Latin American Studies

Where is Latin America anyway?

While Latin America was traditionally defined as only those areas colonized by Spain and Portugal, in practice virtually all of the Western Hemisphere except the United States and Canada has tended to fall within courses taught under the heading of Latin American studies in the United States.

At Mount Holyoke, Latin American studies is an interdisciplinary program that emphasizes critical approaches to the culture, history, society, and political economy of the vast region spanning from Mexico to Argentina.  As societies long defined by--and in opposition to--external powers, Latin America and the Caribbean have in modern times developed distinctive national and cultural identities celebrated on a world stage in art, music, and literature. The program studies the region in its enormous geographic, political, and social diversity, and in its linguistic variety--including four European, several Creole, and numerous indigenous languages.