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Spring 2020

PH.D. PROGRAM IN LATIN AMERICAN, IBERIAN, AND LATINO CULTURES
SPRING 2020 – COURSE LISTINGS
THREE-CREDITS
 
SPAN 72700 – Politics and Literature: Literatura y poder en los siglos 16-17
GC: Thursday, 4:15-6:15 p.m., Prof. Lía Schwartz
 
SPAN 76200 – Colonial Inquisition: The Dogs of God in the New World
GC: Wednesday, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Prof. Mariana Zinni
 
SPAN 80000 – Todo nuevo bajo el sol. Re-Shaping Spanish Identity at the End of the 20th Century
GC: Monday, 4:15-6:15 p.m., Prof. Alvaro Fernandez
 
SPAN 80200 – Critical Pedagogy and Language Learning
GC: Thursday, 2:00-4:00 p.m., Prof. Beatriz Lado
 
SPAN 87000 – The Neoliberal Promise of Happiness and Ugly Feelings: Post-Utopic Fiction and Film from Central America
GC: Tuesday, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Prof. Magdalena Perkowska
 
SPAN 87000 – Raiding the Archive: Strategies from the Latin American Narrative Tradition
GC: Wednesday, 4:15-6:15 p.m., Prof. Carlos Riobó
 
 
ONE-CREDIT MINI-SEMINARS
 
 
TBA
 
 
 
SEE ALSO
 
SPAN 88800 – Dissertation Seminar
GC: Tuesday, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Prof. José del Valle
 
 SPRING 2020 – COURSE DESCRIPTIONS
 
SPAN 72700 – Politics and Literature: Literatura y poder en los siglos 16-17
GC: Thursday, 4:15-6:15 p.m., Prof. Lía Schwartz
 
The ascension of Philip IV to the throne in Spain in 1621 inaugurated a new era of monarchic rule. This course explores the relationship between philosophy, literature and sovereignty in the decades preceding the rule of Philip IV and during his reign. New literary voices and cultural figures to be explored will encompass the Neoplatonic lover, the humanist and the courtier; among new literary forms, Menippean satire, as composed after the model of Lucian, which became very influential after the fifteenth century. Readings will include poems by Francesco Petrarca, Pierre de Ronsard and Garcilaso de la Vega; Ficino’s Dell’amore; Alberti’s Momus; Erasmus’s Colloquies; Castiglione’s Il cortegiano, and Cervantes’s Novelas ejemplares.

 
SPAN 76200 – Colonial Inquisition: The Dogs of God in the New World
GC: Wednesday, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Prof. Mariana Zinni
 
The Spanish Inquisition is not the well-oiled institution we assume at first time, nor the cruelest and bloodiest one. This course proposes an in-depth study of the ideology and practices of the Inquisition in the New World. We will study the influence of the Holy Office in four mayor fields: its conflictive relationship with the native population, its actions as major censorship agency and regulator of Catholic orthodoxy, its intervention on public and private lives, and its internal affairs. Paying attention to the lives and trades of unknown men and women whose names came to us only through their presence as plaintiffs or victims in legal and inquisitorial records, we will study the sometimes failing repressive apparatus of the Holy Office. By examining inquisitorial and legal documents and secondary literature, we will start to view the collective mentality of the era and its ideological formation. By doing so, we will analyze the influence of the Inquisition on multiple aspects of colonial life -- race, blood purity, sex -- and also the people under its fuero -- Crypto-Jews and heretics, witches and women healers, bigamists, gamblers, curas solicitantes, and false priests, among others.  We will pay attention to the inner logic of the Holy Office in order to illuminate its effects on the political, economic, and social realms of colonial life.
 
We will read original Inquisition records such as AHN 1640, on false wedding celebrated by a false priest, AHN 1030 on bigamy, AHN 1028 on false holy mass and penance, AAL IIA12, on mass simulacrum, documents on spells and love magic, satanic possession and mystic experiences, adultery, sodomy and lovemaking with demons, the trials and punishments of the infamous auto-da-fe celebrated in Lima in 1639, Indian prosecutions –i.e. the polemic one on don Carlos Ometochtzin-, secondary bibliography on Holy Inquisition in both, Mexico and Peru (Greenblat, Alberro, Burns, Castañeda Delgado, Griffiths, Gubovich, Nesvig, Tavárez, among others), as well as critical articles on cases pertinent to the four major topics proposed. 
 
SPAN 80000 – Todo nuevo bajo el sol. Re-Shaping Spanish Identity at the End of the 20th Century
GC: Monday, 4:15-6:15 p.m., Prof. Alvaro Fernandez
 
Following the fall of Francisco Franco's dictatorship, Spain underwent a process of cultural re-imagining, supported both by the political class and the cultural industry. The Francoist image of an authoritarian, conservative society, bearing the marks of 40 years of ultra-catholic fascist dictatorship was actively re-shaped by the political and cultural élite in order to demonstrate that Spain succeeded in conquering its past and turned into a model society of 'modernity'. For the last four decades of the 20th century, the country went through a period of Transition, a process which amounted to the intellectual erasure of the memory of the previous regime. Spain became part of the European Union, which stands for a cosmopolitan, open society, and invested heavily in developing and concentrating its cultural industry. It actively engaged in the economic reconquest of Latin America, and at the end of the century faced the re-emergence of political discussions in the form of historical memory debates.
This course will consist of reading, watching and analyzing cultural products that were created along this transitional socio-political process. It will provide an opportunity to the students to examine and critically evaluate the social, political and cultural aspects of the Transition period and to examine the intersection of culture and politics in reshaping Spanish national identity.
Among other readings, the course will analyze: Aub’s La gallina ciega, Patino’s Nueva cartas a Berta, Espinosa’s La fea burguesía, Rosa’s El vano ayer and Marías’ Corazón tan blanco.
 
 
SPAN 80200 – Critical Pedagogy and Language Learning
GC: Thursday, 2:00-4:00 p.m., Prof. Beatriz Lado
 
This course provides students with a solid foundation in critical pedagogy in relation to the teaching of L2, L3, Ln, local, heritage, and foreign languages. The course includes a critical overview of language acquisition theories and teaching methods, and reflects on where Critical Pedagogy stands within Applied Linguistics and Language Teaching.
Students will examine how language teaching and testing often reproduce ideologies, politics, and social hierarchies, and will discuss classroom strategies to resist these practices. An important part of the course will be devoted to creating teaching materials (syllabi, lesson plans, tests) that help teachers and learners understand the socio-cultural, political, and ideological dimensions of language, and make them more sensitive to critical and social justice issues.

SPAN 87000 – The Neoliberal Promise of Happiness and Ugly Feelings: Post-Utopic Fiction and Film from Central America
GC: Tuesday, 6:30-8:30 p.m., Prof. Magdalena Perkowska
 
In The Promise of Happiness (2010), Sara Ahmed critically addresses the promise of happiness that circulates in globalized society, defining people’s attitudes and expectations. She argues that, as on object of individual and social desire, happiness may mean agreement, going along or even willfully submitting to social norms. In this way, happiness can be used as a shield against the recognition of and engagement with political and social alternatives. In contrast, unhappiness and negativity are affective points of disagreement and, as such, judgmental and non-conforming.
Ugly feelings, as defined by Sianne Ngai in her eponymous study (2005), are “minor and generally unprestigious” emotions of a strong, diagnostic nature, because they have capacity of shedding light on “a real social experience and a certain kind of historical truth.” Central American cultural texts (novels, short stories and films) produced during the last two decades are full of such feelings: disenchantment, bitterness, anguish, anxiety, fear, disdain, frustration, sorrow, pain, melancholia, loss, and confusion are signifiers of disappointment with past utopias and present neoliberal restoration or reaffirmation of market capitalism. This course explores a selection of Central American fictions and films which will be read in conjunction with theoretical approaches to affect and emotions (Phillip Fischer, Sianne Ngai, Sara Ahmed, Ann Cvetkovich, Lauren Berlant, Ruth Leys, Martha Nussbaum, among others), neoliberalism (David Harvey, Wendy Brown), and politics and aesthetics (Rancière).  We will examine unresolved tensions articulated through affects and emotions, and will fathom what commitments, if any, are encoded in these ‘feeling texts.’ 


SPAN 87000 – Raiding the Archive: Strategies from the Latin American Narrative Tradition
GC: Wednesday, 4:15-6:15 p.m., Prof. Carlos Riobó
 
In this course, we will analyze major theories concerning the archive (such as those by Foucault, Derrida, Guillory, González Echevarría, and those relating to biological and digital media--by Žižek, Lanier, and applications of Badiou) in order to understand how the archive figures in modern Latin American narrative. We will first examine passages from canonical works, such as Gómez de Avellaneda’s Sab, Rivera’s La vorágine, Gallegos’s Doña Bárbara, and García Márquez’s Cien años de soledad, to understand the major intertexts embedded in our main corpus. We will then study eclectic notions of the archive as both repository and threat, in our main corpus of texts: archival dangers in Carlos Fuentes’s Aura, Kijadurías’s “De hijos suyos podernos llamar,” Ferré’s “La muñeca menor,” Sarduy’s Colibrí, and Borges’s “La biblioteca de Babel”/“El idioma analítico de John Wilkins”; archive of memory in Bolaño’s Nocturno de Chile and Padura Fuentes’s Adiós, Hemingway; and writing as punishment/pleasure in the archive in Puig’s El beso de la mujer araña and Sarduy’s Maitreya and “Omítemela más.” The course will be conducted in Spanish but students may participate in class and write their papers in English.