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Latin American History: Guide to Resources

For research papers or reviews requiring critical examination of people, countries, events, time periods, or themes in Latin American history in general, consult the following:
  1. Reference Materials
    1. General
    2. Bibliographies and Guides
    3. Historical Dictionaries
    4. Historical Statistics
  2. Government Documents
  3. Microforms
  4. FIU Catalog
  5. Electronic Databases
  6. Internet Resources

I. Reference Materials

(all shelved on the 2nd floor, in the Reference Department). Use these sources for a general overview of historical figures or events in a particular country or Latin America in general.

  1. General: Almanacs, Atlases, Dictionaries and Encyclopedias

    Peoples of the World. Latin Americans: the Culture, Geographical Setting, and Historical Background of 42 Latin American Peoples. 1989. N. MIA REF F1408.M84 1989

    South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. 2000. REF DESK F1408.29.S68 (NOTE: Earlier Editions Available in the General Collection.)
    Provides a survey of the political and economic life of the region and of the 48 nations and territories within it. Part 1 includes introductory essays. Part 2 provides country surveys with bibliographies. Part 3 gives regional information. Includes information on the region's major commodities and research institutions. Provides a select bibliography of books and periodicals and an index of regional organizations.

    The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2000. 1999. REF DESK AY 67.N5W7 2000 (NOTE: Earlier Editions Available in the General Collection.)
    Standard reference source for facts and figures about all the regions and countries of the world, including the Americas. Provides basic information and statistical data for each Latin American nation.


    Historical Atlas of Latin America: Political, Geographic, Economic, Cultural. 1967. REF F1408.W66 1967
    Dated but still useful survey of Latin American history. Includes historical maps and brief commentary on the region's geographical background, ethnological composition, European colonization, colonial period, revolutionary and national periods, boundary disputes, foreign relations, and post-WW II situation


    Biographical Dictionary of Latin American and Caribbean Political Leaders. 1988. REF F1414.2.B48 1988.

    Biographical Dictionary of Latin American Historians and Historiography. 1984. REF F1409.8.A2 T48 1984

    The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Latin America and the Caribbean. 1992. REF F1406.C36 1992
    Discusses all of Latin America and the Caribbean within six topical sections: 1)Physical Environment, 2)Economy, 3)Peoples, 4)History, 5)Politics and Society, 6)Culture. Each section is subdivided and comes with a short bibliography. Contains photographs, maps, charts, and subject index.

    Chronology of Hispanic-American History: From Pre-Columbian Times to the Present. 1995. N. MIA REF E184.S75 C49 1995
    Provides timelines of major events, peoples, and themes in Latin American history from before European colonization to the late twentieth century. Includes maps, bibliography, and indexes.

    Dictionary of Afro-Latin American Civilization. 1980. REF F1408.3.N86
    Offers over 4,500 multilingual entries for words, phrases, people, and events pertaining to Afro-Latin America. Arranged by country or region. Includes selected bibliography and name and subject indexes.

    Dictionary of Hispanic Biography. 1996. REF CT1343.D53 1996

    Encyclopedia of Latin America. 1974. N. MIA REF F1406.E52

    Encyclopedia of Latin-American History. 1981. REF F1406.M37 1981
    Provides brief definitions of Latin American historical events, peoples, and themes from pre-Colombian times to the twentieth century. Arranged alphabetically.

    Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture. 5 vols. 1996. REF F1406.E53 1996
    Includes substantive descriptions of prominent figures, moments, and themes in Latin American history and culture from prior to the arrival of Europeans to the present. Provides biographies by category in the form of an appendix and a general index.

    The Indians of Central and South America: An Ethnohistorical Dictionary. 1991. REF F1434.O45 1991
    Provides basic anthropological and ethnographic information about existing Amerindian tribes of Central and South America, including relevant historical descriptions. Arranged alphabetically. Includes an appendix of tribes by country, a chronology of the conquest and colonization of Central and South America, and a selected bibliography of general and specialized literature.

    Latin America: A Political Dictionary. 1992. REF F1406.R67 1992
    Provides thematically arranged entries. Entries include basic definition, historical background, and current relevance.

    Race and Ethnic Relations in Latin America and Caribbean: An Historical Dictionary and Bibliography. 1980. REF F1419.A1 L48
    Identifies terms, names, and events emphasizing inter-ethnic relations. Selected bibliography includes over 1,000 books and articles.

    Who's Who in Latin America: A Biographical Dictionary of Notable Living Men and Women of Latin America. 1971. N. MIA REF CT506.W48 1971

    (Table of contents)

  3. Bibliographies and Guides
  4. América en la época de Carlos V: Aportación a la bibliografía de este período desde 1900. 1962. REF Z1201.A48

    América en la época de los Austrias: Aportación a la bibliografía de este período desde 1900. 1962. REF Z1201.A49

    An Annotated Bibliography of Latin American Sport: Pre-Conquest to the Present. 1989. REF GV586.L29 A73 1989
    Provides brief annotations on sources about sports history in the Americas. Arranged as follows: 1)Theory and History, 2)Indigenous Background, 3)Iberian Background, 4)Colonial Era, 5)National Period (by country), 6)Hispanics in Sports in the United States, 7)Current Latin American Sports Periodicals. Includes subject and author indexes.

    Anuario bibliográfico de historia del pensamiento ibero e iberoamericano. Nos. 1-5. 1989-93. REF CB226. A5
    Lists books and articles on all aspects of Hispanic and Hispanic-American philosophy. Organized in chapters by country of publication. Includes name index.

    Bibliografía histórica mexicana. 1967, 1971, 1980, 1981. REF Z1411.B5
    Classed list of books, articles, and theses. Includes brief annotations for many entries and author index.

    Biblioteca hispanoamericana (1493-1810). 7 vols. 1958-62. REF F1408.M43 1958
    Contents include in volumes 1-5 materials from 1493-1810, volume 6 provides a prolog, and volume 7 writings of León Pinelo.

    Directory of Libraries and Special Collections on Latin America and the West Indies. 1975. REF Z1601.N37 1975

    Dissertations on Iberian and Latin American History. 1975. REF Z1601.H32
    Documentos de Indias, siglos XV-XIX: Catálogo de la serie existente en la Sección de Diversos. 1954. REF CD1858.L3 A5 1954

    Guía bibliográfica para el estudio de la historia ecuatoriana. 1978. REF F3731.N67

    Guide to Materials on Latin America in the National Archives. Vol. 1. 1961-. REF CD3028.L37 H3
    Includes records and descriptions of records, documents, and other materials in the National Archives in Washington, D. C.

    Latin America: A Guide to Economic History, 1830-1930. 1977. REF Z7165.L3 L32
    Includes separate sections for Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru. Each section provides an interpretive essay and bibliography. Essays and annotations are in the language of the contributor. Indexes authors and periodicals.

    Latin America: A Guide to the Historical Literature. 1971. REF Z1601.G75
    Dated but standard reference work in the field of Latin American studies. Provides brief annotations on Latin American historical scholarship. Arranged variously by type of source, historical period, and theme. Includes a key to periodicals cited and an author index.

    Latin America in Basic Historical Collections: A Working Guide. 1972. REF Z1601.B32
    Offers concise descriptions and bibliographies on major archives, libraries and special collections, and other repositories throughout the world relevant to Latin America. Includes an extensive bibliography and index.

    Latin American History: A Guide to the Literature in English. 1958. REF Z1601.H853
    General survey of publications on Latin American history. Provides brief bibliographic surveys of books, journals, and other materials. Covers all nations and historical periods from pre-Colombian times to the 1930s. Includes a list of periodicals cited, a biographical index, and an index of authors, editors, and translators.

    Latin American Research and Publications at the University of Texas at Austin, 1893-1969. 1971. REF Z1601.T38 1971

    Latin American Studies: A Basic Guide to Sources. 1990. REF Z1601.L324 1990
    Basic handbook for researchers. Discusses major library collections on Latin America in Great Britain, Europe, and the United States. Describes how to use them. Indicates bibliographies and other major reference sources. Concludes with a discussion of the field of Latin American studies and lists institutions with Latin American programs. Includes subject and author/title indexes.

    Latin American Urbanization: Historical Profiles of Major Cities. 1994. REF HT127.5.L39 1994
    Includes essays on major cities of Latin America and the Caribbean, from Mexico to the Southern Cone. Arranged alphabetically by country, beginning with Argentina and ending with Venezuela. Provides a selected bibliography and general index.

    Latin Americana Research in the United States and Canada: A Guide and Directory. 1971. REF Z1601.H35

    Libraries and Special Collections on Latin America and the Caribbean: A Directory of European Resources. 1988. REF Z1601.M25 1988

    List of Works for the Study of Hispanic-American History. 1967. REF Z1610.K33 1967

    Peru: A Guide to the People, Politics, and Culture. 1998. REF F3409.5.H641 1998
    Brief survey of Peruvian politics, history, and culture. Includes facts and figures and a list of further readings.

    A Reference Guide to Latin American History. 2000. N. MIA REF F1410.H463 2000
    Provides Latin American historical chronologies and biographies. Includes a bibliography and general index.

    Revistas hispanoamericanas: Indice bibliográfico, 1843-1935. 1960. REF AI17.L4

    Scholars' Guide to Washington, DC, for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 1979. REF Z1601.G867

    (Table of contents)

  5. Historical Dictionaries
  6. (Alphabetically by Country). Series volumes provide definitions of major historical events, peoples, and themes for each country or territory. Arranged alphabetically. Includes basic bibliography.

    Argentina. 1978. N. MIA REF F2804.W74
    Bolivia. 1972. REF F3304.H4
    Brazil. 1979. REF F2504.L46
    Chile. 1987. REF F3054.B5 1987
    Colombia. 1993. REF F2254.D38 1993
    Costa Rica. 1991. REF F1542.C7 1991
    Cuba. 1988. REF F1754.S83 1988
    Ecuador. 1973. REF F3704.B67
    El Salvador. 1972. REF F1482.F55
    French and Netherlands Antilles. 1978. REF F2151.G25
    Guatemala. 1973. REF F1462.M6 1973
    Haiti. 1977. REF F1913.P47
    Honduras. 1994. REF F1502.M56 1994
    Nicaragua. 1972. REF F1522.M4
    Panama. 1970. N. MIA REF F1562.H43
    Paraguay. 1993. REF F2664.K64 1993
    Peru. 1979. N. MIA REF F3404.A39
    Puerto Rico and the U. S. Virgin Islands. 1973. REF F1954.F37
    Uruguay. 1974. REF F2704.W54
    Venezuela. 1996. REF F2304.R8 1996

    (Table of contents)

  7. Historical Statistics
  8. The Handbook of National Population Censuses: Latin America and the Caribbean, North America, and Oceania. 1983. REF HA36.G67 1983
    Describes each national census in terms of definitions and concepts, special features, quality, and publication. Also lists other national statistical publications. Provides population figures for country, capital, large cities, and metropolitan centers.

    International Historical Statistics: the Americas, 1750-1993. 1998. REF HA175.M55 1998. Provides comparative statistics for Latin American and Caribbean nations derived from government and intergovernmental organizations. Supplemented by additional sources. Includes tables on climate, population, labor, industries, trade, business, communications, and education.

    Statistical Abstract of Latin America 2000. Vol. 36. 2000. REF DESK HA935.S8 (NOTE: Earlier Editions Available in the General Collection.)
    Provides over 1,000 pages of statistics on Latin America. Includes data on the land and environment, transportation and communication, population , health, and education, politics, military, and religion, labor and migration, legal and illegal industry, production, trade, finance, policy and prices, and development. Provides an index of tables.

    (Table of contents)

II. Government Documents

(all shelved on the 2nd floor, in the Government Documents Department). General information on countries and international organizations (including the OAS and UN). Statistical facts and short overviews on history, economy, politics, travel and business information.

  1. Foreign Relations
  2. Executive Sessions of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (Historical Series). Vol. III: Part 1 Microform. 1976. Gov Docs. Microfiche CIS Hrgs MF Gp4-(82) SFo-1
    Briefing on Latin American Foreign Ministers meeting concerning the Korean War mobilization's potential impact on the Latin American economy. March 20, 1951.

    Executive Sessions of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (Historical Series). Vol. IV. 1976. Gov. Docs Microfiche CIS Hrgs MF Gp4-(82) SFo-3
    Includes discussion of U.S. policy in Latin America.

    Executive Sessions of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (Historical Series). Vol. VI. 1977. Gov. Docs Microfiche CIS Hrgs MF Gp4-(83) SFo-2
    Includes the Latin America travel report of Sen. Hickenlooper, February 2, 1954, and the Tenth Inter-American Conference, Caracas, Venezuela, March 16, 1954.

    Executive Sessions of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (Historical Series). Vol. X. 1977. Gov. Docs Microfiche CIS Hrgs MF Gp4-(85) SFo-1
    Reports on the establishment of a subcommittee to review U.S. Latin American policies. May 16, 20, 1958. Committee action is in response to anti-American violence encountered on Vice President Nixon's tour of the region. Briefing on Nixon Latin American Tour anti-American demonstrations. May 19, 1958. Also includes discussion of communist activities in Latin America

    Foreign Relations of the United States. GP 3.22/2:210/
    Published by the United States Department of State. Some issues of the paper version accompanied by microfiche supplements, including printed guide. Some volumes in this edition are exact reprints (including House document nos.) of Foreign Relations of the United States, Document edition

    Foreign Relations of the United States: Diplomatic Papers. 1932-. Gov. Docs S1.1
    Published by the United States Department of State. Includes valuable foreign relations and diplomatic papers from and about Latin America.

    The Middle East, Africa, and inter-American Affairs Microform. Gov. Docs Microfiche CIS 81 H381-54 (v.16)
    Selected executive session hearings of the foreign relations committee (Historical series, v. 16, 1951-56) on United States-Latin America foreign policy and relations.

  3. Guides to Collections
  4. The Hispanic World, 1492-1898: A Guide to Photoreproduced Manuscripts from Spain in the Collections of the United States, Guam, and Puerto Rico. 1994. Gov. Docs LC 1.6/4:H62/2
    Contains information on archival and library resources on Spain and Latin America.

    Library of Congress Hispanic and Portuguese Collections: An Illustrated Guide. 1996. LC 1.6/4:H62/3
    Illustrated guidebook to the Library of Congress' holdings on Iberia and Iberian-American collections.

  5. Statistics
  6. Anuario estadístico de América Latina y el Caribe. 1975- 1985. Gov. Docs UN Docs HA751.S1
    Each issue includes several parts: Part 1,statistical series for each region and regional associations (e.g., Latin American Free Trade Association); Part 2-4, statistical series for Latin America and Caribbean arranged by alphabetically by nation. Includes population, national accounts, agriculture, industry, transport, trade, prices, balance of payments, and social statistics.

    Boletín estadístico de América Latina. 1985-. Gov. Docs UN Docs HA751.U5
    Contains statistics on Latin American economic conditions compiled by the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America.

    Indice de cuadros estadísticos socio-políticos sobre América Latina, 1946-1969. 1972. Gov. Docs International Docs Z7165.L3J64
    Index of statistics on Latin American social, economic, and political conditions.

    Statistical Bulletin of the OAS. 1979-1984. Gov. Docs OAS Docs HA755.S7
    Contains statistics on development programs and economic and social affairs in Latin America.

    Statistical Profile of Latin America. 1975?. Gov. Docs International Docs HA756.I57
    Provides a compilation of basic social, economic, and political data for Latin American countries.

    (Table of contents)

III. Microforms

The Middle East, Africa, and Inter-American Affairs Microform. Gov. Docs Microfiche CIS 81-H381-54 (v.16)
Selected executive session hearings of the Foreign Relations Committee. Includes government documents on Latin American foreign relations with the United States.

Princeton University Latin American Pamphlet Collection. (See catalog for holdings.)
Series of microfilm on different aspects of Latin American culture, politics, and economics compiled by both country and themes.

The Slave Trade 1858-1982. 1859. Microforms HT1321.G74 1859a.
Series of microfilm on the trans-Atlantic slave trade from 1858 to 1892. Includes the correspondences of government officials and traders. Compiled by the British Foreign Office.

United States and Castro's Cuba, 1950-1970: The Paterson Collection. (See catalog for holdings.)
Series of microfilm on relations between the United States and Cuba from 1950 to 1970. Includes primary sources from both the United States and Cuban governments from as early as 1939.

The Women's Movement in Cuba 1898-1958: The Stoner Collection on Cuban Feminism. Microforms HQ1507.W66 1990
Series of microfilm on the origins and development of Cuban feminism from the late nineteenth century to the middle of the twentieth century. Includes primary documents and indexes on women and feminism in Cuban history.

Yale University Library Latin American Pamphlets. (See catalog for holdings.)
Microfiche collection of over 9,000 pamphlets and other sources on Latin American history from 1600 to 1900.

(Table of contents)

IV. FIU Catalog

To find books and other materials (e.g., microforms, audiovisuals, etc.) related to Latin American history:

Do a subject search by country and use the guide to find subheadings related to history (e.g., Church History, Military History, etc.).

Try an advanced search using keywords such as Latin America, Hispanic America, or individual nations AND history. Use ? to truncate and adj to join terms. E.g., Latin adj. America? and Politic? adj history.

Browse call numbers beginning with the letter F to find books and other materials on Latin American history:
    F1201-1392 (Mexico)
    F1401-1419 (Latin America, General)
    F1421-1577 (Central America)
    F1601-1640 (West Indies)
    F1741-1849 (Cuba)
    F1900-1930 (Haiti)
    F1931-1940 (Dominican Republic)
    F1951-1983 (Puerto Rico)
    F2050, F2066, F2076, F2077, F2081, F2089, F2103, F2151 (French Antilles)
    F2155-2191 (Caribbean Area)
    F2201-2239 (South America, General)
    F2251-3799 (South America)

(Table of contents)

V. Electronic Databases (Arranged by Main and Related)

  • Consult electronic databases and/or print indexes and abstracts listed below (available through Library Home Page under both Articles and Subject buttons). This list is not comprehensive, feel free to consult any other database related to your topic.
  • Refer to the FIU Library Catalog to determine whether FIU owns the journals and the volume/issue in which your chosen articles are published.

HAPI (Hispanic American Periodicals Index)

Indexes publications on all aspects of Latin American studies.


HLAS (Handbook of Latin American Studies)
  via Library of Congress
 via RLG/Eureka

Indexes 400+ scholarly journals on US-Hispanic and Latin American topics.


Historical Abstracts

Indexes 2000+ scholarly journals in history from 1450 to the present. (Excludes the United States and Canada.)


Humanities Abstracts

Indexes scholarly journals and other publications on health and nutrition.



Anthropological Literature

Indexes 1000+ scholarly journals in anthropology and archaeology.


ATLA Religion Database

Indexes 650+ scholarly journals in religious studies.


Biography Index

Indexes 2700+ publications with biographical information.


Gender Watch

Articles from publications in woman and gender issues.



Electronic full text of backfiles of 50+ scholarly journals.


SIRS Researcher

Indexes multidisciplinary scholarly journals, popular magazines, newspapers and government publications for articles on social, historic, economic, political, and global issues.


Social Science Abstracts

Indexes 350+ international scholarly journals and popular magazines in the social sciences.



Indexes 250+ publications in sociology and related disciplines.


Sociological Abstracts

Indexes 2600+ publications in sociology and related disciplines.


(Table of contents)

VI. Internet Sites


Internet Resources for Latin America
An excellent Internet gateway from Molly Molloy at New Mexico State University.

Latin American Network Information Center from the University of Texas - Austin. The most comprehensive and authoritative compilation of Internet sites available. Logically organized, this is a must stop for anyone doing Latin American web research.


CIA World Fact Book
Up to date statistical information. Includes geography, people, government, economy, transportation and military.

Library of Congress Country Studies
(NOTE: Print Version Available in Gov. Docs D101.22:550-…)
Excellent in depth coverage of most LAC countries. Includes a country profile, major historical events, economy, government, political systems, gender issues, military, etc. Organized like a book, with individual chapters, this is a good starting point for both the beginning and advanced researcher.

State Department Background Notes
General information on countries and international organizations (including the OAS and UN). Statistical facts and short overviews on history, economy, politics, travel and business information.


CLASCO (Consejo Latinoamericano de Ciencias Sociales).
The Latin American Council for the Social Sciences (CLACSO) is a non-profit, non-governmental, international organization founded in 1967 by a group of prominent Latin American social science researchers. CLACSO is organized as federation of approximately 100 independent and university-based research centers in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Cultural Studies in the Americas.
Produced by the Spanish and Portuguese Department at Tulane University for the Roger Thayer Stone Center for Latin American Studies at Tulane. Site includes link to electronic copies of this journal.

ECLAC/CEPAL (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean).
Provides access to Latin American economic and social statistics, publications, etc. Includes its Boletín Demográfico and a synthesis of its Estudio Económico de América Latina y el Caribe. There is also a list of the Commission's publications.

H-LATAM (Network for Latin American Historians).
International forum for the scholarly discussion of Latin American history. Is divided into four categories: a discussion list, announcements, reviews, and resources (online resources, occasional papers, bibliographies).

Histoire ei Societe d L'Amerique Latine.
Produced by the Equipe Histoire et Société de l’Amerique latine. Includes links to the organizations archives, library and bibliographic resourcres, journal (Revue HSAL), research centers, and related internet sites.

Hispanic Page in America. Useful links to Spanish language and Latin American Web sites.

IADB (Inter-American Development Bank).
Makes available a variety of information on IADB publications and projects, including a directory of personnel, news releases, project documents, frequently asked questions, etc. Information is in English and Spanish. In addition to the statistical databases available at this site, the Social Programs and Sustainable Development Department provides links to working papers and other documents on environmental and social development issues and programs, indigenous peoples, women's issues, rural causes, etc.

LACEH (Latin American Colonial Economic History).
Interesting web site, created and managed by Richard L. Garner, is dedicated to the study of the economic history of colonial Latin America and includes on-line essays, data sets, "cajas" (accounts of the Spanish royal treasury), and a bibliography.

OAS (Organization of American States).
Accesses documents, directories, publications, and program information. Has information on a variety of contemporary topics: democracy, human rights, trade, environment, education, etc.


ARL Latin Americanist Project
An initiative of the Association of Research Libraries to provide access to LAC journal articles.

LAMP (Latin American Microform Project)
LAMP's purpose is to acquire, preserve and maintain microform collections of unique, scarce, rare and/or bulky and voluminous research materials pertaining to Latin America. While its holdings are widely representative of the region, LAMP's Brazilian materials, annual ministerial reports from all countries and Haitian imprints are particularly extensive.

SALALM (Seminar on the Acquisition of Latin American Library Materials)
An organization of Latin American librarians to help with the acquisition, control and dissemination of LAC library materials.

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Last updated: January 7, 2003