Why Study Latin America?
Latin American Studies is a vibrant and expanding area of academic activity attracting scholars from a wide range of disciplines and interests, including history, music, film and media studies, economics, languages, geography, politics, anthropology, international relations, sociology and literature.
Latin Americanists are interested primarily in the region or individual countries and this gives them a well-rounded knowledge of their specialist area, incorporating history, contemporary life and the arts, as well as their own niche topic. The interdisciplinary nature of Latin American studies encourages scholars to think in a fluid and imaginative way about issues and events, borrowing ideas from different academic approaches and creating an eclectic response.
Students of Latin America study important traditional topics, such as poverty, injustice and inequality, but also exciting contemporary developments such as the indigenous resurgence across the region, Brazil’s Afroreggae movement and the rise of new left political projects. As such, Latin American studies also provides an important window on power, society and life beyond the region, having the potential to bring important new perspectives to the study of so-called developed countries as well as presenting a distinctive experience of the colonial condition.