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Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures

Graduate Courses in Spanish at the 7xx and 8xx level


SPAN 700: Introduction to Graduate Studies in Languages, Literatures, and Cultures An introduction to graduate studies that includes a survey of contemporary literary theory, an overview of the current state of the profession, and instruction in how to carry out research and write at the graduate level. 

SPAN 711: Introduction to Literary Theory and Criticism. Required of all PhD students in Spanish An overview of twentieth-century literary theories and methodologies used in literary analysis. This course will teach students the fundamental principles of literary discourse in Spanish by way of the study and discussion of the tenets of twentieth-century literary theory as they apply to literary texts written in Spanish. The goal of this course is to enhance critical discourse written in Spanish by applying various paradigms/models of twentieth-century literary theory and criticism to selected works written in Spanish for the purpose of sharpening critical analysis, interpretation, and appreciation as well as appreciating the role of literary theory in general, and of the twentieth-century in particular.

SPAN 715: History of the Spanish Language [= LING 734] This course will trace the evolution of the Spanish language from its beginnings as a regional dialect of Latin spoken in the Iberian Peninsula, through the fall of the Roman Empire, the invasions of the Goths and later of the Moslems, the subsequent “Reconquest” and the expansion of Castilian into the Americas, and the continued development of Spanish to modern day. We will consider internal/structural changes in the language (its sounds and sound system, word and sentence structure, vocabulary) and discuss the external factors that have shaped its development over time (e.g., invasions, migrations, and contact with other languages and cultures). Part of the course is dedicated to discussion of geographic variation, including Peninsular dialects, Latin American Spanish, Judeo-Spanish (Ladino), Spanish in the US and Spanglish, and Spanish-based creoles (e.g., Papiamento, Chabacano, Media Lengua). Learning Outcomes: By the end of the semester, to have a clear conception of how Modern Spanish developed from Latin, and of the major historico-political influences that shaped it, as well as familiarity with the results of its contact with languages and cultures outside of Iberia, including the Americas, Africa and Asia.

SPAN 722: Cervantes A discussion of Cervantes’ narrative work and, in particular, of the cultural, ideological and ideological significance of Don Quijote. Textual analysis and critical theories combine to open the work to current interpretations with the goal to provide access to the aesthetic possibilities immersed within the novel: parody, satire, along the transformations taken place in Early Modern Spain.

SPAN 724: Renaissance and Baroque Poetry and Drama A critical reading of major trends in Spanish Renaissance and Baroque poetry, and a discussion of their function within the cultural and ideological transformation of Early Modern times. The goal is to provide an analysis of the field of poetic discourse during the 16th and 17th centuries in relation to the emergence of a literary representation of subjectivity. Relations between oral and written practices. Poetical conventions and philosophical, religious and social issues.

SPAN 730: Contemporary Spanish Prose Fiction Emphasis on the post-Spanish Civil War narrative. Course description: This course will study a number of the acclaimed Spanish novels and short stories written after 1939. Because this period in Spanish letters is so prolific, the works chosen represent the major trends that fashioned Spain’s narrative (prose fiction) as it emerged from the Civil War (1936-1939). While framed within their corresponding socio-historical contexts, discussion of these works will emphasize an eclectic approach to the application of literary theory (close readings are crucial and the focus is process-oriented rather than lecture-based). A seminar format will be used. In this regard, students will be encouraged to supplement their reading of the primary creative and critical texts with secondary materials. The MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (latest edition) will be used in the preparation of all papers, and Spanish will be the language of instruction (all papers and presentations are to be done in Spanish). The goal of this course is to provide an in-depth study of selected Spanish works of prose fiction with the goal of fostering independent research and scholarly study of novels and short stories that are not covered in classroom discussions. The latter will be presented in a round-table format at the end of the semester.

SPAN 732: Nineteenth-Century Spanish Prose and Poetry Intensive reading of major works of Spanish Romanticism and Realism. Course description: This course will focus specifically on the following writers and their works: (from the Romantic period) Mariano José de Larra, Mesonero Romanos, Angel Saavedra, José Zorrilla, José de Espronceda, Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer, and Rosalía de Castro; (from the Realist period) Benito Pérez Galdós, Emilia Pardo Bazán, Carmen de Burgos, Clarín, Vicente Blasco Ibáñez, José Echegaray, and Manuel Tamayo y Baus. A Xeroxed collection as well as entire texts will be used. A seminar format will be used (numerous outside readings [i.e., Octavio Paz’s Los hijos del limo] will serve as frame for classroom discussion). The MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (latest edition) is to be used in the preparation of all written work (to be turned in), and Spanish will be the language of instruction (all papers and presentations will be done in Spanish). The goal of this course is to provide an in-depth study of selected authors and their works.

SPAN 733: Trans-Atlantic Perspectives The course explores the interconnections between Spain and the Americas in order to discuss a number of issues relating to processes of articulation and assimilation between the Spanish legacy and America’s cultures, together with the African dimension. Readings on the social, economic, and political contexts will stimulate reflection and a questioning of some of the traditional notions of national, cultural and ethnic identities.

SPAN 733: Trans-Atlantic spaces in Latin American literature and culture of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries This course is conceived as an exploration of the importance of specific trans-Atlantic processes in shaping Latin American literature and culture over the course of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. These processes encompass the Caribbean plantation system based on slave labor, as well other modes of extractive capitalism in Latin America, along with the migration of persons, ideas and cultural forms. We will examine the way in which although they belong to specific historical periods, said processes continue to inform complex postcolonial notions of identity, which are, in turn, expressed in spaces (for example, enclosed or peripheral spaces) and spatial practices (such as flight, passage, settlement). By paying particular attention to the way in which literary texts, particularly essays, narrative prose, and film incorporate spatial coordinates that originate in the above processes, our readings should yield a more complex understanding of these texts' role in their respective national literature/culture and, therefore, in the successive formulations of national identities. The readings of the texts, which will be the central focus of each class, should allow students to develop their use of conceptual critical tools that are instrumental in seizing the diverse trans-Atlantic dimensions of Latin American culture and history. Key critical interventions in the field of Latin American cultural studies will also be considered as primary texts, since they will provide a basis upon which the students' readings will be anchored. The course will start out with a thorough case-study of Cuba, including texts by Alejo Carpentier, Fernando Ortiz, Lino Novás Calvo and Miguel Barnet. This will allow students to become duly acquainted with a national corpus in which trans-Atlantic processes are more explicitly present in literature and culture. Subsequent readings will then branch off into diverse national contexts, so as to encompass immigration to the Patagonia, then moving on to José Eustasio Rivera's La vorágine and the chronotope of the Amazonian rubber boom as it is also taken up in Hans Werner Herzog's Fitzcarraldo. The course will be taught in Spanish and most of the primary readings will be in the same language. Critical readings will be added to primary readings at the professor's discretion and distributed throughout the term.

SPAN 734: Spanish Poetry: Generation of 1927 This course explores the works of the so-called Generation of 1927, a group of poets and scholars whose influence has been felt throughout the twentieth century and beyond. They are considered to be an integral part of Spain’s Silver Age. A selection of texts written by major poets, three women, and minor poets of the Generation of 1927 will be the major texts for the course. The avant-garde movements in Spain produced countless works of art, and for its close relation to the Generation, films by Buñuel and Surrealist paintings will be examined in conjunction with the poetry.

SPAN 736: The Generation of 1898 Essay, verse, drama, and fiction of the major writers of this Generation. This course will focus specifically on the works of those writers who have traditionally been grouped together to form the canon of what has been called “The Generation of 1898" in Spain: Azorín, Pío Baroja, Antonio Machado, Miguel de Unamuno, Ramón María del Valle-Inclán, and others. To be studied is a selection of their essays, novels, short stories, poetry, and theatre. An anthology as well as the entire texts of various works will be used. Outside readings will be assigned form time to time. The MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers (latest edition) will be used in the preparation of all written work (to be turned in), and Spanish will be the language of instruction (all papers and presentations will be done in Spanish). In addition to familiarizing students with this period of Spanish letters, the goal of this course is to provide a clear awareness of the literary themes, techniques and theories which were of seminal importance for 20th-century Spanish letters.

SPAN 745: Seminar on Spanish American Drama Selected Spanish-American dramatic works from the colonial period to the present. This seminar will study: the development of theater from Colonial period through the present, the historical facts, political, and religious issues and its representation, and the application of the most important European technical and theoretical influences to the 20th Century and contemporary Spanish-American theater. It will emphasize the theaters of the 20th century and contemporary (theater of revolution, theater of transculturalization, theater of crisis, popular theater, theater of propaganda, etc). Some of plays to study : La noche de los asesinos by José Triana, Juicio Final by José de Jesús Martínez, Las manos de Dios by Carlos Solórzano, Ida y vuelta by Mario Benedetti, El cepillo de dientes by Jorge Díaz, Los siameses by Griselda Gambaro, La balsa de la medusa by Egon Wolf, and El eterno femenino by Rosario Castellano.

SPAN 746: Post-Baroque Spanish Drama A graduate seminar focusing on the application of Spanish and European major stage theories to modern Spanish theatre. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the study of contemporary Spanish drama and the contributions of Spanish playwrights to modern styles of writing and producing plays. The impact that modern European theatre performances had on Spanish playwrights will be examined. Works by Moratín, Benavente, Tamayo y Baus, García Lorca, Valle-Inclán, Mihura, Buero Vallejo and Arrabal will be explored together with Pirandello, Artaud, Becket and Brecht.

SPAN 747: The Modern Spanish American Novel A seminar on selected Spanish-American novels from Independence through Avant-Garde. This course will cover topics such as the creation of the Spanish-American nation and the importance of literature during this period, the historical, political, social and literary movements and their representation in the novels. Other topics include: Romanticism and the novel, realism and naturalism in the novel, the concept of civilization versus barbarie, modernism as a literary movement and its influence, the Mexican revolution and the novel, the avant-garde and the new psychological and political novel. The instructor may choose to work on one or two literary movements and/or choose to select two or tree authors and their works. Instructor may also choose to work on just one topic, ex.: civilización versus barbarie, and select the authors accordingly. A selection of authors and works may include: José Joaquín Fernández de Lizardi, El Periquillo Sarniento (1816), Sarmiento, Facundo (1845); Esteban Echeverria, El matadero (1871); Gertrudis Gómez de Avellaneda, Sab (1841); Jose Hernández, Martín Fierro (1879); Juan León de Mera, Cumandá (1879); Alberto Blest Gana, Martín Rivas (1862); Jorge Isaacs, María (1867); Luis Orrego Luco, Casa grande (1908); Mariano Azuela, Los de abajo (1916); Horacio Quiroga, Cuentos de amor, locura y muerte (1917); Eduardo Barrios, El hermano asno (1922); Teresa de la Parra, Efigenia (1924); Jose Eustasio Rivera, La voragine (1924); Ricardo Gerald’s, Don Segundo Sombrero (1926); Romulo Gallegos, Dona Bárbara (1929); Maria Luisa Bombay, La ultimo nebula(1935). REQUIREMENTS: This course is only for graduate students who have already taken 500 level courses.

SPAN 751: Twentieth-Century Spanish American Short Story Spanish-American short story from 1901 through 2000, with in-depth study of the most significant authors of the 20th-Century. This course will acquaint the student with the literary periods, historical frame and the geographical spaces in which the works were created. The professor will make a selection of the authors and short stories to be discussed in class and to be researched for the final project. Some authors to be studied include Borges, Bombal, Donoso, Mallea, Cortázar, Quiroga, Rojas, Rulfo, Arreola and Ramírez. Requirements: Active participation, 2 exams and a final research paper (MLA format).

SPAN 752: Twentieth-Century Spanish Exile Literature This course will study the creative works which high profile Spanish writers wrote while in exile (in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Argentina, and the U.S.) during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) and the ensuing Francoist regime (1939-1975), hence the course’s trans-Atlantic focus. These writers’ prior works (before leaving Spain) will serve as background for an in-depth discussion of the stylistics/technical, ideological, and thematic aspects of their trans-Atlantic literary productivity. Attention will be paid to the artistic communities which grew from this dialogue and which resulted in the creation of Ibero-American centers of creative excellence, such as El Colegio de México. By way of selected topics for the final paper and a follow-up colloquium, students will compare these works written in exile with those of other Spaniards, such as, for example, Jorge Semprún, Fernando Arrabal, Juan Goytisolo, and María Zambrano, whose chosen places of exile were France, Italy, Switzerland, etc. The course will also make mention of the flourishing sub-genre of literatura memorialística (literature of memory) which provides a personal narrative account of experiences also rooted in one form or another of exile literature.

SPAN 763: Contemporary Spanish-American Narrative Emphasis on works published during the second half of the 20th Century. Some of the topics of study and discussion will be: fiction and reality; fiction within fiction, pop culture; hybrid cultures; dictatorship, political and sexual repression, psychological narrative, exploitation, myth, empowerment of feminine and feminist narrative, narrative voices; the problematic heritage of the mestizo, detective fiction, and rhythm in narrative and polyphonic voices. Some authors and works to be studied include Manuel Puig (Boquitas pintadas), José Donoso (El jardín de al lado), Ángeles Mastreta (Arráncame la vida), Rodrigo Rey Rosas (Lo que soñó Sebastián), Alberto Fuguet (Mala onda), Carlos Fuentes (La muerte de Artemio Cruz) and Fernando Vallejo, (La Virgen de los sicarios).

SPAN 765: Contemporary Spanish American Poets Beginning with Modernismo and ending with the most recent trends in Spanish American poetry, the course will cover different literary movements and cultural formations with an emphasis on issues of gender, race, nation and ideology. Students will read and discuss texts from Darío, Martí, Huidobro, Storni, Guillén and others, and look critically at questions surrounding the formation of a national / regional cannon and the representation of these authors in it’s ever changing condition. Main textbook: Antología de la poesía Hispanoamericana. Editor Julio Ortega. Mexico: Siglo XXI, 1987.

SPAN 767: Spanish American Testimonial Literature In-depth study of selected contemporary testimonial accounts, internationally hailed as classics in the genre, from different Spanish American countries, as well as an in-depth study of two films that fall in the same category of being the voice of the voiceless. Texts covered will include Un día en la vida (Manlio Argueta), Biografía de un cimarrón (Miguel Barnet), Me llamo Rigoberta Menchú y así me nació la conciencia (Elizabeth Burgos), Juan Pérez Jolote (Ricardo Pozas), Tejas verdes. Diario de un campo de concentración en Chile (Hernán Valdés), "Si me permiten hablar..." Testimonio de Domitila (Moema Viezzer), and the films Verónico Cruz and Chile, Obstinate Memory.

SPAN 769: Hispanic Women Writers In-depth study of women authors’ works from Spain and Spanish America--poets, narrators, playwrights, essayist-- writing during the period of the Spanish Civil War and later during the Cold War. This course will study the literary strategies used by women writers to express and denounce, in a highly coded discourse, the horror of violence, human right abuses, the disintegration of family and nation, and the diverse role of women, within family and society, as portrayed in the texts. Selected authors such as Gabriela Mistral, Carmen Martín Gaite, Almudena Grandes, DulceChacón, Mercè Redoreda, Maruja Torres, and others will be some of the authors studied in this course.

SPAN 771: Spanish American Modernism Two tendencies have prevailed among the critics of modernismo. The first persisted in seeing modernismo as a school that emerged in 1888 with the publication of Azul [Blue] and culminated in 1916 with the death of Rubén Darío (1867-1916). This first attempt at categorization put the emphasis on the formal and stylistic aspects of the movement, and interpreted it as a copy of the French literary models in vogue at the end of XIX century. While this version subjected Spanish American Modernismo to the European literary trends of the time, the second integrated it into a broader process characterized by the economic, political and social breakdown, familiar to us under the label of Modernity. In this course we will analyze the ways poets dealt with the "crisis of Modernity", its shapes and turns in Latin America, its representation of the poet, women and other cultures, as well as its insistence on the changing Times and the Ills of the new period. Special emphasis will be placed on its most representative figures such as José Martí, Rubén Darío and Julián del Casal.

SPAN 780: Seminars on Selected Topics These are non-traditional courses whose content reflects new literary and theoretical perspectives on chosen topics in literature (texts) and culture, and which are not covered in other seminars.

Specific offerings:

SPAN 780: Escribir desde el exilio: cuento, poesía y teatro de (algunos de) los escritores españoles prófugos del régimen franquista E.g., Rafael Alberti, Francisco Arrabal, Max Aub, Francisco Ayala, Rosa Chacel, Juan Ramón Jiménez, Paulino Masip, Pedro Salinas, Ramón Sender.

SPAN 783: Seminars on Selected Topics Topics focus on literary texts and their impact on the visual arts, as well as on the emblematic representation of visual texts as the products of the on-going dynamics of cultural change. These are non-traditional courses whose content reflects new theoretical, artistic, literary, and linguistic perspectives which are not covered in other seminars.

 SPAN 880: Seminar on Special Topics in Transatlantic Studies

SPAN 881: Seminar on Special Topics in Spanish-American Literatures and Cultures

SPAN 882: Seminar on Special Topics in Peninsular Spanish Literature and Cultures

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.