The Latina and Latino Studies Program is a freestanding, interdisciplinary and comparative field of study that encompasses a range of approaches to the diverse national origins, histories, experiences, cultural expressions, and representations (including self-representations) of those who constitute the Latina and Latino population in the United States. The program works to enrich the overall Liberal Arts education that is at the heart of the mission of Williams College through critical and inclusive curriculum.
Students concentrating in Latina and Latino Studies will:
• Gain deep understanding of commonalities and differences within and among Latina and Latino groups;
• Critically interpret and examine Latinas and Latinos within the wider rubric of comparative racial and ethnic studies, so that Latinas and Latinos are contextualized explicitly within their shared and divergent experiences with African Americans, Arab Americans, Asian Americans, Euro-Americans, Native Americans, and other im/migrant communities;
• Develop broad knowledge of countries of origin and the causes of migration, as well as understanding of the broadest interpretations of globalization and transnationalism—one that includes politics, economics, cultures, artistic expressions, households, and communities that traverse national boundaries;
• Work with and learn from a variety of texts, including literature, archival and primary documents, and visual, media, and expressive cultures produced by and about Latinas and Latinos;
• Appreciate the interdisciplinary framework of Latina and Latino Studies, which combines both social science and humanities-based approaches to historical and contemporary issues, as well as artistic, cultural, and performative dimensions.