Spanish 250 – Gateway to the Spanish-Speaking World (GE: WRI)
Section A – León Narváez, T/TH 8:00
Section B – Ariel Strichartz, T/TH 9:35/9:30
Section C – Gwen Barnes-Karol, T/TH 11:45/12:45
How do we begin to get into the mindset of another culture? How do individuals relate to a society as a whole? We’ll start to answer these questions with respect to the Spanish-speaking world in this course by exploring different stories and documents about families in Spain from the early 1900’s through 2006. We will work on strategies of academic reading in Spanish through analysis of a series of “cultural texts” – from statistical data to periodical press articles to films to a novel. You will respond to these texts and develop your skills in Spanish through class discussions and oral activities, and most importantly, through various modes of academic writing. The course includes participation in out-of-class conversation groups.
Novel: Historia de una maestra (Josefina R. Aldecoa)
Film: La lengua de las mariposas
The next course for anyone continuing on after 232 and required for Spanish majors
• 250 is the next course for anyone continuing on after 232/232/234 and is required for all Spanish majors.
• Counts for Women’s and Gender Studies major
Spanish 272 – Cultural Heritage of Latin America
Alberto Villate-Isaza, MWF 9:05
The discovery and conquest of the New World brought about violent conflict and posed intellectual and material challenges perhaps unprecedented in Western civilization. The Conquest of the New World experienced a steady rise and a tumbling fall with definite consequences for the Spanish American nations. After the wars of independence from Spain subsided, most of the newly constituted countries strove to find cultural independence, but as the symbolic foundation was being established, the socio-economic conditions brought about a change in the perception of the “real” possibilities of freedom, autonomy, and progress. In this sense, Spanish American history has, unfortunately, witnessed both multiple dictatorships and several instances of corruption and illegality within democratic governments. However, in every occasion grass-roots movements show the persistence of the people who refuse to ignore justice and decide to act.
This course will explore some of the questions that have inhabited and, to a great extent, defined Spanish American culture from the Conquest to the present. The questions of indigenous peoples, Modernity, and Democracy, for example, are only three of the constant inquiries that surface time and again in different guises. We will examine these topics by reading both fiction (a novel, short stories, and poems) and non-fiction (essays, articles) as well as through videos and music.
• Prerequisite: Spanish 250
• Counts as an elective (above 250) for Spanish major and a “focus on Latin America” course
• Counts for Hispanic Studies major
Spanish 273 – Heritage of Hispanic U.S.
Kristina Medina-Vilariño, T/TH 1:20/2:15
This course aims to offer an introductory, panoramic, and critical view of the Latino/a Studies and Latino/a cultural production. Our approach focuses on the origins of the Latino/a Studies as an academic discipline, some of its main research topics, and the Latino/a and Hispanic cultural expressions in the plastic arts, literature, media, and film. We will highlight current controversies (such as the “War on Ethnic Studies in Arizona”) and analyze multiple Latino/a cultural expressions in the U.S. As part of our discussion we will delve into the work of Latino/a artists and writers, such as Miguel Luciano, Favianna, Carmen Miranda (“the Lady in the Tutti Frutti Hat”), Gloria Anzaldúa and Achy Obejas, among many others. Finally, as a requirement for this course, students will complete a project where they interact with the members of the Latino Communities in Minnesota. Ultimately, they will develop a responsible and informed opinion concerning categories of identity such as race, class, economic status, legal status, gender, and sexuality. We will establish connections that will motivate students’ understanding of a variety of cultures, stories, and identities that comprise the history of Latino US, as well as the historic relation between Hispanic migrations and the United States. Some of the questions we will explore are: What are the origins and main controversies that surround Latino/a Studies? What is the significance, history, and social context of the Latino cultures in the United States? What is their social impact? And, how do they relate to St. Olaf students?
• Prerequisite: Spanish 250
• Counts as an elective (above 250) for Spanish major
• Counts for ARMS (American Racial and Multicultural Studies)major
Spanish 275 – Exploring Hispanic Literature (GE: ALS-L)
Gwen Barnes-Karol, T/TH 9:35/9:30
First, you discovered Historia de una maestra. Then, you moved on to Corsario, El plan infinito, or San Manuel Bueno, Mártir. You’ve had experience reading novels as cultural documents in courses at the 250 and 270 levels. Now, you’re ready for the next step—reading literary works not just as cultural documents, but also as “literature.” In this course, you’ll make this transition by exploring what literature really is and learning the principles of literary analysis and literary terminology as applied to poetry, short stories, theater, and the novel. We’ll focus our work on texts that examine various facets of the Spanish Civil War (1936-39) through these four major literary genres, represented by the following works:
• Poems: war-time poetry written by literary figures of the day as well as by every-day Spanish citizens that chronicles the daily experiences of those who lived in both Republican and Francoist Spain
• Ramón J. Sender, Réquiem por un campesino español (a novel originally published in Mexico because it was banned by the Franco regime)
• Manuel Rivas, ¿Qué me quieres, amor? (the short story collection that served as inspiration for the movie, La lengua de las mariposas, that you saw in Spanish 250)
• Fernán Fernán-Gómez, Las bicicletas son para el verano (a play written by one of 20th-/21st-century Spain’s foremost actors and playwrights of which we’ll also see the movie version)
• Prerequisite: Spanish 250
• Required for the Spanish major
Spanish 276 – Spanish as a First and Second Language
Maggie Broner, MWF 2:00
So, you have been learning Spanish as a second language for many years, but…have you ever wondered how a second language is learned and acquired? Or have you ever asked yourself why you acquired English “effortlessly” while you really need to work hard at learning Spanish? And, when you started to learn Spanish, did you ever ask yourself why some countries use vos, and you only learned tú, and usted? This course will introduce you to the cognitive and social processes involved in learning and using Spanish as a second language. You will also explore Spanish as a first language through the study of the history of the Spanish language, the different varieties (dialects) of Spanish spoken in the Spanish-speaking world, as well as the influence of English and other languages on Spanish in situations of language contact (e.g. Spanish in the U.S.). Finally, you will have a chance to improve your pronunciation.
Required for Spanish majors
You may not take this course if you’ve taken Spanish 311
Includes an oral interview to determine your proficiency level at this point in your major
Tentative reading list
Tentative reading list:
- Textbook (TBA)
- Lipsky, John. El español de Latinoamérica (on reserve in Rolvaag)
- Packet of journal articles
- Allende, Isabel. El plan infinito (a novel)
• Prerequisite: Spanish 250
• Required for the Spanish major (prerequisite for Spanish 311)
• Includes an oral interview to determine your proficiency level at this point in your major
• Counts for Linguistic Studies concentration
Spanish 313 –Literature and Society in Spain (GE: ALS-L)
Jonathan O’Conner, T/TH 1:20/2:15
Columbus’ voyage to the Americas in 1492 brought into contact vastly different worlds and laid the foundation for an empire that continues to tie Spain, for better or for worse, to the “New World.” Contact by Spaniards with this unfamiliar reality resulted in a series of dilemmas: How could the travelers describe such an unknown world to those back in Spain? How would those back in Spain imagine a world they had never seen? How did the inhabitants of this vast new land fit into the European view of the cosmos? How could the conquest of the new territory be justified? More recently in 1992 Spain celebrated the quincentennial of Columbus’ first voyage. How has the narrative about the conquest of the Americas evolved there? How has Spain’s view of its former colonies changed?
In this course we will explore these and other questions through reading and analysis of Spanish narratives of the Americas. Readings from the initial period of the conquest will include excerpts from Columbus’ travel diary, Hernán Cortés’ letters to the Spanish monarchs, Bernal Díaz del Castillo’s account of the conquest of Mexico, and Peter Martyr’s Décadas del nuevo mundo, and El Nuevo Mundo descubierto por Cristóbal Colón by the Golden Age playwright Lope de Vega. Our readings will include narratives from other eras, as well, and will highlight more contemporary Spanish narratives of the conquest. For example, we will likely read the contemporary historical novel Tiempo de conquistadores (2000) by Alberto Vázquez-Figueroa about a woman who seeks vengeance after her husband is killed for speaking out against slavery.
• Prerequisites: Spanish 250 and 275
• Either 313 or 314 is required for the Spanish major
• Can count as a 300-level elective if you’ve already taken 313(with a different topic) or 314
• Counts as a “focus on Spain course”
Spanish 399 – Seminar in Literatures (“Women in Reality”)
Sylvia Carullo, T/TH 11:45/12:45
When reflecting on imagination, while discussing the artistic process, Gabriel García Márquez says that “imagination is a special faculty that artists have in order to create a new reality different from the one in which they live.” When referring to reality in life, the Colombian writer says that “reality is a much ‘better writer’ than writers themselves.” And, when speaking about reality in fiction, he points out that “the reality of the novel is the reality of life.” Therefore, following García Márquez’s ideas, we may conclude that novels—and short stories as well—reflect life as is.
This course studies a selection of Spanish-American short stories that belong to an historical period approximately one century long. Such short stories bring to the forefront female characters—set in different historical periods and in miscellaneous environments—that display a variety of images of women, each one representing a particular reality. Thus, and in connection with García Márquez’s concept of reality of life, we will observe that the literary female models appear as the embodiment of the ideals, dreams, and obsessions of their times and authors. We will come to appreciate different female literary portraits that show marked changes within the last decades of the said time frame, due to the switch from a predominantly male viewpoint to a female perspective. This switch in perspective will help us recognize some female images that offer a clear vision of women, resulting from the interpretation of women themselves. Generally speaking, by virtue of a set of rich and well-articulated portrayals of women, the examined short stories will show us that women today demonstrate their continuous presence in the literary world, celebrating their image as protagonists as well as writers.
Prerequisites for SPA 399:
- Spanish 250 and at least two courses at the 270 or 300 level.
- To get books/material for this class, please visit the St. Olaf bookstore