The Latin American and Caribbean Area Studies Program (LACAS) offers an interdisciplinary approach to the study of Latin America, the Caribbean and people of Latin American and Caribbean descent in the United States. LACAS majors examine culture and economic and social problems throughout the Americas. By choosing this major, students not only learn more about a range of cultures and societies, but also about global interconnectedness.
- BA in Latin American and Caribbean Studies
- Latin American and Caribbean Area Studies
Internships, Research Opportunities and More
LACAS encourages students to diversify their experiences by participating in study-abroad opportunities and by combining their LACAS major with a major or minor in another department.
LACAS offers an honors program as well as an accelerated-degree program in which students earn a bachelor's and master's degree in five years.
Some courses to consider in your first year:
LACS 112 - Music Cults:Africa,Carib,Amer
An introduction to the study of world music (ethnomusicology) through an examination of both traditional and popular music styles from different music cultures within Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas, with emphasis on the specific social and cultural backgrounds that have generated and sustained them. Topics will include the study of ethnomusicology, the influences between traditional and popular music, the social status and training of musicians and performers cross-culturally, the world music business, and ongoing processes of musical exchange between musicians from diverse cultural backgrounds. Assessment will be based on three multiple choice exams. Note: Exams will involve identification of music examples from different music cultures in Africa and the Caribbean, selected from examples played and studied in class. Every fall. 4 credits.
LACS 200 - Intro Latin Am & Carib Studies
This interdisciplinary course provides an introduction to Latin America and the Caribbean, emphasizing the region's history, politics, society, and culture. It considers the historical effects of colonial legacies and U.S. intervention. Topics may include: the state; colonialism and anti-colonialism; race and ethnicity; social movements; gender. The course will introduce various approaches to studying Latin America. Offered every Fall. 4 Credits.
LACS 202 - The Modern Caribbean
An interdisciplinary introduction to the Caribbean, from the Haitian Revolution to the present. Topics include empires and the making of the Caribbean; slavery and emancipation; labor and capitalism; race; nationalism, colonialism and neo-colonialism; revolution and resistance; gender and sexuality; diasporas; and cultural expressions. Offered every Spring. 4 credits
LACS 210 - Latinx in the U.S.
This course introduces topics such as: Latin American immigration to the U.S.; impact of Latinx on the U.S.; effects of U.S. expansionism and foreign policies on Latinx and Latin Americans; effects of immigration and border policies; how race, ethnicity, nationality, color, class, gender, and sexual orientation have been practiced and expressed within Latinx communities; perceptions of Latinx by other groups; individual and group identities; interactions with other ethnic groups; and social and political movements. Offered every Spring. 4 credits
LACS 271 - Research Methods in LACS
Research Methods in Latin American and Caribbean Studies. Familiarizes students with the broad range of digital and print resources in the social sciences and the humanities available through the Binghamton University Libraries and the internet. Students gain hands-on experience in using these resources while learning about research methodologies for the study of contemporary issues and historical problems relevant to the Caribbean, Latin America, and communities of Latin American and Caribbean origin in the U.S. Students design, write, present, and revise their own research papers. Offered regularly. 4 Credits
LACS 304 - EnviroActivism in LatAme/Carib
As globalization and industrial development have advanced, populations throughout the world have suffered from environmental degradation. Poor, minority, and working-class communities have been particularly affected. This course examines the development of environmental activism and resistance movements in Latin America, the Caribbean, and the U.S., as well as alternative economic models and practices that are intended to protect local communities and the environment. 4 Credits.
After You Graduate
LACAS prepares students for graduate study and/or a wide array of careers such as teaching, research, social service and activism. LACAS prepares you to work with peoples of Latin America and the Caribbean as well as Latino/a and Caribbean communities in the U.S. Your ability to synthesize information, analyze and express ideas, and communicate across cultures will help you in careers such as:
- community organizing
- foreign service
- international development
- non-governmental organizations
- social work
You may also be interested in our accelerated/4+1 degree programs which allow students to complete their bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in just 5 years!
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