Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

History

Tulane University is a liberal arts institution founded in 1834. Its academic mission has been identified historically with its region. The latter includes the Mississippi River and Gulf-Caribbean basins as well as the Atlantic and Pacific Worlds linked at the isthmus in Panama. Tulane’s programs have evolved as partnerships with these regional neighbors linked by history and shared inheritances.

Tulane has a long-standing special strength in the study of Central America and Mexico. This concentration originated in a turn-of-the-century gift of a large Mesoamerican library, which became the foundation for the Latin American Library’s holdings of resource materials on Guatemala, Honduras, Belize, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Mexico, which are internationally distinguished.

In the early part of the century, one of Tulane’s first internationally prestigious program was the Middle American Research Institute, which was founded in 1924 to conduct “advanced research into the archaeology, history, tropical botany, and natural resources and products of countries facing New Orleans across the waters of the south.” Tulane’s identity and destiny were to become one with this early exemplar of its institutional leaders’ commitments to create knowledge and provide service to a region whose boundaries transcended the geopolitical frontiers of the United States. Archaeology, anthropology, history, political science, literature, biology, and earth sciences formed the core disciplines in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, while the Schools of Law, Business, Engineering, Medicine, and Public Health developed truly Pan-American programs in the early twentieth century.

Although Tulane expanded its scope to all of Latin America after World War II, the Mesoamerican strength remains and the Stone Center acts as a sort of brokerage for relations between Mesoamerica and the United States. A steady stream of Mexicans and Central Americans come to Tulane for training, as Fulbright Professors and to use our library. Specialists on the region can be found in most departments and the university has produced several hundred dissertations and theses on Mesoamerican subjects. Every summer there are well over 100 Tulane faculty and students at work in the region, whether in archaeological excavations, Maya intensive language program in Guatemala, or dozens of National Resource Center-financed individual research projects.

Our program is today comprehensive with faculty in almost every region and discipline essential to understanding Latin America. The Mississippi-Gulf-Caribbean region is the epicenter of cultural and historical converging and radiating flows of a vast cultural and geographic network embracing Europe, Africa, the Pacific Rim, and North and South America. Today, Tulane University has active programs in African and African Diaspora Studies, the Atlantic World, Comparative Southern Studies, and Cuban, Brazilian, and Francophone Caribbean Studies. The Payson Institute for Applied Development and Technology Transfer offers courses on its New Orleans and Washington D.C. campuses and operates a federally-funded third world disaster center. Our Schools of Law, Business and Public Health and Tropical Medicine operate field programs in every region of Latin America.

Nationally, few institutions of Tulane’s size compare in the number of faculty, graduate students, undergraduate majors, library holdings, and support for research dedicated to the support of Latin American studies across the university. When viewed in relationship to the percentage of the relatively small available pool of institutional resources e.g. faculty, students, library holdings, and budget, Tulane’s commitment to Latin American Studies is comparable or superior to institutions such as Stanford and Duke, among private universities, and to the University of Texas and the University of California at Los Angeles, among large public universities, whose faculties and student bodies are three to five times larger.

Tulane is also a top producer of graduate degrees that focus on Latin America. Since the mid-l960s, over 300 students have graduated with an interdisciplinary M.A. degrees in Latin American Studies and have gone on to positions in the public and private sectors, and for additional training in the disciplines and professions. Almost forty have graduated with the interdisciplinary Ph.D. in Latin American Studies since the late l970s. Virtually every one of these graduates is working or has worked in the field. A few placements include University of New Mexico, University of Texas, Smith College, Middlebury College, Banco de Bilbao, Harvard University, U.S. Agency for International Development, and some seven Mexican universities.

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Upcoming Events

Alumni & Friends of the Band Dinner

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Please join Barry Spanier, Director of Bands, Tulane University for the Alumni & Friends of the Band Dinner. The Tulane Concert Band 7th Annual Spring Concert will immediately follow at 7:30 pm in the Dixon Hall Theater. Explore the musical cultures of the Latin world. Feel the passionate rhythms and be transported by the sweeping melodies that have made this music beloved by audiences around the globe. Enjoy the repertoire of Latin composers and others: Malegueña, Amparito Roca, La Virgen de la Macarena, Libertango, Mambo, Danzon No. 2, Puebla de Los Angeles, El Camino Real and Bolero.

For more information, please contact Patricia McWhorter-Broussard 504.314.BAND or patmcwbr@tulane.edu
www.tulaneband.org

Exhibition Opening- Beyond the Canvas: Contemporary Art from Puerto Rico

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Join us on the evening of April 26 to celebrate the opening of Beyond the Canvas: Contemporary Art from Puerto Rico.

The exhibition features the work of five Puerto Rico-based artists spanning several generations who have each developed a process-driven approach to painting. They challenge the notion of the canvas as a flat surface, focusing firstly on its materiality as a site for intervention and manipulation, and secondly as a substrate for painted images. Beyond the Canvas coincides with the 100th anniversary of Puerto Ricans receiving U.S. citizenship and the impending referendum on statehood. MORE >

  • 5:30 PM — VIP/members reception. To join or renew email museum@tulane.edu.
  • 6:30 PM — Lecture with curator Warren James in conversation with Dr. Monica Ramirez-Montagut, Director, Newcomb Art Museum, and Dr. Edie Wolfe, SCLAS Assistant Director for Undergraduate Programs, Tulane University
  • 7:30 – 9 PM — Public reception

Beyond the Canvas will be accompanied by an installation envisioned, curated, and designed by Tulane students from LAST 6961 “Women, Community and Art in Latin America: Puerto Rico.” Co-taught by Edith Wolfe, Assistant Director of the Stone Center for Latin American Studies, and museum director and exhibition co-curator Monica Ramirez-Montagut, the class asks how Puerto Rican socially-engaged art and artists address problems of gender, sexuality, and other issues affecting women on the island. The student-curated exhibition will document citizen-led projects, including a community-run educational center in a low-income, industrial area of San Juan that organizes a local “theater of the oppressed”; the collective decoration of houses in the hillside El Cerro neighborhood, aimed at increasing visibility of marginalized populations; the recuperation of lost artisanal traditions through intergenerational workshops known as Escuelas Oficios (Trade Schools); participatory urban design projects that are restoring blighted properties in Santurce, and the reclaiming of public space through feminist street art and performance.

Tulane Concert Band: Musica del Mundo Latino!

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Newcomb Department of Music Presents: Tulane Concert Band- Barry Spanier, Director of Bands.
Explore the wide range of Latin cultures through this musical tour. Feel the passionate rhythms and be transported by the sweeping melodies that have made this music beloved by audiences around the world. Enjoy the repertoire of Hispanic composers and others: Malagueña, Amparito Roca, La Virgen de la Macarena, Libertango, Mambo, Danzon No. 2, Puebla de Los Angeles, El Camino Real and Bolero.

Free admission & reception to follow.
For more information: www.tulaneband.org, 504.314.BAND, or PATMCWBR@tulane.edu.

Forum: Garifuna Culture, as a Culture of Resistence- Garinagu Past, Present, and Future

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Forum: Garifuna Culture, as a Culture of Resistence- Garinagu Past, Present, and Future
The month of April commemorates the birth of the Garifuna culture and language from Honduras, Belize, Guatemala, Nicaragua and the Garifuna communities in the United States. This forum includes themes on the environment, women’s rights, and immigrant rights. Traditional foods, dances, and handcrafts will be featured after the presentation.
Sponsored by the following organizations:

  • Baruwa Garifuna/Nacion Garifuna
  • Amigos de Nuestra America (ANA)
  • Articulacion Regional Afrodescendiente en las Americas y el Caribe (ARAAC)

New Orleans con Sabor- Latino Exhibit: A Showcase of Latin Foodways in New Orleans

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The opening for the exhibit, New Orleans con Sabor Latino will take place Tuesday, May 2 at 6PM. The exhibit is produced by Tulane students in LAST 4960 Food, Migration, and Culture and it features oral history projects that students did with chefs and cooks that represent the Latinx foodways in the city. There are 15 students in the class and the projected is supported by the New Orleans Center for the Gulf South, the Stone Center, and the Center for Public Service.

Free admission. Light snacks will be served.
For more information email sfouts@tulane.edu

The Tulane Culture Workshop: Movements and Ethnoracial Rights in Latin America

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Join the Tulane Culture Workshop for a discussion of Movements and Ethnoracial Rights in Latin America with Tianna Paschel, University of California- Berkeley, African American Studies and Sociology.

Workshops function on a different model from lectures. In a workshop the paper is distributed so that people can read the paper beforehand. The author gives only a brief introduction to the article, to contextualize the piece. The workshop itself amounts to an extended Q&A on the piece. In this workshop, we will discuss Dr. Paschel’s ongoing ethnicity-based social movements research in Latin America. The discussion will provide her with feedback and give participants an inside view of the craft of scholarship with one today’s leading thinkers.

For more information click here or email idiaz5@tulane.edu.