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|Size||6.0 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 4000 items)|
|Abstract||The Institute of Latin American Studies was established in 1940 as the Inter-American Institute; it kept the latter name until 1947. The Institute's initial purpose was to expand the university's research materials on Latin America. Its first major program was the School for Latin Americans, which it ran from 1941 to 1945 and which brought scholars from Latin America to the Chapel Hill campus. From its beginning, the Institute has received significant funding from foundations, allowing it to expand its programs and activities to include curriculum development, aid to graduate students, support for travel by scholars, publication of research, and the planning and coordination of conferences. Currently the Institute is organized as a program in the College of Arts and Sciences and is administered by a director and advisory board. Records include correspondence and other files relating to the administration and programs of the Institute of Latin American Studies. Institute directors who figure significantly in these records include Sturgis E. Leavitt and Federico G. Gil.|
|Creator||University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Institute of Latin American Studies.|
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The Institute of Latin American Studies was established by Consolidated University of North Carolina President Frank Porter Graham in 1940 as the Inter-American Institute. It grew out of the efforts of Professor Sturgis E. Leavitt to expand the university's research materials on Latin America. The Rockefeller Foundation provided funds for the acquisition of these materials and the use of this funding was supervised by the Inter-American Institute with Leavitt as director.
During the early years of the program, the major activity was the winter "summer school" for Latin Americans. From 1941 through 1945, the grant-funded schools brought hundreds of Latin American scholars to the Chapel Hill campus. In 1947, the Carnegie Corporation funded expansion of the program and the name became the Institute of Latin American Studies. With the Carnegie and subsequent foundation support, the Institute broadened its efforts to include curriculum development and coordination, graduate student support, funding of travel by Latin American scholars to the United States and of American scholars to Latin America, support of professional organizations such as the Southern Conference on Latin American Studies and the Latin American Studies Association, and support for publication of research papers and translations.
More recently, the Institute has operated the Mexican Visiting Scholars Program. Under a grant from Pepsi Cola of Mexico, twelve scholars were selected in 1979 for advanced study at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The following year, the program was expanded to include six Venezuelans in addition to twelve Mexicans. This program continued through the spring semester of 1983. In 1989, UNC-Chapel Hill joined with Duke University to create the Consortium in Latin American and Caribbean Studies.
Currently, the Institute is organized as a program within the College of Arts and Sciences and is supervised by a director and an advisory board. It is composed of historians, political scientists, sociologists, anthropologists, geographers, economists, and linguists actively engaged in the study of Latin American life and culture. Through the activities of the Institute, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has become recognized as one of the major centers of Latin American studies in the United States.
Directors of the Institute have been:
|1940-1959||Sturgis E. Leavitt|
|1959-1983||Federico G. Gil|
|1983-1985||Enrique A. Baloyra|
|1985-1986||Joseph Tulchin, Acting|
|2007?-||Louis A. Perez, Jr.|
Development Grants: Carnegie Corporation of New York Grant to Support Cooperation in the Latin American Field (1947-1952): General Correspondence, 1937-1952 #40089, Series: "1. Administrative Files, 1937-1982." Box 1:1
(University of North Carolina, Tulane University, Vanderbilt University, and University of Texas)
Development Grants: Rockefeller Foundation Grant for the acquisition of Latin American Materials (1940-1946): Reports, 1942-1947 #40089, Series: "1. Administrative Files, 1937-1982." Box 1:1
(University of North Carolina, Duke University, and Tulane University)
Outside Organizations: Latin American Studies Association: Executive Council Meetings, 1970-1972 #40089, Series: "1. Administrative Files, 1937-1982." Box 1:1
(correspondence, agendas, and minutes)
These records in this subseries, 1940-1945, were formerly listed as the Inter-American Institute Records in the University Archives.
The idea for an Inter-American Institute school for South Americans at University of North Carolina originated from a similar effort conducted at the University of San Marcos in Lima, Peru, in 1940. The Grace Steamship Line, which had promoted the Lima venture, approached the University of North Carolina with the suggestion that it host a 1941 school. The University of North Carolina accepted because of its strong romance language and Latin American programs. Professors Sturgis Leavitt and J. C. Lyons were appointed to supervise the effort with an advisory committee including President Frank Graham, Dean of Administration (later Chancellor) Robert B. House, and Controller William D. Carmichael. Monetary support was granted by the Grace and Moore-McCormick steamship lines, the Institute of International Education, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Commonwealth Fund. The school's program integrated instruction and recreation, such as excursions and dances. Some 108 Latin Americans attended the 1941 school, which was held from 19 January 19 to 2 March. With some variations in the program, the schools were held annually from 1942 through 1945.
In 1978, Pepsi Cola of Mexico funded a five-year, interdisciplinary program of advanced study and research for Mexican scholars. Twelve scholars were selected by assessment of their research interests and abilities to spend the spring semester on the University of North Carolina at Chapel or North Carolina State University campus. In 1980, a group of six Venezuelans joined the twelve Mexicans in the program. Fields of specialization ranged from the humanities and social sciences to public health and medicine. The program concluded in 1983, having achieved advances in the knowledge and abilities of native Mexican and Venezuelan scholars. Even more importantly, the program resulted in an increased awareness and understanding of the cultural similarities and differences existing within the hemisphere.
The files include announcements of the program, applications of interested scholars, notes on the selection process, reports of the scholars' activities while at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University, program publicity, and annual reports of the program coordinator.
(includes photographs shelved separately under P-40089/123-125)
(includes photographs shelved separately under P-40089/126-129)
(includes photographs shelved separately under P-40089/132-134)
This conference, held 30 March-3 April 1981, was entitled "Public Policy Issues in Comparative Perspective."
Proceedings: Manuscript of Proceedings #40089, Subseries: "2.4. Chile 1970-1973: Lessons of an Experience Conference (1975)." Box 2:3
University of North Carolina Program: Information for Cuban Students: Publicity Clippings and Photographs #40089, Subseries: "2.10. Cuban Student Leader Seminar in General Sociology (1960)." Box 2:3
(photographs are filed separately under P-40089/115-122)
Processed by: University Archives Staff
Encoded by: ByteManagers Inc., 2008
Updated by: Nancy Kaiser, October 2020Back to Top