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Spanish 1110 Net

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Welcome to the Latin American Civilization Library Resource Guide - Spanish 1110 NET

This guide will help you find books, videos and articles for use in completing your coursework in Spanish 1110 NET Latin American Civilization course. Select a country and find information on Art and Architecture, Culture, History and Geography on that country in a variety of formats, including books, e-books and streaming videos.

If you need additional help, please feel free to contact me or a reference librarian: Ask A Librarian.
Online students: You'll need a COD library card to access many of these resources. To get a library card click here.
 


Argentina

  1. Books
  2. Databases & Videos

Many of the following books are available online. You will need a current library card to access books online. COD Online students can request a library card online. Please note that some books are available for one simultaneous user only. Titles of books available in print will include the call number.

Art & Architecture
Culture, History & Geography
Databases
  • CultureGrams
    Use CultureGrams as a guide to understanding the world's peoples through the documentation of the unique details of their customs, traditions, and daily life.
    Click on the link to CultureGrams, then click on the "World Edition" box, and then click on either North America or South America. From here, select the county of choice. On the left side of the page there are several options to learn more about the country and its people, including background, Customs & Courtesies, society and lifestyle.
Online Films
  • Blood Ties
    "First the junta murdered their sons and daughters. Then, it stole their grandchildren. Under Argentina’s harsh military dictatorship, an entire generation vanished. This is their story. First the junta murdered their sons and daughters. Then, it stole their grandchildren. Under Argentina’s harsh military dictatorship, an entire generation vanished. Amongst the tens of thousands of disappeared were hundreds of pregnant women. Mothers-to-be were tortured, blindfolded while giving birth and murdered. Babies were raised by their parent’s killers. Today the children and parents of the disappeared are forcing Argentina to confront its past. t was the most notorious of Argentina’s concentration camps. From the offices of ESMA, fleets of green unmarked Ford Falcons were dispatched to round up ‘undesirables’. In its basement dungeons, victims were raped, tortured and starved before finally being sent on ‘doorless flights’ and dumped in the ocean. It was here, amidst all this misery, that Victoria Donda was born. 'When I was born, my mother thought they would take me to the nursery,' confides Victoria. 'She put blue string braids in my hair so that she would be able to recognise me.' But there was no nursery at ESMA. Victoria was renamed ‘Analia’ and given to ESMA’s second in command to bring up. It was only decades later that she learnt the truth. Despite the horrors of her birth, Victoria still loves her adoptive parents. She sees herself as having two sets of parents. 'Both of them are my mothers and both of them are my fathers.' But Victoria’s adoptive father shot himself when the circumstances of her birth were revealed. He survived but; 'was wounded and sent to a psychiatric hospital.' Victoria is now training as a lawyer and helping to defend her adoptive mother from child abduction charges. Not all the children of the disappeared were raised by the guilty. Manuel Goncalves was dumped in an orphanage where he was later adopted by loving parents. When he was 19, he was approached by a forensic anthropologist who; 'told me things that were very hard to take in.' Fortunately, Manuel quickly bonded with his biological family. But for every successful reunion, there are six or seven grandmothers desperately searching for their missing grandchildren. 'Sometimes I dream I might meet my grandson on the street,' confides Estella de Carlotta, President of Grandmothers of the Plaza De Mayo. 'I would not even recognise him and he wouldn’t recognise me.' Others don’t want to be reunited with their biological families. 'They have been raised in a very controlled family environment based on lies and hidden truths,' explains Estella. For these people, embracing a new family is an act of disloyalty towards their ‘raising parents.’ Of the hundreds of children known to have been stolen at birth, just 85 have been traced. Their abductions are the dictatorship’s most cruel and lasting legacy."
  • Homage to the Yaghans: The Last Indians of Tierra del Fuego and Cape Horn
    "Homage to the Yaghans was filmed with 16mm cameras in Tierra del Fuego and the Cape Horn area (Chile and Argentina) during the summer of 1987 and the winter of 1988. It was first presented in the United States at the New York Academy of Sciences in early 1990., Homage to the Yaghans was filmed with 16mm cameras in Tierra del Fuego and the Cape Horn area (Chile and Argentina) during the summer of 1987 and the winter of 1988. It was first presented in the United States at the New York Academy of Sciences in early 1990. The video's purpose is twofold. The first is to achieve an understanding of certain episodes of western expansion, beginning in the early seventeenth century, which finally led to the extinction of the Yaghan people. The second is to gain an appreciation of the courage and fortitude of a people who had survived for thousands of years in one of the most inhospitable regions of the planet, but who had been judged by many Europeans as the most degraded human beings in the entire world. Homage focuses on the personality and life of a Yaghan called "Jemmy Button" who was taken to England in 1831 by Captain Fitz-Roy and returned to his homeland two years later during Fitz-Roy's second expedition, in the company of Charles Darwin. Jemmy Button died in 1864, a victim of the first in a series of epidemics which decimated his people. The video ends with scenes of the four women who still speak Yaghan (as well as Spanish) and who live on Navarino Island, on the south shore of Beagle Channel in Chile. One of the four Yaghan-speaking women vividly remembers witnessing the last enactment of the great initiation ceremony, the Chiexaus, held on Navarino Island circa 1932."
  • The Mystery of Eva Peron
    "Actress, seductress, political powerhouse and cultural icon of Argentina and the world, the life and legend of María Eva Duarte de Perón, or Evita, as she came to be known, endures to this day. Yet Evita, a woman of poor origins who rose to become the first lady of Argentina, was as hated by the upperclass of her country as she was loved by the poor masses whose cause she championed. Featuring rare film materials and interviews with Eva’s personal acquaintances, critics and historians, a balanced and finally complete picture emerges of Evita’s life, death, and the history of postwar Argentina. Interspersed with this fascinating portrait of an ambitious woman's rise to power is the bizarre story of her embalmed corpse, illustrating, decades after her death in 1952, the continuing power of her life."
  • Raul, The Terrible: Argentina's Robin Hood
    "In December 2001, there was a seismic shift in Argentina's economic and political landscape. The government devalued the currency and froze people's savings effectively pushing the middle class into the even larger pool of working poor. Currently, there are 20 million people below the poverty line. Countless children suffer malnutrition and many die from it. Unemployment and homelessness are rampant. In response to this crisis, a leader has emerged ready to do battle with the corrupt political system and corporations that exploit the poor. He is Raul Castells, born in the city of Rosario, birthplace of the legendary Che Guevara. He is a walking talking, pushing, barging force of nature. Along with his supporters, he has taken over MacDonalds outlets, occupied casinos and invaded government buildings. With intimate and often dangerously close access, Raul the Terrible is a warts-and-all portrait of a man driven to change the world, and a frightening insight into the politics of poverty"


Brazil

  1. Books
  2. Databases & Videos
Databases
  • CultureGrams
    Use CultureGrams as a guide to understanding the world's peoples through the documentation of the unique details of their customs, traditions, and daily life.
    Click on the link to CultureGrams, then click on the "World Edition" box, and then click on either North America or South America. From here, select the county of choice. On the left side of the page there are several options to learn more about the country and its people, including background, Customs & Courtesies, society and lifestyle.
Online Films
  • Afro Brazil
    "If you are a person of color in Brazil, the chances are the negative impact of historical slavery is still with you. That's the bad news."
  • Body of Rio
    "Rio de Janeiro: the carioca way of life and worship of the body encourage eroticism as well as an increasing cult of youth. It’s the city of miscegenation – encounters between Portuguese conquerors, Indian native populations, African slaves, European immigrants. The popular culture of samba and carnival is mythically embodied by the mulata. The film is loosely inspired by Izabel Jaguaribe’s book 'The Guide-Map of the Marvellous in Rio de Janeira' and draws the 'erotic profile' of a city that is tattooed on its inhabitant’s bodies. The film’s director, Izabel Jaguaribe, is one of the most innovative and lively scholars of contemporary Brazilian culture. Her cultural maps of urban Brazil are designed to foment critical debate about estrangement, belonging and diversity."
  • Brasilia
    "The experience of a capital created from nothing 40 years ago on a desert plateau in Brazil."
  • Brazil: An Inconvenient History
    "While everyone knows of the history of slavery in the USA, few people realize that Brazil was actually the largest participant in the slave trade. Forty percent of all slaves that survived the Atlantic crossing were destined for Brazil, while only 4% were sent to the U.S. At one time half of the population of Brazil were slaves. It was the last country to officially abolish slavery (1888) and one of the ex-slaves is still alive today. This well-researched BBC production charts Brazil's history using original texts, letters, accounts and decrees. From these original sources, we learn firsthand about the brutality of the slave traders and slave owners, and the hardship of plantation life. With the Portugese colony of Angola acting as a "factory" supplying Africans to Brazil, it was cheaper to replace any slave starved and worked to death than to extend his life by treating him humanely. Few plantation owners sent for their wives to live in this hot climate, so the softening effect of family life was absent among the rough white settlers. Historians Joao Jose Reis, Cya Teixeira, Marilene Rosa Da Silva, anthropologist Peter Fry, and others recount the effect of centuries of slavery on Brazil today. This is an important documentary for Black history, African history and Latin American studies"
  • Children of Brazil
    "Luis Carlos, also called "The Rat" and Luciano de Souca, also known as "The Chinaman" are gang members who were abandoned as kids to the streets of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. These two Cariocas teenagers have been left to their own devices all their lives and have survived by begging, stealing, and dealing in drugs. Brightening this harsh life are the friendships that have sustained them, their loyalty to each other, and their contagious high spirits that emerge at events like Carnival. This film allows them to speak in their own words. For Luis, the controlling imperatives are eating and surviving. China, the sixteen-year-old gang leader has a canniness and intelligence that allows his to survive on the fringe of society. He steals to buy food and also glue whose fumes provide him with a blissful high -- the only happiness he has ever known. Unemployment, population explosion and the break up of families is the root cause of the abandonment of such kids all over the Third World. This unique document was filmed despite the barriers put up by a government that does not want such images revealed"
  • Colors of Brazil
    "If you are a person of color in Brazil, your African ancestry dominates the cultural landscape. That's the good news."
  • Inside Brazil
    "This edition goes on location to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil to investigate race relations in this multi-ethnic South American country and uncovers some provocative insights about how Brazilians feel about the issue of race and race problems."
  • Rio de Janeiro
    "The most agreeable city in Brazil was also the site of the most successful architectural creations of the 20th century."


Chile

  1. Books
  2. Databases & Videos

Many of the following books are available online. You will need a current library card to access books online. COD Online students can request a library card online. Please note that some books are available for one simultaneous user only. Titles of books available in print will include the call number.

Art & Architecture
Culture, History & Geography
Databases
  • CultureGrams
    Use CultureGrams as a guide to understanding the world's peoples through the documentation of the unique details of their customs, traditions, and daily life.
    Click on the link to CultureGrams, then click on the "World Edition" box, and then click on either North America or South America. From here, select the county of choice. On the left side of the page there are several options to learn more about the country and its people, including background, Customs & Courtesies, society and lifestyle.
Online Films
  • Chile: Pinochet's Legacy
    "Augusto Pinochet. His name and that sour disapproving face are familiar the world over. He was the last in the long line of military strongmen who once dominated South America. Now he too has left the army; not in disgrace though, but with full honours from the soldiers he led for a quarter of century and as president of Chile. Pinochet leaves behind a democracy and also a country more prosperous than it was when he took over. To his supporters, Pinochet is a hero; the man who saved Chile from chaos and communism, but to his detractors he should be tried for crimes against humanity"
  • Chile: Hasta Cuando?
    "This is the story of a country racked with political repression and torture. The film flashes back to the violence of 1973 in which the country's military, backed by the U. S., overthrew the government of Salvadore Allende, replacing it with the dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet. It is the Pinochet government's harsh, repressive measures that are recorded in this searing documentary. The film crew risked their lives to capture this story of indiscriminate arrests, military intimidation, brutal murders and disappearances, all taking place while Chile's elite enjoyed the good life."
  • Chile: A History in Exile
    "Cecilia Aranada returned to Chile years after her family had escaped the bloody Pinochet regime. Her own mother had been held and tortured in the Estadio Nacional, the infamous stadium from which many never emerged. She was shocked that in Chile today, many did not know of the horrors of the Pinochet regime. Instead, they attribute today's prosperity to progress under the dictator. Interviewing Chileans who escaped at that time, including one of Allende's guards, she records the powerful memories of those who were torn from their families, beaten, raped and subjected to electric shock. With deep emotion, they speak of the friends and relatives they lost. They recall the promise of the Allende regime, the first Marxist democracy in Latin America, where there seemed to be new opportunities for peasants and workers. On September 11, 1973 Allende was killed in a military coup and the reign of terror began. A generation has grown up in Chile with no knowledge of this history. But voices from exile provide irrefutable testimony."
  • Empire of the Incas
    "For nearly 100 years, the Incas ruled the largest empire in South American history. The Incas had a society based on community and co-operation, with power controlled firmly by the Sapa Inca and the royal family. They were brilliant engineers, constructing magnificent forts and cities, and built roads, tunnels and bridges through mountains. Medical and surgical techniques were highly advanced, as were observations of the sun, moon and stars. But, above all, their devotion to the gods was paramount. Invasion by Spanish Conquistadors in the early 1500's began the demise of the Incan Empire. This program was filmed on location in Peru, Bolivia and Chile."
  • Homage to the Yaghans: The Last Indians of Tierra del Fuego and Cape Horn
    "Homage to the Yaghans was filmed with 16mm cameras in Tierra del Fuego and the Cape Horn area (Chile and Argentina) during the summer of 1987 and the winter of 1988. It was first presented in the United States at the New York Academy of Sciences in early 1990., Homage to the Yaghans was filmed with 16mm cameras in Tierra del Fuego and the Cape Horn area (Chile and Argentina) during the summer of 1987 and the winter of 1988. It was first presented in the United States at the New York Academy of Sciences in early 1990. The video's purpose is twofold. The first is to achieve an understanding of certain episodes of western expansion, beginning in the early seventeenth century, which finally led to the extinction of the Yaghan people. The second is to gain an appreciation of the courage and fortitude of a people who had survived for thousands of years in one of the most inhospitable regions of the planet, but who had been judged by many Europeans as the most degraded human beings in the entire world. Homage focuses on the personality and life of a Yaghan called "Jemmy Button" who was taken to England in 1831 by Captain Fitz-Roy and returned to his homeland two years later during Fitz-Roy's second expedition, in the company of Charles Darwin. Jemmy Button died in 1864, a victim of the first in a series of epidemics which decimated his people. The video ends with scenes of the four women who still speak Yaghan (as well as Spanish) and who live on Navarino Island, on the south shore of Beagle Channel in Chile. One of the four Yaghan-speaking women vividly remembers witnessing the last enactment of the great initiation ceremony, the Chiexaus, held on Navarino Island circa 1932."
  • The Lost Gods of Easter Island
    "A grotesque head, attached to a body grossly elongated and as thin as a stick, carved in wood.' When David Attenborough saw this remarkable carving at an auction, he knew it was more important than the auctioneers believed. He bought it, and tried to find out more about it. The search takes him all over the globe, from Russia to Australia, England to Easter Island, where the truth lies. In a very different role from that of explorer and observer of wildlife, David changes his spots to become a historical detective on the trail of a small wooden figurine with a unique history"
  • Patagonia Rising
    "Deep in the heart of Chile's Patagonia region flow two of the world's purest rivers, the Baker and Pascua. Fed by vast glacial systems, these untouched rivers drive biodiversity in rainforests, estuaries and marine ecosystems. They are also the life source for Patagonia's most tenacious residents: the Gauchos, the iconic South American cowboy. Now, five huge hydroelectric dams are planned for the two rivers. Over the past century more than 45,000 large dams have altered the health of the planet's rivers with disastrous impacts that continue to unfold. Capturing the heated battle between those who wish to exploit the rivers and those who wish to preserve them, Patagonia Rising brings awareness - and solutions - to this global conflict over water and power."


Colombia

  1. Books
  2. Databases & Videos
Many of the following books are available online. You will need a current library card to access books online. COD Online students can request a library card online. Please note that some books are available for one simultaneous user only. Titles of books available in print will include the call number.

Art & Architecture
Culture, History & Geography
Databases
  • CultureGrams
    Use CultureGrams as a guide to understanding the world's peoples through the documentation of the unique details of their customs, traditions, and daily life.
    Click on the link to CultureGrams, then click on the "World Edition" box, and then click on either North America or South America. From here, select the county of choice. On the left side of the page there are several options to learn more about the country and its people, including background, Customs & Courtesies, society and lifestyle.
Online Films
  • Busco Personas: The Faces of Colombia's War
    "Possibly the most downplayed conflict of today, the forty-year-old Colombian war shows no signs of ceasing. It's fed by a billion dollar drug trade, political division and an international land battle."
  • Lost World of El Dorado
    "In the 16th century, South America was the destination for countless Spanish Conquistadors in search for the wealth of the New World. Their quest was fuelled by a strange rumour that somewhere in the unexplored heart of the continent was a city of gold. This was known as El Dorado. Although the search for it continued for over a hundred years, El Dorado was never discovered. Ancient Voices joins archaeologist Dr Tony Spawforth on an investigation that will lead him to the true story behind the legendary city of gold."
  • War of the Gods
    "While relying on a polemical stance directed against the cultural genocide wrought by missionaries, War of the Gods also contains a wealth of information and detail about Amazonian Indian cosmology, social life and sexual division of labour. Two groups of Indians from the Vaupes region of Colombia are shown, the Maku, who live mainly by hunting and gathering, and the sedentary Barasana, who live mainly by farming. The film contrasts the belief systems and way of life of the Indians, presented by the anthropologists who worked and lived with them, with those of Protestant and Catholic missionaries. The Protestants, North American Fundamentalists from the Summer Institute of Linguistics, are said to have used their organisation as a cover in order to be allowed to work with the Indians, because open Protestant missionary activity would not have been acceptable to the authorities. No attempt is made to gloss over the complexities of contact between Whites and Indians: the Barasana themselves want change, and the missionaries' influence is undoubtedly more beneficial to the Indians than that of rubber gatherers. Included in this film is an interview — using voice-over — with a Maku shaman, and there are scenes from the Barasana moloka, the communal house which is a centre of social and domestic activity. The climax of the film is a contrasting look at a church service at the S.I.L. headquarters, a Barasana ritual dance (accompanied by the ritual use of the hallucinogen yage), and a Mass at the Catholic mission attended by some of the Indians who took part in the ritual dance. Some missionaries who have seen this film consider that its editing is unfair to the S.I.L., but the head of another important missionary organisation has said that it should be screened during missionary training courses."


Costa Rica

  1. Books
  2. Databases & Videos

Many of the following books are available online. You will need a current library card to access books online. COD Online students can request a library card online. Please note that some books are available for one simultaneous user only. Titles of books available in print will include the call number.

Art & Architecture
Culture, History & Geography
Databases
  • CultureGrams
    Use CultureGrams as a guide to understanding the world's peoples through the documentation of the unique details of their customs, traditions, and daily life.
    Click on the link to CultureGrams, then click on the "World Edition" box, and then click on either North America or South America. From here, select the county of choice. On the left side of the page there are several options to learn more about the country and its people, including background, Customs & Courtesies, society and lifestyle.
Online Films
  • Costa Rica
    "Costa Rica is one of the forerunners in defending the environment: 28% of its territory is pro-tected in the form of parks and natural reserves. On this journey we meet some of the many animals that inhabit this country’s forests: cebus and capuchin monkeys, snakes, racoons and crocodiles."
  • Costa Rica: Child of the Wind
    "In war-torn Central America there is a country with no dictator and no army, a country at peace with itself and its neighbors. It is the oldest democracy in Latin America. This film explores the history of Costa Rica and the reasons it has been able to exist as a neutral country firmly committed to social welfare and free elections. Costa Ricans live without an army, preferring to invest their resources in hospitals and schools rather than machine guns and tanks. The film explores the issue of Costa Rica's neutrality in the face of its dependence on U.S. aid."


Cuba

  1. Books
  2. Databases & Videos

Many of the following books are available online. You will need a current library card to access books online. COD Online students can request a library card online. Please note that some books are available for one simultaneous user only. Titles of books available in print will include the call number.

Art & Architecture
Culture, History & Geography
Databases
  • CultureGrams
    Use CultureGrams as a guide to understanding the world's peoples through the documentation of the unique details of their customs, traditions, and daily life.
    Click on the link to CultureGrams, then click on the "World Edition" box, and then click on either North America or South America. From here, select the county of choice. On the left side of the page there are several options to learn more about the country and its people, including background, Customs & Courtesies, society and lifestyle.
Online Films
  • Bye Bye Havana
    "Havana. A haven set apart from the capitalist world, or hell on earth? Bye Bye Havana is A crystal clear window into a crumbling world. This is a fast-paced stream of consciousness documentary. Presenting a unique flavour of irony and carried by an eclectic and powerful soundtrack featuring Latin Grammy Nominee X Alfonso - here is a vibrant and intriguing portrayal of Cuban life. An elderly and emaciated couple dance the salsa on the sidewalk. Slowly moving around each other, they tell us 'I’m Mercedes, he’s Jose. We’ve been married 41 years and never had a fight'. A Cuban sunset. Kids playing on the streets 'We’re bored!' A man has a brick chained to his foot. As he drags himself along the pavement the women next to him explains 'San Lazaro is a saint with leprosy'. People tell the story of Cuba. Toothless faces, laughter and desperate pleas. Images tell the rest. Crumbling facades, a bustling street and faded posters. As the big bottomed girls tease the boys with nothing to do, it feels it’s been this way forever. But it’s changing. The girls on the billboards are even more enticing. Glamorous, and too thin. Boys look this way… Leave your Cuban girls, come to me... Its visual poetry juxtaposes modern commercialism – adverts promising us a better life through coffee, cars and cigarettes – with the difficulties that the Cubans face. Old black and white films telling anti-Communist America of the 1950s to beware and be vigilant, interspersed with shots of Havana. The American propaganda sounds hollow to our ears. The red menace is no more. ‘There’s a pretty good saying here in Cuba. It’s better to put up with who you know as the 'bad guy' because you don’t know what the next 'good guy' will be’ says Carlos. Cuba stands pummelled by an unworkable socialism and a voracious consumer appetite. Lamparas Viejas tells it plainly 'Well we’re struggling, this is what you call struggle.' The political movement that began more than forty six years ago seems spent. 'Patriotism or death' are now not enough. Cubans want other choices. Only history can tell whether the change under Castro has been for the better or for the worse. And yet, after having been disappointed by the materialism of industrial societies, many now turn to cultural wealth to measure riches. Two generations of Cubans have been spared the American revolution of culture as commerce, which has given Cuba the freedom to develop a true identity. The McDonald super-size gospel has yet to taint Cuba´s shores. The Cubans are still dancing. Salsa and cigars reign. And, for all Havana's crumbling structures and piles of rubble, and its plethora of armed policemen and sun-bleached billboards espousing their pat, revolutionary slogans, it still manages to attract over a million pink-skinned, camera-toting, snack-munching mojito-swilling tourists each year. As the revolutionary song goes: 'I don’t care what they say, I’ll stick around, keeping my mouth shut, struggling with problems in love with life."
  • Che Guevara
    "During his short life, Ernesto (Che) Guevara became the world’s best known and most charismatic revolutionary, revered as a great hero for his part in the Cuban revolution. In reality, however, he was a cold-blooded killer who played a central role in sending thousands of Cuban citizens to their death in the aftermath of the revolution during the early 1960s. But, since he met his own end while trying to start a revolution in Bolivia, many of the less-palatable aspects of his life have been airbrushed from history and he has become a popular, worldwide, cultural revolutionary icon. This is thanks in no small part to a famous photograph of him, taken at the height of his fame, which continues to adorn countless bedroom walls the world over. Born in Rosario, Argentina in 1928, Guevara – who was a qualified doctor – joined up with Fidel Castro in the mid-1950s, soon becoming his most-trusted right-hand man. Together, they led the Cuban revolution. And together they embarked on a ruthless and unprecedented reign of terror, as Guevara presided over a pitiless kangaroo court where the death sentence was the norm. But within a few years, tired of the trappings of power, Guevara left Cuba to ferment revolution elsewhere. Finally, in October 1967, Guevara’s dream of ousting governments and dictators the world over ended when he was executed by a Bolivian soldier in a grubby, dilapidated schoolhouse in Bolivia. By all accounts, 39-year-old Guevara died bravely. His last words are said to have been, 'I know you have come to kill me. Shoot coward, you are only going to kill a man."
  • Cuba
    "The documentary series with the emblematic remote control has arrived for its final series in Cuba. One click and we discover Cuban TV, relatively unknown and full of surprises! When in Havana, you’re bound to come across Chinese TV programmes: entertainment, culture, cooking...anything. Since the collapse of the USSR, China has become Cuba’s most important economic partner and supplies it with TV programmes. China even offered millions of TV sets to the Cuban viewer. Just as in 2007 when China offered rice cookers and Fidel Castro himself promoted them live on TV! A true gem among the offerings on Cuban TV. After having visited over 130 countries, this final series will go to: Hainan (China) - Latvia - Costa Rica - Vietnam - Siberia - Iraq - Hunan - Cuba - Gabon - El Salvador - TV of the Roms - Tajikistan - Congo DR - Belarus - The Maldives Cuba is available in English"
  • Cuba: In the Shadow of Doubt
    "Filmed on location at La Plata, Castro's former guerrilla headquarters- the first time any foreign film crew had been permitted there - the documentary examines the origins of Castro's revolution, and its ultimate successes and failures. It places U.S.-Cuban relations within the context of history, dating back to the Spanish-American War in 1898. The documentary goes on to paint a canvas of everyday Cuban life. It contrasts the successes of Cuba - medical care, education and housing - with the often repressive political measures implemented by the Castro government. We hear from Cuban artists, State Department officials, exiled writers, and Fidel Castro himself. We visit the Psychiatric Hospital, the Women's Prison, and a library to see what books are available. This film does full justice to its complex subject. It is neither a rationale for Communist Cuba nor a political tool for Cuban exiles. It will interest audiences of all political persuasions."
  • Cuba's Secret Operation
    "Fidel was becoming obsessed with foreign policy. In his desire to exert influence around the world, he was ready to sacrifice everything. We, the Cuban people, paid the price. Our young men were sent to Angola, and the death toll rose remorselessly."
  • Cuban Dance Examples: A Glimpse of Cuba Through Dance
    "This documentary by Yvonne Daniel includes clips of a variety of different dance styles found in Cuba."
  • Cuba: Trading With The Enemy
    "The time is now. The place is Havana, Cuba. Filmmaker Jeff Kaiser went to Cuba and was granted rare permission by the Cuban government to explore the streets of the capital city and document the unrestricted thoughts of the Cuban people. A fascinating look at the island republic and its people."
  • Fidel
    "Whether dismissed as a relic or revered as a savior, many agree that Fidel Castro is one of the most influential and controversial figures of our time. Rarely are Americans given a chance to see inside the world of this socialist leader. The documentary Fidel offers a unique opportunity to view the man through exclusive interviews with Castro himself, historians, public figures and close friends, with rare footage from the Cuban State archives"
  • Inside Castro's Cuba
    "The eyes of the world have been on Cuba as thousands of Cubans have risked their lives trying to reach the U.S. Inside Castro's Cuba looks at what drove many to leave and what the reality is for the vast majority of Cubans who stayed behind. With the collapse of the Soviet bloc, Cuba has been presented with its toughest test of strength since the revolution thirty-five years ago. Filming in Cuba for an entire year, the filmmaker gained rare access to Castro himself and to his personal archives. The result is an insightful view of the man and his people. People wonder how long Castro will maintain his leadership. The film discovers huge support for him because he brought Cubans a higher standard of living than that of any other country in the third world. Still vigorous and tenacious about his power, he is not likely to give up the revolution."


Mexico

  1. Books
  2. Databases & Videos
Databases
  • CultureGrams
    Use CultureGrams as a guide to understanding the world's peoples through the documentation of the unique details of their customs, traditions, and daily life.
    Click on the link to CultureGrams, then click on the "World Edition" box, and then click on either North America or South America. From here, select the county of choice. On the left side of the page there are several options to learn more about the country and its people, including background, Customs & Courtesies, society and lifestyle.
Online Films
Art & Architecture
  • Art
    "The Mexican People is an exceptional documentary series. A powerful journey inside Mexico, from its origins until today. An inside view of a complex society through different themes: its arts, culture, environment, future and many more."
  • Diego Rivera - Revolutionary With A Paintbox
    "Mexican painter and architect Diego Rivera is best known as a muralist, using such materials as gold leaf, fresco and mosaic. As well as reviving centuries-old techniques, he also embraces new ones such as polystyrene paint. This film paints a fascinating picture of the man and his work. Includes interviews with Carlos Fuentes, Dolores Olmedo and archive footage of the Mexican Revolution."
  • Frida Kahlo
    "Frida Kahlo: declared a symbol of Mexican national heritage, made into a cult figure by the women's movement, praised by the likes of Picasso and Breton. At the age of 18, she suffered an accident that would forever change her life, destining her to pain, numerous operations and childlessness. This film takes you to the Blue House in Coyoacan, the place of her birth and the last years of her life. Today, the house serves as a museum dedicated to the charismatic artist. Haunting self-portraits and a stirring world of images tell of her life and passions, her thoughts and feelings, her exhausting love for Diego Rivera and her deep connection to Mexico "
  • Inside Mexico's National Museum of Anthropology
    "This impressive modern museum, visited by 2 million people every year, tells the story of Mexico from before the Aztec civilization to the Spanish conquest. In this episode, a chemical engineer and some Mexican athletes help us discover whether the rubber ball used on the ancient Aztec playing field contained a human skull. We dive into a watery cave to discover the Mayan path to the afterlife, and then investigate the power of a crystal skull to reveal the secrets of the dead. We pilot an ancient canoe through Aztec canals to discover why modern Mexico City is sinking, and then discover how a valiant gladiator defeated a score of Aztec warriors armed with the world’s sharpest swords. And finally, we discover how a dress worn by the most notorious woman in Mexican history led to a massacre that changed history."
  • The Feathered Serpent
    "The Olmec, Toltec, Mayan and Aztec Cultures ... built their high pyramids and great cities on the dusty plains of Mexico and in the steaming jungles of the isthmus. This episode views the striking skeletons of these complex communities."
Culture, History and Geography
  • Cortes: Conqueror Of Mexico
    "He is one of the greatest conquerors in history, and among the most brutal. Hernán Cortés' thirst for gold and power led him to Mexico in 1519, where he launched a conquest unlike any other in history. As THE CONQUERORS details, Cortés undertook his campaign in violation of explicit instructions; his was supposed to be a more diplomatic than military mission. Yet his first contacts in Mexico resulted in a battle that so terrible that the Aztecs fled into the interior. They had never seen the guns, horses, and shiny metal armor of the conquistadors. In approximately two years, Cortés owned the Aztec empire, and their once proud ruler Montezuma was dead. Through brilliant execution, from an often precarious military position, Cortés killed hundreds of thousands of Aztecs and brought down the 300-year-old empire—the first major American civilization to fall to the Spanish."
  • Mexico: God, Gold and Glory
    "Explore the mysteries of the Toltec and Mayan civilizations through visits to the ruins of Teotihuacan and Palenque, trace the waves of conquest that made the Aztecs the most powerful people in the New World, and examine the battles with the Spanish that brought their empire to its knees in little over a year after the arrival of Cortes in 1519."
  • Mexico: From Independence to the Alamo
    "For 300 years after the conquistadors' triumph over the Aztecs, Mexico was the crown jewel of the Spanish colonial empire. This volume reveals what life was like during that time and examines the injustices of the feudal system and the excesses of the Inquisition, which led to the long fight for freedom from Spain. Also, the storied Battle of the Alamo is relived, which forever colored Mexico's relationship with its powerful neighbor to the North."
  • Mexico: Revolution and Rebirth
    "By the end of the 19th century, Mexico was exhausted from years of fighting, but the battles were not over, as the nation rose up against its dictator Porfirio Diaz. This volume tells the story of the revolution waged by Pancho Villa, Emiliano Zapata and others, and the modern nation that was born. Discover how Mexico finally gained stability under the rule of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, and examine the problems that face the nation today."
  • The Mexican Revolution
    "This A&E Special takes a close look at the Mexican Revolution, a revolt against a dictator that ended in civil war, with action on both sides of the Mexico-U.S. border. Offers a much needed historical perspective on Mexican-American relations."
  • The Native Civilizations: History and Present
    "The Mexican People is an exceptional documentary series.A powerful journey inside Mexico, from its origins until today.An inside view of a complex society through different themes: its arts, culture, environment, future and many more."
  • Mexico: Battle For North America


Peru

  1. Books
  2. Databases & Videos
Databases
  • CultureGrams
    Use CultureGrams as a guide to understanding the world's peoples through the documentation of the unique details of their customs, traditions, and daily life.
    Click on the link to CultureGrams, then click on the "World Edition" box, and then click on either North America or South America. From here, select the county of choice. On the left side of the page there are several options to learn more about the country and its people, including background, Customs & Courtesies, society and lifestyle.
Online Films
Art and Architecture
  • Empire of the Incas
    "For nearly 100 years, the Incas ruled the largest empire in South American history. The Incas had a society based on community and co-operation, with power controlled firmly by the Sapa Inca and the royal family. They were brilliant engineers, constructing magnificent forts and cities, and built roads, tunnels and bridges through mountains. Medical and surgical techniques were highly advanced, as were observations of the sun, moon and stars. But, above all, their devotion to the gods was paramount. Invasion by Spanish Conquistadors in the early 1500's began the demise of the Incan Empire. This program was filmed on location in Peru, Bolivia and Chile."
  • Peru's Treasure Tomb
    "Archaeologists unearth a wondrous treasure trove of gold masks, exquisite pottery, and elaborate beadwork when they save an ancient Peruvian tomb from looters."
  • Raiders of the Lost Civilizations
    "This documentary is the story of an archeologist's race against the clock to explore and preserve what remains of a mysterious Pre-colombia n civilization in Peru. He confronts the looters of ancient tombs, impoverished peasants tempted by the offerings of the middlemen who work for international traffickers and collectors. A fascinating behind-the-scenes investigation of the international trade in artifacts, a business that ranks third worldwide after drugs and arms."
Culture, History and Geography
  • Along the Inca Trail: Mountain Gods and Golden Fleece
    "Two months into her journey and well into the high mountains of northern Peru, Karin meets a sorcerer - a man with the power to cure ills and see into the future. She takes the opportunity to participate with him in an all-night healing ceremony, which requires drinking San Pedro cactus juice and snorting liquid tobacco. Continuing on to the Chachapoyas, Peru's new archaeological frontier, Karin befriends a local farmer who offers to be her guide. She discovers that most ruins of ancient Chachapoya civilization reside in the cliffs - hundreds of burial chambers, each containing a mummy. Proceeding the Peru's capital at Lima, Karin finds a modern metropolis where the word 'Inca' seems to have become little more than advertising jargon used to sell goods. She arrives in Lima on the eve of the Lord of Milagros procession - the largest religious gathering in all of Peru. There's never a dull moment along the Inca road, as Karin deals with unexpected twists and turns that add humor and dimension to her unique story"
  • Empire of the Incas
    "For nearly 100 years, the Incas ruled the largest empire in South American history. The Incas had a society based on community and co-operation, with power controlled firmly by the Sapa Inca and the royal family. They were brilliant engineers, constructing magnificent forts and cities, and built roads, tunnels and bridges through mountains. Medical and surgical techniques were highly advanced, as were observations of the sun, moon and stars. But, above all, their devotion to the gods was paramount. Invasion by Spanish Conquistadors in the early 1500's began the demise of the Incan Empire. This program was filmed on location in Peru, Bolivia and Chile."
  • Incan Indians Return Home
    "A report on Inca Indians returning home a decade after they fled from 'Shining Path' savagery. Back in their highland villages, the Incas are bent double gathering in the harvest. When they have threshed the grain, they kneel down in the straw and offer thanks to 'Mother Earth'. Brightly woven clothes and fluttering ribbons belie ten years' suffering at the hands of Peru's infamous revolutionaries. Dismissing the Incas as ignorant peasants, the Shining Path were brutal in their attempt to impose revolutionary ideals. Maria, recruited by the Shining Path when she was 16, recalls how her leaders shot two peasants in front of her. She was then given a revolver and told to shoot dissenting villagers. In a grey shanty town outside of Lima, Jose Paiwa lives with his children and one granddaughter. He fled from the highlands after his son was killed along with 18 others. Recently, under pressure from the government, he took his family home. But without equipment or food, he was forced to leave his overgrown land and return to his city shack. To avert future conflicts, local villagers have formed militia groups and women have turned to evangelical Christianity."
  • Inca Music, Journeys and Rituals
    "Two Peruvian musicians, Ebert and Jabier, have dedicated their lives to researching the ancient musical traditions of Peru. Ebert reproduces the old instruments, using natural materials such as bamboo, clay, bone and horn. He also collects the music for the Peruvian Institute for Culture and teaches it to children so it will survive. After being blessed by a medicine man in a sacred ritual, Ebert and Jabier journey into the rain forest where they visit three tribal communities. In the first village, where Machiguenga Indians live, only the old shaman still remembers the songs. In another village, Palotoa, very few recall their traditions. The missionaries' threats of "burning in hell" have made the Indians afraid to practice their original rituals. In the last village they visit, Diamante, the inhabitants have completely lost their identity due to the destructive influence of the timber company, the missionaries and tourism. Children are ashamed of being Indian and the women only dance when a tourist boat sails by. Saddened by this erosion of cultural roots, the two musicians will nevertheless preserve the music that a few of the elderly shared with them."
  • The Inca Revolution
    "A nationalist revolution is brewing in Peru. Tired of a world banking system that has turned them into slaves, Peruvians are turning to radical nationalist groups. A crowd of Christian Nationalists wave the Nazi flag. They're calling for foreign companies to leave and Peru to be left to indigenous people. People in Peru are desperate. There are no jobs, no money and no health care. Extremist groups provide a real political alternative. "The Spanish exterminated the indigenous people. Now we want a return to power."
  • Journey Through the Sacred Valley
    "Dr. Daniele Behn travels to Peru to learn about that area's traditional medicine."
  • The Quechua
    "This film is set in a community of peasant agriculturalists 2 1/4 miles above sea level in the southern Peruvian Andes. Concentrating on a single family, the film explores aspects of religious and secular life. The first part of the film shows a pilgrimage to a Christian sanctuary situated close to the residence of the most powerful of the Central Andean mountain spirits (Apus) illustrating the syncretism of Catholic and pre-Hispanic local religious traditions. In the second part of the film we see a fertility rite for sheep, and the attempts of certain members of the community to procure government assistance for a motor road to the village which would link them more closely with the rest of Peruvian society. This film portrays the Quechua of the village of Camahuara as being in a sense sealed off from the rest of the world, but it also shows how their way of life is integrated with the Peruvian economy. It has been criticised for emphasising that the desire for change is coming from inside the traditional society rather than being forced on it from without."