Please note that this module has been
withdrawn and is no longer available.
In this undergraduate final-year Advanced Option module students will analyse the growing literature on sexuality and the family in colonial and nineteenth-century Latin and North America. Students will be encouraged to explore the changing meaning of love, marriage, and sexuality from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries in both Latin and North America. In particular, the module will focus on the varied construction of ideas of femininity and masculinity in different parts of the Americas. The impact of the European colonisation on gender and sexual identities will be explored, and the module will pay particular attention to race and class in this process. The module will also examine whether attitudes towards love and marriage varied from 1500 to 1800. ‘Arranged marriages’ will be a specific topic of concern in the second term. The topics studied will be situated comparatively in relation to the existing European historiography. Current debates in the history of the family and sexuality will be assessed, and students will be urged to explore the similarities and differences between Europe and the Americas, as well as between Ibero- and Anglo-America.
The module provides the opportunity to study an important area of research in the social and cultural history of the Americas, and is therefore suitable for anyone who wishes to explore the importance of sexuality and gender in the region’s development. Although familiarity with the history of either Latin or North America will be useful, students with little prior knowledge of either have also done extremely well. There are, in other words, no pre-requisites for this module, but students should be prepared to supplement the assigned reading with the recommended background reading.