Specialization Coordinator: TBA

The Brazilian Studies specialization in the Master of Arts in Latin American Studies (MALAS) provides a well-rounded study of Brazilian history, culture, and society, preparing students for careers in academia, foreign service, and international/transnational organizations. Faculty and courses draw from the social and natural sciences, the humanities, and the arts to provide training and research opportunities for students whose career plans and educational goals center on Brazil, Latin America’s largest and only Lusophone nation.

Students interested in Brazil will find a richness of resources and opportunities at the University of Florida. We offer targeted Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) fellowships funding for the study of Brazilian Portuguese. We have one of the oldest continuous Study Abroad opportunities open to graduate students, UF in Rio. UF library collection of Brazilian and Brazilianist holdings is among the top in the nation. Read more about UF’s connections to Brazil here.

Purpose of specializations in Latin American Studies
  • To help graduate students and advisors to navigate the vast and constantly shifting curricular landscape supporting Latin American Studies at UF.
  • To foster connection and collaboration around shared interests among current and prospective UF faculty and students.


12 credits total, including courses from at least two academic programs.


Students pursuing the specialization in Brazilian Studies must have previous knowledge of Portuguese and/or completed Composition and Conversation (POR 3243) or an equivalent course approved by the specialization coordinator.

Contributing Courses: select 12 credits, at least 3 as LAS 6938
  • ANG 5336/LAS 6938 Peoples of Brazil
  • ANG 6930 Indigenous Peoples of the Amazon
  • GEO 6466 Seminar on Amazonia
  • LAH 5637 Brazil after 1750
  • LAH 5607 History of Amazonia
  • LAH 6936 Historiography of Brazil
  • LAS 6938/MUH 6935 Music and the Construction of Brazilian Identity
  • MUH 6549 Seminar on Brazilian Music
  • POW 6276 Twentieth Century Brazilian Novel
  • POW 6385 Brazilian Lyric
  • POW 6386 Brazilian Drama
  • POW 6905 Individual Work
  • POW 6930 Special Topics in Brazilian Portuguese/Literature*
  • FOR 6668 Community Forest Management
  • LAS 6290 The Amazon

Also relevant are variable topics courses (LAS 6938/ANG 6930) and independent studies with 100% Brazil-related content.

Graduate students may also arrange to take undergraduate courses in POW with some adjustments. See Dr. M. Elizabeth Ginway for details and consult Specialization Coordinator for approval.


Emilio Bruna (Latin American Studies/Wildlife Ecology) Tropical conservation; scientometrics

Larry Crook (Music) Ethnomusicology; Percussion

Andréa Ferreira (Spanish and Portuguese Studies) Race and Nation-Building, Brazilian Literature and History

M. Elizabeth Ginway (Spanish and Portuguese Studies) Brazilian Literature, Science Fiction, Cinema

Michael Heckenberger (Anthropology) Amazon, Ethnoarchaeology, Embodiment, Urban Studies

Karen Kainer (Latin American Studies/Forest Resources and Conservation) Brazil, Mexico, Community-based forest management, Tropical forest ecology, Amazon conservation, and sustainable development

Michael Leslie (Telecommunication); Race, Communication, and Development

Jeffrey Needell (History) Brazilian History, Early Modern Latin America; History of Amazonia

Stephen Perz (Sociology) Environment, Population, development, and Quantitative Methods

Mary Risner (Latin American Studies) Languages for Specific Purposes (LSP); Global Education, Project Manager for Florida-Brazil Linkage Institute

Marianne Schmink (Latin American Studies Emerita) Anthropology; Amazon, Gender and Development

Cynthia Simmons (Geography) Agrarian Reform, Land Conflict, Political Ecology

Jeanne-Marie Stacciarini (Nursing) Mental Health Nursing, Mixed Methods Research, Brazilian Healthcare System

Welson Tremura (Latin American Studies/Music) Brazilian Music, Ethnomusicology

Robert Walker (Latin American Studies/Geography) Amazon, Land Change, Geospatial Analysis

Robin Wright (Religion) Indigenous Religious Traditions