Requirements

Latin American, Caribbean, and Latinx Studies (LACLaS) Major

Prospective majors should demonstrate competency in a language spoken in Latin America, equivalent to intermediate advanced Spanish, French, or Portuguese. Students may also demonstrate proficiency in languages spoken in this region but not yet offered at Bowdoin including Quechua, Guarani, and Aymara. This requirement may be satisfied through the completion of HISP 2204 Intermediate Spanish II or FRS 2204 Intermediate French II at Bowdoin, placement beyond these courses, or through an oral interview and the submission of a writing sample to the program’s director. The language requirement must be completed by the end of the junior year. 

The major consists of nine courses:

Required Courses
Select one course in history covering several countries and/or periods in Latin America, the Caribbean, and/or Latinx communities in the US, such as:1
HIST 2401
Becoming Latin America: The Making of a Colonial World (1491-1700)
HIST 2402
Decolonizing Latin America: A (long) Century of War, 1770-1910
HIST 2403
Revolutions in Latin America: The People Take the Stage
HIST 2430
Gendering Latin American History
HIST 2862
The Haitian Revolution
HIST 3404
Crime and Punishment in Latin America
LACL 2107
History, Politics, and Culture of Soccer in the Americas
Select one course in the humanities (other than history) that focuses on cultural production (such as literature, arts, music, dance, art history, and/or media) and covers two or more countries and/or periods in Latin America, the Hispanic or Francophone Caribbean, and/or Latinx communities in the US, such as:1
ARTH 1300
Introduction to Art History: Introduction to the Art of Ancient Mexico and Peru
HISP 2409
Introduction to Hispanic Studies: Poetry and Theater
HISP 2410
Introduction to Hispanic Studies: Essay and Narrative
HISP 2505
The Making of a Race: Latinx Fictions
HISP 3220
Medicine, Literature, and Spanish
HISP 3249
The Southern Cone Revisited: Contemporary Challenges
HISP 3252
The Battle of Chile: From Allende to Pinochet
LACL 1045
Social Justice Warriors of the Americas
MUS 1271
Experiencing Latin American Music(s)
MUS 2296
Songs of Race and Power in Colonial Latin America
Select one intermediate course (2500–2799) in the social sciences (anthropology, economics, government, psychology, or sociology) that focuses on Latin America or Latinx communities in the US, such as: a1
ANTH 2737
Family, Gender,and Sexuality in Latin America
ANTH 2830
Descendants of the Sun: The Inca and their Ancestors
ENVS 2313
Food, Environment, and Development
GSWS 2345
Gender, Race, and Citizenship in Brazil
Select one advanced seminar in Latin American studies, such as:1
ANTH 3320
Youth and Agency in Insecure Times
LACL 2421
Between the Alamo and the Wall: Latinx Activism in the United States
SOC 2320 Latinx in the United States
SOC 3410
Migrant Imaginaries
Select five elective courses in Latin American, Caribbean, and Latinx studies, four of which should be taken at the 2000, 3000, or 4000 level.5

Latin American, Caribbean, and Latinx Studies (LACLaS) Minor

 
 

The minor consists of five courses.

Required Courses
Select one course in Latin American history covering several countries and periods in the region, such as:1
HIST 2401
Becoming Latin America: The Making of a Colonial World (1491-1700)
HIST 2402
Decolonizing Latin America: A (long) Century of War, 1770-1910
HIST 2403
Revolutions in Latin America: The People Take the Stage
Select one course in the humanities or the social sciences covering several countries and periods in Latin America, the Hispanic or Francophone Caribbean, or Latinx communities in the US.1
Select three elective courses in Latin American, Caribbean, and Latinx studies, two of which should be taken at the 2000, 3000, or 4000 level. 3

Additional Information and Program Policies

  • Majors and minors in LACLaS are expected to take courses on different periods of the history of Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Latin American and Caribbean communities in the United States.
  • Majors and minors in LACLaS are highly encouraged to pursue immersion in Latin America or the Caribbean, as well as research opportunities in the region. Students should consult with their advisors and the Office of Off-Campus Study for information about available programs and research travel grants.  
  • Courses that count toward the major or minor must be taken for regular letter grades (not Credit/D/Fail), and students must earn grades of C- or better in these courses. 
  • Up to three credits from off-campus study (excluding first- and second-year language courses) may count toward the major. Up to two credits from off-campus study (excluding language courses) may count toward the minor. Approval of the director of LACLaS for those courses is required. Please inquire in advance of enrollment in a program.
  • Up to two independent studies (4000-level courses) in Latin American studies may count toward the major or minor.
  • Majors may elect to write an honors project in the department with the approval of a faculty supervisor. This involves two semesters of independent study in the senior year and the writing of an honors essay and its defense before a faculty committee. 
  • Up to three courses outside the program may count toward the major and two may count toward the minor.
  • Up to one of the courses outside the program may be a non cross-listed course at Bowdoin, with the approval of the program director.
  • Students who receive a minimum score of four on the French Language and Culture AP exam, or a minimum score of six on the French IB exam, are eligible to receive a general credit toward the degree, not the major/minor, if they complete FRS 2305 Advanced French through Film or higher and earn a minimum grade of B-. Students meeting these criteria do not receive credit if they place into or elect to take a course lower than FRS 2305 Advanced French through Film.
  • Students who receive a minimum score of four on the Spanish Language AP exam or the Spanish Literature and Culture AP exam, or a minimum score of six on the Spanish IB exam, are eligible to receive a general credit toward the degree, not the major/minor, if they complete HISP 2305 Advanced Spanish or higher and earn a minimum grade of B-. Students meeting these criteria do not receive credit if they place into or elect to take a course lower than HISP 2305 Advanced Spanish.
  • In order to receive credit for Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate work, students must have their scores officially reported to the Office of the Registrar by the end of their sophomore year at Bowdoin. 

Important information for Incoming Students

Latin American, Caribbean and Latinx Studies is an interdisciplinary program with regularly cross-listed courses in the departments of anthropology, art, history, music, romance languages and literatures, sociology, and gender, sexuality and women’s studies.

Required courses include one cross-listed course in the social sciences, one cross-listed course in history, and one cross-listed course in the humanities – all with focus on Latin America, the Caribbean, and/or Latinx communities in the U.S. The 1000-level courses in the humanities and the 2000-level history courses are often a good place to begin as they offer an excellent overview of the regions and normally have no prerequisites. Students can enter the program through any of its disciplines and at any level, but they may need to take introductory classes such ANTH 1101 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology, or SOC 1101 Introduction to Sociology as pre-requisites for some of the classes.

Students are expected to address the language requirement early on. This requirement may be satisfied through the completion of HISP 2204 Intermediate Spanish II or FRS 2204 Intermediate French II at Bowdoin, placement beyond these courses, or through an oral interview and the submission of a writing sample to the program’s Director, Margaret Boyle. Students may also demonstrate proficiency in languages spoken in this region but not yet offered at Bowdoin including Quechua, Guarani, and Aymara.


This is an excerpt from the official Bowdoin College Catalogue and Academic Handbook. View the Catalogue