Rights & Identities in the Americas: Human Rights, Indigenous Peoples, and Contemporary Challenges (Fall)

zapatistas001-300x195Rights and Identities in the Americas is an intensive examination of rights history, thinking and action in the Americas (North and South), with a focus on indigenous peoples, minority communities and contemporary rights struggles. Our sites of study include North Carolina and Chile, including the Mapuche areas south of the capital, Santiago. Place is a key element of our inquiry (reservation vs. private land, museums, community centers and churches) and we will also incorporate indigenous leaders, activists, community leaders and artists and teachers into interactions with students.

Click here for more information and to download the application!

Note:  Students are required to pay a $800 program fee and participants must pay for roundtrip airfare between RDU and Santiago, Chile. Financial aid packages may be used to cover these costs. 

Lead Faculty: Robin Kirk, Faculty Co-Chair of the Duke Human Rights Center @ the Franklin Humanities Institute; Robert Korstad, Professor of Public Policy and  History; Liliana Paredes, Associate Professor of the Practice of Spanish and Director of the Spanish Language Program.

    • History & Contemporary Policy Analysis of Human Rights in the United States & Canada (Robert Korstad)
    • Human Rights in Latin America, (Robin Kirk)
    • Identity and Linguistic Rights (Liliana Paredes)
    • Research in Human Rights (Robert Korstad & Robin Kirk)


Student Testimonials from 2013 DukeImmerse: Rights and Identities in the Americas

Read the Chronicle article with information about the trip and other DukeImmerse programs.

Check out the Rights and Identities Tumblr from the 2013 trip to Chile.

IMG_1140DukeImmerse was the first time I ever really got to know professors on a personal level and I am so thankful for that opportunity. I also really enjoyed being able to engage with the topics we were learning, both through the trip to Chile and the weekly trips around North Carolina. I felt more invested in the topics we were learning than I normally do, and know that I will remember what I studied long after this class ends. –Celina Rodriguez ‘14



I believe the Immerse program is the best way to get to know professors here at Duke. I now consider my Immerse professors to be life-long mentors, and am so grateful that I had the opportunity to forge these great relationships.  Furthermore, my professors approached the Duke Immerse experience with not only the intention of teaching me about human rights and social justice issues, but also with the aim of fully impressing upon me the importance of these issues in the modern world.  This has been my first experience in which a teacher or a professor wanted me to do more than learn- they want me to care.  –Lauren Kelly ‘16

Click below to view selected projects from participants of the DukeImmerse 2013 Rights and Identities in the Americas program.

Video recap of the semester made by Rinchen Dolma ’16 and Simar Nagyal ’15.

Preserving Culture Through Pageants - Nicole Daniels ’14

The Human Rights Impacts of VAWA 2013 - Lauren Kelly ’16

Futures Held Hostage - Isabella Szcabolcs ’14

Vandalism or Art?  - Chelsea Sawicki ’14

Selected Interviews - Kaley Deal ’15 and Mariel Charles ’15

Freedom Struggles in the 20th Century: A comparison of the Civil Rights Movement in the American South and South Africa’s Anti-Apartheid Struggles (Spring)

cape-town-300x200This DukeImmerse semester grew out of a desire to understand the similarities and differences between the American Civil Rights Movement and the anti-apartheid struggles in South Africa. The program combines classroom study with visits to historic sites of resistance and oppression in South Africa, as well as discussions with scholars and activists from both countries. Click here for more information! 

Lead faculty: William Chafe, Alice Mary Baldwin Professor of History; Karin Shapiro, Visiting Associate Professor of History

  •  Apartheid South Africa, 1948-94 (Karin Shapiro)
  • Civil Rights Movements (William Chafe)
  • U.S. & South Africa Comparative Doc (Karlyn Forner)
  • Racial Justice: U.S. & South Africa (William Chafe & Karin Shapiro)