Using Digital Projects to Teach Cultures of Latin America
Author: Clayton McCarl
Faculty Mentor: N/A
In Fall 2020, I have experimented with a new approach to teaching a 3000-level course in Spanish about cultures of Latin America. I have built the course around two assumptions — that the study of Latin America must include a diversity of voices, and that we can access many of them through the use of technology. These ideas are in line with general trends in Latin American studies, in which matters of inclusion and equity inform much contemporary scholarship, and in which much digital work seeks to recover narratives that have been forgotten or erased. In this presentation, I discuss how I have organized the course around the exploration of a series of digital projects, corresponding to periods from the colonial era to the present, and involving methodologies that include textual editing, digital archives, spatial analysis, oral history, and documentary filmmaking. I also explain the interviews that I recorded with project creators and other scholars in order to provide context and frame these experiences for the students.