Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Academic Programs

Commonly Offered Courses

For information about current course offerings go to the Tulane University Schedule of Classes.

AFRS-2000-01: Intro to Africana Studies
Professor: Christopher Dunn
Of the nearly 12 million Africans who survived the Middle Passage to the Americas, only about 450,000 arrived in what is now the United States. The great majority of enslaved Africans were sent to the South America, the Caribbean, and Mesoamerica. This course will focus on the Black Atlantic, the complex system of human, material, and cultural traffic that connected southern Europe, West Africa, the Americas from 1500 to the present. Grounded in a historical perspective, this course will address a range of topics, including the regional and ethnic origins of enslaved Africans, comparative slavery, slave resistance and emancipation movements, modern ideologies of race, black culture and national identity discourse, the interplay between race and gender, affirmative action initiatives, and contemporary multiculturalism and identity politics in a transnational context.

ANTH-3260-01: Highland Mex PreHistory
Professor: Tatsuya Murakami
Patterns and processes of cultural development in the highlands of central Mexico, western Mexico, and Oaxaca as known from archaeological and ethnohistorical data. Early cultures, Toltecs, Aztecs, Mixtecs, Zapotecs.

ANTH-3310-01: Introduction to Historical Linguistics
Professor: Marc Zender
Historical Linguistics traces language change over time. Reconstruction through comparative method and internal paradigm examination is used to retro-project earlier stages of a language or a language family, elucidating interrelationships among languages, paths of migration, spheres of influence, and varieties of contact. Reconstructed vocabulary yields inferences about ancient homelands, social organization, and culture constructs. The processes observed in language change yield insights into human cognition and the language faculty.

ANTH-3710-01: Historical Ecology of Amazonia
Professor: William Balée
Interactions between local peoples and Amazonian landscapes from prehistory to the present. Amazonian landscapes as an analytic unit will be examined from the interdisciplinary perspective of historical ecology. Changes and development of forests and savannas since the arrival of human beings. Historical, ecological, cultural forces involved in biological and edaphic diversity in modern forests. Long-term effects of prehistoric and historic human occupations and manipulation of landscapes. Implications for conservation and development.

ARHS-3910-01: Art in 20th Century Latin America
Professor: Adrian Anagnost
Art in 20th Century Latin America introduces students to art from Mexico to the Southern Cone from circa 1900 to the present. We will consider national and regional histories and artistic trajectories, beginning with the advent of the artistic avant-gardes, and investigate the complex relationships between European and Latin American developments in the history of art. The course will focus on different experiences and understandings of modernity and modernism in Latin America, relationships between the national and the international, and the intersections of art and politics within twentieth-century art of Latin America.

DANC-3240-01: American/Afro-Caribbean Social and Vernacular Dance Forms
Professor: Beverly Trask
This course will study, compare selected social and vernacular dances from early American vernacular jazz dance and selected Afro-Caribbean dance idioms: Coursework includes assigned reading, lecture, research, videotape viewing and studio dancing.

EBIO-2110-01: Tropical Biology
Professor: Renata Ribeiro
Tropical Biology will provide an introduction to ecological and evolutionary studies of living organisms in the tropics, with a special emphasis in the Neotropics. The course will focus on major themes in tropical biology, many of which are as important today as they were when early tropical naturalists first wrote about them. We will read a number of classic papers in the field and compare their insights with those of contemporary tropical biology literature. There are no prerequisites for this course.

HISL-2912-01: Modern Latin America
Staff Instructors
This course is designed to introduce you to the history of modern Latin America from the wars of independence through the late twentieth century. This is a large and daunting project; therefore, instead of attempting to cover the “history of all Latin America,” we will be surveying a selection of themes—economic, cultural, social, and political—that aim to reveal the unifying elements (or lack thereof) of the region we have come to understand as “Latin America.” As we survey case studies of state formation, ideas of identity and difference within national contexts, and the organization of social movements and revolution, we will also be taking the opportunity to examine how Latin American history has been written, by whom, and why. This will allow us to take on a more critical approach to the ways in which we understand the region today.

HISL-2912-01: Caribbean History
Professor: Laura Rosanne Adderley
A historiographical course focusing on major texts, major themes, and major trends in the historical literature of the Caribbean, including the island territories along with Belize and the Guianas.

LAST-1010-01: Intro to Latin America
Staff Instructors
Majors and minors in Latin American Studies must take LAST 101, a wide-ranging interdisciplinary discussion of Latin America with an emphasis on the 20th century. The course probes the social and cultural institutions and production of modern Latin America through the concepts of Encounter, Identity, Nation, and Welfare. Readings, lectures, discussions, and media presentations are integral components of the course.The objective of the course is to introduce students to the region, institutions, and cultural production of Latin America. Students will become familiar with the physical, political, and cultural boundaries of the region and then examine modern Latin America through the use of case studies, primary source materials, discussion and current research. Several sections of this course are offered during the fall and summer semesters. LAST 101 is designated a service learning course.

LAST-1020-01: Intro to Latin American Studies II
Staff Instructors
Majors and minors in Latin American Studies must take LAST 102, a wide-ranging interdisciplinary discussion of Latin America with an emphasis on the 20th century. The course probes the social and cultural institutions and production of modern Latin America through the concepts of Creativity, Exchange, Land, and Peoples. Readings, lectures, discussions, and media presentations are integral components of the course. The objective of the course is to introduce students to the region, institutions, and cultural production of Latin America. Students will become familiar with the physical, political, and cultural boundaries of the region and then examine modern Latin America through the use of case studies, primary source materials, discussion and current research. Several sections of this course are offered each spring semester.

LAST-4960-01: Food, Migration & Culture
Professor: Sarah Fouts
Tacos, banh mi, and bagels are products encountered everyday in the United States; their cultural significance has been shaped by centuries of migration. From the Irish and Mexicans to Vietnamese and Jews, waves of migration continue to impact our culinary palettes and our cityscapes. Concepts like food gentrification, authenticity, creolization, and hybridity complicate static images of cherished recipes, inviting analysis into the impacts of globalization and local movements, and an exploration of the heightened interest into foods and food systems. Drawing from interdisciplinary scholarship and grounded in ethnographic methodology, this course examines the role of migration and foodways, with an emphasis on Latino/a foodways in the Gulf South. During the semester, students will conduct community-engaged research through oral history interviews with food industry workers and owners that represent New Orleans’ shifting foodways. Through this course, students will develop skills in qualitative methodology, learn to link historical contexts to contemporary events, and gain a critical lens into the cultural production and consumption of foodways.

POLC-3350-01: Politics of Latin America
Professor: Gustavo Silva
This course will focus on the current state of Latin American politics and society by analyzing the social and political forces at play in the region, the challenges of its economic development, and its external interaction with the United States and other world regions. Although regional in its scope the course will rely on individual countries from South America as well as Mexico to exemplify particular issues confronting the region.

PORT-4130-01: Brazilian Cities
Professor: Rebecca Atencio
Taught in Portuguese, this class introduces students to several Brazilian cities through cultural, historical, journalistic and literary readings. In doing so, it examines important issues facing urban centers in the 21st century, among them land ownership, migration and displacements, public transportation, pollution, segregation, police brutality, crime, and megaprojects and events. As we will see, Brazilian cities have invented creative solutions to many of these pressing urban challenges. The cities we will study include São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, Recife, Brasília, Manaus, and Porto Alegre.

SOCI-2490-01: Latin American Social Structure
Professor: Timothy Gill
An historical examination of the human condition in Latin America emphasizing three primary spheres of social relations: political, economic, and ideological. Within each sphere the following themes are addressed: national-international relations, urbanization, rural social structure, demographic trends, cultural change, and stability.

SOCI-2650-01: Latin America & the Environment
Professor: Amalia Leguizamón
Nature’s abundance has been to Latin America a blessing and a curse. Ever since colonial times, there has been a rush to extract natural resources: gold, silver, coffee, sugar, and lately, oil, soy, lithium, water. Paraphrasing Eduardo Galeano, the open veins of Latin America are still bleeding. This course takes a global and historical perspective to study the political economy of the environment in Latin America. Who has control over natural resources? What is the goal of natural resource extraction? What are social and environmental consequences of these extraction-based development projects? These are some important questions we will attempt to answer as we explore environmental issues in Latin America through the sociological lens. Some topics/issues to be explored in this class are: theories in development and environmental sociology; water (privatization, mega-dams); oil; mining; and industrial agriculture (food production and distribution, GMOs, deforestation). Emphasis will be placed on studying current issues, in particular in relation to the neo-extractivist projects of the ‘new’ Latin American left and the local struggles to contest these projects.

SOCI-6990-01: Sustainable Development in Latin America
Professor: Amalia Leguizamón
In Our Common Future, Sustainable Development is defined as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” What is “Development” and what should be its goals? Is it poverty reduction, wellbeing, justice? What does a “sustainable” use of natural resources may look like? Who decides what “development” projects are implemented and on which basis? Who wins and who loses from these decisions? What are the alternatives?
In this course, we will attempt to answer these questions by exploring the dimensions of sustainable development in Latin America, taking a historical and global perspective to understand the region. We will examine the most prominent development theories as they unfold in the region. We will assess the results, the failures, and successes in addressing social and environmental issues such as poverty, inequality, food production and distribution, and climate change. We will take special consideration to look at challenges, struggles, and alternatives that are taking place in the region nowadays.

SPAN-4060-01: Pre-20th Century Readings in Spanish
Professor: Dale Shuger
An introduction to the literature and critical issues of early Hispanic cultures until modernismo”. Students acquire fundamental skills in literary and critical analysis as well as a basic understanding of key cultural topicssuch as medieval “convivencia” the social order in early modern Spain indigenous concerns in colonial Latin America.

SPAN-4120-01: Social Problems in Spanish American Literature
Professor: Maureen Shea
The chief problems of Latin American society as reflected in poetry, short fiction, essay, and theatre. Representative works concerning the Mexican revolution; the social status of women, Indians and blacks; the life of urban and rural working classes; tyranny and political repression.

SPAN-4270-01: Iberoamerican Dialectology
Professor: Harry Howard
Survey of the varieties of Spanish spoken in Spain, Latin America, and the United States. We look at variation in pronunciation and grammatical usage, such as the tu/usted/vos, as well as variation by age, gender, and social class.

SPAN-6520-01: Mexican Literature
Professor: Yuri Herrera-Gutierrez
Study of the various tendencies of Mexican literature from the colonial period to the present. Special attention is given to representative authors such as Balbuena, Sor Juana, Fernández de Lizardi, Gutiérrez Nájera , Azuela, Rulfo, Fuentes, Paz, Garro and others.

SPAN-6790-01: Latin America Film & Visual Culture
Professor: Antonio Gomez
A study of Latin American cinema and visual culture from a historical, theoretical, and cultural perspective. Possible topics include: national cinemas, genre, main historical movements in Latin American film, Third Cinema and armed struggle in Latin America, New Latin American cinemas, cinema and other visual arts, Latin American documentary.

LATEST SITE UPDATES

EVENTS

NEWS

PEOPLE

All Events

Upcoming Events

CIPR post-doctoral fellow Christopher Chambers-Ju to present on labor politics and teacher mobilization in Latin America

View Full Event Description

Tulane University’s department of Political Science in association with the Murphy Institute and the Center for Inter-American Policy and Research is proud to begin the 2018-19 Political Science Seminar series with a presentation by Christopher Chambers-Ju titled, Varieties of Labor Politics: Teacher Mobilization in Latin America on Friday, October 19.

Dr. Christopher Chambers-Ju received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley in 2017. His research examines the politics of education through a focus on teachers’ unions. Studying the cases of Argentina, Colombia, and Mexico, he examines why some teachers take to the streets while others form an organized voting bloc, with distinct relationships to political parties. By focusing on teachers, Christopher seeks to shed light on broader dynamics of education policy-making and political change in contemporary Latin America. Dr. Chambers-Ju is currently a post-doctoral fellow with the Center for Inter-American Policy and Research.

9th Annual South-Central Conference on Mesoamerica

View Full Event Description

The 9th annual South-Central Conference on Mesoamerica will be hosted by the University of Texas San Antonio and the San Antonio Museum of Art on October 19 through October 21, 2018. The South-Central Conference on Mesoamerica is a regional conference that provides a venue to bring together scholars in the fields of archaeology, ethnography, art history, and others, as well as the general public, to share information and interpretations on current research focused on the cultures of the Mesoamerican region.

The keynote address will be given by Dr. Vera Tiesler, who has been a research professor at the National Autonomous University of Mexico for nearly 20 years. Her academic interest lies in illuminating the human conditions of the Maya and of past society, by correlating data gleaned from human skeletal remains from archaeological contexts with information from other material and documentation. In her keynote address Ancient Maya Life, Death, and Identities: A View from Yaxuná, Yucatan, Mexico, Dr. Tiesler will discuss perceptions of life and death of the Yucatecan Maya prior to and during the rise of the ancient city of Chichén Itzá. This northern cultural arena is poorly understood compared to other regions of the Maya kingdoms. Tiesler anchors her explorations of ancient Northern Maya Lowlanders through examinations of the burial population at Yaxuná, another ancient urban center located in the heart of the Yucatan Peninsula and connected to Chichén Itzá by a causeway. The human remains unearthed during excavations provide valuable insight into everyday life, evolving social roles, collective identities, and manners of death experienced by Yucatec Maya. To reveal these mysteries, Tiesler combines several approaches, including bioarchaeology, mortuary archaeology, and artifact-based iconography. Her discussion will address the fate of individuals and neighborhoods, the regional trajectory that resulted in Yaxuná‘s rise, and then, ultimately, the city’s abandonment. She will conclude with thoughts on the advent of Chichén Itzá‘s political networks and what was perceived as a new cosmic era for the Maya.

During her career, Dr. Tiesler has conducted work on some 250 Maya burials. Her publications discuss living conditions and lifestyle among Maya social classes, social aspects of age and gender, physical appearance and body enhancement, violence, sacrifice, and ancestor veneration. Dr. Tiesler recently published her findings from Yaxuná in the book Before Kukulkán: Bioarchaeology of Maya Life, Death, and Identity at Classic Period Yaxuná (University of Arizona Press).

All conference events will be held at the San Antonio Museum of Art. The conference is free and open to the public.

To receive updates about the conference meeting, please sign up for the mailing list.

Registration for the 9th Annual South-Central Conference on Mesoamerica is now open. To register please fill out the registration form.

Schedule of Events

Friday, October 19
Keynote Address
Ancient Maya Life, Death, and Identities: A View from Yaxuná, Yucatan, Mexico
Dr. Vera Tiesler

Saturday, October 21
Screening of Out of the Maya Tombs
Panel Discussion lead by David Lebrun, Michelle Rich, and Jason Yaeger

Saturday October 20 – Sunday, October 21
Paper Presentations

CIPR talk series Critical Issues in Democratic Governance to host political scienctist Victor Menaldo

View Full Event Description

Join the Center for Inter-American Policy and Research and the Stone Center for Latin American Studies in welcoming Dr. Victor Menaldo as part of the fall speaker series Critical Issues in Democratic Governance, on Friday, October 26, in 110A Jones Hall. Dr. Victor Menaldo will give a talk titled Authoritarianism and the Elite Origins of Democracy.

Victor Menaldo (Ph.D., Stanford University, 2009) is an associate professor of Political Science at University of Washington and an affiliated faculty of the Center for Statistics and the Social Sciences (CSSS), Near and Middle Eastern Studies, and the Center for Environmental Politics. Dr. Menaldo specializes in comparative politics and political economy. Menaldo’s research focuses on the political economy of taxation and redistribution, the political economy of regulation, the political economy of regime change, and the political economy of natural resources.

The event is free and open to the public. Please RSVP to cipr@tulane.edu.

Outgoing authoritarian rulers sometimes design democratic institutions in ways that preserve their political and economic advantages. For example, over two-thirds of countries that have transitioned to democracy since World War II have done so under constitutions written by the outgoing authoritarian regime. This lecture will examine the reasons behind this phenomenon, as well as how different types of political power and economic resources in a society following democratization. Not only do these disparate origins determines polities’ basic architecture, the rights of citizens, and how representative and inclusive the political system becomes, but also has a big impact on the size of future governments and their commitments to social justice and egalitarianism. Statistical analysis and case studies of Chile, Sweden, and several other countries show why some democratic transitions yield unequal political representation and rights for citizens.

Celebrate Caribbean culture and heritage during Caribbean Carnival of New Orleans

View Full Event Description

Bayou Bacchanal, the original Caribbean Carnival of New Orleans, is back for its 16th annual celebration of Caribbean culture and heritage. Presented by Friends of Culture, Bayou Bacchanal will include two days of Caribbean cuisine, dance, music and celebration.

World Wide Dance
Beginning Friday, November 2 stop by the newly-opened, Algiers based, Haitian restaurant Rendezvous, for World Wide Dance. This late-night dance party begins at 10:00 p.m. and doesn’t end until the final dancer clears the floor. Enjoy live sets by locally and regionally based, Trinidadian DJ Phil and DJ Spice. Admission is $10 in advance and $12 at the door and includes access to the World Wide Dance celebration. A cash bar and bites from Rendezvous will be available for purchase.

Bayou Bacchanal Parade and Party
After an evening of dancing and celebrating, rest up for the annual Bayou Bacchanal Parade on Saturday, November 3. Assembly begins at 11:00 a.m. and the parade takes off at noon from Harrah’s. Parade-goers are welcome to come dressed in traditional carnival attire while engaging, marching and dancing to the beats of Soca music along with Casa Samba throughout the French Quarter. The parade’s final destination will be at North Peters & Mandeville Street where the party will then transition to Crescent Park.

From 2:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. several Dancehall, Soca and Reggae performers will grace the Bayou Bacchanal stage for this daylong festival. Guests can expect live performances by local, national and international artists such as: Soca Artist Preacher, Pan Vibrations, Tigress of Trinidad & Tobago, and Mystic of Trinidad & Tobago.

Beats will be provided by DJ Spice and hosted by Lady Pepper. Authentic Caribbean foods, drinks and special merchandise will be available for purchase. Trini Lisa and Boswell’s will be among the official vendors for Bayou Bacchanal 2018. Fest-goers can expect Caribbean staples such as salt fish, curry goat and roti. Tropical drinks including ginger beer, passionfruit juice and Sorrel will also be available. Guests are also encouraged to dress in tradition Carnival attire for a chance to win a grand prize of $2000.

Admission to the Bayou Bacchanal fest is $15 in advance and $20 at the door. For more information on Bayou Bacchanal or Friend of Culture, visit their onsite information booth during the festival or click here.

Bayou Bacchanal Post Party
Closeout Bayou Bacchanal at Island Flavor Bar and Grill and enjoy tasty Caribbean bites, music and dancing. DJ Ray will be spinning beginning at 11:00 p.m. Celebrate the closing of Bayou Bacchanal with a bang!

Forging a New World: Books & Writing in Early Spanish America, 1492-1821

View Full Event Description

On Wednesday, November 14, the Latin American Library at Tulane University will host Dr. Hortensia Calvo, Doris Stone Director of the Latin American Library, for a talk titled, Forging a New World: Books & Writing in Early Spanish America, 1492-1821.

This presentation is part of the Tulane University Women’s Association’s Jane and Herbert Longenecker Lecture Series. The event is dedicated to María García Daly.

La Hora del Cuento: Fall Bilingual Story Hour at the Pebbles Center

View Full Event Description

This fall, join us for La hora del cuenta bilingual readings series at the Pebbles Centers of the New Orleans Public Libraries!

On the first and last Saturday of every month, we will read a bilingual book at the Algiers Regional Library and the Children’s Resource Center Library beginning on Saturday, August 25 until Saturday, December 29. Children and parents are welcome!

Story Hours Dates and Locations

Algiers Regional Branch
Saturday, September 1
10:30 AM

Saturday, October 6
10:30 AM

Saturday, November 3
10:30 AM

Saturday, December 1
10:30 AM

Children’s Resource Center Library
Saturday, August 25
10:30 AM

Saturday, September 22
10:30 AM

Saturday, October 27
10:30 AM

Saturday, November 24
10:30 AM

Saturday, December 29
10:30 AM