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Master Class: Modernidad en América Latina


Admission requirements

Registered as a student of the Master’s in Latin America Studies. This course can be done for 5 or 10 ects. Please consult with the teacher.


The course pays attention in the fascinations and frustrations that Latin Americans have with regard to the phenomenon of modernity and its associated discourses. Especially elites, over time, have carried out various projects of modernization with the aim of introducing innovations political, cultural and economic from Europe and the United States, often with asymmetric and disappointing results in Latin America. Also deals with the way in which the common population of Latin America is facing modernity from outside the region: while some of its elements are directly opposed, other aspects of that modernity are transformed into useful tools at the service of its own social and cultural needs.

Course objectives

  1. Analyze the historical processes of Latin America in the framework of modernity.
    1. Identify the specific fields in which modernity has operated in Latin America.
    2. Identify the ideological components of the discourse on national identity in Latin America in relation to modernity.
    3. Analyze the contradictions, paradoxes and challenges resulting from the process of modernization in Latin America.


Collegerooster (master, 2e semester)

Mode of instruction

Lectures, presentations and paper.

Course Load

5 EC = 140 hours in total.

  • Hours spent on attending lectures and seminars: 24 hours

  • Time for studying the compulsory literature: 48 hours

  • Time for completing assignments, whether in preparation at the college: 34 hours

  • Time to write a paper (including reading/research): 34 hours

Assessment method

A. A presentation of 10 minutes with the following structure:

  • introduction of the subject (2 minutes),

  • development of the theme (6 minutes)

  • conclusions of the presentation (2 minutes).
    The presentation should be in Spanish with the guidance of a short PowerPoint presentation or a hand-out to the other students.
    The presentations will take place starting from college 5.
    The figure for the presentation is equal to 25% of the final mark.
    The aspects which are evaluated are: (a) clarity in the explanation, (b) the relevance of the chosen theme and © the ability to present the subject in brief.

B. A paper of at least 15 and up to 18 A4 format pages, Word or PDF, related to the chosen theme of the presentation. This document must be in Spanish and shall contain:

  • title and subtitle

  • identification of the author (initials, last name, student number, e-mail address)

  • a brief summary of up to 8 lines.

  • the identification of a maximum of 5 important concepts (key words)

  • the development of the subject

  • the conclusion

  • the bibliographic references, sorted alphabetically. The bibliography must be registered according to the APA system.
    The score of the paper is equal to 75% of the final mark.
    The aspects that are assessed are: (a) coherence and clarity of writing, (b) quality of the argumentation, © proper use of bibliographic sources, (d) Spanish academic writing, (e) formal presentation of the text, (f) level of analysis of the contents.
    The dateline shall expire on a specific date and place indicated in the course program.


Blackboard is used for providing study materials, methodological indications, specific information about each college and the format of the presentations and the paper.

Reading list

  • LARRAÍN, JORGE (2000). Identity and Modernity in Latin America. Cambridge: Polity Press.

  • ANDERSON, BENEDICT (1993). Comunidades imaginadas. Reflexiones sobre el origen y la difusión del nacionalismo. México, D.F.: Fondo de Cultura Económica. Capítulo I, ‘Introducción’ (pp. 17-25); Capítulo II, ‘Las raíces culturales’ (pp. 26-62).

  • FRANCO, JEAN (1997). ‘La globalización y la crisis de lo popular’, Nueva Sociedad, 19, 62-73.

  • GIMÉNEZ, GILBERTO (2003). ‘La cultura como identidad y la identidad como cultura’, UNAM, Instituto de Investigaciones Sociales, México,

  • HOBSBAWM, ERIC (2012). ‘Introducción: la invención de la tradición’, en: E. Hobsbawm y T. Ranger (eds.), La invención de la tradición (pp. 7-21). Barcelona: Crítica.

  • HERMET, GUY (2003). ‘El populismo como concepto’, Revista de Ciencia Política, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, XXIII(1), 5-18

  • RUBIO FERRERES, JOSÉ MARÍA (2007). ‘Las identidades en la era de la globalización mediática’, en: J. M. Rubio Ferreres et al. (eds.), Identidad, historia y sociedad, capítulo 4 (pp. 107-134). Granada: Editorial Universidad de Granada.

  • LÓPEZ DE AYALA, Mª CRUZ (2004). ‘El análisis sociológico del consumo: una revisión histórica de sus desarrollos teóricos’, Sociológica, 5, 161-188.

  • MARTÍN BARBERO, JESÚS (2001). De los medios a las mediaciones. Comunicación, cultura y hegemonía. III parte, capítulo I ‘Los procesos: de los nacionalismos a las transnacionales’ (pp. 164-202). México, D.F.: Ediciones G. Gili, 6ª edición.

  • SCHAEFER, TIMO (2009). ‘Engaging Modernity: the political making of indigenous movements in Bolivia and Ecuador, 1900-2008’, Third World Quarterly, 30(2), 397-413.

  • VICTORIANO SERRANO, FELIPE (2010). ‘Estado, golpes de Estado y militarización en América Latina: una reflexión histórico-política’, Argumentos, 23(64), 175-193.

Also additional articles on Blackboard.


Enroll as student via uSis

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte via:
Registration Contractonderwijs via:


Dr. P.A. Isla Monsalve
phone: +31 (0)71 5272061.

Remarks All other information. This course is only open to students who have a good command of the Spanish language