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Indigenous heritage of the Caribbean


Compulsory attendance


Admission requirements

Degree students (including Dutch BA graduates): BA degree (or equivalent) in Archaeology, Latin American Studies or a relevant discipline.

SAP and Exchange Students: BA degree. Admission only after formal application.


Indigenous heritage is an interdisciplinary course covering archaeological and anthropological topics and is designed to gain an in-depth knowledge of shared meanings and symbolism of the Amerindian circum-Caribbean as expressed through materiality of objects and places.
We focus on key concepts of anthropological art and artefact, representation and non-representation, ‘primitive’ art and aesthetics, visual art and culture, social and individual, place and the landscape. This course traces meaningful links between the South American Tropical Lowlands and the Caribbean, drawing from a series of specific case studies.

Course objectives

  • To gain an in-depth knowledge of and ability to analyse the key notions of Amerindian appreciation, sharing meanings and symbolism from an interdisciplinary perspective, and especially using the approach of the cognitive vision of culture;

  • To re-evaluate current academic notions of expressive symbolism as communication and as an integral part of socio-cultural heritage of the indigenous Caribbean;

  • To compare and evaluate current research trends in scholarly approaches to study Amerindian symbolism.

Ects distribution

The course load will be distributed as follows:

  • 7×2 hours of lectures;

  • 280 pages of literature;

  • Essay/article;

  • Presentation.


Course schedule details can be found in the MA time schedule.

Mode of instruction


Assessment method

  • Participation (20%);

  • Essay/article (50%);

  • Presentation (30%).

Assessment deadline

All assessment deadlines (exams, retakes, paper deadlines etc.) can be found in the examination schedule.

Reading list

To be announced.


Register for this course via uSis.
Instructions for registration can be found in the uSis manual.

Exchange students: please see the Prospective students website for information on how to apply.

Contractonderwijs: all information (costs, registration, entry requirements, etc.) for those who are interested in taking this course as a Contractstudent is on the Contractonderwijs Archeologie webpage (in Dutch).

Contact information

For more information about this course, please contact mw. dr. M.M. Antczak.