Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Course Description

This course studies important twentieth century texts from Spain and Latin America. The readings include short stories, theatre, the novel and poetry. This subject is conducted in Spanish and all reading and writing for the course is also done in Spanish.

The goal of this course is to enable each student to acquire the skill necessary for the enjoyment of serious examination of literary and cultural issues in a foreign language. Students will become familiar with the historical, political, geographical and cultural settings that resulted in the imaginative voices we have come to identify as uniquely Hispanic. Emphasis will be given to the moments in the twentieth century during which the exchange between the New World and the Old created a wholly new way of communicating human experience. Attention will be paid to films that will sometimes be shown during class time, and sometimes as part of an assignment. These films form an integral part of the course. The class will also have on-line access to El País, an excellent daily newspaper from Spain that has extraordinary coverage of cultural and literary matters and a wonderful archive to which you will have access.

This subject is designed for a variety of students. Some may be confronting a literature course in Spanish for the first time. Others have taken literature courses in Spanish before, but have not had experience with the kinds of approaches to texts that characterize college level courses. There will be an emphasis on class discussion. Each student will participate in a teaching group. The group will be responsible for generating thought questions to guide the class reading of the text at hand before that work is assigned. Students will have access to the archive of El País and can use the newspaper, books, journals, and on-line materials for presentations. In addition, the teaching group will lead discussion for that particular class. There will be three short papers and a final exam as indicated on the syllabus. In addition, students will submit response papers that will record their personal responses to the films and the readings. Asterisks on the calendar indicate a day on which a journal entry must be submitted. Grades will be based on class participation, timely submission of journals and papers (absolutely no late papers or journals will be accepted without a medical excuse), quality of papers, and work in teaching groups. Because class discussion is of primary importance in this class, more than one unexcused absence will result in an automatic lowering of your grade.

If you are having trouble with any aspect of the course, or if you have suggestions as to how we might improve the class to better meet your needs or interests, please see me. I have, over the years, often changed the syllabus to reflect student suggestions and additions to works I have chosen to teach.