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Introduction: Contact Zones and Colonialism (Rebecca Earle)

This seminar introduces students to the history of the Americas, and explores the intimate relationship between colonialism and the development of ideas about race.

For discussion

What topics might be embraced a study of race in the Americas?

What similarities, and what differences, underpin the development of racial thinking across the Americas?


David Brion Davis, ‘Constructing Race: A Reflection’, William and Mary Quarterly, 3d series, vol. 54:1 (1997).

Richard Graham, ‘Introduction’, The Idea of Race in Latin America, 1870-1940, ed. Richard Graham (1990).

Gary Nash, ‘The Hidden History of Mestizo America’, Journal of American History, vol. 82:3 (1995).