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Robert G. Moser, Chair BAT 2.116, Mailcode A1800, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-5121

Spring 2010

GOV 337M • International Politics of Latin America

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
38828 MWF
2:00 PM-3:00 PM

Course Description

This course will analyze Latin America's international relations in a wide-ranging perspective. The first week will introduce a variety of theoretical approaches to this topic. For a few weeks thereafter, the course will examine U.S. policy toward Latin America, starting with the long list of U.S. interventions during the twentieth century (before and during the Cold War). We will then analyze how U.S. - Latin American relations have changed with the end of the Cold War. Thereafter, the course will investigate the impact of economic structures and forces on the region’s international position and influence; in particular, what have the repercussions of Latin America’s "economic dependency" been, and how has the wave of market-oriented reforms changed the region’s insertion into the international economy and political system? Finally, the last third of the course will discuss a variety of new issues that have arisen on Latin America’s international agenda, such as democracy and human rights; international migration; drugs and (other) international criminal activities; and the protection of the environment and of indigenous populations. How have the U.S. and Latin America dealt with all of these novel issues, and how do we need to adjust our theoretical frameworks to account for these new developments?

Grading Policy

1 six to seven page essay paper about questions distributed by the instructor; midterm and final examinations; 2 quizzes about the readings. Strict attendance policy. Rigorous enforcement of scholastic honesty norms.


Texts (preliminary list): Michael Grow, U.S. Presidents and Latin American Interventions. University Press of Kansas, 2008. Russell Crandall, The United States and Latin America after the Cold War. Cambridge University Press, 2008. Abraham Lowenthal, Theodore Piccone, and Laurence Whitehead, eds. The Obama Administration and the Americas. Brookings Institution Press, 2009. Coursepack with xeroxed journal articles and book chapters The readings will amount to 80-100 pp. of material per week.


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