Undergraduate Courses in Latino Studies

Spring 2023

Caribbean Diasporas
Subject associations
LAO 265 / COM 255 / LAS 265 / AAS 266

This course examines what it means to be Caribbean, or of Caribbean descent, in the diaspora- either the United States, England, and France due to their stake in colonizing the Caribbean in the quest for imperial power and modernity, and how Caribbean culture has been defined in historical and contemporary contexts through a survey of Caribbean diasporic literature. In this course students will learn how legacies of colonialism and modernity affect Caribbean populations and how they negotiate empire, identity, language, culture, and notions of home.

Instructors
Keishla Rivera-Lopez
Latina/o Literature and Film
Subject associations
LAO 347 / ENG 247

In this course students will be reading works from the Latinx literary canon as a survey of diverse Latinx voices. Through the course theme, students will examine how select Latinx authors write about community, identity, race, gender, resistance, and culture in a manner that captures The Latinx Experience. Selected texts will showcase how home is contested as their characters navigate their lives 'here' and 'there' via notions of diaspora, migration, and belonging, languages, and borders. This course analyzes Latinx literary works, including the course novels, Fruit of the Drunken Tree, Sabrina & Corina, and The House on Mango Street.

Instructors
Keishla Rivera-Lopez
Afro-Diasporic Dialogues: Black Activism in Latin America and the United States
Subject associations
AAS 322 / LAS 301 / LAO 322 / AMS 323

This course investigates how people of African descent in the Americas have forged social, political, and cultural ties across geopolitical and linguistic boundaries. We will interrogate the transnational dialogue between African Americans and Afro-Latin Americans using case studies from Brazil, Cuba, Haiti, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic. We will explore how Black activists have partnered to challenge racism and economic inequality, while also considering why efforts to mobilize Afro-descendants across the Americas have often been undermined by mutual misunderstandings.

Instructors
Reena N. Goldthree
Modern Latin America since 1810
Subject associations
HIS 304 / LAS 304 / LAO 303

This course explores Latin America's history from independence to the present. We examine the contentious process of building national polities and economies in a world of expansionist foreign powers. The region's move towards greater legal equality in the 19th century coexisted with social hierarchies related to class, race, gender, and place of origin. We explore how this tension generated stronger, even revolutionary demands for change in the 20th century, while considering how growing U.S. power shaped possibilities for regional transformation. Primary sources foreground the perspectives of elites, subalterns, artists and intellectuals.

Instructors
Corinna Zeltsman
Becoming Latino in the U.S.
Subject associations
HIS 306 / LAO 306 / LAS 326

History 306 studies all Latinos in the US, from those who have (im)migrated from across Latin America to those who lived in what became US lands. The course covers the historical origins of debates over land ownership, the border, assimilation expectations, discrimination, immigration regulation, intergroup differences, civil rights activism, and labor disputes. History 306 looks transnationally at Latin America's history by exploring shifts in US public opinion and domestic policies. By the end of the course, students will have a greater understanding and appreciation of how Latinos became an identifiable group in the US.

Instructors
Rosina A. Lozano
Mediated Lives: Caribbean and Latina Women Rewriting History and Theater
Subject associations
LAS 308 / THR 370 / AMS 298 / LAO 308

This class will look at the works of Latin American and Latinx women playwrights who have created works that are either adaptations of mythical Greek heroines or reinterpretations of the historical Latin American and Caribbean record. These works challenge our visions of history: they use the power of the canon to make us think about the weight of tradition, and use that weight to shatter our preconceptions of gender, race, and identity. The course will include dialogues/workshops with contemporary artists and scholars, and will include performance, creative writing, and digital work as part of our class assignments and/or final project.

Instructors
Lilianne Lugo Herrera
Introduction to Latin American Cultures
Subject associations
SPA 222 / LAS 222 / LAO 222

An introduction to Latin American cultures and artistic and literary traditions through a wide spectrum of materials. We will discuss relevant issues in Latin American cultural, political, and social history, including the legacy of colonialism and indigenous resistance, the African diaspora, national fictions, popular and mass culture, gender and racial politics. Materials: essays by Ángel Rama, short stories by Julio Cortázar and Samanta Schweblin, poems by Nicolás Guillén and Cuban son music; paintings by Mexican muralists, films by Patricio Guzmán and Jayro Bustamante, writings by indigenous activist Ailton Krenak.

Instructors
Rachel L. Price
Spanish in the Community
Subject associations
SPA 304 / LAO 304

This course examines the paradoxical position of Spanish in the United States. The course aims to place the issues and controversies related to linguistic subordination and the maintenance of Spanish in the broader context of Latino communities and their social and historical position in the United States. In addition, it tries to equip students with critical resources to address topics such as the relationship between language and identity, political debates around Spanish and English, and bilingualism and the processes of racialization of linguistic minorities.

Instructors
Alberto Bruzos Moro
Drag Kings: An Archeology of Spectacular Masculinities in Latinx America
Subject associations
SPA 372 / LAS 374 / LAO 372 / GSS 421

The figure of the drag king has been practically absent from Latinx American critical analysis. Taking what we call "spectacular masculinity" as our starting point, a hyperbolic masculinity that without warning usurps the space of privilege granted to the masculinity of men, this course revises the staging of spectacular masculinities as a possibility of generating a crisis in heterosexism. We will highlight notable antecedents of the contemporary DK show, and study the hegemonic masculinity and its exceptional models through a critical technology that turns up the volume on its dramatization and its prosthetic/cosmetic conditions.

Instructors
Javier E. Guerrero
Documentary Film and the City
Subject associations
URB 202 / JRN 202 / LAO 232

In this hands-on seminar in non-fiction film, we work at the intersection of investigation and portraiture to explore how Central American migration has shaped two small cities: Trenton NJ and Salcajá, Guatemala. Our tool of inquiry is documentary film, which brings students in direct contact with intimate stories of real lives. Readings, screenings, and discussions focus on the topics of migration, reverse migration, remittances, and immigration policy, as well as the ethics and craft of film. Students will collaborate--with each other, subjects, and filmmakers in Guatemala--to produce and edit stories told from both sides of the border.

Instructors
Purcell Carson

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