Ibero-American Studies Collection


The Ibero-American Studies Collection at the UW-Madison Libraries supports the research and instruction needs of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese and the Latin American, Caribbean and Iberian Studies Program (LACIS) and its affiliated faculty and students. The collection, begun in the 1960s, consists of materials from or about the countries of Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Iberian Peninsula. The resources in the collection are in a variety of formats and support research in disciplines such as: literature, linguistics, history, sociology, anthropology, economics, political science, religious studies, cultural studies, women and gender studies, and film studies. Chronologically, the collection covers ancient cultures of the Americas and the early medieval period in Iberia through to the present day.

The core humanities and social sciences collection is housed in Memorial Library. Additional materials about Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Iberian Peninsula are held at their respective disciplinary libraries, including: Steenbock Library (agricultural & life sciences), Kohler Art Library, the Business Library, the Law Library, and Mills Music Library.

Collection Description

Areas of disciplinary strength within the Ibero-American Studies Collection include anthropology, economics, history, political science, sociology, and Spanish and Portuguese language and literature. While all the countries of Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Iberian Peninsula are represented in the collection, our holdings are strongest for the following countries: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico, Spain, and Venezuela.


Spanish, Portuguese, and French are the principal languages of primary source materials in the collection. Secondary sources are routinely acquired in these languages in addition to English, and, to a lesser degree, German and Italian. Materials in indigenous and creole languages of the Americas and the languages of Spain are also acquired, including: Nahuatl, Mayan languages, Quechua, Aymara, Haitian Creole, Catalan, Galician, and Euskera.


The majority of the Ibero-American Studies Collection comprises printed books and serials, but the Library does have significant collections of microforms, audio-visual media, and archival materials. We also subscribe to and provide access to electronic sources such as Internet-based electronic journals, bibliographic databases, and primary source databases. Digitized materials from our physical collections are also made available through the University of Wisconsin Digitized Collections (UWDC).

Special Collections

The Department of Special Collections houses several notable collections in the area of Ibero-American Studies. These include the Biruté Ciplijauskaité Collection (Spanish poetry and criticism), the Cartonera Collection, the Mexican Pamphlet Collection (19th century), the Ayotzinapa Ephemera Collection, the Porter Collection (18th century Spain), Publications of the Positivist Church of Brazil, and the Vanguard Poetry Collection (South American, 1950-1980).