The course provides a general introduction to the historical, social, cultural and political structures of Latin America. A particular attention is given to inter-ethnic relations and processes of nation building. The common thread throughout the course is the interaction between religion, race and nation. The course looks at how these historical processes shed light on current events. The course is divided into large sections which chronologically cover the key moments of Latin American history, including the colonization of Latin America and processes of transculturation; the period of independence and the creation of the nation-state; revolution and the model of the plurinational state.