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The College Catalogue

Latin American Studies – Overview

Gustavo Faverón Patriau, Program Director

Jean M. Harrison, Program Coordinator

Visiting Faculty: Joseph S. Tulchin

Fellow: Laura Premack

Contributing Faculty: Greg Beckett, Michael Birenbaum Quintero, Margaret Boyle, Nadia V. Celis, Elena M. Cueto Asín, Gustavo Faverón Patriau, Marcos Lopez, Stephen J. Meardon, Melissa Rosario, Krista E. Van Vleet, Hanétha Vété-Congolo, Susan E. Wegner, Allen Wells, Eugenia Wheelwright, Nathaniel T. Wheelwright, Carolyn Wolfenzon, Enrique Yepes

The Latin American Studies Program explores the history, aesthetic production, and contemporary relationships of the diverse cultural groups of Mexico, the Caribbean, Central and South America, and Latinas and Latinos in the United States. Its multidisciplinary approach is designed to integrate the scholarly methods and perspectives of several disciplines in order to foster increased understanding of Latin America’s social differences and economic realities, cultural diversity, transnational connections, historical trajectories, and range of popular culture and artistic and literary expression. Competence in a language spoken in the region other than English (such as Spanish, French, or Portuguese) is required, and it is strongly recommended that students participate in an off-campus study program in Latin America.

Requirements for the Major in Latin American Studies

The major in Latin American studies consists of nine courses, including:

1. One course, offering a survey of cultural production (literature, art, music, mass media, etc.) in Latin America, conducted in one of the languages spoken in the region other than English. Students may choose:

Latin American Studies 2407 {206}, Francophone Cultures (same as Africana Studies 2407 {207} and French 2407 {207}); or

Latin American Studies 2409 {209}, Introduction to Hispanic Studies: Poetry and Theater (same as Spanish 2409 {209}); or

Latin American Studies 2410 {210}, Introduction to Hispanic Studies: Essay and Narrative (same as Spanish 2410 {210}) or

a comparable course from off-campus study that surveys Latin American cultural production in Spanish, French, or Portuguese.

2. A survey course in Latin American history covering several countries and periods in the region. Students may choose: Latin American Studies 2401 {252}, Colonial Latin America (same as History 2401 {252}); Latin American Studies 2402 {255}, Modern Latin America (same as History 2402 {255}); or Latin American Studies 2403 {258}, Latin American Revolutions (same as History 2403 {258}).

3. An intermediate course (numbered 2500–2799 {223, 226, 229, 235, 237, 238, 246, 247, 271, 277, 278}) in the social sciences (anthropology, economics, government, psychology, or sociology) that focuses on Latin America or Latinos in the United States. (Note: Students may also need to take prerequisite courses in the cross-listing department.)

4. A concentration of four additional courses centered on a particular theme (e.g., identity and inequality) and/or geographic region (e.g., the Andes, Caribbean), selected by each major in consultation with a faculty advisor in Latin American studies. The courses for the concentration should be at the intermediate level (numbered 2000–2969 {200–289}) or advanced level (numbered 3000–3999 {300–399}).

5. An elective course in Latin American studies, outside the student’s concentration.

6. An advanced course (numbered 3000–3999 {300–399}) or Advanced Independent Study in Latin American studies during the senior year.

A maximum of three courses from off-campus study programs may count toward the major with the approval of the director of Latin American studies. Courses that will count toward the major must be taken for regular letter grades (not Credit/D/Fail), and students must earn grades of C- or better in these courses.

Requirements for the Minor in Latin American Studies

The minor consists of at least one Spanish course at Bowdoin beyond Spanish 2204 {204} (or another appropriate language); Latin American Studies 2402 {255}, Modern Latin America (same as History 2402 {255}); and three additional courses, two of which must be outside the student’s major department. Independent studies can meet requirements for the minor only with the approval by the director of Latin American studies of a written prospectus of the project. A maximum of two courses from off-campus study programs may count toward the minor with the approval of the director of Latin American studies. Courses that will count toward the minor must be taken for regular letter grades (not Credit/D/Fail), and students must earn grades of C- or better in these courses.

Program Honors

Students contemplating honors candidacy must have established records of A and B grades in program course offerings and must present clearly articulated proposals for scholarly research. Students must prepare and defend an honors thesis before a program faculty committee.


Online Catalogue content is current as of August 1, 2014. For most current course information, use the online course finder. Also see Addenda.