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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : Postgraduate (History, Classics and Archaeology)

Postgraduate Course: The Cold War in Latin America (PGHC11590)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe Cold-War rivalry between United States and Soviet Union had major consequences for the rest of the world, where it introduced superpower resources, forces, and ideology into local social and political conflicts. This course examines those consequences in Latin America. It asks to what extent the dialectic between revolution and counterrevolutionary dictatorships in the region had local historical roots, and to what extent it was introduced from the outside by a Cold-War dynamic.
Course description The course examines the history of the Cold War in Latin America. It draws on a fast-growing historical literature that explores how the conflict between two super-powers was in Latin America refracted through regional, national, and sub-national social and political dynamics. The course thus asks students to think about the interplay between a global process and the peculiar social, cultural, and political history of an important world region. At the end of the course students will be familiar with current academic discussions about (1) the character and periodization of the Cold War in Latin America, (2) the escalation of Cold-War conflict and violence, (3) the ideology and practice of Latin American militant groups and authoritarian or semi-authoritarian governments during the Cold War, (4) the Cuban Revolution and its impact on the region, (5) the role of the superpowers in shaping Latin America's Cold-War experience, and (6) the impact of the Cold War on current political imaginaries in the region.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 History courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses. Applicants should note that, as with other popular courses, meeting the minimum does NOT guarantee admission.

** as numbers are limited, visiting students should contact the Visiting Student Office directly for admission to this course **
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  15
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 22, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 174 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework:
1,500 word essay (30%)
3,500 word essay (70%)
Feedback Students will receive feedback on their coursework, and will have the opportunity to discuss that feedback further with the Course Organiser during their published office hours for this course or by appointment.

Meaningful mid-semester feedback will be provided by the assessment of the first essay.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. command the body of knowledge considered in the course
  2. read, analyse and reflect critically upon relevant scholarship
  3. develop and sustain scholarly arguments in oral and written form, by formulating appropriate questions and utilising relevant evidence
  4. plan and execute a substantial piece of historical research
Reading List
Booth, William, "Rethinking Latin America's Cold War," The Historical Journal (First View, published online 5 October 2020): 1-23

Field, Thomas, Stella Krepp, and Vanni PettinĂ  (eds.), Latin America and the Global Cold War, (University of North Carolina Press, 2020)

Grandin, Greg, The Last Colonial Massacre: Latin America in the Cold War, (University of Chicago Press, 2004)

Guerra, Lillian, Visions of Power in Cuba: Revolution, Redemption, and Resistance, 1959-1971, (University of North Carolina Press, 2012)

Harmer, Tanya, "The Cold War in Latin America," in Artemy Kalinovsky and Craig Daigle (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of the Cold War, (Routledge, 2014)

Iber, Patrick, Neither Peace nor Freedom: The Cultural Cold War in Latin America, (Harvard University Press, 2015)

Keller, Renata, Mexico's Cold War: Cuba, the United States, and the Legacy of the Mexican Revolution, (Cambridge University Press, 2015)

Mallon, Florencia, "Barbudos, Warriors, and Rotos: The MIR, Masculinity, and Power in the Chilean Agrarian Reform, 1965-74," in Matthew Gutman (ed.), Changing Men and Masculinities in Latin America, (Duke University Press, 2003)

Manzano, Valeria, "Sex, Politics, and the Making of the 'Enemy Within' in Cold War Argentina," Journal of Latin American Studies 47/1 (2015): 1-29

Padilla, TanalĂ­s, "From Agraristas to Guerrilleros: The Jaramillista Movement in Morelos," Hispanic American Historical Review 87/2 (2007): 255-292

Weld, Kirsten, "The Spanish Civil War and the Construction of a Reactionary Historical Consciousness in Augusto Pinochet's Chile," Hispanic American Historical Review 98/1 (2018): 77-115

Westad, Odd Arne, The Global Cold War: Third World Interventions and the Makings of Our Times, (Cambridge University Press, 2005)
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Command of a substantial body of historical knowledge about the Cold War in Latin America

The ability to develop and sustain historical arguments, formulating appropriate questions and utilising evidence, both in class discussions and in written work

An ability to interrogate, read, analyse, and reflect critically upon scholarship on an often politicized topic

A knowledge of concepts and theories derived from the study of the Cold War in Latin America

An ability to design, research, and present a sustained and independently conceived piece of historical writing
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Timo Schaefer
Course secretaryMr George Bottrell-Campbell
Tel: (0131 6)50 8349
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