Modern History of Chile

Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Modern History of Chile

  • Host University

    Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso

  • Location

    Valparaíso and Viña del Mar, Chile

  • Area of Study

    History, International Studies, Latin American Studies, Political Science

  • Language Level

    High Intermediate

    Hours & Credits

  • Contact Hours

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview



    The course offers a general perspective on Chilean history, with an emphasis on the processes of change. In terms of methodology, the course includes perspectives and varieties of analysis of the country?s social, political, and economic history.


    ? Analyze from a global perspective the history of Chile in the 19th and 20th centuries, with an emphasis on the processes of change.
    ? Reflect on the diverse historiographical perspectives on the large processes of Chilean history.
    ? Discuss and investigate a historical process from a bibliographic and documentary perspective.


    1. Geographic Vision of Chile
    a. The passage and the occupation of space
    b. The evolution of the borders of Chile

    2. Colonial Society
    a. Socio-cultural evolution and structure of colonial Chile. 18th Century.
    b. Change and continuity in colonial economy and society.

    3. The Process of Independence
    a. The process of decolonization. The crisis of the Spanish Monarchy.
    b. Construction of the state and the nation.

    4. Construction of the State and the Nation, 1830-1861
    a. Evolution of Chile?s political institutions, 1830-1861
    b. Cycle of economic expansion and social transformation
    c. Cultural growth. Institutions and education.

    5. Peak and Crisis of the Oligarchic System, 1861 ? 1935
    a. Consolidation of liberalism, 1861-1891
    b. Political conflicts in the system. Church and State.

    6. Construction of a New Political Order 1925 - 1938
    a. International context of the period
    b. Economic cycles
    c. Socio-cultural transformation. Middle classes and the culture of the masses.
    d. Crisis and transformation of the oligarchic system

    7. Exclusive Political Projects, 1947 ? 1973
    a. International Context, 1947-1973
    b. Tendencies and tensions. From the Ibáñez government to Alessandri.
    c. The Frei Project and the revolution in liberty
    d. Project of the political party "Popular Unit"

    8. Crisis of Democracy and Military Regime, 1973 -1989
    a. The Crisis of 1973
    b. Phases of the military regime: installation, consolidation, and crisis.

    9. Democratic Transition and Consolidation, 1989 -2006
    a. Shift towards democracy, 1989 ? 1994
    b. Democratic consolidation, 1994 ? 2006
    c. Social, economic, and cultural change in Chile today

    Methodology and Evaluation:

    The subject uses a methodology of analysis and discussion of the themes put forward by teachers and students.

    Evaluation will consist of 2 exams (35% each) and one research paper (30%).


    1. Angell, Alan, Chile de Alessandri a Pinochet: en busca de la utopia, Andres Bello. Santiago, Region Metropolitana de Santiago. Chile, 1993.
    2. Arriagada, Genaro, Por la razon o la Fuerza: Chile Bajo Pinochet, Sudamericana. Santiago, Region Metropolitana de Santiago. Chile. 1998.
    3. Aylwin, Mariana y otros, Chile en el Siglo XX, Planeta. Santiago, Region Metropolitana de Santiago. Chile. 1990.
    4. Collier, y Satter, Willaim, Historia de Chile 1808-1994, Cambridge University Press. Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, Inglaterra, 1998.
    5. Drake, Paul, Socialismo y Populismo en Chile, Ediciones Universitarias de Valparaiso. Valparaiso, Region de Valparaiso. Chile, 1992.
    6. Edwards, Alberto, La fronda Aristocratica, Universitaria. Santiago, Region Metropolitana de Santiago, 1991.
    7. Gazmuri, Cristian, Eduardo Frei Montalva y su epoca. Aguilar. Santiago, Region Metropolitana de Santiago. Chile. 2000.
    8. Gorgora, Mario, Ensayo Historico Sobre la Nicion de Estado en Chile en los Siglos XIX y XX. Universitaria. Santiago, Region Metropolitana de Santiago. 1998.
    9. Moulian, Tomas, Chile Actual. Anatomia de un Mito, LOM. Santiago, Region Metropolitana de Santiago. Chile. 1998.
    10. Stuven, Ana Maria, Una aproximacion a la Cultura Politica de la Elite Chilena: Concepto y Valoracion del Orden Social, Estudios Publicos 66, 1997.
    11. Urzua, German, Historia Politica de Chile y su Evolucion Electoral, Juridica de Chile. Santiago, Region Metropolitana de Santiago. Chile. 1992.
    12. Valenzuela, Arturo, Los Origenes de la Democracia. Reflexiones Teoricas Sobre el caso de Chile, Estudios Publicos, 12, 1983.
    13. Valenzuela, Arturo Origenes y Caracteristicas del Sistema de Partidos en Chile, Estudiose Publicos 18, 1985.
    14. Valenzuela, Samuel, Origenez y Transformaciones del Sistema del Sistema de Partidos en Chile, Estudios Publicos 58, 1995.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.


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