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 SSC 312 - Contemporary Latin American Social Theory


​This course is an introduction to Latin American social and political reality. In the last two decades Latin America has undergone enormous changes. Thus the participants in the course will see how different is the social and political landscape in Latin America from the one that prevails in Western Europe and the US. Students will also be able to see the phenomenon of migration from another perspective. Recent data shows that migration has become the most important factor of social wellbeing and poverty reduction in Latin America.

With such striking differences it is no wonder that Latin American social scientists are unsatisfied with social theories that have emerged in Europe and North America, as these are of little use for explaining social developments in Latin America. Concepts such as 'globalization', 'world economy', 'modernity', 'human rights' and 'power' have come into question in Latin American political and academic practice. Contemporary Latin-American Social Theory and Debate brings to light that there are systems of explanation that seem to be more appropriate for understanding what is happening in Latin America.

The course draws on the material of prominent Latin American social thinkers that have been devoted to the task of building up alternative knowledges, alternative histories and alternative politics. This course on Latin American Social Theory provides different ways of looking at social reality. Thus it is expected that the participants in the group will extend their horizons of thought and enrich their interdisciplinary training.




One of the following courses is required in order to take this course:

  • SSC 111 Introduction to Sociology
  • SSC 131 Introduction to Socio-Cultural Anthropology
  • SSC 151 Introduction to Political Theory
  • SSC 171 Law, Society and Justice