southern Cone (=POL 354)
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
B. Crandall

Course offers brief historical overview of Southern Cone nations Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay and then moves to in-depth study of political and economic institutions.  Themes include bureaucratic authoritarianism, economic shocks, military rule and the return to democracy, regional integration, and globalization.

Satisfies a major requirement in Latin American Studies and Political Science
Satisfies a concentration requirement in International Studies
Satisfies Liberal Studies requirement
Meets the Cultural Diversity requirement
 

LAS 235 The 1959 Cuban Revolution (= AFR 235, =HIS 362)
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Benson

This course explores the historical underpinnings of the 1959 Cuban Revolution, U.S.-Cuban relations, and how Cubans have experienced the changes the island has undergone in the past 100 years. Particular attention is given to people of African descent who make up over a one-third of the island's population. This Cuban narrative illuminates a variety of themes including the spread of U.S. imperialism, Cuba's fight for sovereignty, and race relations in the Americas.  

Satisfies a major requirement in Africana Studies (Geographic Region: Latin American/Caribbean).
Satisfies a major or minor requirement in History.
Satisfies a major or minor requirement in Latin American Studies.
Satisfies the Historical Thought requirement.
Satisfies the cultural diversity requirement.

 

LAS 240 Introduction to Latinx Studies
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Luna

An introduction to the interdisciplinary field of Latinx studies based on ethnographic texts by anthropologists and sociologists. It examines how Latinx people in the United States are criminalized and constructed as threatening to the nation, as well as how they have constructed meaningful lives in relation to structural inequalities. Particular attention given to issues of language, identity, migration, and gender and sexuality.

Satisfies a requirement in the Latin American Studies major and minor.
Satisfies a requirement in the Anthropology major and minor.
Satisfies a requirement in the Gender and Sexuality Studies major and minor.
Satisfies a Social-Scientific Thought requirement.
Satisfies the Justice, Equality, and Community graduation requirement.

LAS 243 Sex, Drugs, & Money on the Mexico/US Border
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Luna

Ethnographic approach to understanding the social effects of several profit-generating industries in Mexican border cities: drug trafficking, sex work, and the maquiladora industry.  Emphasis on Mexico's relationship to the United States and how the implementation of neoliberal economic policies have profoundly circumscribed the way that people in Mexico earn a living and fulfill gendered kinship obligations.

Satisfies a requirement in the Latin American Studies major and interdisciplinary minor.
Satisfies a requirement in the Anthropology major and minor.
Satisfies a requirement in the Gender & Sexuality Studies major and minor.
Satisfies the Social-Scientific Thought requirement.
Fulfills the Justice, Equality, and Community Requirement.

 

LAS 284 Latinxs and Environment (=ENV 284)
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Garcia Peacock

In this course, students will examine a broad range of Latinx environmental experiences across time and place in the United States.  Taking the environment as a key category of analysis, students will explore the ways that the natural and built environments shape, and are shaped by, Latinx culture.  Looking to important rural, urban, suburban, and wilderness sites across the United States, students will construct a nuanced "picture" of how Latinx environments have changes over time.  With our methodology placed squarely in historical and visual analysis, we will frequently engage interdisciplinary approaches to enhance our understanding of key issues including: labor, migration, public health, community and neighborhood building, transportation networks, natural resource development, education, and tourism.  Students will be exposed to a wide range of human expressions of place, such as art, literature, and activism, to gain a better understanding of how Latinxs have represented their environmental experiences.

Satisfies the Humanities track of the Environmental Studies major and minor.
Satisfies a requirement in the Latin American Studies major.
Fulfills the Justice, Equality, and Community requirement.

LAS 300 Major Thinkers in Africana Studies: Afro-Cuban Feminisms (=AFR 300)
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Benson

Black and mulata women have participated in constructing Cubanidad (Cuban nationalism) since the beginning of the Cuban republic in 1902. However, the largely male-dominated national narrative that has made Che Guevara's "New Man" famous since 1959 frequently overshadows their interventions. Despite this public silence, Afro-Cubanas (Afro-Cuban women) have consistently challenged narratives of exclusion and contributed to antiracist and antisexist movements in Cuba. As theater critic, Inés María Martiatu Terry explained in 2011 one of the goals of the Afrocubanas movement is to "feminize negritude and to blacken feminism."  

This course will analyze Afro-Cubana feminisms through a close reading of the work of four key black and mulata intellectuals and activists-Sara Gómez, Nancy Morejón, Daisy Rubiera, and Gloria Rolando. In doing so, it seeks to trace the legacy of the many black and mulata women who participated in revolutionary Cuba from the 1960s to the present. In particular, the course will examine how Afro-Cubanas have challenged negative stereotypes about black women, worked both inside and outside of Cuba's state-sponsored women's movement, and fought to create space for racial and sexual rights. All course readings will be in English and will include memoirs, films, and first-hand historical documents in additional to scholarly books and articles.

The course can be repeated for credit given sufficiently distinct topics.

Satisfies a major requirement in Africana Studies

Satisfies a major requirement in Latin American Studies

Satisfies the Histories and Genealogies major requirement in Gender and Sexuality Studies

LAS 342 The Latin American City: Historical Narratives & Cultural Representations (= SPA 342)
Prerequisites & Notes

SPA 260 and/or SPA 270

Instructors
Maiz-Peña and Mangan

This course will study the Latin American city through histrocial and cultural perspectives.  Students will learn about the history of select cities and then analyze the relationship between historical context and cultural production through texts offering historical, cultural and literary representations of the cities.  The course will emphasize comparison of cities over time, with attention to the prehispanic city, the modern city and the contemporary Latin American city,  as well as US cities with a strong Latino influence.
(Taught in Spanish.) 

Satisfies an Area III requirement for the Hispanic Studies major.
Counts as an upper-level elective in the Latin American Studies major.
Satisfies a requirement in the History major and minor.

LAS 360 History of the Caribbean: Race, Nation, and Politics (= AFR 360, = HIS 360)
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Benson

This course explores the history of the Caribbean from pre-Colombian times to the present. The goal of the class is to trace the emergence of modern Caribbean nations beginning from their status as slave colonies of the not-so-distant past within an emphasis on the central role the Caribbean islands have played in global history.  Particular emphasis is given to the maintenance of European and North American imperial enterprises and the elaboration of racial ideologies growing out of the diversity that has characterized the island populations.  Issues to be addressed include colonialism, piracy, sugar revolution, slavery and emancipation, national independence, tourism, and Caribbean migrations. Cuba, Haiti, and Jamaica will be the main areas under consideration, although texts from other islands such as the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and Martinique are included.

Satisfies a requirement in the Africana Studies major (Geographic Region: Latin America/Caribbean).
Satisfies a requirement in Latin American Studies major and minor.
Satisfies a requirement in the History major or minor.
Satisfies the Historical Thought requirement.
Satisfies the cultural diversity requirement.

LAS 394 Latinx Sexual Dissidence and Guerilla Translation (=GSS 394)
Prerequisites & Notes

Requires permission from the instructor.

Please email Melissa Gonzalez (megonzalez@davidson.edu) if you are interested in this course.

Instructor 
González

Despite local differences and sociocultural contexts, there are also remarkable convergences in subcultural minority activisms focused on liberation from intersecting oppressions related to sexuality, race, gender, ability, citizenship status, and class in North and South America. In this upper-level bilingual seminar, students will translate guerilla-style-functionally and in a non-literary fashion-texts by activists and cultural producers focused on intersectional sexual dissidence. Working in teams, students will have the opportunity to consult with some of their target texts' authors, and the course's final product will be an online archive of English and Spanish translations of texts related to intersectional, feminist, and queer Latinx American activisms and cultural productions.  First, students will study the rhetorics and aesthetic strategies of feminist and queer activist collectives focused on social issues such as immigration, transgender rights, anti-racism, economic equality, anti-speciesim, body positivity, and prison abolition with a pro-pleasure, leftist perspective. Second, students in the course and I will elaborate a list of the principles and goals informing our functional, guerrilla translations. In the third unit, students will work exclusively on the translation projects they have been developing throughout the semester. They will have the opportunities to interview at least one of the authors whose work they are translating. Collectives, authors, and artists from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and the U.S. that we will study include: Colectivo Lemebel; Colectivo Universitario de la Disidencia Sexual (CUDS); TransLatina Coalition; Biblioteca Fragmentada; Lino Arruda; Constanzx Alvarez Castillo; Jorge Díaz; Valeria Flores; Daisy Hernández; Jennicet Gutiérrez; Claudia Rodríguez; Ignacio Rivera; Julio Salgado; and Susy Shock.
 

Satisfies a major requirement in Gender and Sexuality Studies.
Satisfies a minor requirement in Gender and Sexuality Studies.
Satisfies a major requirement in Latin American Studies.
Satisfies an interdisciplinary minor requirement in Latin American Studies.
Satisfies the Justice, Equality and Community requirement.
Satisfies the Literary Thought, Creative Writing, and Rhetoric requirement.

LAS 395 Independent Study in Latin American Studies
Prerequisites & Notes

Independent Study

LAS 490 Senior Capstone Seminar
Prerequisites & Notes

Spring

Instructor
Staff
 

Capstone course for Latin American Studies majors.  Students will study one theme from an interdisciplinary perspective and prepare a related major research paper.

LAS 495 Honors Thesis Independent Study
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Staff

Independent study dedicated to research and writing the honors thesis: Grade will be noted as NG after the first semester and the final grade will be applied in the spring semester at the completion of the thesis.  The final grade for the thesis will be determined by the thesis committee following a spring defense of the thesis.

LAS 499 Honors Independent Study
Prerequisites & Notes

Instructor
Staff

Honors Independent Study

MUS 241 Music of Latin America
MUS 246 Music of Brazil
POL 201 Methods and Statistics in Political Science
POL 293 Politics of the Americas
POL 344 Politics and Economics of Brazil (= LAS 220)
POL 347 Politics of Development
POL 353 The Latin American Political Novel
POL 354 Political Economy of the Southern Cone (=LAS 222)
POL 360 International Political Economy
POL 361 U.S.-Latin American Relations
SPA 241 Latin American Literature in Translation
SPA 244 U.S. Latino Literature in English
SPA 270 Textual Analysis
SPA 340 Latin American Literature I
SPA 341 Latin American Literature II (= SPA 401, spring 2018)
SPA 342 The Latin American City: Historical Narratives & Cultural Representations (= LAS 342)
SPA 343 Contemporary Latin American Novel
SPA 344 Latino Culture in the U.S.
SPA 346 Latin American Theatre
SPA 347 Imperial Cities
SPA 352 Contemporary Latin American Cinema
SPA 358 "Writing the Amerindian Americas" (=SPA 405, spring 2018)
SPA 359 Contemporary Latin American /Latino Short Story
SPA 374 Caribbean Peoples, Ideas, and Arts
SPA 375 Latin American Women Writers
SPA 401 Latin American Literature II (=SPA 341, spring 2018)
SPA 403 Latino American Sexualities
SPA 406 Life-writing, Gender, Performativity
SPA 410 Writing/Righting the Cuban Revolution