The Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection, a unit of the University of Texas Libraries, is a specialized research library focusing on materials from and about Latin America, and on materials relating to Latinos in the United States. Latin America is here defined to include Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean island nations, South America, and areas of the United States during the period they were a part of the Spanish Empire or Mexico. Named in honor of its former director (1942-1975), the Nettie Lee Benson Collection contains over 970,000 books, periodicals, pamphlets, and microforms; 4,000 linear feet of manuscripts; 19,000 maps; 11,500 broadsides; 93,500 photographs; and 50,000 items in a variety of other media (sound recordings, drawings, video tapes and cassettes, slides, transparencies, posters, memorabilia, and electronic media). Periodical titles are estimated at over 40,000 with 8,000 currently received titles and over 3,000 newspaper titles. Initially endowed with a superb collection of rare books and manuscripts relating to Mexico, the Benson Collection now maintains important holdings for all countries of Latin America with special concentrations on the countries of the Río de la Plata, Brazil, Chile, Peru, and Central America. The Mexican American Library Program, a department of the collection established in 1974, has gathered extensive research materials in all subject areas related to the U.S. Southwest and Latino culture in the U.S. In sum, the book collection of the Benson Collection represents approximately ten percent of all of the volumes in the University of Texas Libraries, the fifth largest academic library in the United States. While the purchase of private libraries laid the foundation for the Benson Collection, the acquisition of current publications is now the major factor in its growth. Researchers from the U.S. and abroad have been attracted to this remarkable resource through the last eight decades, coming to consult materials accumulated from all parts of the world, in many languages, dating from the fifteenth century to the present.

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Recent Submissions

  • A Hemisphere of Knowledge: A Benson Centennial Exhibition 

    Arbino, Daniel (2021-04-02)
    To mark the Benson’s centennial, this exhibition looks at knowledge production from different communities in the Americas. Special attention is paid to community stories, craftwork, harvest and subsistence, medicine, and ...
  • Santa Anna in Life and Legend 

    Garcia Hutchins, Vanessa (2020-12-04)
    The Benson Latin American Collection holds the handwritten memoirs of Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. It also holds various other primary sources that add voices to Santa Anna’s questionable account of Mexico’s history. "Santa ...
  • Celebrating Eric Williams 

    Williams-Connell, Erica; Winston, Rachel E. (2021-04-02)
    A scholar and statesman, the Honorable Dr. Eric Eustace Williams (1911-1981) led Trinidad and Tobago for over a quarter of a century. He oversaw the country’s independence from Britain in 1962 and 1976 transition to a ...
  • Revolutionary Mexico in Newspapers 1900-1929: Guide to the Microfilm Set 

    Benavides, Adán; McAlester, Agnes L. (Benson Latin American Collection, 2002)
    The University of Texas at Austin General Libraries and its Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection have preserved on microfilm 227,930 pages from 560 Mexican newspaper titles which date primarily from 1900 to 1929. ...
  • Indigenous Resistance to Spanish Hegemony in Colonial Mexico 

    Cook, Scott; Kirkman, Kurt (2020-05)
    Students will examine the Spanish colonization of Mexico through the lens of Indigenous ‘resistance’—physical resistance, religious resistance, and socio-cultural resistance—using primary source documents. Students will ...
  • Lesson 1: Physical Resistance of Mexico’s Indigenous Peoples 

    Cook, Scott; Kirkman, Kurt (2020-05)
    Students will investigate different forms of armed resistance the Aztecs and other Indigenous groups in Mexico put forth during the colonization period to counter Spanish hegemony. Students will examine primary sources ...
  • Lesson 2: Religious Resistance of Mexico’s Indigenous Peoples 

    Cook, Scott; Kirkman, Kurt (2020-05)
    Through a primary source document-based inquiry, students will examine the beliefs and rituals of some Indigenous groups in Mexico at the time of the Spanish invasion and their resistance to Christianization efforts.
  • Lesson 3: Socio-Cultural Resistance of Mexico’s Indigenous Peoples 

    Cook, Scott; Kirkman, Kurt (2020-05)
    Students will investigate Indigenous peoples’ socio-cultural resistance to Spanish hegemony through the lens of transculturation. Students will gain a working understanding of the concept of transculturation, develop that ...
  • Ernesto Cardenal Papers: Ministerio de Cultura Spreadsheet 

    González Vílchez, Francisco Alfredo (Benson Latin American Collection, 2016)
    Ministerio de Cultura Correspondence and Records, arranged by country/region and alphabetically. The majority of this subseries are digital copies of materials which remain in Nicaragua. The Benson Latin American Collection ...
  • Inventory of Notes and Photographs, Negatives and Film Positives of Architecture in the City and State of Oaxaca, 1530s-1980s 

    Mullen, Robert J. (Benson Latin American Collection, 2007)
    This collection is the basis for the book, The Architecture and Sculpture of Oaxaca, 1530s-1980s, published by the Center for Latin American Studies, University of Arizona, Tempe, in 1995. CODEX Editores, Mexico, is ...
  • Independent Mexico in Newspapers, the 19th-Century: Guide to the Microfilm Set 

    Benavides, Adán; McAlester, Agnes (University of Texas at Austin, 2005)
    The University of Texas Libraries' Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection has preserved on microfilm 192,527 pages from 579 Mexican newspaper titles which date from 1807 to 1900. The project, which ran from October ...
  • Catalog of Documents Principally Related to Land Holding, Land Use, Tribute, and Population of the Valle del Mezquital, Mexico, During the Sixteenth Century 

    Grossmann Cairus, Brigitte; Cairus, Jose (Benson Latin American Collection, 2007)
    This catalog lists documents from the Archivo General de la Nación, Mexico City, selected by Elinor G. K. Melville during her research to produce A Plague of Sheep: Environmental Consequences of the Conquest of Mexico ...
  • United States Department of State Microfilm at the Benson Collection 

    Schroer, Craig (Benson Latin American Collection, 2003-08)
    This Biblionoticias is a compilation of all microfilm copies of United States Department of State records currently held by the Benson Latin American Collection. It is arranged alphabetically by country and, where the ...
  • Drug Trafficking in the Americas: Selected Sources 

    Schroer, Craig (Benson Latin American Collection, 2000-11)
    The topic of illegal drugs and drug trafficking spans a multitude of disciplines, including economics, political science, media studies, sociology, psychology, and health. As a result, researchers are faced with an abundance ...
  • Religion: Current Periodicals in the Benson Latin American Collection 

    Delepiani, Oscar E. (Benson Latin American Collection, 2000-01)
    Religion is an important aspect of Latin American society, and many educational and research institutions are associated with a religious group or have a religious orientation. They produce many journals, magazines, and ...
  • Ecotourism in Latin America 

    Schroer, Craig (Benson Latin American Collection, 1999-11)
    In the past decade, the idea of ecotourism as a means of combining sustainable development with ecological protection has garnered a good deal of attention from several different quarters including environmentalists, ...
  • Curanderismo: Folk Healing in the Mexican American Community 

    Gutiérrez, Margo (Benson Latin American Collection, 1999-09)
    Traditional folk healing practices continue to be viable and prevalent in the Mexican American community. The study of curanderismo and related folk medical practices encompasses several disciplines: anthropology, folklore, ...
  • The Texas-Mexico Border Region: Classic Works and Recent Publications 

    Benavides, Adán (Benson Latin American Collection, 1999-05)
    This multidisciplinary bibliography of works on the Texas-Mexico border area reflects the continuing prominence of the region in national and binational affairs. Most were published in the 1990s, but a few classic works ...
  • Argentine Art: Selected Sources 

    Gutiérrez-Witt, Laura (Benson Latin American Collection, 1999-03)
    Argentina is a major center for Latin American art where artists thrive, particularly in the vibrant and active cultural milieu of Buenos Aires, but also in the provincial capitals. Known and appreciated around the world, ...
  • Slides of Latin America and the Caribbean 

    Garner, Jane (Benson Latin American Collection, 1999-01)
    This listing of all 35mm. slides relating to Latin America and the Caribbean currently held by the Benson Latin American Collection is arranged by country or geographic area. Slides are housed in the Rare Books and Manuscripts ...

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