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Master of Arts in Latin American Studies - Social Sciences


Brodwyn Fischer, Department of History and the College

Student Affairs Coordinator (Program Advisor)

Jamie Gentry
phone: 773.702.8420

Please see the entry for Center for Latin American Studies for the list of the Latin American Studies faculty, also available at on the CLAS website.

The Center for Latin American Studies administers a Master of Arts degree program in Latin American Studies. The Master of Arts program is a one year program of graduate studies that provides students with a thorough knowledge of the cultures, history, politics, and languages of the region. Students benefit from various resources that put the University of Chicago at the forefront of research and scholarship on Latin America, including world renowned faculty, top quality library resources, graduate workshops, and field research grant opportunities. Please see the Center for Latin American Studies entry in the Graduate Announcements for full details on Center resources. The Center also administers a Bachelor of Arts (major and minor) in Latin American Studies, and a BA to MA degree program (for details please see the CLAS degree programs webpages).

The master’s program attracts students who will benefit from interdisciplinary training in a highly individualized and flexible program. Each student works closely with faculty and the program advisor to design a customized curriculum, define an area of scholarly research, and write a master’s paper. Students take advantage of the program’s flexibility to advance their academic and/or career objectives before making a major professional or educational commitment. Some students approach a research interest from a multidisciplinary perspective. Others strengthen their training in a single discipline as it relates to Latin American Studies, or explore new fields.

Through the M.A. Proseminar, the required common core of the master’s program, students gain a critical understanding of the major theoretical approaches, principal research methods, and current trends in Latin American Studies. During the autumn and winter quarters of the Proseminar students develop the proposal for their master’s paper. The master’s paper is meant to demonstrate the student’s ability to apply formal training in Latin American Studies toward a specific and original research problem. Primary Latin Americanist faculty at the University of Chicago serve as guest lecturers in the Proseminar to introduce students to their research.

The master’s program provides students with the opportunity to develop and enhance skills and knowledge appropriate for careers related to Latin America or as preparation for further graduate work or professional training. Graduates of the program enter or return to careers for which the master’s degree is increasingly an entry-level requirement, including secondary and higher education, government, business, and various cultural organizations and non-profit agencies. Others enter doctoral and professional degree programs with support and advice from Latin American Studies staff and faculty.

Admission to the Master’s Program

Prospective students to the Master of Arts program in Latin American Studies may apply to the program through the Division of the Social Sciences or through the Division of the Humanities and will receive the degree from the division through which they have been admitted.

How to Apply

The application process for admission and financial aid for all graduate programs in is administered through the divisional Office of the Dean of Students. The Application for Admission and Financial Aid, with instructions, deadlines and department specific information is available online:
Division of the Humanities
Social Sciences Division

Foreign students must provide evidence of English proficiency by submitting scores from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Current minimum scores, etc., are provided with the application.

Students who wish to earn a Ph.D. degree should apply to a degree program in one of the graduate departments or committees in the Division of the Humanities or the Division of the Social Sciences. Foreign students should be advised that in the United States completion of a master’s degree program is generally not a prerequisite to entering a Ph.D. program.

Program Requirements

Upon entering the program, students will work under academic direction of the CLAS Student Affairs Coordinator and the CLAS Postdoctoral Lecturer to develop a specific program of study, cultivate their research interests, and identify a faculty advisor for their master’s paper. The basic components of the master’s program are described below.


A fundamental requirement of the program is proficiency in one of the spoken languages (other than English) of Latin America and the Caribbean. This requirement normally will be met in Spanish or Portuguese. However, substitution of an Amerindian language (such as Aymara, K'iche' Maya, or Yucatec Maya ) or a language spoken in the Caribbean (such as Hatian Kreyol) is permissible with the approval of the program advisor. Petitions for substitution will be evaluated in light of the student’s prior competency and curricular program and the adequacy of instructional resources in the substitute language. Advanced Proficiency Examinations will be administered to evaluate the entering student’s language skills. Students usually meet the language requirement through the Advanced Proficiency Examination in Spanish or Portuguese.

Course Requirements

The standard course requirement is nine quarter courses, to be met as follows: the M.A. Proseminar in Latin American Studies; five courses in Latin American and Caribbean Studies; and three disciplinary elective courses. Students are expected to fulfill the language requirement through proficiency examination, and complete the master’s program in three quarters of course work. 

The MA Proseminar in Latin American Studies

Through the MA Proseminar, the required common core of the master’s program, students gain an introduction to the variety of disciplinary approaches, discourses, and foci that fall under the large rubric of Latin American Studies. The Proseminar introduces students to specialists in the field at the University of Chicago and to the research and investigation in which they are involved. Led by the Postdoctoral Lecturer in Latin American Studies, the Proseminar meets during the Autumn and Winter quarters. 

5 Latin American Content Courses

Each quarter CLAS compiles a list of University-wide courses with Latin American content. Courses which focus on disciplinary, methodological or comparative topics (such as International Relations Theory or Indigeneity) may also be counted toward this requirement, provided the student completes a paper or other major project treating a Latin American theme. Students choose their content courses in consultation with the Program Advisor and the CLAS Postdoctoral Lecturer.

3 Disciplinary Elective Courses

These courses may have Latin American content, but they are often taken in order to gain a specific disciplinary grounding, to explore a particular theoretical framework, or to develop skills in a particular research methodology. Non-degree graduate level courses taken and completed at the University prior to admission to the master's program may be used in fulfillment of elective requirements, upon approval of the Program Advisor. Students choose their elective courses in consultation with the Program Advisor and the CLAS Postdoctoral Lecturer.

Credits towards the Master of Arts in Latin American Studies must be taken at the graduate level (courses designated as 30000 or above). However, certain lower level courses may be accepted, at the discretion of the program advisor. All course requirements can be met in three academic quarters.


Courses pertinent to the Latin American area are offered through the individual departments and committees of the Divisions of the Social Sciences and the Humanities, and through the University’s professional schools. Please refer to the listings in these Announcements and in the quarterly Time Schedules for specific offerings. Additionally, special courses are offered by senior visiting Latin Americanist faculty through the Center’s Tinker Visiting Professorship. Each quarter the Center compiles a comprehensive list of Latin American and Caribbean courses to be offered at the University available on the CLAS webpage or through

The Master’s Paper

In addition to the course requirements outlined above, every master’s degree candidate is required to submit a master’s paper. This paper is meant to demonstrate the student’s ability to apply formal training in Latin American and Caribbean studies toward a specific research problem developed over the course of the program. The research and writing of this paper will be conducted under the guidance of a faculty advisor and the CLAS Postdoctoral Lecturer. A student may register for the course LACS 40300 Master’s Paper Preparation, which is arranged on an individual basis with the faculty advisor for the project. This course, while optional, may be counted as one of the five required Latin American Studies core courses.

For additional information about the Master of Arts in Latin American Studies program, please see visit the CLAS website or call CLAS Student Affairs Coordinator Jamie Gentry at (773) 702-8420.


*For a continually updated list of course offerings, please visit the  Center for Latin American Studies webpage.

LACS 30401. Intensive Study of a Culture: Lowland Maya History and Ethnography. 100 Units.

The survey encompasses the dynamics of first contact; long-term cultural accommodations achieved during colonial rule; disruptions introduced by state and market forces during the early postcolonial period; the status of indigenous communities in the twentieth century; and new social, economic, and political challenges being faced by the contemporary peoples of the area. We stress a variety of traditional theoretical concerns of the broader Mesoamerican region stressed (e.g., the validity of reconstructive ethnography; theories of agrarian community structure; religious revitalization movements; the constitution of such identity categories as indigenous, Mayan, and Yucatecan). In this respect, the course can serve as a general introduction to the anthropology of the region. The relevance of these area patterns for general anthropological debates about the nature of culture, history, identity, and social change are considered.

Instructor(s): J. Lucy     Terms Offered: Autumn,TBD
Note(s): CHDV Distribution: C*
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 21230,ANTH 30705,CHDV 20400,CHDV 30401,CRES 20400,LACS 20400

LACS 30603. Image and Text in Mexican Codices. 100 Units.

In most Mesoamerican languages, a single word describes the activities that we would call “writing” and “painting.” This seminar will investigate the interrelationships between image and text in Central Mexico both before and immediately after the introduction of alphabetic writing in the 16th century. We will also review art historical and archaeological evidence for the social conditions of textual and artistic production in Mexico, and how these traditions were transformed under Spanish colonial rule. We will consider the materiality of text and image by working with facsimiles of Mesoamerican books in the Special Collections Research Center of the Regenstein Library. At the end of the course, students will have acquired a basic literacy in Aztec and Mixtec writing systems, and will have refined their ability to look productively and write elegantly about art.

Instructor(s): C. Brittenham     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 30603,LACS 20603,ARTH 20603

LACS 34600-34700-34800. Introduction to Latin American Civilization I-II-III.

Taking these courses in sequence is not required. This sequence meets the general education requirement in civilization studies. This sequence is offered every year. This course introduces the history and cultures of Latin America (e.g., Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean Islands).

LACS 34600. Introduction to Latin American Civilization I. 100 Units.

Autumn Quarter examines the origins of civilizations in Latin America with a focus on the political, social, and cultural features of the major pre-Columbian civilizations of the Maya, Inca, and Aztec. The quarter concludes with an analysis of the Spanish and Portuguese conquest, and the construction of colonial societies in Latin America.

Instructor(s): A. Kolata     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 23101,CRES 16101,HIST 16101,HIST 36101,SOSC 26100,LACS 16100

LACS 34700. Introduction to Latin American Civilization II. 100 Units.

Winter Quarter addresses the evolution of colonial societies, the wars of independence, and the emergence of Latin American nation-states in the changing international context of the nineteenth century.

Instructor(s): D. Borges     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 23102,CRES 16102,HIST 16102,HIST 36102,SOSC 26200,LACS 16200

LACS 34800. Introduction to Latin American Civilization III. 100 Units.

Spring Quarter focuses on the twentieth century, with special emphasis on the challenges of economic, political, and social development in the region.

Instructor(s): B. Fischer     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 23103,CRES 16103,HIST 16103,HIST 36103,SOSC 26300,LACS 16300

HMRT 24701. Human Rights: Alien and Citizen. 100 Units.

This course addresses how international human rights doctrines, conventions, and mechanisms can be used to understand the situation of the “alien” (or foreigner) who has left his or her country of origin to work, seek safe haven, or simply reside in another country. If human rights are universal, human rights are not lost merely by crossing a border. We use an interdisciplinary approach to study concepts of citizenship and statelessness, as well as the human rights of refugees and migratory workers.

Instructor(s): S. Gzesh     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 25303,LAWS 62401

LACS 34705. Argentine Histories. 100 Units.

This seminar introduces students to current scholarship on modern Argentina, with an emphasis on the 20th century but drawing also on cutting-edge literature from the 19th to understand long-term processes. The themes are diverse: the links between Argentina and global history; social classes, economic regions, and political regimes; urban and domestic spaces; the gendered nature of politics; the history of the state and its elites; the anthropology and economics of food and music; the forms of remembering; human rights; sexual identities; and, of course, football and psychoanalysis. All revolving around the production of, and the challenges to, Argentina's egalitarian ethos.

Instructor(s): P. Palomino     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 26122,HIST 36122,LACS 24705

LACS 35110. Revolutions, Constitutions, and War: A Continent Transformed. 100 Units.

During the central decades of the 19th century (1840–1870), the decentralized political structures that had been set up after independence throughout most of the continent, north and south, were refashioned. Under the banners of nationalism, freedom, and democracy, through war, diplomatic wrangling, and innovative law-making, the American republics—and the continent’s monarchical regimes—took on new shapes. The course will explore the ways in which political and territorial controls were refashioned, as were some of the central—and most contentious—tenets of the political order (sovereignty, property, citizenship) during these turbulent decades.

Instructor(s): Erika Pani, Tinker Visiting Professor     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 26316,HIST 36316,LACS 25110

LACS 35112. History in Practice: Musical Multiculturalism in Brazil. 100 Units.

Brazil is a country uniquely identified with its musical history. This course is designed to describe how Indigenous, African, and European influences merged over the course of the 19th and 20th centuries to create Brazil’s rich and complex musical tradition. We will focus especially on the interaction of erudite and popular influences, and on the musical and social processes that gave birth to distinctly Brazilian genres such as Samba, Choro, Maracatu, and Frevo. Taught by a renowned Brazilian composer and guitarist, this course will explore Brazil’s musical history through live musical performance as well as lectures, readings, recordings, and discussion.

Instructor(s): Sergio Assad     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 26818,HIST 36218,MUSI 23817,MUSI 33817,LACS 25112

LACS 36221. Advanced Seminar on Haitian Kreyol Language 1. 100 Units.

This advanced-level 3 course sequence helps students develop their skills in understanding, summarizing, and producing written and spoken arguments in Haitian Kreyol through readings and debates on various issues of relevance in Haitian society. In addition to reading, analyzing, and commenting on advanced texts (both literary and nonliterary), students practice and extend their writing skills. 

Instructor(s): Balan-Gaubert, W.     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 26221

LACS 38000. United States Latinos: Origins and Histories. 100 Units.

An examination of the diverse social, economic, political, and cultural histories of those who are now commonly identified as Latinos in the United States. Particular emphasis will be placed on the formative historical experiences of Mexican Americans and mainland Puerto Ricans, although some consideration will also be given to the histories of other Latino groups, i.e., Cubans, Central Americans, and Dominicans. Topics include cultural and geographic origins and ties; imperialism and colonization; the economics of migration and employment; legal status; work, women, and the family; racism and other forms of discrimination; the politics of national identity; language and popular culture; and the place of Latinos in US society.

Instructor(s): R. Gutiérrez     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): AMER 28001,CRES 28000,GNSE 28202,HIST 38000,LACS 28000,CRES 38000,GNSE 38202,AMER 38001,HIST 28000

LACS 38613. Poetry of the Americas. 100 Units.

This course investigates the long poem or “post-epic” in 20th- and 21st-century North and Latin America. As we test the limits of the term post-epic, we will consider whether it may be applied equally to the heroic tale and the open field poem. How do poets interpret the idea of “the Americas” as lands, nations, and sources of identity in these works, and in what tangled ways do their poetics develop through dialogue across linguistic and geographical distances? Authors may include T. S. Eliot, Pablo Neruda, Derek Walcott, Gwendolyn Brooks, Corky Gonzalez, José Montoya, Vicente Huidobro, Aimé Césaire, M. NourbeSe Philip, Anne Carson, Lisa Robertson, Pedro Pietri, and Urayoán Noel. (C, G)

Instructor(s): R. Galvin     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): AMER 28613,LACS 28613,ENGL 38613,ENGL 28613

LACS 40100. Reading and Research in Latin American Studies. 100 Units.

Students and instructors can arrange a Reading and Research course in Latin American Studies when the material being studied goes beyond the scope of a particular course, when students are working on material not covered in an existing course or when students would like to receive academic credit for independent research.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Summer,Autumn,Winter,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Consent of faculty supervisor and program adviser
Note(s): College students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form. Typically taken for a quality grade.
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 29700

LACS 40300. MA Paper Prep: Latin American Studies. 100 Units.

No description available.

Terms Offered: Summer,Autumn,Winter,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Instructor Consent required

LACS 40501. MA Proseminar. 100 Units.

 Required course for the master's in Latin American Studies degree program.  Students will gain an introduction to the variety of disciplinary approaches, discourses, and foci that fall under the large rubric of Latin American Studies.  The proseminar introduces students to specialists in the field at the University o fChicago and to the research and investigation in which they are involved.  Open only to program students.

Terms Offered: Autumn

LACS 47814. Advanced Seminar in Mesoamerican Linguistics. 100 Units.

Advanced seminar for the study of less commonly taught languages.

Instructor(s): J. Lucy     Terms Offered: Autumn,TBD
Prerequisite(s): Requires instructor consent

LACS 79101. Seminar: Topics in Latin American History 1. 100 Units.

This two-quarter research seminar is devoted to the craft of reading and writing Latin American history. Specific topics will shift from year to year, depending on the instructor. For 2016–2017 the first quarter of the seminar will be devoted to the study of social history in Latin American historiography, with an emphasis on agrarian and indigenous societies. This seminar can be taken either as a two-quarter seminar sequence, which culminates in a winter-quarter research paper, or as a autumn-quarter colloquium.

Instructor(s): E. Kouri     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Graduate students only.
Note(s): Open to PhD students; MA students with consent of instructor.
Equivalent Course(s): CRES 79101,HIST 79101

LACS 35113. From "Mestizaje" to the "Mexican genome" 100 Units.

As the Kingdom of New Spain became independent Mexico, how did a society structured around status, caste and corporate bodies imagine itself as a republic of equal citizens? This course will explore the categories of class, culture and, particularly, race, with which, for over two hundred years, Mexican politicians and public writers, scientists and intellectuals have sought to make sense of the nation, decipher its ethnic, linguistic and cultural diversity, assuage the profound inequalities that have riddled it, and forge a "national identity".

Instructor(s): Erika Pani, Tinker Visiting Professor     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): LTAM 25113

LACS 36201. Race, Ethnicity and Politics in Comparative Perspective. 100 Units.

The primary objective of this course is to offer a comparative approach to understanding the relationship between race, inequality, and politics. It focuses primarily on examples from Latin America and the United States, and is organized in three sections. In the first, we explore the relationship between capitalist expansion, the modern-nation, state and the socio-historical construction of “race”. In the second section, we explore differences in political elites’ approaches to the question of race in the period of nation building. We discuss how different ethno-racial groups were incorporated into, or excluded from, the nation both through legal institutions and nationalist ideologies. In the final section, we analyze the emergence of black and indigenous social movements as a critical response to the failure of the nationalist project. Throughout the course we analyze the different ways race, ethnicity, and identity are understood in these distinct contexts, and also explore how race intersects with other axes of power, such as class and gender. (C)

Instructor(s): T. Paschel     Terms Offered: Autumn

LACS 36409. Revolution, Dictatorship, and Violence in Modern Latin America. 100 Units.

This course will examine the role played by Marxist revolutions, revolutionary movements, and the right-wing dictatorships that have opposed them in shaping Latin American societies and political cultures since the end of World War II. Themes examined will include the relationship among Marxism, revolution, and nation building; the importance of charismatic leaders and icons; the popular authenticity and social content of Latin American revolutions; the role of foreign influences and interventions; the links between revolution and dictatorship; and the lasting legacies of political violence and military rule. Countries examined will include Guatemala, Cuba, Chile, Argentina, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Peru, Venezuela, Bolivia, and Mexico.

Instructor(s): B. Fischer     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 36409,LACS 26409,HIST 26409

LACS 36415. Language, History, and Nation in Latin America. 100 Units.

Since the 1980s the so-called linguistic turn became a cliché in history writing. As a result, cultural history became hegemonic in the discipline, and such words as "discourse," "representation," "meaning," and "rhetoric" became common currency for historians. But has language really become a category of historical analysis in the formation of culture, nation, and state in Latin America? This seminar is organized as an exploratory forum, blending historiographies that do not often talk to each other, in order address the questions.

Instructor(s): M. Tenorio     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 36415,LACS 26415,HIST 26415

LACS 36510. Cities from Scratch: The History of Urban Latin America. 100 Units.

Latin America is one of the world's most urbanized regions, and its urban heritage long predates European conquest. And yet the region's cities are most often understood through the lens of North Atlantic visions of urbanity, many of which fit poorly with Latin America's historical trajectory, and most of which have significantly distorted both Latin American urbanism and our understandings of it. This course takes this paradox as the starting point for an interdisciplinary exploration of the history of Latin American cities in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, focusing especially on issues of social inequality, informality, urban governance, race, violence, rights to the city, and urban cultural expression. Readings will be interdisciplinary, including anthropology, sociology, history, fiction, film, photography, and primary historical texts.

Instructor(s): B. Fischer     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Some background in either urban studies or Latin American history.
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 36511,LACS 26510,HIST 26511

LACS 36810. Brazilian Avant-Gardes. 100 Units.

Avant-garde movements, tendencies, and artists have been present in Brazil throughout the twentieth century. From the paradigmatic Week of Modern Art in 1922 to the Tropicalism of the 1960s and 1970s, this course revisits works of fiction, poetry, essay, visual arts, film, and music that have shaped the Brazilian avant-gardes. We will focus on the Modernist Movement, Concretism, Neoconcretism, New Cinema, Tropicalism, and regional avant-garde movements produced across the country.

Instructor(s): V. Saramago     Terms Offered: Winter
Note(s): Taught in English, with readings available in Portuguese and English.
Equivalent Course(s): PORT 36810,LACS 26810,PORT 26810

LACS 40305. The Inka and Aztec States. 100 Units.

This course is an intensive examination of the origins, structure, and meaning of two native states of the ancient Americas: the Inka and the Aztec. Lectures are framed around an examination of theories of state genesis, function, and transformation, with special reference to the economic, institutional, and symbolic bases of indigenous state development. This course is broadly comparative in perspective and considers the structural significance of institutional features that are either common to or unique expressions of these two Native American states.

Instructor(s): A. Kolata     Terms Offered: Not offered 2016-17; will be offered 2017-18
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 40100,LACS 20100,ANTH 20100

LACS 31205. From the Non-Object to the End of Art: The South American 1960s. 100 Units.

Beginning with the 1959 publication of the “Neo-Concrete Manifesto” in Rio de Janeiro, this course traces the radical transformations of art objects and artistic practices in South America (especially Brazil and Argentina) over the course of the 1960s. Through the study of both works of art and the writings of artists and critics, we will investigate new definitions of the art object, revolts against existing institutions of art, and the emergence of performance, media, and conceptual art. These developments will be read against social and political changes in the region, including the impasse of mid-century modernization efforts and the rise of repressive dictatorships. We will make extensive use of the Hélio Oiticica exhibition and related programming at the Art Institute during the quarter.

Instructor(s): M. Sullivan     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ARTH 31205,LACS 21205,ARTH 21205

LING 34960. Creole Genesis and Genetic Linguistics. 100 Units.

In this seminar course we will review the “creole exceptionalism” tradition against the uniformitarian view, according to which creoles have emerged and evolved like other, natural and non-creole languages. We will situate creoles in the context of the plantation settlement colonies that produced them and compare their emergence specifically with that of languages such as English and the Romance languages in Europe. We will also compare these evolutions with those of new colonial varieties of European languages (such as Amish English, mainstream American English varieties, Brazilian Portuguese, and Québécois French) which emerged around the same time but are not considered creoles. Using the comparative approach (in evolutionary theory), we will assess whether the criteria used in the genetic classification of languages have been applied uniformly to creole and non-creole languages. In return, we will explore ways in which genetic creolistics can inform and improve genetic linguistics (including historical dialectology).

Instructor(s): Salikoko Mufwene     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): LING 21300/31300 (Historical Linguistics), LING 26310/36310 (Contact Linguistics), or consent of the instructor.
Equivalent Course(s): LING 24960

LACS 35109. Clientelism and Elections in Latin America. 100 Units.

After the Third Wave of democracy, many believed clientelism would naturally disappear as citizens in developing nations became wealthier and less tempted by the exchange of government goods and services in return for votes. In Latin America, however, even as almost all nations have democratized and economies have grown, clientelism continues to play an important role in mobilizing voters. This course will use several nations in Latin America, including Mexico, Argentina, and Peru to illustrate why clientelism has survived; how both politicians and parties use it; and some of its consequences for politics, especially representation. This course will use both classic readings as well as more modern scholarly work. By studying clientelism in Latin America, one is able to understand politics in developing nations in a more profound way.

Instructor(s): Joy Langston, Tinker Visiting Professor     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 25109

LACS 35111. Tiempos mexicanos: la violencia y la comunidad por venir. 100 Units.

VIOLENCIA. El tejido social en México se ha roto con la llamada "guerra contra el narcotráfico". De acuerdo con Reporteros sin Fronteras, México se ha convertido en el país más peligroso para ejercer el periodismo. Pese a esto, la crónica se ha mantenido muy activa, dando cuenta de una realidad en apariencia incomprensible. ¿Qué desplazamientos y qué diferentes captaciones de sentido han ofrecido las narrativas sobre la violencia? ¿Cómo se intersectan las interpretaciones hegemónicas, la visión de Estados Unidos, la presunta narcocultura y las narrativas independientes? MEMORIA. El curso se propone reflexionar sobre el ejercicio del testimonio y la ficción en tiempos violentos. Al mismo tiempo, propongo analizar la construcción de una memoria alterna al discurso oficial, a partir del ejercicio narrativo e incluso las anticipaciones poéticas de alteridad possible. PORVENIR. Por otra parte, a pesar de sus convulsiones, México no deja de ser un país donde se imagina, para usar la expresión de Giorgio Agamben, una "comunidad por venir", representada, fundamentalmente, por los proyectos de las comunidades en la zona zapatista de Chiapas. En este empeño, las interpretaciones de distintos intérpretes de la realidad se cruzan con la actualización de los relatos indíginas y la copiosa producción literaria del subcomandante Marcos, recientemente transformado en subcomandante Galeano. En cierta forma, el futuro más visible proviene de reciclaje creativo de tradiciones atávicas.

Instructor(s): Juan Villoro, Tinker Visiting Professor     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): This course will be taught in Spanish
Equivalent Course(s): SPAN 25117,SPAN 35117,LACS 25111

ENGL 36183. Migrations, Refugees, Races. 100 Units.

This MA/BA-level course introduces students to globalization theory, with particular attention to readings that showcase the displacements and migrations that characterize the era of advanced global capitalism. Fleeing economic, social, and climatological collapse, migrants hardly find a second home; they become refugees without refuge. The limits on their flourishing extend far beyond the national borders that they cross in search of livable life. Wherever they go, they are discriminated and psychologically segregated by discourses of race nationalism, discourses in which migrations give rise to races. This course will focus on this process of migrant racialization—all the more pressing in light of current world events—with a curriculum that includes works by Weber, Simmel, Smohalla, Benedict Anderson, Anzaldúa, Appadurai, Brathwaite, Walter Benjamin, Celan, Derrida, Eggers, Ghosh, Le Guin, Glissant, Vine Deloria Jr., Woody Guthrie, Mbembe, Haraway, Tsing, Giddens, Negri and Hardt, Jason Moore, Bhabha, August Wilson, Sterling Brown, Big Bill Broonzy, Jacob Lawrence, Miguel Méndez, Mary Louise Pratt, Momaday, Silko, Canclini, Karen Tei Yamashita, Heise, Gikandi, Schmidt-Camacho, Fields and Fields, Bonilla-Silva, and Massey, in addition to film screenings and field exercises. (H)

Instructor(s): E. Garcia     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 26183,CRES 25011,CRES 36183,ENGL 25011

LACS 36222. Advanced Seminar on Haitian Kreyol Language 2. 100 Units.

This advanced-level 3 course sequence helps students develop their skills in understanding, summarizing, and producing written and spoken arguments in Haitian Kreyol through readings and debates on various issues of relevance in Haitian society. In addition to reading, analyzing, and commenting on advanced texts (both literary and nonliterary), students practice and extend their writing skills. 

Instructor(s): Balan-Gaubert, W.     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 26222

LACS 36412. Music and Globalization in Modern Latin America. 100 Units.

This course introduces students to the cultural history of Latin America as a region and the history of the region's globalization, from the perspective of the history of Latin American modern music. Lectures, group work, readings, and individual assignments deal with the role of music in producing Latin America's modern culture from a global perspective. It deals with the histories of folk, classical, and urban musical traditions, diasporic music styles, entertainment corporations, state policies in the realm of music, music pedagogy, music and cinema, Latin American musicology, musical nationalism, and musical diplomacy. The emphasis is on the late 19th and the 20th centuries, but students interested in colonial music are welcome to take the course.

Instructor(s): P. Palomino     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 26116,MUSI 23416,LACS 26412

LACS 36509. Law and Citizenship in Latin America. 100 Units.

This course will examine law and citizenship in Latin America from the nineteenth to the twenty-first centuries. We will explore the development of Latin American legal systems in both theory and practice, examine the ways in which the operation of these systems has shaped the nature of citizenship in the region, discuss the relationship between legal and other inequalities, and analyze how legal documents and practices have been studied by scholars in order to gain insight into questions of culture, nationalism, violence, inequality, gender, and race.

Instructor(s): B. Fischer     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Some background in either Latin American studies or legal history.
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 36509,LACS 26509,HIST 26509

PLSC 41101. The Politics of Wealth Redistribution. 100 Units.

How do political institutions affect the structure and scope of wealth redistribution initiatives? This graduate seminar will introduce students to the scholarly literature on redistribution, focusing primarily on recent work. We will study the causes and consequences of redistribution, focusing both on the institutions that shape incentives for governments to implement redistribution, as well as the mechanisms, actors, and international conditions that can erode government incentives or capabilities to redistribute. The emphasis of the course will be twofold: rigorously examining the inferences we can draw from existing work, and designing research that can contribute to a better understanding of the fundamental questions regarding redistributive policies. (C)

Instructor(s): M. Albertus     Terms Offered: Spring

PLSC 41203. Political Regimes and Transitions. 100 Units.

Despite a shift toward democracy in much of the world, many states have remained solidly autocratic while others are plagued by political instability. This graduate seminar will introduce students to fundamental questions in the study of political regimes: What distinguishes democracy from dictatorship? How does the functioning of democratic institutions affect democratic survival? Why are some dictatorships more stable than others, and what role do institutions such as legislatures, parties, and elections play in their stability? What political and economic factors explain regime transitions, and why do transitions tend to cluster both spatially and temporally? The course will examine how these questions are addressed in current scholarship, with an emphasis on enabling students to design research projects that contribute to our understanding of how political regimes function, persist, and change. (C)

Instructor(s): M. Albertus     Terms Offered: Spring