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Politics: Latin America


Admission requirements

This course is only available for students in the BA International Studies.

Limited places are also open for exchange students. Please note: this course takes place in The Hague.


This course provides a general introduction to Latin American politics, emphasizing the specific ways in which the political process has evolved in each of the countries conforming this region. So despite the many communalities one can observe in this region with respect institutional systems and political practices, each country presents a particular type of political evolution. All sorts of historical, social, political, economic, cultural, and ethnic factors have played an important role in shaping the political reality of the individual countries. This course follows a country-centred approach providing an explorative journey through the Latin American nations, from North to South.
1. Latin American Politics: A General Introduction
2. Mexican Politics
3. The Spanish Speaking Caribbean: Cuba, the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico
4. Central America I: Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras
5. Central America II: Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama
6. South America I: Venezuela
7. South America II: Colombia
8. South America III: Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia
9. South America V: Brazil
10. South America VI: Uruguay and Paraguay
11. South America VII: Argentina
12. South AmericaVIII: Chile

Course objectives

This course aims to allow students to comprehend the main dynamics characterizing the Latin American political process since the late 19th century until today. Students will learn to distinct the specific political features of each Latin American country. Finally, students will also learn why political phenomena affecting the entire region have dissimilar impacts and consequences in the different Latin American countries.


The timetable is available on the BA International Studies website.

Mode of instruction

Lecture course with tutorials.
Attending lectures and tutorials is compulsory. If you are not able to attend a lecture or tutorial, please inform the tutor of the course. Being absent without notification can result in a lower grade or exclusion from the final exam or essay.

Course Load

Total course load: 5 ECT (140 hours)

  • Attending lectures and seminars: 2 hours per week lecture x 12 weeks = 24 hours

  • 2 hours tutoial x 4 weeks = 8 hours

  • Time spent competing compulsory weekly readings 4hours x 12 weeks = 48 hours

  • Time spent studying for exams and completing assignments = 60 hours

Assessment method

Tutorials 30%
Midterm Exam 30%
Final Exam 40%

If the final grade is insufficient (lower than a 6), there is the possibility of retaking the full 70% of the exam material, replacing both the earlier mid- and endterm grades. No resit for the tutorials is possible.

To complete the final mark, please take notice of the following:
the final mark for the course is established by determining the weighted average


Blackboard will be used. For tutorial groups: please enroll in blackboard after your enrolment in uSis

Students are requested to register on Blackboard for this course

Reading list

Howard J. Wiarda en Harvey F. Kline (eds), Latin American Politics and Development. Boulder: Westview Press, 2014 (8th edition). ISBN: 978-0-8133-4904-6.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.

General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.