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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Upcoming Events

Screening of De Lo Mio at the New Orleans Film Festival

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The Stone Center for Latin American Studies is proud to sponsor two screenings of De Lo Mio at the New Orleans Film Festival.

SAT OCT 19 | 3:45PM | BLUE ORLEANS THEATER (THE ADVOCATE)
MON OCT 21 | 11:00AM | BLUE ORLEANS THEATER (THE ADVOCATE)

Director Diana Peralta will be in attendance at both screenings.

Film Description

After a years-long absence, sisters Rita and Carolina finally return to their birthplace in the Dominican Republic to prepare their dead father’s childhood home for sale. There, they rejoin their brother Dante, their main link to the family back home. As they excavate the house’s literal and emotional junk, they discover that there’s more than years and miles separating them. In this affecting chamber piece, first-time director Diana Peralta zooms in past the postcard prettiness of the island setting, framing intimate scenes that raise big questions: whether a patriarch’s death severs a sibling bond or starts it anew, and how to square the longing for a home that’s an ocean away with the reality that you’ve forever left it behind.

The Stone Center will be offering a limited number of free tickets on a first-come, first-served basis. Please stay tuned for announcements on how to redeem these tickets.

Screening of Havana, From on High at the New Orleans Film Festival

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The Cuban and Caribbean Studies Institute is proud to sponsor two screenings of Havana, From on High at the New Orleans Film Festival.

THURS OCT 17 | 12:30PM | THE RANCH THEATER AT CAC
TUES OCT 22 | 3:45PM | TUBI THEATER AT CAC

Film Description

The sun rises over Havana, Cuba, and awakens not just a city, but the people who live on its rooftops. Amidst poverty and dilapidated buildings left by the Special Period‘€“the worst economic crisis the country has ever seen‘€“lie people with a deep love for the city and their towering views. Through sun-soaked visuals and interviews with rooftop dwellers, we get a sense of their hopes, history, and the reality of living in Cuba post‘€“Special Period. What begins as a portrait of everyday life becomes an exploration of the effects of socio-economic disarray and increased foreign influence on a fiercely independent nation. Despite their adversity and separation from the world, the rooftop dwellers of Havana, like all others, search for happiness.

The Stone Center will be offering a limited number of free tickets on a first-come, first-served basis. Please stay tuned for announcements on how to redeem these tickets.

Queerness within Latinx Dance & Food

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In honor of LGBTQ+ Hxstory Month, Latinx Heritage month, and OGSD LGBTQ+ Hxstroy & Celebration Days programs we invite you to Queerness within Latinx Dance & Food on Tuesday, October 22nd from 7-9:30 pm in LBC Rathskeller Lounge.

Join OGSD, TU Genté, Gender Sexuality Advisory Council (GSAC), The Roger Thayer Stone Center for Latin American Studies, Gender & Sexuality Studies Program, and Newcomb Institute for gourmet tacos from Chef Melissa Araujo a Honduran Chef who is based in New Orleans and performances and workshop by Jose Richard Aviles.

Jose is a multi-media artist who draws from their identities as a Queer, Brown body, Angeleno native, and Scholar. Aviles’ work puts theory and practice in dialogue and their art is a result of their scholarly explorations and lived experience. Callejera is the embodiment of theories of Spatial Production and Aviles’ lived experience as a Pasajera (Bus Rider).

RSVP and learn more at the official FB event page.

Latin American Writers Series: Andrea Palet (Editorial Laurel)

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Editorial Director Andrea Palet presents the history, philosophy, and ongoing projects of Editorial Laurel, a publishing house founded in Santiago, Chile in 2014. Her presentation sheds light on the changing landscape of literature in the Americas today. It will be followed by a reception. This event will be held in Spanish.

About the Latin American Writers Series

This series brings together Latin America’s most representative creative voices and the editorial entrepreneurs that publish them. By way of interviews conducted by renowned Ecuadorian writer Gabriela Alemán and presentations of various editorial missions, the guests will shed light on a literary world shaped by the contemporary issues of the continent. Moving forward, their conversations will comprise the centerpiece of a digital archive that introduces their ideas to a global audience.

Este serie reúne a los autores más representativos de la escritura continental y los editores que los publican. A través de entrevistas con la reconocida escritora ecuatoriana Gabriela Alemán y presentaciones de proyectos editoriales, los invitados explorarán los vínculos entre el mundo literario y la realidad continental. Sus conversaciones se convertirán después en el eje de un archivo digital que busca llevar estas ideas a un público global.

About the Speaker

Andrea Palet is the founding editorial director of Editorial Laurel, established in 2014 in Santiago, Chile. Under her leadership, the house has released the works of more than 20 novelists, essayists, and chroniclers. Paleta also oversees the Master of Editing program at the Universidad de Diego Portales. A collection of her columns, Leo y olvido, was released in 2018 by Ediciones Bastante.

Bate papo!: Portuguese Conversation Hour

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A weekly hour of Portuguese conversation and tasty treats hosted by Prof. Megwen Loveless. All levels are welcome!

The theme for this semester will be Passion Fruit. So bring your sweet tooth to try this week’s homemade delicacy: Biscoito de maracujá.

K-12 Educator S.T.E.A.M Workshop: Teaching Central America at the Zoo

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Tulane University’s Stone Center for Latin American Studies in collaboration with the Audubon Nature Institute will be hosting a K-12 educator workshop on Saturday, October 26, 2019. This workshop will focus on conservation efforts and environment of Central American rainforests. This workshop is a great way to learn how to bring real world science into your classroom. We will explore the zoo with Professor Kathy Jack, a primate behavioral ecologist who works on conservation efforts in Dry Forests of Costa Rica. Activities will incorporate a variety of sciences and other subjects including: art, environmental science, cultural components, anthropology, computer science and technology. While it is geared for middle and high school teachers, this workshop is open to all educators formal and informal.

Register here.