nl en

Andean Cultural History


Admission requirements

The admission requirements for the MA in American Indian Studies are applicable: BA in archaeology or Latin American and Caribbean Studies, or BA in a related discipline.


Modern Andean culture has its roots in an indigenous tradition that has suffered profound transformations due to almost five centuries of foreign invasion and political domination by Europeanized elites. The course follows the history of the Andean peoples from Pre-Columbian to modern times with a special emphasis on the colonial period (1532-1810), which lies at the basis of most of the changes that gave Andean society its present form. The course addresses a representative series of topics pertaining to Andean cultural history from early forms of complex civilization to the cultural and political demands of contemporary native societies and the economic and ideological adaptation of traditional communities.

Course objectives

Through this course students become acquainted with current views on the social and cultural history of a complex agricultural society with New World indigenous roots. They learn how to evaluate these views and form an independent opinion about them. They learn how to communicate their impressions in a (powerpoint) presentation for co-students. By reading an extensive and representative selection of specialized but informative literature they acquire a substantial amount of factual information on Andean cultural history and learn how to recognize the principal contentious issues relevant for this field of research. The skills and knowledge thus acquired provide a good basis for participation in specialized conferences, for writing a MA thesis on Andean cultural history and for an independent written contribution to the scientific debate on this topic.



Mode of instruction

Reading and seminar with presentations by students followed by discussion

Assessment method

Presentations and written exam

Blackboard Yes.

Reading list

  • F. Salomon and S. Schwartz, The Cambridge History of the Native Peoples of the Americas: III South America (2 parts). Cambridge University Press, 1999.

    *J.W. Bastien, Mountain of the Condor. Waveland Press, 1978. ### Registration

Register via uSis.

Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Study in Leiden website for information on how to apply.

Contact information

Prof. dr. W. Adelaar


All other information.