J-Term Programs

Semester Break Programs

Social and Political Transformation in Ecuador


This course explorea socioeconomic issues in Ecuador as manifested in the country's growing inequality and the proliferation of new social movements to address this crisis. Particular emphasis will be placed on indigenous rights, gender equality, the protection and management of natural resources, and Ecuador's new constitution. Ecuador can stand as a microcosm of the wider Andean region, and provides an ideal setting for this dynamic inquiry, with complex social and economic circumstances, a mix of indigenous and European cultural and political institutions, and a division between a growing leftist movement and a historically conservative middle and upper class. Students will gain a firsthand perspective on these phenomena, with fieldwork and NGO site visits in and around the beautiful capital city of Quito and in more distant rural communities. Spanish-language ability is helpful but not necessary: host families will contain at least one English speaker, and translators will be provided in the field. 4 credits.