Latin America

Latin American history has become a strong focus of study at Georgetown. Following the emphases of our core faculty most students in the field work on the Andes, Brazil, and Mexico from the eighteenth century to the present. Still, others have studied Cuba, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Argentina, and Chile with good success. Thematically, our interests are broad: political economy and popular movements; indigenous peoples and agrarian communities; capitalism, globalization, and urbanization; environment, commodities, and labor; gender, ethnicity, and culture; music and sports. Our aim is to integrate diverse concerns and perspectives, seeking more comprehensive understandings of Latin American communities, regions, and nations in global context.

Many students pursuing transregional studies or focusing on other world areas join in the Latin American field. Notably, those studying migration, labor, and politics in the U.S. and others exploring U.S. strategic and economic expansions include work on Latin America. Others emphasizing questions of environment, gender relations, and popular movement in regions from Europe and the Islamic World through East Asia have found key comparative perspectives in the history of Latin America. Our program aims to merge local depth with global perspectives to find new understandings of Latin America in the world.

Our faculty resources are deep and diverse. Erick Langer works primarily in indigenous peoples and national development in Bolivia and the Andes since the late eighteenth century, while his studies and interests extend across Spanish South America and into Brazil. Bryan McCann focuses on twentieth-century Brazil—and twentieth-century Latin America more broadly—first emphasizing politics and popular culture, especially music, and recently turning urban challenges and popular social movements. John Tutino has engaged New Spain and Mexico in the context of North America and the world from colonial times to the present. Long focused on rural communities and agrarian resistance, he turned to the global silver economy and the rise of capitalist ways and patriarchal social relations in urban and rural New Spain. He continues to study popular risings in the era of independence while beginning to explore the accelerating urbanization of late twentieth century Mexico.

Our faculty resources extend beyond history to Anthropology, Government, Sociology, Spanish and Portuguese, and other disciplines. We work together through the Center for Latin America Studies in the interdisciplinary programs of the Americas Initiative. The presence in Washington of the unparalleled collections of the Library of Congress, the National Archives, and diverse other repositories, creates exceptional research opportunities.

View a list of Faculty specializing in Latin America.

View a list of PhD Students specializing in Latin America.