Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Academic Programs

Preparing to Write the Dissertation

Topic Selection

From the moment students enter the doctoral program in Latin American Studies at Tulane, and possibly before, they should be thinking about potential dissertation topics. A viable project will be one that transforms a focused and feasible research investigation into a valuable and unique academic contribution.

Dissertation Committee

By the beginning of the semester after completing the General Preliminary Examinations, students should decide in consultation with the Graduate Advisor the constitution of their Dissertation Committee. Once chosen, each committee member is given one of the following assignments: Director, Second Reader, or Third Reader. The Dissertation Director has primary responsibility for deciding how the committee will distribute responsibilities and will function. The Dissertation Director is usually the faculty member with whom a student has worked very closely and who has significant expertise in the student’s primary concentration.

Prospectus

Within three months of completing the General Preliminary Examinations, students should present a Dissertation Prospectus. The prospectus constitutes the first formal synthesis of the research project that culminates in the Dissertation. Students should use it to organize and structure the content of the proposed research, to describe how and where it will be conducted, to analyze its feasibility and specific methodology, to define the importance of the topic as a unique contribution to knowledge, and to create a timetable for completion. Students prepare the Dissertation Prospectus in close consultation with their Dissertation Director, the Graduate Advisor, and other members of their Dissertation Committee.

The Dissertation Prospectus to be submitted to the Dean of Liberal Arts should be approximately five doubled-spaced pages in length. The cover sheet includes the student’s name, department, the title of the proposed dissertation, and the names of the Dissertation Director and the other members of the committee. The introduction of the prospectus should contain a summary of previous scholarship on the problem. The body should include an orderly description of the plan for the investigation. The conclusion should clearly state the anticipated nature of the investigation results. Major sources of information should be indicated and a selective bibliography attached. The prospectus is usually subject to a defense in front of the Dissertation Committee. Once the prospectus is approved by the full Dissertation Committee, three copies are prepared and are delivered to the Graduate Advisor with signatures of all members of the Dissertation Committee. The Graduate Advisor submits these documents to the Dean of the School of Liberal Arts.

Funding for Dissertation Research

University Fellowships and Financial Aid are tied structurally to university appointments as Teaching Assistants or Project Associates that can only be fulfilled while in residence at Tulane. Furthermore, these positions are made available to continuing students for only two years and to new or transfer students for a maximum of four years (five years for students in the Joint LAST/Art History Ph.D. program). Consequently, where field research is a fundamental component of the dissertation project and where it cannot be accomplished with summer research grants that the Stone Center funds each year, students must solicit outside funding to support that work.

The Graduate Advisor is available to work with each student to identify additional sources of support and to prepare applications as soon as the student formulates his or her proposal. Many application deadlines occur in the early Fall, so doctoral students are advised to schedule meetings with the Graduate Advisor at least one year before they plan to begin field research.

Advancement to Candidacy for the Ph.D.

After the successful completion of all required coursework, language examinations, the General Preliminary Examination, and the Dissertation Prospectus, doctoral students officially apply for Admission to Candidacy for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy. The application form is completed and submitted by the Graduate Advisor.

After this formality is complete, the Graduate Advisor secures the signed approval of the Dissertation Chair and submits a recommendation for Admission to Candidacy to the Dean of the School of Liberal Arts certifying that all requirements for the degree have been met. Once the Dean of the School of Liberal Arts has certified that all requirements for the degree have been met, he or she will advance the student to Candidacy for the Degree of Ph.D. in Latin American Studies.

The recommendation for Admission to Candidacy must be submitted to the Dean of the School of Liberal Arts no later than September 15 for those expecting to receive the degree in December, December 15 for those expecting to receive the degree in May, or March 15 for those expecting to receive the degree at the end of the Summer Session.

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Forum on Education Abroad Workshop: Health, Safety, Security, and Risk Management

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Forum on Education Abroad Workshop: Health, Safety, Security, and Risk Management
In conjunction with the AAPLAC Conference, Hosted by the Stone Center for Latin American Studies

The Standards of Good Practice workshop, with a focus on Health, Safety, Security and Risk Management (Standard 8) can provide you with the tools you need to do just that. After examining the data available (including The Forum’s Critical Incident Database), workshop participants will consider how this specific Standard works in conjunction with the other Standards to guide programs in developing a solid risk management plan. Participants will practice applying three different approaches to risk management as they discuss actual case studies from the field. This qualifies as a Forum Certification Workshop.

Registration Deadline: February 2, 2018
For registration and more info click here.

29th Annual AAPLAC Conference

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The Association for Academic Programs in Latin America and the Caribbean (AAPLAC) will hold its 29th Annual Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana, February 21-24, 2018, hosted by the Stone Center for Latin American Studies at Tulane University.

AAPLAC is an organization that facilitates and supports study abroad programming among Latin American, Caribbean and US institutions of higher learning and organizations dedicated to the promotion of cross-cultural, academic-based experiences.

This year’s theme, “Study Abroad: Meeting the Challenges of Cultural Engagement,” will include a variety of paper topics:

  • New Orleans after Katrina: The impact of the growing Hispanic population which came to help with rebuilding and has since stayed on
  • Interdisciplinary Institutional Content Assessment: How to best track what students are doing overseas and the benefits for our campuses
  • Global Partnerships through Peer Collaboration: How we can better work with institutions in Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Research Collaborations – U.S.-Latin America: Faculty led/student participation in on-site studies
  • Anglo-Hispanic Challenges: Cross-cultural understanding through experiential learning and study abroad
  • Strategic Partnerships: How we can enhance protocols between our schools in the US and those in Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Strengthening AAPLAC Relationships through Inter-Organization Mentoring: How we can enhance protocols amongst our schools in the US
  • Latina Empowerment: More women on study abroad programs: How we can take advantage of this bond between women of the North and the South
  • Rethinking Mobility: How is the student’s identity compromised/enhanced abroad?
  • Community-Based Partnerships: How students can learn as they engage with local communities in working type environments
  • Crossing Borders: The eternal quest for a global space as students interact with the other
  • Global Xenophobia on the Rise of Brexit/Trump? What is our role?
  • Cuba: Future U.S. Relations – Impact on Study Abroad

Our Call for Papers has now closed, but we encourage non-presenters and presenters alike to register for the conference. Any interested faculty, staff, and students from local and international universities, institutions, and study abroad providers are welcome. Registration is now open through February 1st.

A pre-conference workshop from the Forum on Education Abroad is also open to any conference participants. We encourage registration for this “Health, Safety, Security, & Risk Management (Standard 8)” workshop by February 2nd. Click here for registration and more information.

For questions, please contact Laura Wise Person at 862-8629 or lwise1@tulane.edu.

Latin American Graduate Oraganization (LAGO) 2018 Conference

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The Latin American Graduate Organization will be hosting its 2018 Latin American Studies Conference titled Thinking of the Future: Expanding the possible in the Americas (Pensando en el porvenir: Expandiendo lo posible en las Américas) February 23 – 25, 2018, at Tulane University, in New Orleans, Louisiana.

This year, the conference topic is meant to challenge academics and activists to move beyond critiques and recommendations of how to address modern days issues, and instead articulate a vision of and for the future.

The LAGO Conference welcomes all disciplines and all approaches, as long as the project attempts to grapple with the idea of building something better. This is a Latin American Studies Conference, but creative writers, journalists, artists, performers, organizers, lawyers and healthcare providers as well as graduate students and other academics are welcome. Proposals are accepted in Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, and English.

Please contact lago.tulane@gmail.com with questions. For more information, visit the official conference website.

Lecture: Congresses of Black Culture of the Americas (1977, 1980, 1982)

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Please join us for a work-in-progress talk titled “Congresos de la Cultura Negra de las Américas (1977, 1980, 1982): Contradicciones y resignificaciones en el campo conceptual de las negritudes y su impacto en la creación y la crítica literaria y artística,” by Silvia Valero, 2017-2018 Richard E. Greenleaf Fellow at the Latin American Library. The talk will be in Spanish and all will be invited for refreshments afterwards. Abstracts for the lecture in both Spanish and English below.

Congresos de la Cultura Negra de las Américas (1977, 1980, 1982): contradicciones y resignificaciones en el campo conceptual de las negritudes y su impacto en la creación y la crítica literaria y artística

Los Congresos de la Cultura Negra de las Américas, realizados en 1977 (Colombia), 1980 (Panamá) y 1982 (Brasil), fueron los primeros grandes intentos internacionales en América Latina por reunir académicos, intelectuales y escritores de diferentes lugares del mundo, con el objetivo de reflexionar y debatir acerca del aporte realizado por los pueblos de ascendencia africana a la historia y la cultura. Considerando que los organizadores fueron todos hombres de letras negros, me pregunto si, en el período de influencia de los Congresos, es posible establecer una retórica hegemónica en las letras en torno a conceptos claves como negritud, estéticas negras, afrodiáspora y panafricanismos similar a lo que ocurrió en los últimos 20 años con el movimiento afrodescendiente en América Latina.

Congresses of Black Culture of the Americas (1977, 1980, 1982): Contradictions and Resignifications in the Conceptual Field of Blackness and Its Impact on Creation and Literary and Artistic Criticism

The Congresses of Black Culture of the Americas, held in 1977 (Colombia), 1980 (Panama) and 1982 (Brazil), were the first major international attempts in Latin America to bring together academics, intellectuals and writers from different parts of the world, with the objective of reflecting and debating about the contribution made by people of African descent to history and culture. Considering that the organizers were all Black men of letters, I aim to explore if, in the period of influence of the Congresses, a hegemonic rhetoric was developed around key concepts such as Negritude, Black aesthetics, Pan-Africanisms, and Afro-Diaspora, similar to what occurred in the last 20 years with the Afro-descendant movement in Latin America.

Professor Fridman to present research from his recently published book, Freedom from Work

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Daniel Fridman is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at University of Texas, Austin. Professor Fridman will present research from his recently published Freedom from Work: Embracing Financial Self-Help in the United States and Argentina (Stanford University Press, 2016). Freedom from Work analyzes how people in the US and Argentina are taught to think about themselves as economic actors today. The author follows groups of fans of financial success best-sellers and associated practices, like seminars, and even a board game. Fridman uses ethnographic methods and in-depth interviews to unpack the core ideas and practices of financial self-help, which exhorts readers to endure a tough self-exploration and self-transformation in order to achieve “financial freedom.”

This talk is in partnership with the Tulane Altman Program. For more information please contact Professor Camilo Leslie at cleslie1@tulane.edu

Exploring Foods of the Columbian Exchange: K-12 Teacher Workshop

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Join us at the Southern Food and Beverage Museum for a fresh perspective on the Columbian Exchange. This workshop will engage educators with hands-on activities to provide a Louisiana perspective on the foods of this exchange. Learn from cultural historians and food experts about the impact the Columbian Exchange had on Louisiana. Participants will gain a unique experience of teaching about this topic through food with an engaging activity coordinated by faculty from Tulane University’s Teacher Certification Program.

The workshop is $10 and includes lunch, curricula, and a certificate of completion. The registration link will be available soon.

Registration is now open!

Sponsored by Tulane University’s Stone Center for Latin American Studies, and the Southern Food and Beverage Museum.