The Intercollegiate Department of Chicana/o Latina/o Studies at the Claremont Colleges is concurrently a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary field of academic inquiry broadly relating to people of Latin American descent within the hemisphere, particularly within the United States and the wider diaspora. Courses in Chicana/o Latina/o Studies take into account the intersection of race, ethnicity, class, culture, gender and sexuality. These courses are distributed across three areas of study that make up the Chicana/o Latina/o Studies major: 1) Educación: Identities, Cultures and Communities; 2) Experiencia: Literature, Music and Representation; and 3) Sin Fronteras: Latin@ Experiences in the Americas. Chicana/o Latina/o Studies contribute to all fields in the humanities and social sciences including professional programs such as education, social work, medicine and law.
Chicana/o Latina/o Studies emerged in the academy as a product of education and social movements of the 1960s. These movements led to the initial creation of the program at the Claremont Colleges in 1969, making it the second oldest Chicana/o studies department in the nation. More recently, Chicana/o Latina/o Studies has emerged as a field of inquiry relating to Latin Americans in the hemisphere and has been the site for work seeking to transcend the gaps between area studies and ethnic studies.
Rita Cano Alcala