Florianópolis, Brazil
USAC
1-866-404-USAC1-775-784-65691-775-784-6010studyabroad@usac.unr.edu

Course Information

Florianópolis, Brazil | 2018 Spring

Studying abroad can be a more meaningful and invigorating learning experience than at home—both inside and outside of the classroom. You may be more curious and alert than you usually are so use this heightened energy to enhance your studies as well as your cultural and geographical explorations. You may also encounter different teaching styles and course processes; be prepared to adapt and to learn.

Academics

You will enroll in 12 to 18 credits per semester comprised of a language track plus electives in Brazilian culture studies, global economy, and natural resource management. Course availability is contingent upon student enrollment and is subject to change.

Portuguese Language Studies

All students must enroll in an intensive language and culture course during the first four weeks of the fall semester or the first five weeks of the spring semester. The course is offered at four different levels with a maximum class size of 15 and includes site visits and activities to increase your understanding of local culture.

After the intensive period, students have the option to take an additional language course that lasts the remainder of the semester. You may choose one of the following:

Note that a student who has successfully completed Advanced Portuguese prior to arrival may have the option of doing an independent study for credit, supervised by a Portuguese language professor. Advanced/fluent speakers may also take up the option of an unpaid internship and/or enroll in courses at UFSC.

Fall Semester

Brazilian Culture Studies, Global Economy, and Natural Resource Management
Courses are taught in English unless otherwise stated in Portuguese.

Spring Semester

Brazilian Culture Studies, Global Economy, and Natural Resource Management
Courses are taught in English unless otherwise stated in Portuguese.

Host University Courses

The Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC) allows USAC students to enroll in any of the principal UFSC courses with the exception of literature, first-semester courses, and those that are closed to international students. Enrollment in a particular UFSC course is dependent upon the approval of the professor and academic department offering the course. Students who wish to pursue this option must commit to remaining in Florianópolis for the duration of the UFSC academic calendar, which differs from USAC program dates. Requests to take UFSC courses must be received by the USAC Central Office at least one month prior to arrival.

Field Studies

Deepen your academic experience by turning the optional Minas Gerais Tour into a 1-credit field study by completing additional academic requirements (readings, written assignments, reports, etc.) on the historical, cultural, and natural features of the region. Students who enroll in this 1-credit course will complete a research paper on a particular topic of interest; such as, mining, slavery, the struggle for independence, or art and architecture. The written work may be completed in English or Portuguese.

Internships

Florianópolis internship opportunities fall into broad categories; and have included placement in a language assistantship in a community center for at risk children, assisting the work of a non-profit organization, and working in a veterinary clinic. Other internship sites are possible but require at least three months advance notification. Placement is not guaranteed by USAC, rather it will be determined by your application and supporting materials, and an interview onsite with the internship sponsor. For most positions, students will be required to attend orientation training sessions at the beginning of the internship.

Eligibility: enrollment in the Florianópolis program, a minimum GPA of 3.0 and junior standing at the time of the internship. A refundable fee of $100 is charged and returned upon successful completion of the internship.

US Professors

Local faculty teach most USAC courses; however, the following US professors are also teaching as Visiting Professors.

Fall Semester:

Dr. Richard Penglase, Loyola University Chicago

Courses offered:

Ben Penglase is a cultural anthropologist at Loyola University Chicago. He recently published Living with Insecurity in a Brazilian Favela. He has won Loyola's Master Teacher and Master Researcher awards. He was also a researcher for Human Rights Watch. He practices Brazilian jiu-jitsu and has paraded in Rio's Carnival.

Spring Semester:

Dr. Sarah Blithe, University of Nevada, Reno

Courses offered:

Dr. Sarah Blithe teaches a variety of communication courses, including intercultural, gender, and organizational communication at the University of Nevada, Reno. She has won several teaching and research awards, including a 2015 Outstanding Book Award for her research on gender equality and work-life balance.

Course Descriptions

Advanced Portuguese I

Spring (Other Foreign Language; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course is designed to further equip students with the necessary language skills in Portuguese to express themselves well (in writing and verbally) when discussing scholarly topics. It aims at helping students feel more confident to speak, develop a higher level of understanding of the spoken and written language, and learn more advanced vocabulary and cultural and literary contents. The class discussions, readings, and writing components will focus on Brazilian movies which emphasize different aspects of the country’s culture, history, economy and politics. Each unit of the book discusses a film and each movie is treated as a textbook. All aspects of language learning (from acquisition of vocabulary to review of grammar points) will be included. Therefore, the course encompasses listening comprehension and discussions, but also focuses on an extensive number and variation of written exercises. The class will watch, analyze, and write about five contemporary movies. The movies discussed in this course are O Caminho da Nuvens (2003), Central do Brasil (1998), Cidade de Deus (2002), and Dona Flor e Seus Dois Maridos (1976), and Orfeu (1999). Each film will be watched and analyzed in class, in parts, dissecting all components of it: vocabulary, oral comprehension, written exercises. Each unit of the textbook includes a reading component (a 4-5-page-long text on a topic related to the movie). In addition, the students will read a literary text by Jorge Amado to establish cultural comparisons with some of the movies discussed.

Este curso tem como objetivo habilitar o/a aluno/a a se expressar oralmente e por escrito de maneira mais sofisticada. Ajudará o/a aluno/a a se sentir mais confiante para desenvolver um nível de compreeensão mais elevado da língua falada e escrita e analsiar assuntos culturais e literários. As discussões, leituras e componentes da escrita enfocarão filmes brasileiros que enfatizam diversos aspectos da história, economia, política e literatura do Brasil. Cada unidade do livro discutirá um filme e cada filme é tratado como um texto. Todos os aspectos da aprendizagem da língua (desde a aquisição de novo vocabulário a pontos gramaticais) serão examinados. Portanto, este curso inclui compreeensão oral, mas também enfoca um número variado e extensivo de exercícios escritos. Serão vistos e analisados cinco filmes: O Caminho da Nuvens (2003), Central do Brasil (1998), Cidade de Deus (2002), and Dona Flor e Seus Dois Maridos (1976), and Orfeu (1999). Os filmes serão vistos na sala em pequenas dosagens (parte por parte) e exercícios de compreensão oral, gramática e escrita acompanharão cada parte vista. Cada unidade apresenta um componente de leitura (2-5 páginas). Os alunos também lerão o romance Dona Flor e seus Dois Maridos de Jorge Amado e estabelecerão comparações com o filme assisitido.

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Advanced Portuguese II

Spring (Other Foreign Language; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course is designed to advance the students oral and written skills in Portuguese and to allow them to establish comparison between literary and cinematic texts. The class discussions, readings, and writing components will focus on Brazilian movies and literary texts which emphasize different aspects of the country’s culture, history, economy and politics. The emphasis is on all aspects of language learning (from acquisition of vocabulary to review of grammar points, reading will be included). Each unit of the textbook also includes a reading component (a 4-5-page-long text on a topic related to the movie). The class will watch, analyze, and write about three movies and read three literary texts (novel, memoirs, diary) on which the movies were based or on related subjects. This course is a higher-level version of the course “Advanced Portuguese I.” The discussions addressing the literary texts will be interwoven with the film discussions and the two types of films will complement each other.

Este curso tem com objetivo ajudar os alunos a adquirir proficiência oral e escrita avançada em português e permitir-lhes estabelecer comparações entre filmes e textos literários. As discussões na sala, as leituras, e os componentes escritos enfatizarão diferentes aspectos da cultura, história, economia e política brasileiras. A ênfase é nos aspectos da aprendizagem da linguagem (da aquisição de vocabulário à revisão de pontos gramaticais e leitura serão incluídos), da cultura, e do cinema e da literatura. Cada unidade do livro-texto também inclui um componente de leitura (um texto de 4-5 páginas sobre um tópico relacionado com o filme). A classe vai assistir, analisar e escrever sobre três filmes e ler três textos literarários. (um romance, um livro de memórias, e um diário) nos quais os filmes foram baseados ou sobre assuntos relacionados. Este curso é uma versão mais adiantada e sofisticada do curso “Português Avançado I.” As discussões dos textos literários serão intercaladas às discussões sobre os filmes e os dois tipos de texto se complementarão.

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Brazilian Architecture and Urbanism

Fall (Architecture, Art; 300-level; 3 credits)

Through an architectural, urban and historical approach, this course aims to offer an overview of Brazil, a nation built on diversity. The state of Santa Catarina and the city of Florianopolis will be in focus in particular. By understanding the historical development of Brazilian urban and architectural landscapes, it is hoped that students will gain a stronger understanding of modern Brazil. Students will also be encouraged to observe the constructed landscape and to analyze the issues revealed beyond the spatial forms.

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Brazilian Cuisine

Fall (Nutrition; 200-level; 1 credit)
Spring (Nutrition; 200-level; 1 credit)

The Brazilian Cuisine course is designed for all students who enjoy cooking and have an interest in discovering the secrets of the varied and important gastronomy of Brazil. The course will consist of learning to prepare and serve traditional Brazilian dishes like feijoada; identifying and selecting a variety of ingredients; and enjoying the results. As a mainly practical course, with each student working on developing her/his knowledge and culinary repertoire, it will also look in broad terms at the history of eating habits in Brazil, and how food affects the lifestyle and culture of Brazilians and vice versa. The course will therefore serve a very useful opening into the culture and customs of the host country. Students will also have the chance to practice Portuguese and develop their language skills in a fun learning environment.

This is a course that varies according to the time of the year and the products available at any given time. For this reason, there may be changes to the proposed menus. Dishes prepared will include many different national ingredients, including fish and sea food, white and red meat, exotic fruit and vegetables, and cereals and pulses.

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Brazilian Culture: Film

Spring (Sociology; 400-level; 3 credits)

The course will inform students about various approaches to the documentary film, as well as, provide the overview of the Czech (and Czechoslovak) documentary filmmaking. The aim is to initiate discussion about what the documentary is, whether it is more "trustworthy" than the fiction film, which/whose "truth" it shows if any, etc. The students will watch the documentaries in their entirety and will discuss them in the class. Reading should be prepared for the day on which they are listed on the course schedule. Come to class ready to discuss and ask questions.

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Brazilian History

Spring (History; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course will explore the history of Brazil and offer a broad overview of its periods, from the indigenous era prior to the Europeans’ arrival, to the development and end of the Colony, the Independence, the Empire, the Republic, and the social, economic and political changes of the 20th and 21st centuries. The course will therefore provide a deeper insight into the historical reasons for the present problems of contemporary Brazil, which will be analyzed from a critical and actively participant perspective. Through readings, seminars, lectures, films, discussions and research, Brazilian history will be reconstructed so as to enable students to understand contemporary Brazil while being aware of the historical context from which it originates.

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Brazilian Music and Dance

Fall (Dance, Music; 200-level; 3 credits)
Spring (Dance, Music; 200-level; 3 credits)

This course will cover different styles and movements of Brazilian Art, as expressed by some of the most salient musicians and dancers along its history but mainly in 20th and 21st centuries. Contemporary music and dance in Brazil will be approached in seminars in which the Professor will initiate the students into different genres through newspaper and magazine articles, academic readings, films, documentaries, websites and audio materials, upon which the different dialogues about the socio-political and cultural broader context of this art will be based, as well as the commentaries on the artistic and cultural features of these manifestations.

The activity in the seminars will be complemented by the attendance at local cultural events and the students’ direct contact with any of the different music and dance proposals and groups present in Florianópolis, either as researchers, critics or active participants themselves. This direct contact must enable the students to document through interviews, recordings, their own music and dance performances, etc., the wide diversity of Florianópolis contemporary music and dance in the seminars at the end of the semester.

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Capoeira

Fall (Dance, Music; 100-level; 1 credit)
Spring (Dance, Music; 100-level; 1 credit)

Capoeira is one of the strongest expressions of Afro-Brazilian culture that exists today. Introduced to Brazil by West African slaves from the 16th century, it is a martial art which combines elements of dance, music and acrobatics. Through learning capoeira, students will be able to develop a greater, richer understanding of Brazilian dance and music, and the African influences in the country.

The USAC Capoeira course, taught by Bahian Luiz Liborio, uses capoeira as a means of educating, teaching Portuguese, social inclusion and a way of teaching African-Brazilian culture. The course will develop ethical values based on respect, socialization, and freedom through the capoeira course that will be offered as practical and theoretical workshops, as well as documentaries and other material about capoeira.

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Elementary Portuguese I

Fall (Other Foreign Language; 100-level; 4 credits)
Spring (Other Foreign Language; 100-level; 4 credits)

Elementary Portuguese I is an intensive, four-credit language course designed for students who have not taken any Portuguese courses at college-level before. This course helps non-native speakers of Portuguese acquire basic communicative competence. It offers the students the opportunity to develop the fundamental skills of a language: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Grammar is taught in a communicative way. The main emphasis of this course is on communication and, therefore, class attendance and active participation are essential.

Português para Iniciantes I é um curso intensivo de quatro créditos para alunos que nunca estudaram português a nível universitário. Este curso tem como intenção ajudar alunos não nativos de português a adquirir comunicação básica. Oferece aos alunos a oportunidade de desenvolver as competências fundamentais de uma língua: ouvir, falar, ler e escrever. A ênfase principal do curso é a comunicação por isso, a presença e a participação ativa nas aulas são essenciais.

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Elementary Portuguese II

Fall (Other Foreign Language; 100-level; 4 credits)
Spring (Other Foreign Language; 100-level; 4 credits)

Elementary Portuguese II is a four-credit language course designed for students who completed Elementary Portuguese I or have successfully taken one semester of Portuguese at college-level before. This course helps non-native speakers of Portuguese advance their ability to express themselves verbally and in writing, expand their range of vocabulary, and learn to describe, define, compare, and sustain dialogues. It offers the students the opportunity to continue developing their ability to listen, speak, read, and write Portuguese. The emphasis of this course is on communication and, therefore, class attendance and active participation are essential.

Português para Iniciantes II é um curso intensivo de quatro créditos para alunos que completaram Português Iniciante I ou que completaram um semestre de português a nível universitário. Este curso tem como intenção ajudar alunos não nativos de português a adquirir a habilidade de se expressarem verbalmente e por escrito, expandir seu vocabulario, e aprender a descrever, definir, comparar e manter diálogos. Oferece aos alunos a oportunidade de continuar desenvolvendoas as competências fundamentais de uma língua: ouvir, falar, ler e escrever. A ênfase principal do curso é a comunicação, por isso, a presença e a participação ativa nas aulas são essenciais

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Gender and Communication

Spring (Sociology, Speech Communications, Women's Studies / Gender Studies; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course examines gender as a historical and contemporary social practice that remains vital to identities, relationships, and institutions in society. It treats gender as something we do through communication, rather than as something we are or have; and it explores the implications of this shift in perspective. Course material includes a historical overview of gender equity movements, and how earlier conceptions of gender continue to influence how individuals act. The course also includes an exploration of gendered verbal and nonverbal communication, in various social interaction settings, including friendships, families, classrooms, organizations, and the media. Students will develop a set of affective and behavioral skills and characteristics that support effective and appropriate attentiveness to and analysis of diversity and equity.

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Human Rights in Latin America

Fall (Political Science; 300-level; 3 credits)

This course explores human rights in Latin America. It will examine how the idea of human rights and institutions that promote human rights developed, why human rights abuses have occurred, the effects abuses have had, and how Latin Americans have responded. Specific case might examine issues such as: torture during the military dictatorship in Argentina, civil war in Guatemala, inequality and violence in Brazil, and indigenous rights, children’s right and women’s rights throughout the region.

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Intercultural Communication

Spring (Speech Communications; 400-level; 3 credits)

This is a combination theory and application course on intercultural communication. It is designed to help students understand how to communicate with people who are different from them. We live in a global environment where individuals from diverse cultures interact face to face and online. This course is designed to lead students through an examination of their own cultural identities and their interactions with others. We will look at cultures around the globe, examining the interactions of values, beliefs, traditions, identities, challenges and contributions of various cultures. Taking a communicative lens, we will address how these cultural indicators manifest through communication and how cultures use communication in different ways. Through this course, I hope to broaden students’ perspectives of life and people, and to build their capacity to adapt to a changing world by exploring perceptual differences.

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Intermediate Portuguese I

Fall (Other Foreign Language; 200-level; 3 credits)
Spring (Other Foreign Language; 200-level; 3 credits)

Portuguese Intermediate I is a three-credit, intensive language course designed for students who completed a year of college Portuguese, or Beginning Portuguese II. Students will continue to expand their vocabulary and further their knowledge of the spoken and written language, develop listening comprehension, and acquiring competence in cultural topics. The emphasis of the course is in communication skills, therefore, attendance to class and active participation are essential. Grammar is taught in a communicative way and material studied in previous courses will also be reviewed and contextualized.

Português Intermediário I é um curso intensivo de três créditos para alunos que completaram dois semestres de português a nível universitário ou Português para Iniciantes II. Os alunos continuarão a expandir seu vocabulário e incrementar seu conhecimento da linguagem falada e escrita; desenvolverão sua habilidade de compreensão oral e adquirirão competência em tópicos culturais. A ênfase principal do curso é a comunicação, por isso a presença e a participação ativa nas aulas são essenciais. A gramática será ensinada de forma comunicativa e o maerial estudado nos cursos anteriores será revisado e contextualizado.

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Intermediate Portuguese II

Fall (Other Foreign Language; 200-level; 3 credits)
Spring (Other Foreign Language; 200-level; 3 credits)

Prerequisite: Intermediate Portuguese I, or its equivalent. Students will continue to enhance their knowledge of the spoken and written language and study more complex and advanced cultural topics and related vocabulary. It is designed for students who also want to develop reading skills in a relevant cultural context (travel narratives). The course includes diversified communicative and written activities. The unifying concept of the course is traveling and all the grammar review, oral, and written exercises were developed based on travel narratives by the famous contemporary Brazilian author, Moacyr Scliar, in which he occasionally establishes insightful comparisons between Brazilian and American cultures. This course will offer review of grammar topics studied in previous semesters (including all moods and tenses of regular and irregular verbs, object pronouns, relative pronouns, plural of nouns and adjectives, comparative and superlative, adverbs, ordinal numbers, and prepositions). Grammar will be taught in a communicative way and grammar topics studied in previous courses will be revised. The main emphasis of this course is on communication and, therefore, class attendance and active participation are essential.

Português Intermediário II é um curso intensivo de três créditos para alunos que completaram Português Intermediário I ou equivalente. Os alunos continuarão a expandir seu vocabulário e incrementar seu conhecimento da linguagem falada e escrita; desenvolverão também a habilidade de leitura num importante contexto cultural (narrativas de viagem). O curso inclui atividades comunicativas e escritas diversificadas. O conceito centralizador do curso é viagens e toda a revisão gramatical, exercícios orais e escritos foram desenvolvidos baseados nas narrativas de viagem do conhecido e respeitado autor brasileiro, Moacyr Scliar, que ocasionalmente estabelece comparações interessantes entre o Brazil e os Estados Unidos. Este curso oferecerá também uma revisão de tópicos gramaticais estudados previamente (incluindo todos os tempos de verbo, pronomes oblíquos e relativos, plural de substantivos e adjetivos, comparativos e superlativos, advérbios, números ordinais e preposições). A gramática será ensinada de forma comunicativa e o material estudado nos cursos anteriores será revisado e contextualizado. A ênfase do curso é a comunicação, por isso a presença e a participação ativa nas aulas são essenciais.

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International Development

Fall (Agriculture, Economics, Geography, Political Science; 400-level; 3 credits)

A study of how factors such as poverty, population, technology, resources, trade and the environment affect humankind’s effort to develop. The roles of the public and private sectors are discussed as well as the process of policy formulation and implementation. Emphasis is placed upon the agricultural sector and its role in the process of economic development, especially in countries where problems of hunger, demographic pressure and poverty are pervasive. The main objective of this course is to provide a broad understanding of the issues faced by developing countries in their efforts to modernize their economies and the policy options available to help address these issues.

The class will be divided into teams of students. Each team will analyze a nation-state or region working toward developing a clear understanding of the issues and problems of a particular world region.

The instructor will provide an actual non-profit business to the class working in a Third-World country. The teams will utilize the Internet, Skype and other communication methods to assist in the management staff of the business in determining the best possible solutions for the non-profit.

In the conclusion, at the end of the course the student should have a more global perspective of the functions of management, leadership and business. While at the same time, the students are working directly with a business client in the classroom.

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International Development in Agriculture

Spring (Agriculture, Economics; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course aims to provide students with an understanding of international development in the context of agriculture and the environment. Key elements to be covered are the history and philosophy of development, rural poverty and how it is combated, fundamentals of crop and livestock farming systems, and agricultural economics.

The course, taught over a period of 11 weeks, will present an overview of agriculture, rural livelihoods and rural policy and politics in the developing world, placing special emphasis on agricultural development in Brazil.

At a time when agriculture has returned to the top of the international development agenda, students will learn about how agriculture can contribute to poverty alleviation and rural development around the world. Policies and practices of the major international institutions in rural development, including the World Bank, Food and Agriculture Organization and United Nations Development Program, will be reviewed, as well as Brazilian organizations including Brazil’s Landless Workers Movement.

The course seeks to strengthen students’ analytical skills and to transfer relevant knowledge and skills acquired in other disciplines to the subject of rural development and agriculture. Lectures, seminars, group work and individual assignment will cover the different topics to be studied.

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International Economics

Fall (Economics; 300-level; 3 credits)

This course is designed to introduce the core micro- and macro-economic principles which underlie international economic relations. The first part of the course covers the microeconomic issues of international trade and investment and will deal with several key issues including why countries trade, how the gains from trade are distributed, as well as providing an outline of the theory and practice of trade policy. The second part of the course addresses the main topics related to international finance and macroeconomics. It will review national income accounting and the balance of payments, exchange rates, and International macroeconomic policy including European Monetary Union, and crises and reform in Latin American countries. The third part of the course will focus on economic policies in Brazil multilateral economic relations between Brazil and other countries

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International Management

Spring (International Business, Management; 400-level; 3 credits)
Spring (International Business, Management; 600-level; 3 credits)

This course examines the challenges facing managers that are competing in a global economy. In particular, we will devote our attention to strategic management in a globally competitive environment and the role of culture in motivation, leadership, communication, negotiation, decision making, HRM practices, and the management of a multicultural workforce abroad or at home. We will cover the process of management based on both the macro (organizational) level of environment and strategy and the micro (interpersonal) level of culture and human resources. We will also comprise corporate social and environmental responsibility and social and ethical issues in business. The course will give particular attention to management in Latin America and Brazil. Some of the critical topics to be explored include the international environment, managing international strategic planning and implementation, managing people and processes across borders and cultures, ethical dilemmas in international management, and management in Brazil.

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Latin American Economic Perspectives

Spring (Economics, Political Science; 300-level; 3 credits)

This course introduces students to the political economy of Latin America. It will focus on the economic problems and policies of countries of the region, placing particular emphasis on Brazil.

The course will first provide a historical overview of Latin American states, economies and political systems, before moving on to identify and discuss the most important features of Latin American economic development. Students will learn about the principal economic theories and debates present in Latin America today, and the contrasting directions taken by countries such as Argentina, Perú and Venezuela, whose economies will be compared and contrasted.

The Brazilian economy, as the most dominant in the region and one of the biggest emerging markets in the world, will be looked at in detail in the second part of the course. Several areas will be highlighted, including the challenges of industrialization in the 1960s to the present; the legacy of Lula; and what the future holds.

Through the course, students will understand the diversity of economic structures and systems in Latin America, and will develop the tools necessary to analyze and comment on economic perspectives in the region.

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Latin American Political History

Fall (History, Political Science; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course will explore contemporary Latin America and provide a deeper insight into the historical reasons for the present problems which affect the area. Starting with the Independence movements in the early 19th century, the lectures, films, readings and class discussions will topically analyze the lingering colonial influences, the efforts of modernization, the struggles for changes, the enigma of mass poverty, the concept of economic dependency and the challenges that have faced Latin American democracies.

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Latin American Social Inequalities

Fall (Social Work, Sociology; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course examines inequality in Latin America through its class systems, the unequal distribution of income and wealth across groups within countries, and the barriers some groups face in accessing the resources of society. The course will be divided into three parts. In the first part we take a brief historical look at the roots of contemporary inequality. Second, we address issues of measurement of inequality and comparisons of inequality levels between Latin America and other regions of the world as well as between and within countries of Latin America. Finally, we explore aspects and consequences of inequality for life chances in the areas of employment, education and health care. Besides appropriate readings there will be a number of class trips in the city of Florianópolis to observe first hand some of the issues discussed in class.

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Minas Gerais Field Study

Spring (200-level; 1 credit)

Minas Gerais has always occupied a very important role in Brazilian history and society. The fourth largest state in the country, with a population of just over 20 million, it was once a key player in the Portuguese Empire, due to the large quantities of gold, diamonds and other precious stones which were discovered in abundance from the late 17th century. As a result of the state’s mining importance, it became a focal point for trade and for slavery, and flourished as a center of the arts and architecture, with splendorous churches and colonial buildings. It was also home to the first independence movement in Brazil, the ‘Inconfidência Mineira’ (Conspiracy Movement). Minas Gerais has a collection of beautiful historical towns, three of which students will visit on this study tour.

For this optional 1-credit field study, students will choose one from three of the most important aspects of the Minas Gerais Tour: Slavery and Mining, Art and Architecture, and the Conspiracy Movement. Throughout the 5 days of the tour, students will have the opportunity to explore and learn about their chosen topic through the activities offered, which include guided visits to mines, museums, churches and other places of historical and cultural importance. As the tour progresses, students will be expected to take notes, photographs, ask questions and participate in discussions. By the end of the tour, they will have sufficient material, allied to the recommended reading, with which to produce a written assignment detailing their analysis of the chosen topic.

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Natural Resource Management

Fall (Biology, Environmental Science; 400-level; 3 credits)
Spring (Biology, Environmental Science; 400-level; 3 credits)

The management of natural resources is of extreme global importance, ever more so as we consider the threats facing our planet of dwindling resources and climate change.

This course addresses the great problem of life on Earth in the 21st century: how to preserve and protect natural resources while at the same time meet human needs which are ever increasing. It outlines the importance of the protection of natural resources throughout the world, and at the same time searches for ways in which the environment can be maintained and managed to meet our needs and ensure our ongoing survival.

Great emphasis is therefore placed on human interactions with the environment and the balancing of uses, needs and values in the area of natural resources.

As home to one of the largest and richest ecosystems in the world, the Amazon, and some of the most important natural resources, Brazil offers an ideal setting to study natural resource management. Focusing on the topics of rainforests, rivers and mining, local examples and cases will be viewed in order to equip students with a greater understanding of this fascinating field of study.

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People and Culture of Brazil

Fall (Anthropology, Latin American Studies; 200-level; 3 credits)

This class is an introduction to the culture and society of contemporary Brazil. We will focus on the urban experience, with attention to race, gender, inequality and mobilization for social justice. Specific case studies will look at contemporary social issues such as urban violence in favelas (poor neighborhoods), middle-class life under economic crisis, popular religion and rural social movements. These readings will be rooted in ethnography, or long-term qualitative research. We will also examine some of Brazil’s most famous national features such as carnival, samba and soccer.

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Peoples of the Amazon

Fall (Anthropology, Sociology; 400-level; 3 credits)
Spring (Anthropology, Sociology; 400-level; 3 credits)

The course is intended to give a general introduction to the cultures of Amerindian peoples that live in Lowland South America (including but not limited to the Amazon basin). The course has four parts. The first is an overview of the pre-history of Amerindian populations, historical ecology and languages spoken by Amazonian Indians. The second explores two different variations on the subject of social organization of Amerindians. The third part examines some of the classical themes that have informed anthropological debate about Amazonian peoples (the body, shamanism, human-nature relations, “pure” vs. “mixed” peoples). The final part discusses a sample of the different struggles of contemporary indigenous peoples in the context of their ever-increasing contact and exchange with the surrounding society and state representatives

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Politics in Brazil

Spring (400-level; 3 credits)

This course will provide a historical and contemporary overview of the Brazilian political system and an analysis of the relationship between Brazilian politics and society.

The course will deal with authoritarianism and hierarchy in Brazil’s colonial and post-independence past, and how it influenced the country’s political setup; military rule and the dictatorship of Getulio Vargas; the transition to democracy, political elites and the representation of minorities; current successes and failures of Brazilian democracy; and the political challenges facing Brazil in the 21st century.

The second part of the course will focus on civil society and cultural politics in Brazil, and the complex relationship between the two. Students will learn about how the country’s unique social and cultural history has shaped politics and policy-making in the present.

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Portuguese Composition I

Spring (Other Foreign Language; 300-level; 3 credits)

This course focuses on helping students advance their writing skills, review some grammar points, and acquire more advanced oral proficiency and cultural competence through action learning. The textbooks and class discussions will foment opportunities for the students to express themselves in written and spoken Portuguese. The topics selected and the readings will help them expand their vocabulary and apply the target language to address everyday situations. The areas covered in this course focus on several aspects of Brazilian modern society (agriculture, technology, arts, culture, health, lifestyle, tourism, sports, environment, and immigration issues). In addition, students will read and complete a reading log of selected Brazilian crônicas (short literary/journalistic pieces, first published in newspapers and later collected in a volume). The collection of crônicas chosen for this course was written by the well-known Brazilian writer, Luis Fernando Verissimo. The unifying concept of his crônicas is gastronomy (all subjects related to eating and drinking, food, spices, and his personal experiences during his trips in Brazil and throughout the world). Each class combines a variety of discussions and review of grammar embedded in the context of the topic discussed. Emphasis is in reading/writing in combination with oral expressions. Class attendance and active participation are required.

Este curso tem como objetivo ajudar os alunos a avançar usa habilidade de escrever bem, rever ponots gramaticais e adquirir porficiência oral e competência cultural. Os livros e as discussões na sala darão oportunidades aos alunos de se expressarem por escrito e de forma oral. O tópicos do livros escolhidos ajudarão os alunos a expandirem seu vocabulário e a usar a língua portuguesa em vários contextos. As áreas cobertas neste curso enfocam vários aspectos da moderna sociedade brasileira (agricultura, tecnologia, artes, cultura, saúde, estilo de vida, turismo, esportes, meio-ambiente e imigração). Os alunos também lerão e completarão fichas de leitura sobre um livro de crônicas do famoso escritor brasileiro, Luis Fernando Verissimo. O tema deste livro é gastronomia (assuntos relacionados a comer, beber, temperos, experiências pessoais e mviagens pelo Brasil e pel o mundo). Cada aula apresenta uma variedade de discussões e revisará pontos gramaticais embutidos no contexto do tópico discutido. A ênfase é em ler e escrever em combinação com as expressões orais. Frequencia às aulas e a participação ativa são essenciais.

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Portuguese Composition II

Spring (Other Foreign Language; 300-level; 3 credits)

This course helps the students further advance their writing skills, by focusing on a variety of techniques. It is intended for students who can already communicate well and want to polish their linguistic competence. The textbooks and class discussions will foment opportunities for the students to advance their ability to express themselves in written and spoken Portuguese. This course will provide ample opportunity for the students to expand their vocabulary and apply the target language to address cultural questions and intercultural differences. The students will learn some strategies to edit their own texts and to write informative, clear, concise, and grammatically correct texts. The students will also read and complete a reading log of selected Brazilian short stories. The collection chosen for this course includes several contemporary writers. Class attendance and active participation are required.

Este curso leva os alunos avançarem sua habilidade de escrever, salientando uma variedade de técnica. É um curso desenhado para quem já se comunica bem e quer polir sua competência linguística. Os livros e as discussões da sala de aula fomentarão oportunidades para os alunos expandirem seu vocabulário e usar o português em várias situações culturais e interculturais. Os alunos aprenderão estratégias de editar textos e escrever textos claros, concisos e gramaticalmente corretos. Lerão um conjunto de contos brasileiros cuja coleção inclui vários escritores contemporâneos. A frequência às aulas e participação ativa são mandatórias.

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Portuguese Conversation I

Spring (200-level; 2 - 3 credits)

Portuguese Conversation is an intensive, two-credit language course plus one optional credit (practicing the language in a local activity), designed for students who have taken two semesters of Portuguese at college-level. This course complements the development of linguistic competences taught at the two hundred level courses. The main emphasis of this course is on oral communication and, therefore, class attendance and active participation are essential. As for the optional credit, the students will have to practice 30 hours of Portuguese in a class or university activity that is fully in Portuguese, such as: Culinária Brasileira (Brazilian cuisine), Capoeira (a traditional Brazilian mix of dance and fighting), Cinema brasileiro and/or futebol (soccer).

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Portuguese Conversation II

Spring (Portuguese; 300-level; 2 - 3 credits)

Portuguese Conversation II is a two-credit language course plus one optional credit (practicing the language in a local activity) designed for students who have taken four semesters of Portuguese at college-level. This course complements the development of linguistic competences taught at the three-hundred level courses. The main emphasis of this course is on oral communication and, therefore, class attendance and active participation are essential. As for the optional credit, the students will have to practice 30 hours of Portuguese in a class or university activity that is fully in Portuguese, such as: Culinária Brasileira (Brazilian cuisine), Capoeira (a traditional Brazilian mix of dance and fighting), Cinema Brasileiro and/or futebol (soccer).

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Principles of Conservation

Fall (Biology, Environmental Science; 200-level; 3 credits)

This course aims to provide students with an understanding of the principles, theory and values of conservation. The course approaches the scientific principles of the conservation of biodiversity in the context of a human dominated world.

Throughout the course, students will be able to develop a broad understanding of how habitat loss, fragmentation, overexploitation, introduction of exotic species and environmental factors threat biological diversity. We examine the spatial-temporal scale at which they occur, from individual decision-makers to international treaties and from local habitat degradation to global climate change.

We also look at the difficult issues surrounding conservation – Why conserve? Who is it for? Who gains and losses from conservation action? When is a species endangered and where should conservation effort be placed? How do we value nature and how do we make complex trade-offs between the values held by different people?

Local references of Florianopolis and other Brazilian ecosystems and conservation projects will be used, so that students can gain an understanding of conservation in a Brazilian context. Students will be able to participate actively in fieldwork so that they can see at first hand some of the country's most important ecoregion, the Atlantic Rainforest, and the mangrove and sandbank ecosystems.

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Strategic Management and Policy

Fall (Management, Political Science; 400-level; 3 credits)

Strategic Management is a course designed to provide the student with a thorough overview of the management principles and techniques. In this course the student will experience hands-on practical application of theory and concepts working in tandem with actual businesses coming to the classroom setting.

This is a critical thinking course. Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action. In its exemplary form, it is based on universal intellectual values that transcend subject matter divisions: clarity, accuracy, precision, consistency, relevance, sound evidence, good reasons, depth, breadth, and fairness.

It will be the goal of the course to present students with real life situations and problems encompassing all the aspects found in the business world. The students will work in a group setting as independent teams striving toward the same ultimate goal, that of assisting the client-business in achieving long-term competitive advantage in its particular area of operation.

Ideally, the groups will be small teams of students utilizing their educational specialization to work cohesively with their other team members in achieving the best overall ideas and implementation for the business client.

The instructor will provide material relevant to the project and the client.

In the conclusion, at the end of the course the student should have a more global perspective of the functions of management, leadership and business. While at the same time, the students are working directly with a business client in the classroom.

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Surfing

Fall (Recreation / Physical Education; 100-level; 1 credit)
Spring (Recreation / Physical Education; 100-level; 1 credit)

This course is offered by a surf school at one of the world’s best surfing locations, Florianópolis.

For both the Fall and Spring semesters, students will meet once per week for 10 weeks in order to complete the course. The programmed order of sessions is subject to changes for reasons beyond our control, such as inclement weather, very big waves, strong rip currents, etc.

The surf school will provide all necessary equipment and insurance, as well as showers and a locker room.

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Survey of Brazilian Literature

Fall (Other Foreign Language; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course will introduce students to some of the works of the best known Brazilian writers from the second half of the 19th century onwards, focusing on the following literary schools:

1. 16th - 18th century: Colonial Period to Romanticism

Realism

Brazilian Modernism

Contemporary Literature

The course will take students on a literary journey from colonial times to the present day, with stops to visit Brazil’s most important and influential writers, including Machado de Assis, Mario de Andrade, Jorge Amado and Clarice Lispector.

Classes will involve discussions on selected readings, a focus on different literary styles of Brazil, and some of the key themes which are introduced by different influences of the country’s literature: including social inequalities, class divisions and a struggle for identity in the emergence of the Brazilian nation.

Students with a particular interest in the Portuguese language are invited to take this class to further their communication skills and knowledge of the literature of the country they have chosen to study abroad in.

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Sustainable Agriculture

Fall (Agriculture; 200-level; 3 credits)

Agricultural sustainability is a wide-ranging area that encompasses biological, ecological, social, economic, political and ethical perspectives. In this course, students will explore some of the key elements of agriculture and agricultural sustainability, primarily from the viewpoint of natural sciences. The resources and conditions required by agriculture will be examined in the light of the 21st century, climate change and other issues of sustainability. Brazil will be used as a key case study, and important examples of sustainable agriculture will be drawn from other Latin American countries and the US. The course will include components of laboratory exercises and field trips, allowing students to come into contact with a number of production practices and agricultural systems. An assessment of the sustainability of agricultural operations in Brazil will be made, permitting students to understand the ecology and management of crops, soils and livestock in the region.

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Sustainable and Economic Development in Brazil

Spring (Economics; 400-level; 3 credits)

This course will analyze the economic challenges facing Brazil in its quest for development. The course will be divided into three sections. In the first section, we will address the challenges of achieving long-term economic growth. Focusing on specific projects in Brazil’s recent history, we will examine what causes some development strategies to succeed and others to fail. In particular, we will focus on the role played by the government (i.e., state-ownership, macroeconomic policy and microecomonic incentives), economic openness (i.e., trade and capital account liberalization and economic integration), and multilateral lending institutions and non-governmental organizations in fostering development. In the second part of the course, we will address the challenges of generating equitable and sustainable growth. After examining the trends in poverty and inequality in specific regions of Brazil, we will analyze which development strategies and government policies result in more equitable outcomes. In the final part of the course, we will focus on the causes and consequences of one of the key obstacles to sustainable development in Brazil today: deforestation.

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Trade in the Americas: Mercosul and NAFTA

Spring (Economics, Political Science; 400-level; 3 credits)

Latin America has become one of the most dynamic growth regions in the world and a hub of trade and commercial activity. With a US$4.8 trillion economy, 600 million citizens and a growing middle-class, the countries of Latin America represent markets of growing importance for businesses and trade institutions.

One of the key trade blocs in the region is Mercosul, and this course aims to present the importance of Mercosul on a regional and global level, to compare and contrast Mercosul with NAFTA, its North American equivalent, and to analyze trade policies and practices adopted by both sets of countries, and relative successes and failures of each.

The course will provide students with a comprehensive understanding of how trade works in the Americas on both a macro and micro level.

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Wildlife Conservation

Spring (Environmental Science, Political Science; 200-level; 3 credits)

This course aims to provide students with an understanding of the principles which underpin contemporary ecological science, wildlife conservation and habitat management. The course combines the scientific principles of animal function and behavior with conservation biology.

Throughout the course, students will be able to develop a broad understanding of the interactions between biodiversity loss and human society. We analyze the biological and social processes that lead to biodiversity loss. We examine the spatio-temporal scale at which they occur, from individual decision-makers to international treaties, and from local habitat degradation to global climate change.

We also look at the difficult issues surrounding conservation – who is it for? Who gains and loses from conservation action? How do we value nature and how do we make difficult trade-offs between the values held by different people?

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