History 201-04 Latin America & the United States

Prof. Katie Holt

MWF 9:00-9:50am

Kauke 136

Course Description

This writing intensive history seminar explores the history of the intimate but often conflictual relationship between the US and Latin America from the early 19th century to the present.  Rather than having any pretensions at exhaustive coverage, we will focus on case studies primarily drawn from U.S. relations with Cuba, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic, as well as emphasizing the evolving cultural, political, and economic roles of Latinx communities within the United States.  Students can pick any Latin American country or Latinx community for their individual research projects.  We’ll focus on working as public historians, presenting our research to a broad audience in a variety of formats.  Writing assignments include an encyclopedia entry, an annotated bibliography, a short book review, and an student-designed research project.  This course satisfies in part the writing requirement for graduation.

Student Learning Goals:

At the end of the semester, you should be able to meet the following departmental learning goals:

  1. Historical Thinking: Craft a stimulating research project that critically engages with the historiography to interpret a set of primary sources.   Demonstrate a global awareness of the peoples and cultures of Latin America and how ethnic identity, race, gender, and class intersect to shape a diversity of individual experiences.
  2. Historical Knowledge: Identify the principal events, people, and institutions that shaped the relations between the United States and Latin America, and explain their significance.  Read critically and evaluate divergent interpretations of Latin American and Latinx history.
  3. Critical Reasoning: Demonstrate your mastery of the central skills of historical research, including the ability to formulate a historical argument using primary and secondary sources as evidence.
  4. Clear Communication: Organize, present, and communicate your own reactions to readings in class discussions, formal papers, and multi-media presentations.

Wooster Degree Requirement Designations: HSS; Writing-Intensive (W); Diversity, Power, & Privilege (D)