Looking South: The Evolution of Latin Americanist Scholarship in the United States, 1850-1975

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A comprehensive, ambitious, and valuable work on an increasingly important subject

In the Preface to her new study, Latin Americanist Helen Delpar writes, "Since the seventeenth century, Americans have turned their gaze toward the lands to the south, seeing in them fields for religious proselytization, economic enterprise, and military conquest." Delpar, consequently, aims her considerable gaze back at those Americans and the story behind their longtime fascination with Latin American culture. By visiting seminal works and the cultures from which they emerged, following the effects of changes in scholarly norms and political developments on the training of students, and evaluating generations of scholarship in texts, monographs, and journal articles, Delpar illuminates the growth of scholarly inquiry into Latin American history, anthropology, geography, political science, economics, sociology, and other social science disciplines.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“This is a very interesting and thorough survey that beautifully conveys the evolution of scholarship and teaching about Latin America in the United States.”
Marshall C. Eakin,  author of Brazil: The Once and Future Country

“Helen Delpar's book, Looking South, is a journey and an adventure—a trip through the dreams and reality of Latin America. In the book the reader encounters people, places, and ideas, often unexpectedly. Her work is historiography in an extended sense—history that encompasses all ideas, artifacts, and human development going back well into the past. Delpar follows a century and a quarter of the origins and transformation of U.S. interest in Latin America. Her work is informative, enlightening, and, at times, fascinating. Looking South clearly offers a reward for the modest effort required to read it. When I reached the end, my reward was that I better understood the people, ideas, and historical development of a field that I had worked in for over forty years.”—H-Net Reviews

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780817354640
  • Publisher: University of Alabama Press
  • Publication date: 12/24/2007
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Helen Delpar is Professor of History at The University of Alabama and author of  Red Against Blue: The Liberal Party in Colombian Politics, 1863-1899 andThe Enormous Vogue of Things Mexican: Cultural Relations between the United States and Mexico, 1920-1935.

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Table of Contents

Preface     ix
Beginnings     1
Laying the Foundations     25
Early Historians     33
The Rise of Anthropology     52
Geography and the Other Social Sciences     73
Latin Americanists and the World of Policy Making     90
Maturity and Institutionalization     109
A Decade of Expansion, 1935-1945     111
Marking Time, 1945-1958     129
The Boom Years, 1958-1975     153
Conclusion     184
Notes     191
Select Bibliography     227
Index     235
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