Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

History

The principal strengths of the Center include the following:

  • Tulane is one of the few universities to have continuous funding from the U.S. Department of Education‘€™s Title VI programs since the inception of the federal program in the 1960s. Nationally, few institutions of Tulane‘€™s size compare in the number of faculty, students, library resources, and research support for Latin American studies.
  • The Stone Center has an endowment of $15 million, principally from the Zemurray Foundation. In 2004-05 alone it was awarded grants from Louisiana Board of Regents, Rockefeller Foundation, Tinker Foundation, and Zemurray Foundation.
  • The Stone Center’s faculty averages 74 core Latin Americanists, 25 affiliates, 8 visiting professors, and 3 post-doctoral fellows, which represents the largest contingent of faculty associated with any department or program on the Tulane campus. In addition, the Stone Center is administered by 8 professional staff.
  • In the period 2000-2005, Tulane awarded 88 Ph.D.s with Latin American foci in Spanish and Portuguese (25), Anthropology (19), Latin American Studies (15), History (6), Business Administration (5), Political Science (4), Sociology (3), French (2), Economics (1), EEB (1), Geology (1), Parasitology (1), Public Health (1), and Social Work (1).
  • The most recent Gourman Report, Undergraduate Programs (1997) ranked Tulane’s Latin American Studies undergraduate program second in the United States.
  • In 2005 alone, 50 undergraduate students graduated with a Latin American Studies major or minor; 5 majors graduated with honors.
  • As of Fall 2005 there are a total of 36 students enrolled in the graduate program in Latin American Studies, 19 of which are in the Masters program.
  • Tulane is one of three continuously funded Latin American National Resource Centers that offer an interdisciplinary Ph.D. program; as of Fall 2005 there are 12 students enrolled.
  • The Stone Center’s interdisciplinary graduate program on average admits 12-15 students each year.
  • Latin American Studies GRE scores also continue to rise. According to our internal records, scores averaged 1243 for students admitted in Fall 2001, 1194 in Fall 2002, 1306 for Fall 2003, 1216 in Fall 2004, 1260 in Fall 2005, and 1270 in Fall 2006. Declines often correlate with the number of non-English speaking students admitted in a given year.
  • Ph.D. placements are strong. Of the 20 PhDs awarded since summer 1999, ten are in tenure-track academic jobs, two are in research positions, two are visiting faculty, two are in government, one is a university administrator, one a medical doctor, one a librarian, and one is currently on the academic job market.
  • Tulane’s professional schools provide training options in a wide variety of fields and the Stone Center offers joint degree programs in Business and Law. In 2004-05, the professional schools offered eighty-one courses with more than 25% Latin American content with total enrollments of 2,419 (Architecture 9, Social Work 2, Law 8, Business 13, and Health Sciences 49).
  • Over the last three years, the Stone Center funded 26 summer field research grants for faculty and professional librarians (averaging $1,899 each), provided $22,481 in airfare and per-diem for 64 trips for travel to professional meetings, and awarded over $20,000 for editorial, translation, and publication subsidies and for staff and TAs to attend 15 professional development workshops.
  • In the two-year period 2003-2005, Tulane students participated in twenty-three different study abroad programs in fourteen Latin American and Caribbean countries: Argentina, Belize, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico, Peru, and Trinidad & Tobago. In 2003-2005, the average yearly enrollments for summer programs by destination country were: Belize (7), Chile (17), Costa Rica (25), Cuba (62), the Dominican Republic (14), Guatemala (20), Mexico (20), Peru (7), Trinidad and Tobago (10).
  • The Stone Center offers a variety of Less Commonly Taught Languages (LCTLs), Portuguese, Kaqchikel Maya, Yucatec Maya, Haitian Creole, and Nahuatl. Tenured or tenure-track faculty teach Portuguese and Kaqchikel. Native language instructors under the supervision of tenured faculty members teach the others. Yucatec and Nahuatl are taught in alternate years on campus with the assistance of native informants who work individually with each student.
  • Tulane’s Latin American Library (LAL) comprises 19% of the Howard-Tilton Memorial Library and occupies one sixth of its floor space. Tulane’s holdings of 420,000 place it among the top four institutions (Texas, Harvard, Yale, and UCSD) who reported to the SALALM survey for 2003-04. In that report, LAL’s number of volumes received annually ranked sixth and its acquisition expenditures seventh. In SALALM’s last report on FTEs in 1999-2000, Tulane’s total FTEs dedicated to Latin American resources ranked third.
  • In the natural sciences, federal funding helped establish a new Ecology and Evolutionary Biology line in tropical biology. Today the department has five tropical biologists working in Latin America.
  • The Stone Center also supports the Latin American Resource Center (LARC), whose mission is to promote the study and understanding of Latin America through a broad range of programs that insure high academic quality and content that is accessible and relevant for our diverse audiences. LARC’s lending library is widely recognized as the largest available collection of audio-visual and curriculum materials on Latin America for educators nationwide. The library includes over 4,000 items.

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Upcoming Events

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: Arroz doce de maracujá.

MARI Brown Bag: Rachel Witt "Chosen for death: Preliminary results from a study of human sacrifices from the Moche Valley, Peru"

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MARI is happyy to announce the fifth talk of the Fall 2019 Brown Bag talk series. Rachel Witt, PhD candidate in Anthropology at Tulane University, will present her recent research in a talk entitled “Chosen for death: Preliminary results from a study of human sacrifices from the Moche Valley, Peru.” See you on Friday, and remember to bring your lunch!

CIPR Fall Speaker Series

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Please join us Mondays at noon for our Fall speaker Series
Markets, the State, and Democracy in Latin America
October 14, October 21, November 11, and November 18.

In the 2019 fall series, Markets, the State, and Democracy in Latin America, speakers will discuss emerging issues that have surfaced as the result of the opportunities and challenges to democratic governance that markets have brought to the region. Latin America experienced a major influx of investment, particularly in the resource sector, over the past several decades. While this foreign investment helped hasten economic development, it also brought a backlash of resource nationalism and increased calls for redistribution. Moreover, Latin America is now a model in its own right, with other countries in the Global South adopting its state-sponsored development strategies in the resource sector. These presentations will also explore how Latin America is navigating a sea change in geopolitics, with China emerging as a challenger to the United States as the region’s main trade partner and ally.

For more information, check out our Fall Series Poster

Refugee Crises Now: A closer look at the Americas, Syria, and the Rohingya

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The Tulane History department, Jewish Studies program, CELT, and the Altman Program are sponsoring a talk by Jana Mason from UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency. Mason will be addressing the refugee crises from various parts of the globe, including Venezuela and Central America.

Graduate Student Writing Group

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Weekly structured writing sessions for Latin Americanist graduate students in all departments. Students, who arrive with a project and a goal, work in communal silence during two 45 minute blocks separated by a 10-minute coffee break. All meetings will be held in the Latin American Library Seminar Room. Co-sponsored by the Stone Center and the Latin American Library.

Latin American Writers Series: Alberto Barrera Tyszka

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Ecuadorian writer and Tulane Visiting Scholar Gabriela Alemán interviews Venezuelan writer Alberto Barrera Tyszka about his life, interests, and influences. Their discussion will be followed by an open Q&A and an informal 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 Author

Born in Caracas, Alberto Barrera Tyszka has published over a dozen works of poetry, short story, chronicle, novel, and biography. His most recent publications include the novels Patria o Muerte (2015) and Rating (2011), the poetic anthology La inquietud (2013), the collection of chronicles Un país a la semana (2013), and the short story collection Crímenes (2009). In 2005, he collaborated with Cristina Marcano to write the definitive biography of Hugo Chávez, Hugo Chávez sin uniforme: una historia personal (2005). Patria o muerte won the 2015 Premio Tusquets de Novela, and his novel La enfermedad, translated into English as The Sickness (2010), received the 2006 Herralde Award. Barrera also writes for television and has scripted soap operas for Venezuelan, Mexican, Colombian, and Argentinian networks.