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About the Location

Barcelona and the University of Barcelona

The University of Barcelona (UB) is a global university with facilities in two exciting, centrally located neighborhoods in Barcelona.  CHESS’s collaboration with UB offers special opportunities for student fieldwork placements in Spain.  The University of Barcelona program has working relationships with a range of libraries, museums, and heritage sites in Barcelona and the surrounding areas, including Jewish and Islamic heritage projects, Spanish civil war sites, and the Barcelona Centre of Contemporary Culture (CCCB).  

Barcelona has a lively student scene as well as museums and monuments related to European politics and culture.  With its historical legacies of Jewish and Islamic civilization, five centuries of colonial expansion and trade, and the twentieth-century civil war and dictatorship, Spain offers a wide range of opportunities to investigate how different stakeholders interpret the past and respond to official efforts to recognize and represent past populations, events, and cultural practices.  The emerging challenges of creating inclusive and multicultural heritage policies may also be fully explored in contemporary Spain, home to immigrant communities from north Africa, southeastern Europe, and Latin America, as well as the Basque and Catalan autonomous regions.


Amherst and the University of Massachussetts-Amherst

The Department of Anthropology at UMass-Amherst has one of the longest histories of specialization in European anthropology in the country, with numerous faculty members from across the four fields working in Europe (see faculty page).  The European Field Studies program has run continuously for the past 40 years and has launched the research of close to 200 students (to read more about the past work of EFS participants, please visit 

In addition to building on the experience of the European Field Studies program, CHESS is strengthened by a partnership with the newly established Center for Heritage Studies
(CHS), which offers additional courses and colloquia related to heritage studies.  Our department is developing a special strength in research related to the cultural politics of heritage, historical memory, and material culture, with faculty specialists studying a range of communities in Europe and the United States.