LALS courses you may want to consider for the Fall 2020
LALS 103 Intro to Latino Urban Studies
This course offers a broad and comprehensive understanding of contemporary urban Latino immigrant experiences in the United States. We will address this topic using several perspectives within the social sciences and public policy such as demographic trends, migration processes, photo essays, modes of integration to the host society, civic engagement, cultural transformations, and social inequality. The course will focus on the Latino immigrant experiences of Mexicans, Central Americans, Colombians, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, and Dominicans in both traditional destination cities such as Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, and New York, as well as in new urban and rural destinations in North Carolina and Nebraska. The goals of this class are to introduce you to academic discussions, develop writing skills, enhance your critical thinking, and help you become exposed to scholarly and policy oriented materials in the field of urban studies related to Latinos. In this class, we will combine the study of the Latino immigrant community from an American ethnic perspective with an understanding of the countries they are coming from.
M-W 1:00-1:50 PM
LALS 109 Introduction to Latino Cultures
This course examines the expressive practices and cultural productions of Latinos in the United States. Lectures, readings, and discussions will explore Latinx cultural history, folklore, popular and public culture, and visual and material culture. Among the topics covered are: the role of narrative in Latinx cultural identity; the culture of everyday life; handmade commercial and street graphics; the oral tradition (corridos/ballads, proverbs, tales); Latinos in cinema and theater; Latinx amateur sport history and fandom; and Latinx interventions in new media like podcasts. Latinx culture is at a crossroads of Latin American and American (U.S.) cultures. Thus, our lectures, readings, discussions, and assignments encourage us to look at Latinx culture not simply as another U.S. minority culture worthy of study, but rather as one that has been, is, and promises to remain central to the American experience, broadly defined. While this course focuses on Latinx texts, issues, and examples, the concepts, theories, and terminology used in this course are relevant and translatable to the study of other cultures. Required texts are: When I Was Puerto Rican by Esmeralda Santiago and Heroes, Lovers, and Others: The Story of Latinos in Hollywood by Clara Rodriguez. Other assigned readings will be available on Blackboard and Daley Library electronic reserves.
LALS 395 Seminar in Latino Studies
Sound serves as the entry point to (re)interpret Latinx experiences as perceived thru soundscapes, media, and literature. This course introduces key concepts from the interdisciplinary field of sounds studies as a means to explores how the meaning of noise, silence, loudness, voice, privacy, intimacy, and accent (among others) are concepts which are socially and ideologically constructed and negotiated in Latinx communities. Attending to both live and mediated Latinx sound(s), this course tunes-in to the intersectional politics of race, class, gender, and sexuality as experienced by Latinx bodies and communities in the 20th, 21st century and in the current Covid19 post-reality. This course offers a writing and research focus supported by writing workshops. Students will participate in one collaborative project, learn ethnographic research methods, and pursue an original research question.
Wed 3-5 PM | CRN: 35811 | Prof. Díaz Martín
LALS 491: Topics in Latin American Studies
Disasters, Catastrophes, Plagues—An Inquiry into Corona Virus 19 and Related Matters
Given that today’s pandemic will probably continue to control us as we enter the fall semester, this course will be a very hands-on inquiry into our current condition. At the same time we will try to arrive at some overarching theory about the power of disasters, catastrophes, and plagues to alter social and economic life. At the beginning of the course we will divide students into small working groups focused on different dimensions of COVID-19. Working groups will be determined by the interests of the students.
Even as these working groups do their work and share their information with the rest of us, we will be examining historical, philosophical, economic, and literary texts to deepen our analyses of the meanings of catastrophe. For instance, we will examine other diseases such as Zika and malaria in Latin America, and how they have often functioned in racial and economic terms. The function of disease at the moment of colonizing the Americas was simply another instance of this. Other texts will include Barbara Tuchman’s classic work A Distant Mirror; the economist Walter Scheidel’s amazing text The Great Leveler: Violence and the History of Inequality from the Stone Age to the Twenty-First Century; and Albert Camus’ classic meditation on existentialist philosophy The Plague.
In sum, the course will be a transnational examination of both Latinx populations in the United States as well as Latin American peoples. We will frame these real world, contemporary concerns in the larger context of history, economics, and philosophy (and possibly other disciplines). Our goal will be to understand not only COVID-19 but the “nature” of catastrophe itself.
Professor Ralph Cintrón | email@example.com | Wednesday 6:30 – 9:00 PM
CRNs: 32584 undergrad & 32585 grad