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Latin American Studies

Guide to Latin American and Caribbean Studies research at Temple University Libraries

Introduction to Reference Books for Latin American Studies

Bibliographies, dictionaries, directories, encyclopedias, guides, handbooks, indexes, and other reference (or tertiary) sources are critical to the research process. Here are three of the many benefits of reference works:

  1. Scholarly encyclopedias help researchers to contextualize their topics, properly setting the stage for further research.
  2. Bibliographies, which can take the form of whole books or a brief "Further Readings" section at the end of an encyclopedia article point researchers to relevant secondary and primary sources.
  3. Scholarly encyclopedias can help researchers to choose and/or refine a research topic.

The following is a selected list of reference works of interest to students researching Latin America. Any one of these titles would be a great place to begin your research! 

The following e-books are available full-text online:

  • New Dictionary of the History of Ideas: A selection of relevant articles:
    • A selection of relevant articles: 
    • Anticolonialism: Latin America
    • Authoritarianism: Latin America
    • The City: Latin America
    • Colonialism: Latin America
    • Creolization: Caribbean
    • Dictatorship in Latin America
    • Indigenismo
    • Religion and the State: Latin America
    • Republicanism: Latin America

Country Backgrounds

Find demographic, statistical, and other background information for various countries in Latin America via the following online reference works and websites: