This course explores the relationship between the U.S. and Latin America from the wars for independence in the early 1800s through the present day, with a focus on case studies of both direct U.S. military/covert intervention (Cuba) and somewhat less direct U.S. economic intervention (Mexico). For each case study, you will engage in a project to explore some aspect of these issues in greater depth. The course materials include primary documents from multiple U.S. and Latin American perspectives, documentary films, and the writings of journalists and historians.
Anore Horton ()
Dates: June 16 -July 11, 2014
This course begins with an (appallingly inadequate and brief) overview of the history of U.S.-Latin American relations from the wars of independence up to the present day. We then spend the rest of our time together focused on two key aspects of U.S. foreign activity in Latin America: trade and investment, and direct covert and overt intervention. We will explore these two critical and interlocking aspects of U.S.-Latin American relations using primary documents, films, and your own research work. We will spend some of our class time in the library conducting this research. The rest of our class time will be divided among lectures, discussions, and in-class project work. It is impossible to get a complete education in 200 years of U.S.-Latin American relations in 4 weeks, but you will leave this course with a solid grounding in key themes and events. I also guarantee that you will never read about or listen to news reports on U.S. trade, immigration, or intervention policies in the same way again!
Attendance and participation in class are critical to your success, especially because we will be doing a lot of work on your graded assignments during our class sessions. This class is designed to be participatory, so come prepared to discuss the readings and to ask questions. I have a full-time job as an anti-hunger advocate, and I have read a lot of research about how people cannot absorb information and think critically when they are hungry. Since our class goes right through the dinner hour, you are welcome to bring food and drink to class.
Your graded assignments will take a variety of forms, from journaling about some out-of-class and in-class experiences, to an analysis paper, to an in-class presentation on the intervention of your choice. Oh, and there will be a map quiz, because it certainly helps to know where countries are located when you are discussing their relationships with each other! (See the syllabus for more details.)
Course runs from to
Lafayette Hall L300 (View Campus Map)
to on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
Courses may be cancelled due to low enrollment. Show your interest by enrolling.
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