Joint-honours information for 2016 entry

Current Themes in the Anthropology of Latin America

Module L6096

Module details for 2016/17.

30 credits

FHEQ Level 6

Module Outline

The aim of this module is to provide a framework for understanding current social, cultural and political issues in Latin American. Throughout the module we will engage with anthropological understandings of a number of key ideas including indigeneity, race, gender, colonialism, nation states and the environment. Each week will be centred on ethnographic pieces that offer interesting reflections on contemporary issues as well as anthropological theory.

We begin with a basic history of the continent that sets up some of the key issues that underpin the current cultural and social diversity of the region. This includes both the dichotomy between the European `conquerors' and indigenous groups, as well as the introduction of African slaves and notable distinctions based around urban and rural living and nation states and their peripheries. In doing this the emphasis is on including both European based understandings of events and ideas but also local, alternative understandings of the world, particularly in the form of Amazonian cosmology and ideas of perspectivism.

This cultural and historical knowledge then gives us the foundations from which to look at key contemporary issues including race and identity; rural to urban migration; cities, slums and current attempts to `pacify' and control them; music and festivals; the Latin American diaspora and the creation of transnational cultures and communities.

Throughout the course we emphasise the heterogeneity of Latin America while giving you some basic ideas and theoretical approaches to the continent and its people that will then allow you to find a topic or idea that interests you and that can form the core of your essay.

Module learning outcomes

To demonstrate an awareness of key themes in the anthropology of Latin America.

To locate such themes within wider anthropological theoretical discussions and debates.

To apply theoretical insights to historical and ethnographic accounts of the region.

To apply an anthropologically critical perspective to local, national and international, political, economic and social issues in the Americas.

Essay (4000 words)Semester 1 Assessment Week 1 Thu 16:00100.00%

Submission deadlines may vary for different types of assignment/groups of students.


Coursework components (if listed) total 100% of the overall coursework weighting value.

TermMethodDurationWeek pattern
Autumn SemesterSeminar3 hours111110111111

How to read the week pattern

The numbers indicate the weeks of the term and how many events take place each week.

Dr Alice Wilson

Assess convenor

Dr Evan Killick

Convenor, Assess convenor

Miss Susan Chater

Assess convenor

Miss Emilia Roycroft

Assess convenor

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