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SPAN 497 – Studying Language through Texts: Introduction to Corpus Linguistics

Time: MoWeFr 11:15 AM – 12:05 PM
Instructor: Carlos Echeverría
Description: Corpus linguistics is the discipline that studies language using real texts – especially large, electronically available collections of texts, potentially including transcriptions of spoken language – as primary sources of data. Because of the emphasis it places on natural linguistic behavior, quantitative analysis, and the use of computer tools, corpus linguistics can be useful to professionals in a wide variety of fields besides linguistics: education, psychology, communication sciences and disorders, computer science, data science, etc. This course offers an introduction to the discipline from the perspective of Spanish and focusing on the use of freely available computer tools. By the end of the course, students will be familiar with the foundations and methods of corpus linguistics and will be able to build their own corpora and conduct basic corpus analyses
Prerequisites: SPAN 215

SPAN 497 – The Many Faces of Modern Hispanic Culture

Time: MoWeFr 1:25 PM – 2:15 PM
Instructor: Mary Barnard
Description: This course deals with multiple manifestations of Spanish and Hispanic-American contemporary culture in canonical and non-canonical poetic texts, works of art, and film. They will be analyzed within their social, political, and historical contexts. It will cover diverse topics, including the Spanish Civil War, the Cuban Revolution, Spanish colonialism in the Caribbean, neocolonialism, feminism, the culture of the gypsy, and slavery and its connections with the Atlantic slave trade during the Spanish conquest and its consequences for modern Caribbean poets. The course will include the political and social repercussions of Negritude and Negrismo in the literary production of Afro-Hispanic poets and their interconnections with Marxism and socialism. The poets we will study include Antonio Machado, Nicolás Guillén, Luis Palés Matos, Pablo Neruda, José Martí, Federico García Lorca, Delmira Agustini, Julia de Burgos, and Nancy Morejón. The course will cover artists such as Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Pablo Picasso, and Salvador Dalí. The films will include Diarios de Motocicleta (Walter Salles) and Un chien andalou (Luis Buñuel).
Prerequisites: (SPAN 100A or SPAN 200) and SPAN 253W

SPAN 497 – Historical Memory in Recent Spanish Film, Fiction, and Comics

Time: MoWeFr 10:10 AM – 11:00 AM
Instructor: Matthew Marr
Description: This course will examine the concept of historical memory in contemporary Spanish cinema, narrative, and comics. We will consider a stylistically diverse set of cultural productions which have played no small role in catalyzing and informing Spain’s belated, if now vigorous, public reckoning vis-à-vis the full traumas of the Civil War (1936-1939), the ensuing Franco dictatorship (1939-75), and the so-called “Pacto del Olvido” (the Pact of Forgetting) of the transition to democracy.
Prerequisites: (SPAN 100A or SPAN 200) and SPAN 253W

SPAN 509 – Functional Syntax

Course Description: Our objectives are for students to (1) become acquainted with the study of grammatical forms together with their functions, (2) sample approaches in this area (usage-based theory, grammaticalization, discourse-based syntax, typology, construction grammar), and (3) learn skills for carrying out a quantitative syntactic analysis of natural speech data, and developing corresponding argumentation.

SPAN 597E – A Panorama of Spanish Goldern Age Theater

Course Description: As the title indicates, this class will examine several different subcategories of theater from one of the richest periods of Spanish stage productions.

SPAN 597D – Images of the Caribbean in Hispanic Caribbean Literature

Course Description: Students will explore different representations and repetitive discourses pertaining Caribbean culture and politics in Hispanic Caribbean writings from the nineteenth to the twentieth century.

SPAN 597B – Body and Space Politics in Latin American Intellectual Writing

Course Description: In this seminar, we will study some of the most important Latin American and Latina/o intellectual traditions (post 1800s) and will particularly examine their thoughts and theorizations on bodies and geographies in the Americas.

SPAN 596D – Biopolitics in Latin American and Spanish Literature of the late 20th Century

Course Description: This course will examine various cultural expressions of the body, sexuality, science, and technology put forward during the modernist period. We will analyze their key social and aesthetic implications and inquire into how they deepen our understanding of the complex, multi-layered relationship between the corporeal and the spiritual, the sensuous and the intelligible, and the self and the other.

SPAN 597B – Decadentism, Eroticism and the Diseased Imagination

Course Description: This course will examine various cultural expressions of the body, sexuality, science, and technology put forward during the modernist period. We will analyze their key social and aesthetic implications and inquire into how they deepen our understanding of the complex, multi-layered relationship between the corporeal and the spiritual, the sensuous and the intelligible, and the self and the other.

SPAN 597A (now SPAN 561) – The Cinematic Pluriverse of Pedro Almodóvar

SPAN 597E – Representing Mythology in Early Modern Spanish Theater

Course Description: The course would go over basic classical mythology; look at its transmission in Early Modern Spain; examine a number of “myth” plays of varying lengths, ie, traditional comedia and shorter works; look at connections among the myths, plays, and cultural-political contexts; and see how some of the myths were protrayed by painters from the period.

SPAN 597 – War, Memory, and Displacement in the Americas

Course Description: This seminar will study memory representations of violence and displacement in Latin American and U.S. Latino literatures and other artistic productions. We will begin by reading a diverse body of theory on trauma, memory, mourning, and melancholia, as well as on the relation of these phenomena to the concepts of nation, exile, diaspora, and borderlands. Throughout the rest of our course, we will examine how the specificities of different body politics in the Americas (race, gender, and sexuality) inscribe the work of memory as a work of resistance. Some contexts we will explore through these initial propositions include the U.S.-Mexico borderland (la frontera), the Spanish–American War, U.S. (neo)colonialism in the Caribbean, Latino soldiers in the Korean and Vietnam Wars, the Cuban Revolution, dictatorships in the Southern Cone, and the Central American Refugee crisis. Our corpus will include diverse literary genres, such as autobiographies, crónicas urbanas, essays, short stories, and novels, as well as performances, films, works of art, and architecture. In this sense, our examination will also reflect on a variety of aesthetics and media and their particular impressions on memory index. Among others, we will consider works by Eva Antonia Wibur-Cruce, José Martí, José Luis González, Pedro Pietri, Reinaldo Arenas, Rodolfo Walsh, Diamela Eltit, Raúl Zurita, Pedro Lemebel, Josean Ramos, Junot Díaz, and Francisco Goldman.

SPAN 597 – Race, Performance, and Possession in the Americas

Course Description: This course will take a hemispheric approach to examining the connections between race, performance, and “possession”—a vexed concept that can refer to everything from property ownership to spirit possession. Over the course of the semester we will explore the multiple meanings of this term and ask what it can tell us about the equally complex notions of “race” and “performance” by studying a diverse array of cultural phenomena from throughout the Americas (theater, performance art, films, literature, historical documents, music, etc.). For example: What sort of logical contortions were required to reconcile the fact that slaves—i.e. pieces of property—could speak, sing, dance, and even write or act? Is there any link between the practice of spirit possession in many indigenous and African-influenced religions and the histories of dispossession experienced by these groups? How might both instances of “possession” place pressure on liberal conceptions of subjectivity, and what can they tell us about the relationship between race and capital? Possible topics include: the exhibition of racially marked bodies and “scenes of subjection” (Sadiya Hartman); examples of racial impersonation such as blackface performance (what Eric Lott refers to as “love and theft”); slaves as objects of conspicuous consumption and the racialization of conspicuous consumption in the present; Haitian vodou, and links between zombies and whiteness in recent popular culture; avant-garde engagements with ritual practices of trance; struggles over copyright and cultural appropriation; and the politics of archives and museum collections.

The course will be conducted in English, and all required materials will be available in English. (Some supplemental materials may be accessible only in Spanish, Portuguese, or French, and students in SIP need to read Spanish texts in the original.)

SPAN 597 – The Origins of the Latin American Subject

Course Description: This course looks at canonical texts from the late eighteenth century to the end of the nineteenth century, in order to explore various formations of identity:national, cultural, racial and class. Topics will include post-colonial mimicry,criollo identity, various forms of indigenism, civilization vs. barbarism, regionalism vs. cosmopolitanism, europhilia and cultural independence, the historical origins of caudillismo, and anti-imperialism. Readings will include Concolorcorvo, Lizardi, Bello, Sarmiento, Altamirano, Hernández, Avellaneda, Silva, Martí, Darío, and Rodó, as well as historical documents. Theorists and critical readings will include Anderson, Mariátegui, Cornejo Polar, Sommer, González Echevarría.

SPAN 597/COMP LIT 597 – Translation in the Americas

Course Description: This course departs from the claim of Edwin Gentzler in his 2009 study Translation and Identity in the Americas that, “Translation is not a trope but a permanent condition in the Americas” (5). Does translation, in fact, exist as a permanent condition in this hemisphere? How does translation unfold as a metaphor, a linguistic act, and a cultural experience in the Americas? To what extent do processes of translation inform the exchanges of languages, peoples, and cultures within and between nations in this region? By examining the works of key translation theorists and scholars, as well as translators and writers, the course aims to analyze how translation informs the creative and critical projects of artists and intellectuals in the Americas. The class pairs readings of Latin American writers engaged with translation as a metaphor, theory, and practice, such as the Brazilian modernists, Jorge Luis Borges, Augusto and Haroldo de Campos, and Octavio Paz, with critical texts of translation studies by, among others, Walter Benjamin, Lawrence Venuti, and Emily Apter. To further analyze translation as a linguistic and aesthetic challenge situated within a politics and economics of the literary market, we consider the phenomenon of Clarice Lispector in translation and re-translation. The course ends by studying the recent “boom” of Brazilian and Spanish American literature translated into English that has corresponded with an emergence of more print and online venues for publishing translations.

This class will be taught in English, but readings will be English, Spanish, and Portuguese. Students with knowledge of other languages of the Americas (French, Creole, indigenous languages) are welcome to work with these traditions in their final projects. Class readings and discussion, however, will focus on examples from Latin America and the United States.

SPAN 597 – The City as Text: Theorizing Urban Life

Course Description: This course will examine the cultural, commercial, ideological, religious, and sexual dynamics that have defined various urban landscapes in the nineteenth and early twentieth century as seen through art, literature, theory, and philosophy. Special attention will be given to the evolving city of Madrid, a city described throughout this period as cemetery, sordid labyrinth, prison for paranoiacs, creative hub, beacon of freedom, and modern ideal.

SPAN 597 – Culture, Capital, and the Global Jungle

Course Description: The Amazon is sometimes imagined as a primeval place located outside history. Yet for several centuries (if not longer) it has been a site of exploration and exploitation by foreigners, and ever since the rubber boom of the late nineteenth century it has been closely integrated into the international economy. This course will approach the Amazonian regions of Brazil and Spanish America as a site of international capital and cultural exchange by focusing on literature, film, theater, music, and historical accounts. Secondary readings will deal with nature and the production of space, indigeneity, and the changing dynamics of global capital.

This graduate seminar will consider texts on uneven development by Marxist and postcolonial critics alongside work on queer theory, race, and (old) new media studies that also thinks through the issue of anachronism and temporal heterogeneity. Among the critics we will read are Karl Marx, Leon Trotsky, Theodor Adorno, Walter Benjamin, Heather Love, Silvia Federici, Roberto Schwarz, Lisa Gitelman, and Mladen Dolar.

SPAN 597 – Spanish Cinema Studies: Current Methods and Theoretical Approaches

Course Description: In recent years the rise of digital technologies has led critics to reconsider the category of “literature” and look back at the ways in which it has changed throughout history in response to the advent of new media. In this course we will take up this question in the context of Latin America, beginning in the late nineteenth century and continuing into the present. Among the questions we will ask: How might shifting the focus to regions often regarded as “backward” and “behind” help challenge the rhetoric of rupture and historical amnesia that often accompanies the introduction of “new” media? Given the (in some places) high rates of illiteracy, has literature in Latin America responded differently to the challenges posed by new media? How has the “embodied” art of theater responded to changes in the mediascape, including the invention of the phonograph, film, radio, and digital media? Each week we will read key works of media theory and criticism alongside literary and artistic works by a wide array of Latin American writers. The course will cover a number of works on the MA list for students in SIP, including modernista poetry and other types of texts by José Martí, Miguel Ángel Asturias’s El señor presidente, Roberto Arlt’s play Saverio el cruel, Gabriel García Márquez’s Cien años de soledad, and stories by Jorge Luis Borges; it will also include a few texts in Portuguese by writers such as the Brazilian concrete poets, which we will consider in relation to the rise of cybernetics. For those with no background in Portuguese, these texts will either be available in translation, or (as in the case of concrete poetry) will be simple for readers of Spanish to decipher.

SPAN 597 – Latin American Modernisms and (Old) New Media

Course Description: In recent years the rise of digital technologies has led critics to reconsider the category of “literature” and look back at the ways in which it has changed throughout history in response to the advent of new media. In this course we will take up this question in the context of Latin America, beginning in the late nineteenth century and continuing into the present. Among the questions we will ask: How might shifting the focus to regions often regarded as “backward” and “behind” help challenge the rhetoric of rupture and historical amnesia that often accompanies the introduction of “new” media? Given the (in some places) high rates of illiteracy, has literature in Latin America responded differently to the challenges posed by new media? How has the “embodied” art of theater responded to changes in the mediascape, including the invention of the phonograph, film, radio, and digital media? Each week we will read key works of media theory and criticism alongside literary and artistic works by a wide array of Latin American writers. The course will cover a number of works on the MA list for students in SIP, including modernista poetry and other types of texts by José Martí, Miguel Ángel Asturias’s El señor presidente, Roberto Arlt’s play Saverio el cruel, Gabriel García Márquez’s Cien años de soledad, and stories by Jorge Luis Borges; it will also include a few texts in Portuguese by writers such as the Brazilian concrete poets, which we will consider in relation to the rise of cybernetics. For those with no background in Portuguese, these texts will either be available in translation, or (as in the case of concrete poetry) will be simple for readers of Spanish to decipher.

SPAN 597 – Voices of the Povo/Pueblo

Course Description: This course examines the relationship between public intellectuals and the “people” by analyzing various voices of the povo and the pueblo in Latin American literature, visual art, music, and film since the early twentieth century. The class conceives of public intellectual in a broad sense to include, among others, essayists Sérgio Buarque de Holanda, Fernando Ortiz, and Carlos Monsiváis, musicians Chico Buarque and Violeta Parra, filmmakers Glauber Rocha and Octavio Getino, and painters Tarsila Amaral and Wifredo Lam. By reading works by Brazilian and Spanish American artists and intellectuals together, we will explore the intersections of the intellectual, the popular, the national, and the political in modern and contemporary Latin America. Theoretical and critical texts on the role of public intellectuals, the concept of the national-popular, the testimonial, and the voice will complement our study of literary and artistic works.

SPAN 597 – A Poetry of Things: Material Culture in the Spain of the Austrias

Course Description: With the rise of Spain in the sixteenth century as a trans-European and global power, social, political, and aesthetic ideals were aligned with the court, empire and modernity. This course will focus on how major poets of Habsburg Spain use artifacts as material sites of discourse to explore connections to antiquity, cultural memory, political and social events, space, self-representation, and status. Artifacts range from large decorative objects, like tapestries, paintings, and frescoes, to trinkets and accessories in “cabinets of curiosities.” The course will examine diverse topics such as the city as text, specifically how a “pilgrim”  and learned humanist from Spain reads a Rome of ruins and museum artifacts; how objects like tapestries and paintings are used to explore questions of patronage, social networking, and gift-giving as well as to celebrate imperial politics and ideology; how  mirrors and portrait miniatures are used for examining questions of introspection and self-reflexivity of an incipient modern self; and how inscriptions on tombs and urns explore the interplay between orality and writing, voice and memory. Since the topic is part of a larger European phenomenon, the course will include Spain’s cross-cultural relations with Italy, a major source of cultural objects. Time will be devoted to early modern collectionism as a backdrop to textual and artistic production.

SPAN 597 – Los desafíos de la libertad y el liberalismo: Autoridad, política, y poder

Course Description: Este curso tiene tres vertientes: la literaria, la histórica, y la filosófica. A través de lecturas pormenorizadas en estos campos vía ensayos, poemas, tratados filosóficos, novelas, y obras teatrales, este seminario tiene como objetivo examinar el concepto de “libertad” y “liberalismo” en figuras como Aristóteles, Platón, Rousseau, Kant, Hegel, Jovellanos, Quintana, Larra, Espronceda, Bécquer, Rosalía de Castro, Coronado, Galdós, Krause, Marx, Bakunin, Nietzsche, Ortega y Gasset, y Gómez de la Serna.

SPAN 566 – Contemporary Spanish Poetry

Course Description: This seminar will explore a rich harvest of movements and figures in Spanish poetry of the early twentieth century through the contemporary moment, with the twin goals of privileging the close reading of a significant number of primary works and deepening students’ understanding of the cultural, aesthetic, and social contexts in which these were produced. Beginning with a review of the vibrant panorama of “-ismos” at play in much early twentieth-century verse (and highlighting how these are in conversation with and against poetic/artistic tradition), the course will swiftly move toward a consideration of Peninsular poetry under fascism and dictatorship, its uses as a vehicle of social protest, its diverse inflections in a climate of postmodernism and democratic renewal, and its more recent evolution amidst the disquieting forces of neoliberalism, globalization, technophilia, and political/economic unrest.

SPAN 597 – The imperial Lyric in Habsburg Spain

Instructor: Mary Barnard 
Course Schedule: Antonio de Nebrija remarked famously in his Gramática de la lengua castellana (1492) that “language has always been the companion of empire.” This course deals with poetry that is indeed the fitting companion of empire, informed as it is by the profound political and cultural transformations that began in large part with the imperial agendas of Habsburg emperor Charles V. It will explore how the construction of texts and new personal and political identities was highly conditioned by the crossing of boundaries:  the crossings into Italy (with its abundance of literary, artistic, and scientific production), trans-Mediterranean crossings to North Africa, and transatlantic crossings into the New World. Of particular importance is how the poetics of empire coexists with a poetics of love and solitude. A study of the nature of the new subject; the relation of rhetoric and modernity; memory and exile; the dynamics of vision; classical mythology; and Petrarchism will be particularly useful in the deciphering of the imperial lyric. Works of arts–paintings, portraits, heraldic and commemorative tapestries, and sculptures–will figure prominently in the exploration of the celebration and critique of the politics and ideology of empire.

SPAN 597 – Caribbean Imaginations of Sovereignty, Community, and Vulnerability

Instructor: Judith Sierra-Rivera 
Course Schedule: A geography inscribed by a history of (neo)colonialism, the Caribbean Antilles have produced stories and theories that talk about sovereignty. “Sovereignty,” a concept that takes us beyond and through struggles for independence, acquires different names across the Hispanic, Anglo, French, and Dutch Caribbean. In all of its different versions, sovereignty seems to be attached to two other concepts: “community” and “vulnerability.” In this seminar, we will study how the combination of these three words reveals a particular set of political imaginations that propose a way of living not only for the Caribbean archipelago but also for a world in which life (bios) appears to be in a permanent vulnerable/dependent state. Some of the questions that will initiate our discussions include: What are the meanings that Caribbean (neo)colonial history has attached to “being sovereign”? How do Caribbean stories and theories propose and interpret the relationship between sovereignty, community, and vulnerability? Which of them have acquired notoriety in other literary/philosophical traditions? How are they consumed and used in dialogue with other geographies? Among others, we will engage with writings by Toussaint Louverture, Simón Bolívar, José Martí, Luisa Capetillo, Marcus Garvey, Aimé Césaire, Frantz Fanon, Frank Martinus Arion, Derek Walcott, and Édouard Glissant. Most of the texts have been translated into English, but a reading level of Spanish and French is recommended for this seminar.

SPAN 597 – History, Time, and the Contemporary Latin American Stage

Instructor: Sarah J. Townsend
Course Description: This course will focus primarily on Latin American theater and performance from the past two decades while also taking specific plays and performances as an entry point for examining longer patterns and practices. Throughout the semester, we will reflect on the following questions: What exactly is the “contemporary”? When does it begin and end? What is its relationship to the past and future? Many theories of performance emphasize its “liveness”—the fact that it takes place in a specific here and now (or there and then)? But if this is so, how does theater represent history, and why does the stage seem to be such a haunted place? What happens when other media (such as film projections or digital media) are integrated into live performance? Could it be that the theater is a particularly apt space for understanding how multiple temporalities can coexist and act upon one another? We will special attention to the insights Latin American theater and performance can offer into these issues, given the fact that the region (and its theater) has historically been imagined as underdeveloped or “backward” in relation to other parts of the world such as the United States and Europe. 

Playwrights and theater groups we will likely study include Mariano Pensotti (Argentina); Lola Arias (Argentina); Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol (Mexico); Teatro de Ciertos Habitantes (Mexico); Mapa Teatro (Colombia); Ói Nóis Aqui Traveiz (Brazil); and Teatro Oficina (Brazil). Theorists and critics include Rebecca Schneider, Diana Taylor, Peggy Phelan, Richard Schechner, Fred Moten, and Nicholas Ridout.

SPAN 597 – Interreligious Cultural Exchange and Hermetic Sciences in Medieval Spain.

Instructor: Juan Udaondo Alegre
Course Description:
 In the Middle Ages, the Iberian Peninsula was a crossroads of cultural and religious traditions where Muslims, Christians, and Jews interacted, disputed, and prospered together for centuries. Talking about the cultural achievements of that period, María Rosa Menocal affirmed in The Ornament of the World that: “Books, like buildings, like works of art, like songs and sometimes even like the languages of prayers, often tell stories about the complexities of tolerance and cultural identity, complexities that ideological purists deny, both as an immediate reality and as a future possibility.” In this seminar we will unravel part of those complexities by exploring the circumstances in which books of the kind described by Menocal were brought to Iberia from the other side of the Mediterranean, exchanged, translated, and finally recreated in different languages. We will approach the motifs and productions of both independent sages and those who worked under the patronage of powerful leaders such as the Umayyad Caliphs of al-Andalus or King Alfonso “the Wise” of Castile. Through a variety of readings, we will ascertain that one of the main goals of those translators and thinkers was to recover the so called Hermetic sciences: Magic, Astrology, and Alchemy, attributed from ancient times to Hermes Trismegistus. We will discuss how the search for Hermes’s legacy fostered both the translation movement and a culture of tolerance, in which erudite seekers were able to forget mutual prejudices and question their own identities to pursue secret knowledge. We will also explain how the cultural exchange which took place in the kingdoms and territories which are now Spain generated curiosity across their borders,  deeply influencing the culture of Europe in the Late Middle Ages and beyond. This course will be conducted in English.

SPAN 572 – Translation in the Americas

Instructor: Krista Brune 
Course Description:
 This course provides a broad exploration of translation in the Americas. In particular, it investigates the politics, practices, and theories of translation in Latin America and the United States from the late nineteenth century to the early twenty-first century, which allows for a comparative mode of reading across and between borders of language, nation, and region. The following questions will guide our readings and discussions over the course of the semester: How does translation unfold as a metaphor, a linguistic act, and a cultural experience in the Americas? To what extent do processes of translation inform the exchanges of languages, peoples, and cultures within and between nations in this region? The class examines the role of canonical Latin American writers as translators and scholars in order to underscore the centrality of translation to the production, circulation, and reception of Latin American literature. The course analyzes the contributions of Latin American writers, including José Martí, Brazilian modernists, Jorge Luis Borges, concrete poets Augusto and Haroldo de Campos, Octavio Paz, and Julio Cortázar, to discussions of translation by reading their works on translation as theory and practice alongside key essays in translation studies by, among others, Walter Benjamin, Jacques Derrida, Gayatri Spivak, Lawrence Venuti, and Emily Apter. It also considers the importance of translators like Gregory Rabassa, Suzanne Jill Levine, and Elizabeth Bishop in disseminating Latin American literature within the United States. Building on these insights, students will consider the recent phenomenon of Latin American literature in translation and re-translation to recognize translation as a linguistic and aesthetic challenge governed by, in part, the political and economic demands of the global, literary market.

SPAN 597 – Spanish Romanticism: Theory, Philosophy, Aesthetics

Instructor: Nicolás Fernández-Medina
Course Description: This course will examine a range of issues in Spanish Romantic Studies, including the concept of self and individuality, the idealization of the feminine, the celebration of nature and the natural supernatural, and the metaphysics of beauty and the sublime.

SPAN 571 – Latina/o Studies: Foundations in the Field and Its Teaching

Instructor: Judith Sierra-Rivera
Course Description: 
A foundation in the field and strategies for teaching Latina/o Studies to undergraduates. This course provides a foundation in U.S. Latina/o Studies Literature and its contexts, with two separate but related goals. The first is to get a grasp on the U.S. Latina/o Studies canon that integrates humanities and social science approaches in order to analyze critical historical contexts that have shaped the emergence and evolution of the field of Latina/o Studies in U.S. higher education and academia, such as early colonial enterprises in the South and the Southwest, Spanish and U.S. imperialism, the Chicano and Young Lords movements during the 1960s, immigration patterns from the Caribbean and Latin America, government policies towards Latinos, contemporary rural and urban movements, etc. The second goal is to explore systematically pedagogical theories and practices in Latina/o Studies and critical race scholarship more broadly, in order for students to become conversant in the theoretical debates that underlie the design of curriculum and classroom practice in Latina/o Studies at the undergraduate level. The course will incorporate some of the major lines of research in Latina/o Studies from different disciplines (such as History, Anthropology, Ethnic Studies, Gender and Sexuality Studies, and Linguistics) in order to address some of their most relevant discussions, internal critical debates, and major schools of thought. Students will also engage with other forms of cultural production, including visual culture, theater and performance, and music, among others. The seminar will provide graduate students a solid foundation in the development of a very timely and marketable research and teaching minor.

SPAN 597 -La lírica culta en la España de los Austrias

Instructor: Mary Barnard
Course Description: 
This course deals with early modern lyric poetry that belongs to high culture–urban, “docta,” and aristocratic–a “new poetry” that is the product of new social, political and aesthetic ideals aligned with the court, empire, and modernity. We will explore the construction of texts as products of cross-cultural encounters with the ancients and the Italians, as well as a culture of consumption.Topics and issues covered: space, tombs and the poetics of death, aristocratic mysticism, literary academies, intellectual and political clashes between Muslim East and Christian West, the city as text.

SPAN 597 – Amazonia: Culture and Extractivism

Instructor: Sarah J. Townsend
Course Description: Over the past few months the Amazon has become a focus of international outcry as news outlets and social media circulate images of a forest in flames. But while widespread anxiety about the future of the planet lends a particular urgency to the current crisis, it is only the latest stage of a much longer and complex history that belies the common image of the Amazon as a primeval place outside history. Indeed, for several centuries (if not longer) the Amazon has been a target for exploration and exploitation by outsiders, and ever since the rubber boom of the late nineteenth century it has been closely integrated into the international economy. This course will focus on the Amazon as a site of international capital investment and cultural exchange through film, photography, literature, music, and historical accounts. Framing our discussions will be recent theoretical work on extractivism, or the social, economic, and cultural relations that take shape around the extraction of natural resources. Particular topics to be examined include the epic expeditions in search of Eldorado, the lost city of gold, and the environmental degradation caused by more recent waves of illegal gold mining; the rubber boom of 1870-1912 and what the political geographer Susanna Hecht (invoking parallels with Africa) refers to as the “Scramble for the Amazon”; the aesthetic excess of opera in the Amazon; “failed” projects such as Henry Ford’s utopic settlement of Fordlândia; the recent wave of “neo-extractivism” led by left-leaning states; Amazonian cities such as Manaus and Belém and urban music genres such as tecno-brega; indigenous political movements surrounding hydroelectric projects and oil drilling; and anthropological efforts to reconceptualize the relationship between humans and nature by drawing on indigenous perspectives and systems of thought.

The class will be conducted in English, and while students from SIP will be expected to read certain texts in Spanish or Portuguese, translations are available for almost all materials. In the case of one novel for which there is no translation, those who are unable to read Spanish will read a related text in English and we will share our observations in class.

SPAN 597: La Vida es Sueño and the Theater of Calderón de la Barca

Time: TR 10:35-11:50 a.m.
Instructor: Juan Udaondo Alegre
Course Description: In this seminar we will delve into the complexities and beauty of Calderón de la Barca’s theater, particularly prevalent in his most famous creation: La vida es sueño. La Vida es Sueño and the Theater of Calderón de la Barca: Paradigm, Symbol, and Humankind on Stage. According to many specialists La vida es sueño is the best play of the Spanish Golden Age, and in Spanish literature it represents something comparable to Hamlet. As we will ascertain from the first sessions of the seminar, in La vida es sueño the fineness of the verses is not at odds with the philosophical depth, the richness of characters, and a quasi-perfect plot; indeed, all are features that Calderón developed throughout the rest of his production, a significative selection of which we will examine during the rest of the semester, including El alcalde de Zalamea, Amar después de la muerte, El gran teatro del mundo, El príncipe constante, La cisma de Inglaterra, La dama duende, etc. When analyzing these plays we will start with their historical, political, and sociological context. After this, we will discuss how Calderón addressed the major themes of his time and to what extent his reflections on freedom, war, honor, violence against women, human nature, political power and its limits, assimilation of ethnic and religious minorities, tragic vs. comic, etc. are still valid. The seminar will also highlight the playwright’s conception that theater should first be staged and then read. For this reason, in every class we will engage in the analysis of the dramatic text (characters, conflicts, stage directions, etc.), watch clips of theater performances of the plays we are reading, and discuss how theater, cinema, and television professionals have approached both the dramatic wealth and the allegorical worlds of Calderón.

SPAN 597: Mystics, Ascetics, and Visionaries: Religious Writings and the Visual and Material Culture of Counter-Reformation Spain

Time: F 8:00-11:00 a.m.
Instructor: Mary Barnard
Course Description: (NOTE: THIS COURSE IS AN APPROVED ELECTIVE FOR THE DUAL TITLE IN VISUAL STUDIES). This seminar explores works of poetry and prose by religious writers of the sixteenth and seventeenth century–San Juan de la Cruz, Teresa de Ávila, Luis de Granada, and Luisa de Carvajal y Mendoza–and the role that pictorial images and artifacts played in the mystical experience, the materializing of visions, and questions of piety, identity, and politics. Art works will include paintings and statuary, psalter illuminations, altar pieces, and relics. Objects of Christological significance like polychrome sculptures of the crucifixion and Christ at the column of flagellation take center stage. We will pay special attention to the interweaving of vision, cultural memory, and sacred spaces. Carvajal will be privileged in this course, as we follow her from her early years living next to the Monasterio de las Descalzas Reales in Madrid, as much a museum as a convent, to her final days as an activist in Jacobean England. We will study her letters and autobiography alongside her mystical poems. The course will be conducted in English. Readings will be in Spanish and English. Papers may be written in either Spanish or English.

SPAN 597: Commodity Cultures

Time: T 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Instructor: Krista Brune
Course Description: This seminar examines the literary and cultural representations and repercussions of Latin America’s extractive economies. Letters, diaries, travelogues, and narratives from the colonial period through the nineteenth century crafted Latin America as a “marvelous possession” whose natural resources were to be controlled, extracted, and exploited for the benefits of elites. To explore how colonial, neocolonial, and neoliberal dynamics of extractive capitalism resonate within Latin American culture, this seminar will focus on commodities such as cotton, sugar, gold, coffee, water, and oil. At the end of the semester, we will move beyond these goods to consider culture itself as a commodity. Our discussions will draw on theoretical and critical readings from, among others, Héctor Hoyos, Macarena Gómez-Barris, Ericka Beckman, Charlotte Rogers, and George Yúdice, in dialogue with primary texts, including essays, novels, and films by Júlia Lopes de Almeida, Fernando Ortiz, Graciliano Ramos, Cristina Rivera Garza, Sebastião Salgado, and Lucrecia Martel. Readings will be in Spanish, Portuguese, and English.

IT 801: The Fundamentals of Reading Italian for Graduate Research

Time: TR 9:05-10:20 a.m.
Instructor: Sherry Roush
Course Description: This graduate course provides the fundamental skills for reading Italian prose. The course is taught in English, and no previous knowledge of Italian is expected. By the end of the semester, successful students will be able to read secondary texts in Italian in their field of research. Please note: there is no emphasis in this course on Italian writing, speaking, or listening skills. Class will meet TR 9:05-10:20 during Fall 2022. For more information, please contact Sherry Roush at slr21@psu.edu. This course fulfills the additional language requirement for the Ph.D. as listed in the graduate handbook.

SPAN 597: Decadentism, Eroticism, and the Diseased Imagination

Time: F 8:00-11:00 a.m.
Instructor: Nicolás Fernández-Medina
Course Description: This course will examine the so-called decadent mentality and the notion of social and moral degeneration that followed the fin de siècle and the first few decades of the twentieth century.

SPAN 597: Race, Performance, and Possession in the Americas

Time: TR 12:05-1:25 p.m.
Instructor: Sarah Townsend
Course Description: This course will take a hemispheric approach to examining the connections between race, performance, and “possession”—a vexed concept that can refer to everything from property ownership to spirit possession. Over the course of the semester we will explore the multiple meanings of this term and ask what it can tell us about the equally complex notions of “race” and “performance” by studying a diverse array of cultural phenomena from throughout the Americas (theater, performance art, films, literature, historical documents, music, etc.). For example: What sort of logical contortions were required to reconcile the fact that slaves—i.e., pieces of property—could speak, sing, dance, and even write or act? What is the link between the practice of spirit possession in many African-influenced religions and the histories of dispossession experienced by these groups? How might both instances of “possession” place pressure on liberal conceptions of subjectivity, and what can they tell us about the relationship between race and capital? Possible topics include: the exhibition of racially marked bodies and “scenes of subjection” (Sadiya Hartman); examples of racial impersonation such as blackface performance (what Eric Lott refers to as “love and theft”); slaves as objects of conspicuous consumption and the racialization of conspicuous consumption in the present; Haitian vodou, and links between zombies and whiteness in recent popular culture; avant-garde engagements with ritual practices of trance; struggles over copyright and cultural appropriation; and the politics of archives and museum collections.

SPAN 597: Family, Nation, Telling, and Other Traumas

Time: W 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Instructor: John Ochoa
Course Description: This course will familiarize the student with psychoanalysis as a way to approach literature and culture. We will cover its basic concepts and structures, especially with regard to trauma and post-trauma. Most relevant will be: 1) witnessing and rendering testimony; 2) inherited or misplaced trauma; 3) responses to the father figure and paternalism. For all, but especially this last topic, we will consider parallels between the individual subject and the collective psyche: both the personal and the national, or the personal as national. For specific case studies/histories, we will draw on the Latin American and Latinx canon, from the Colonial period to the present. These may include El Inca Garcilaso, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Hernandez’s “Martín Fierro,” caciquismo, the death of José Martí, Alfonso Reyes and his father, Rulfo’s Pedro Páramo, Cien años de soledad, the Dirty Wars of the 1970s, Rigoberta Menchú, and Gloria Anzaldúa. Theoretical readings will include psychoanalysis and trauma theory by Freud, Caruth, Felman, Laub, and on national identity by Benedict Anderson and Isiah Berlin.

SPAN 597 – Filthy Fiction(s): Spanish Naturalism, Tremendismo, and Dirty Realism

Time: W 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Instructor: Matthew J. Marr
Course Description: This seminar will consider late-nineteenth century Naturalism, post-Civil War Tremendismo, and Generation X “dirty realism” (or “blank fiction”) of the 1990s—a triptych-like set of modern narrative sensibilities whose sordid reflections of/on the real thrust the genre of the Spanish novel beyond contemporary limits of good taste, while drawing on its foundations in the picaresque.  Authors considered, by way of paired texts, will include: Emilia Pardo Bazán and Vicente Blasco Ibáñez; Camilo José Cela and Carmen Laforet; José Ángel Mañas and Lucía Etxebarría.

SPAN 597 – Utopian Intellectual and Artistic Practices in Latin America

Time: R 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Instructor: Marco Martínez
Course Description: Utopia implies the sense of an ideal place on earth, expressed in idyllic social institutions, relationships and conditions. Since the fifteenth century, intellectuals and artists have imagined Latin America as a utopic place on earth. This seminar will focus on projects that explore the concept of utopia in order to understand the variety of political imaginations over the continent. We will focus on the rise, decline, and fall of utopian projects in the region as well as the international dialogues they have generated. Some of the questions we will be exploring are: How is utopia expressed as an aesthetic trope? How utopian projects have changed over time and geographies? How Latin American utopian ideologies and aesthetics have been incorporated or rejected by the State? Some of the authors and documents we will read are José Enrique Rodó, Camila Henríquez Ureña, José Martí, Gloria Anzaldúa, José Vasconcelos, Chela Sandoval, Alfonso Reyes, Gabriela Mistral, José Carlos Mariátegui, Rita Segato, and the EZLN First Declaration in the Lacandona Jungle.

SPAN 587 – Stylistic and Literary Criticism: Luso-Hispanic Studies: Theories, Methodologies, and Approaches to the Field

Time: T 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Instructor: Krista Brune
Course Description: This course proposes an introduction to the theories, methodologies, and approaches in the field of Luso-Hispanic literary studies. The class will trace the developments of the field from Hispanism and Latin Americanism through more recent iterations of Transatlantic Studies and Hemispheric American Studies. After this overview, the seminar will delve into theoretical texts and debates of most relevance to our discipline of Iberian and Latin American literatures and cultures. These areas will include, among others, poststructuralism, Marxism, postcolonial studies, feminisms, queer theory, critical race theory, and ecocriticism. Readings will be in English, Spanish, and Portuguese.

SPAN 597 – Embodiments of Writing: Reflections on Our Craft Across Traditions

Time: F 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Instructor: Judith Sierra Rivera
Course Description: This seminar will focus on a big question: What does it mean to be a writer? Specifically, we will concentrate on conceptualizations of “writing” as a practice of the body, and “body” as what shapes and is shaped by writing. Our examination of emotions and ideas associated with the intimacy involved in our craft will consider texts by a wide variety of authors, such as Roland Barthes, María Zambrano, Rosario Castellano, Reinaldo Arenas, Néstor Perlongher, Pedro Lemebel, Audre Lorde, Gloria Anzaldúa, and Cherríe Moraga, among others. At the same time, we will comparatively analyze forms of (de)mystifying writing in the European, American, and Latin American academia. We will experiment with our practice as we learn conventions that rule over different kinds of academic texts: abstracts, proposals, conference talks, articles, chapters, and books. For many of us, this experiment will also include a reflection of what it entails to constantly move between scholarly circles in different academic contexts. Readings for this class will be in Spanish and English. The class will be conducted in English.

SPAN 597 – Visual and Material Culture in Habsburg Spain

Time: TR 12:05-1:20 p.m.
Instructor: Mary Barnard
Course Description: With the rise of Spain in the sixteenth century as a trans-European and global power, social, political, and aesthetic ideals were aligned with the court, empire and modernity. This course will focus on how major poets of Habsburg Spain used artifacts as material sites of discourse to explore connections to antiquity, cultural memory, political and social events, space, self-representation, and status. Artifacts range from large decorative objects, like tapestries, paintings, and frescoes, to trinkets and accessories. The course will examine how objects are carriers of culture and history; how tapestries and paintings are used to explore questions of patronage, social networking, and gift-giving as well as to celebrate and critique the politics and ideology of empire; how mirrors and portrait miniatures are used for examining questions of introspection and self-reflexivity of an incipient modern subject; and how inscriptions on tombs and urns explore the interplay between orality and writing, voice and memory. The course will also deal with theories that subtend the production of texts: space, ruins, the city as text. Since the topic is part of a larger European phenomenon, the course will include Spain’s cross-cultural relations with Italy.

SPAN 597 – Framing Don Quixote

Time: TR 10:35-11:50 a.m.
Instructor: Juan Udaondo Alegre
Course Description: El presente seminario abordará la obra maestra cervantina desde una sensibilidad contemporánea, incidiendo en su contexto sociopolítico, histórico, filosófico y estético.  Se tocarán aspectos relativos al desarrollo de la novela tanto formales (coherencia interna, elaboración de personajes, parodias en juego, referentes míticos y simbólicos) como ideológicos (sustrato humanista, trasunto biográfico, relectura imperialista). Las aportaciones del profesor situarán el texto cervantino dentro del momento en que se generó, haciendo especial énfasis en las coordenadas estéticas y las manifestaciones artísticas tanto del propio Cervantes como de sus coetáneos. Se anima al estudiante a disfrutar de las numerosas reescrituras tanto literarias como fílmicas del texto con el fin de aportar una mayor riqueza al debate. Los textos asignados en clase deberán ser leídos en su totalidad. La base del curso se estructura a partir de un close reading de la obra complementado con las correspondientes lecturas ancilares. Habrá varios trabajos escritos: presentaciones semanales y un ensayo de unas 20 páginas que se entregará al final del semestre. La evaluación final estará basada en la nota de las presentaciones y del trabajo final, además de la preparación y participación en clase. El profesor se reunirá con el estudiante para discutir el tema del ensayo no más tarde de la décima semana.

SPAN 597 – (Anti)Bodies: Embodiment and the New Self in Spanish Modernism

Time: F 8:00-11:00 a.m.
Instructor: Nicolás Fernández-Medina
Course Description: This graduate seminar explores concepts of the body, identity, and self in Spanish modernism. Through a range of literary and philosophical texts spanning from roughly the 1890s to the late 1930s, it will examine how the body in the Spanish/European modernist context was shaped by power and also employed as an effective aesthetic and political instrument of resistance and knowledge. Topics of study include first-wave feminist theory, avant-garde body culture, health politics and the medicalization of culture, sexology and scientific rationalism, and neo-vitalist philosophy. Ultimately, at the center of this course rests the larger question of embodiment and subjectivity in relation to the problems of representation, interpretation, and meaning.

SPAN 597 – La colonia y sus intérpretes

Time: TR 1:35-2:50 p.m.
Instructor: John Ochoa
Course description: This course is a panoramic review of colonial literature from Latin America over a span of four centuries, from the pre-Columbian period to the early nineteenth century. We will consider key works and figures in their respective historical, aesthetic, and intellectual contexts. These canonical figures will include Cristobal Colón, Bernal Díaz del Castillo, Bartolomé de las Casas, Alvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca, the Inca Garcilaso, Felipe Guamán Poma, Alonso de Ercilla, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Carlos de Sigüenza y Góngora, and Concolorcorvo. Some have been “lost” and “rescued,” and most of them reframed: for instance by americanismo; both by de-colonial thought and neo-colonialism; by feminism; indigenismo and ethnic identity; state-sponsored nation-building; and modern aesthetic movements like the neobarroco. The method will consist of reading excerpts and representative short texts, engaging in a few detailed close readings of selected works. On a broader level we will attend to the impact of the colonial past upon later Latin American imaginaries.

SPAN 597 – Golden Age Theatre and the Spanish Game of Thrones during the Middle Ages

Time: TR 9:05-10:20 a.m.
Instructor: Juan Udaondo Alegre
Course Description: Este seminario mostrará que existen en la literatura española personajes y situaciones tan complejos y apasionantes como los que aparecen en la serie de televisión Juego de Tronos (Game of Thrones), y además se comprobará que no es algo casual, sino que ello obedece a unos referentes literarios e históricos semejantes. Juego de Tronos se basa en una popular serie de novelas del escritor George R. R. Martin. Martin ha reconocido como una de sus principales fuentes de inspiración las historias de la Inglaterra medieval y, en concreto, la dramatización que de ellas hizo Shakespeare a través de su famoso ciclo de teatro histórico. Al igual que ocurre con el teatro Isabelino que inspira a Martin, la Comedia Nueva española del mismo período tiene en el teatro histórico uno de sus principales géneros. También de la misma forma, el período medieval es el más representado en las obras de Lope de Vega y su escuela. La crítica moderna ha visto en las historias de ambición y violencia de Shakespeare y Lope de Vega una manera de exorcizar los demonios medievales que condujeron a la creación de los modernos estados europeos. Esta violencia, generalmente motivadas por luchas fratricidas entre nobles y conflictos sociales entre estamentos, contrasta con el mensaje de paz interior que los reyes quisieron transmitir una vez superada la ‘oscura’ Edad Media. Sin embargo, Lope o Shakespeare hicieron que la crítica hacia la injusticia medieval sirviera también para la de su propio tiempo, si bien envuelta en una técnica dramática que atrapaba, y atrapa, a público y lectores. No es extraño que el público del Globe o de los corrales de comedias encontrase motivos de reflexión análogos a los del espectador de televisión actual, pues nada más atrayente que personajes de moralidad virtuosa o ambigua enfrentados a gobernantes despóticos en busca de enemigos interiores y exteriores, dividiendo la sociedad y buscando su propio beneficio. Quizá los poderosos de hoy no difieran tanto de los de otros tiempos. Además, como se analizará durante las clases, entonces y ahora la violencia contra los rivales políticos muchas veces desencadena la violencia contra los miembros más desfavorecidos de la sociedad. Entre estos marginados estaban las minorías religiosas (judíos y musulmanes) y especialmente las mujeres. De hecho, la trama de muchas obras del teatro histórico español tiene su momento culminante en la violencia o la cosificación de las mujeres, siendo este el motivo central de obras tan importantes como FuenteovejunaReinar después de morir o El mejor alcalde, el rey. Otros temas importantes para debatir en clase serán los prejuicios raciales y la diversidad cultural, que se tratarán en piezas como La judía de Toledo o El bastardo Mudarra.

SPAN 561 – The Cinematic Pluriverse of Pedro Almodóvar

Instructor: Matthew J. Marr
Course Description: This seminar will examine the cinematic imagination of Spain’s most internationally celebrated filmmaker, Pedro Almodóvar. Topics to be considered will include Almodóvar’s lensing of gender politics, sexuality, multiculturalism, and national identity in post-dictatorial Spain; his nimble negotiation of the local and the global; his taste for cinephilic self-referentiality and hybridity of genre; and a distinctive tendency toward thematic idiosyncrasy. all of which are signature features of his postmodern “brand.” Significant attention will be devoted to approaches and trends within the vast corpus of scholarly criticism dealing with the filmmaker¿s oeuvre, and our engagement with film theory will arise organically out of the references from these texts. Some basic tools, techniques, and language of film analysis will be considered, as will a general understanding of field-specific norms of film studies as practiced in North American and U.K. Hispanism.

SPAN 597 – Latin American Cosmopolitanisms

Instructor: Krista Brune
Course Description: This seminar explores theories and expressions of cosmopolitanism emerging from Latin America beginning in the mid-nineteenth century and continuing through the contemporary moment. The class will consider how understandings of cosmopolitanism have changed in recent decades as Bruce Robbins, Pheng Cheah, and Homi Bhabha, among others, have embarked on a project of ¿new cosmopolitanisms.¿ By following a more nuanced comparative perspective, this course recognizes that cosmopolitanism is no longer privilege of the elites, but rather an experience shared with the poor and others. Latin American scholars Silviano Santiago, Mariano Siskind, and Ignacio Sánchez-Prado invite us to think about cosmopolitanisms in relationship to peoples, languages, and cultures often relegated to the periphery of world literary and cultural systems. In reading their theoretical interventions alongside philosophical texts by Immanuel Kant, Martha Nussbaum, and K. Anthony Appiah and literary works by Brazilian and Spanish American writers, this seminar proposes an investigation into the meanings and expressions of Latin American cosmopolitanisms. The following questions will animate course readings and discussions: How does a study of cosmopolitanism contribute to our understanding of the place of Latin America and its writers in the world? How do Latin American writers exude a desire for the world, which Siskind considers constitutive of cosmopolitanism? To what extent do Latin American cosmopolitanisms vary over time, in response to global geopolitical, economic, and cultural developments?

SPAN 597 – Latin American Photography: Archives, Practices, and Theories

Instructor: Marco Martínez 
Course Description: Since the nineteenth century, Latin American photography has generated a massive visual archive of great quality, powerful artistic practices and movements, and theoretical reflections. By focusing on the aesthetics associated with the exotic and picturesque as well as with modern photography, this seminar will examine how this form of art has been defined in practice and theory for more than a century now (since the 1850s). We will also look closely at a selection of materials that addresses challenges related to photo techniques and forms of reproduction; working with visual archives; dynamics of memory; national imaginaries; and photography as a mechanism of social control as well as of resistance. Additionally, we will analyze how these particular reflections on Latin American photography enter in dialogue with their specific local contexts and with a global artistic sensibility, impacted by ¿the age of mechanical reproduction¿ (Benjamin) and, more recently, the advent of virtual reality. Some of the photographers that will organize our discussions are Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Héctor García, Nacho López, Graciela Iturbide, Pedro Meyer, Silvina Frydlewsky, Daniela Rossell, Alessandra Sanguinetti, Enrique Metinides, and Gian Paolo Minelli, among others. Readings for this seminar will be mostly in Spanish and will be drawn from contemporary critical theory in art, philosophy, history, and popular culture.

SPAN 597C (LING 597C) – Methods in Language Contact Research

Course Description: This course will explore a variety of approaches to the study of language contact, with special emphasis on naturalistic data from bilingual speech communities.

SPAN 597A – Language Acquisition and Variation

Course Description: This course focuses on acquisition of variable input with the goal of understanding how children acquire language.

SPAN 596C – Language Science

Course Description: Methods and research in language science.

SPAN 596B – Variable Use of the Spanish Subjunctive

Course Description: The goal is to conduct a review of treatments of the Spanish subjunctive and grammars spanning the 15th to 20th centuries modeled on Poplack et al. (to appear), and to conduct a variationist analysis of Peninsular Spanish Speech Corpus.

SPAN 596A – Spanish Mood Variation

Course Description: The goal is to conduct a review of treatments of the Spanish Subjunctive in Grammars spanning the 15th-20th centuries modeled on Poplack et al. (top appear), and to conduct a variationist analysis of a Mexican Spanish speech corpus.

SPAN 597C – Field Methods

Course Description: This course will present methods and techniques for field research in linguistics, including ethnographic/anthropological, sociolingistic, and psycholinguistic approaches. Among the topics to be presented are interview techniques, software and hardware for field settings, adapting laboratory methods to varying linguistic ecologies, interpretation of data, and interfacing with other empirical approaches to the study of language.

LING 597 – Code-switching in the lab and in the community

Course Schedule: The primary goal in this course will be to explore a range of quantitative techniques common in language science, for analyzing continuous and categorical data. By the end of the course you should be able to apply these techniques for visualizing and analyzing your own data as well as for evaluating results reported in the literature. The scope of the course encompasses techniques for exploring data, basic hypothesis testing, regression, ANOVA, categorical data analysis, and mixed effects regression.

SPAN 597 – The psycholinguistic study of code-switching

Course Description: This seminar will provide an in-depth examination of codeswitching, with both historical grounding and a review of contemporary codeswitching work from corpus-based and lab-based perspectives. To begin the course, we will provide a historical overview, focusing on seminal papers in the field, so that students have an understanding of how syntactic constraint-based approaches to codeswitching arose in the literature, in large measure as a means of establishing that codeswitched language was not “a-lingual.” As we explore the issue of constraint-based approaches, we will also carefully examine methodological issues, focusing in particular on the limitations of the data and data collection paradigms that have constituted the basis for the theoretical claims made in the literature. In the next phase of the course we will focus on more recent approaches to codeswitching from a production and processing perspective. Throughout the course, we will attempt to evaluate psycholinguistic research in light of more linguistically informed approaches to the complex array of issues arising in codeswitching.

SPAN 597 – Statistics for Language Scientists

Course Description: The primary goal in this course will be to introduce a range of quantitative techniques used in language science. By the end of the course you should be able to apply these techniques for visualizing and analyzing your own data as well as for evaluating results reported in the literature. The scope of the course encompasses techniques for exploring data, basic hypothesis testing, regression, ANOVA, categorical data analysis, and mixed effects regression. Time permitting we will also explore topics in Bayesian inference. A secondary goal is to learn to conduct these analyses and data manipulation using the open source programming language R.

But statistics, and science, never sits still. Therefore, alongside our practical goals, we will aim for the, arguably more important, goal of learning to think about quantitative data. This includes a critical view of quantitative research in general, questions of measurement, the many decisions involved in model structure and interpretation, the use of alternative methods, and enhancing your ability to extend your knowledge to new techniques independently.

SPAN 510 – Romance Phonology

SPAN/LING 597 – Contact-induced languages

Course Description: Historical linguistics strives to reconstruct earlier stages of languages, but it is seldom possible to arrive at the “first” form of a language, because past a certain time depth no reliable conclusions can be extrapolated. Under special situations of language contact, however, “new” languages emerge, including pidgins, creoles, anti-creoles, and intertwined languages. This course will examine issues such as: How are contact-induced languages formed? What are the similarities and differences (if any) between these “new” languages and “natural” languages? In contact-induced languages what are the relative contributions of the input languages, linguistic and cognitive universals, and spontaneous emergent traits? What are the characteristics of bilingualism involving a contact-induced language and one or more of its lexifier languages, and how can data from such environments contribute to a broader understanding of bilingualism? What are some viable possibilities for conducting research on contact-induced languages?

SPAN 597 – Fitting languages together: Theoretical approaches to multilingualism

Course Description: How do you fit two or more languages into one mind? Do bilinguals have two language systems, or just one (or is this a sensible question to ask)? How is multilinguals’ knowledge of language different from that of monolinguals? In this course we will explore a variety of approaches to understanding the nature of multilinguals’ linguistic knowledge and use, relying on a variety of theoretical traditions, sources of data, and multilingual phenomena including second language acquisition, code-switching, language contact, and language processing. We will aim for a synthesis that will help chart a way forward in understanding the way most of the world experiences language—two or more at a time!

LING 504 – Advanced topics in phonological analysis and theory

Course Description: Phonology is concerned with understanding sound patterns in language. Through this course we will seek to understand what this means, and we will explore how phonologists have sought to advance this goal over the past several decades. We will examine the shift from rule-based to constraint-based theories of phonology with an emphasis on analyzing the shortcomings and paradoxes inherent in earlier approaches. At issue will be the search for a better understanding of how the phonological component continually interacts with phonetics and morphology in order to create optimal outputs. Students will analyze data in formal problem sets and we will examine particular problems through reading various journal articles treating the same topic from different experimental and theoretical approaches. We will then evaluate the various approaches systematically. The goal of this course is to prepare students to do close readings of advanced research.

LING 520/PSY 520 – Language Processing in Bilinguals

Course Description: Why is bilingualism interesting to psycholinguists? And who is a bilingual anyway? Despite the prevalence of monolinguals in the United States, most people of the world are bilingual. To have a genuinely universal account of human cognition will therefore require a detailed understanding of the relations between language and thought in individuals who speak and understand more than one language. It will be essential that research on basic cognitive functions in bilinguals examine both the course and the consequence of second language acquisition. Bilingualism, therefore, provides a unique vantage point from which the relations between thought and language may be viewed. Historically, this issue was the focus of the debate over the Whorfian hypothesis (i.e., does language determine thought?). In contemporary psychology, it has emerged as a central issue in the debate over modularity. Understanding the form of language and memory representation in the bilingual may provide an important set of constraints in modeling the fundamental categories of the mind. Bilingualism can provide a research tool for examining cognitive functions that are sometimes impenetrable within an individual’s first language. The examination of the mapping of form to meaning in constructing syntactically well-formed sentences in two languages with contrasting syntax, or in understanding the meaning of words that have similar form but differ in meaning in two languages, provides a tool for developing converging sources of evidence to test theories of language comprehension and memory.  Topics to be covered include second language acquisition in children and adults, language comprehension and production in a second language, code switching and language mixing, cognitive consequences of bilingualism, and the neural basis of bilingualism.

SPAN 597 – Current Statistical Practice in Language Science

Course Description: Our primary goal in this course is to explore how to analyze and interpret quantitative data in language science. Part of this goal will be to gain familiarity and proficiency with a range of quantitative techniques common in language science. Reflecting trends in the field, linear and logistic mixed effects regression will be a major focus in addition to more well-known (e.g. ANOVA, multiple regression, chi-square) techniques. We will also spend some time exploring other methods such as multidimensional scaling, generalized additive modeling, and conditional inference trees, as well as more specialized techniques (e.g. drift-diffusion modeling). A more important goal is to learn to think critically about quantitative data and how we can learn from it. This includes a critical view of quantitative research in general, questions of measurement, the many decisions involved in analytic strategy, model structure and interpretation, and the ability to extend students’ knowledge to new techniques independently.

SPAN 508/LING 500 – Generative Syntax/Syntax II

Course Description: This course serves as an overview of principle elements involved in the formal analysis of syntactic structure in natural language. Using a wide array of cross-linguistic data, we will explore which elements of syntactic structure are essential building blocks in the human language. The theoretical approach adopted in this course combines both formal and functional factors, and will function as an essential grounding for the combination of theoretical and experimental research moving forward. The first half of the course centers on the role of the lexicon, argument structure, and word order variation, while the second half of the course will be dedicated to filler-gap (i.e., long-distance) dependencies.

SPAN 597 – A few words about words: Linguistic and psycholinguistic approaches to morphology

Course Description: Intuitively, the nature of words and their use seems obvious, but a well-specified theoretical understanding of words has remained surprisingly elusive. The goal of this course is to develop a solid understanding of the important questions about words, and the current state of our knowledge about their answers, drawing on a broad range of work in linguistics and psychology. These questions include, what resources exist in individual languages for constructing new words, or for decomposing old ones into smaller, meaningful parts? What is the relationship between the meanings of complex words and their morphological structure? How do languages differ in the ways words may be constructed? What is the nature of humans’ long-term knowledge of words, and how is that knowledge deployed in language production and comprehension? Students will engage these questions through assigned readings, searching multiple literatures, guiding class discussions, and short written assignments, as well as a final project.

SPAN 597 – Acquisition and Variation

Course Description: This course brings together research in psycholinguistics, sociolinguistics, and first and second language acquisition in order to prepare students to investigate how L1 and L2 speakers acquire and process sociolinguistic variation. The first half of the course will be focused on methodologies in child language acquisition research, as compared to methods used with adult speakers. The second half of the course will focus on sociolinguistic variation, with special attention to studies that involve children and L2 speakers. In our field, there are very few studies that focus on developmental sociolinguistics – acquisition of variation and processing of variation in child L1 and adult L2 speakers. In this course, the goal is for students to draw from these various sub-disciplines of linguistics and create a project that integrates language variation, processing, and language acquisition.

SPAN 597/ LING 597- Methods in field research

Course Description: This course will present methods and techniques for field research in linguistics, including ethnographic/anthropological, sociolinguistic, and psycholinguistic approaches. Among the topics to be presented are interview techniques, software and hardware for field settings, adapting laboratory methods to varying linguistic ecologies, interpretation of data, and interfacing with other empirical approaches to the study of language. The overarching goal is to make the students more versatile as scholars and researchers, complementing existing skills and knowledge with new concepts as well as integrating this knowledge in order to facilitate cross-disciplinary research.

Among other things: In order to put into practice the initial exploratory phase that precedes many field-based research endeavors, each student will identify one linguistic environment geographically distant from Penn State and with which the student has no previous familiarity. During the course of the semester students will research this environment from afar using all available personal and electronic resources, will develop a set of viable potential contacts for future field research in that environment, and using these contacts will collect and demonstrate some basic pilot data that could be used in the formulation of a proposal for a full study. Throughout the course there will be class segments devoted to brief oral presentations on the progress of this assignment.
In order to develop familiarity with open-source experiment-building software, each student will design (including substantial modifications to existing programs), demonstrate, and turn in a demo-level pilot experiment program in an open-source platform such as PEBL, OpenSesame, PsychoPy, DMDX, etc.
Students will develop and turn in a research bibliography relevant to the chosen field research environment.

At the end of the semester each student will submit a final paper that incorporates the results of the exploratory survey and the corresponding research bibliography. The paper will include details of a proposed research project that involves both collection of basic linguistic data (oral and/or written) and an interactive experimental component.

SPAN 597/Ling 597 – Linguistic Ecology

Instructor: John Lipski
Course Description: Linguistic ecology is the study of languages as they relate to one another, to the people who speak and study them, and to the societies in which they are embedded. The development, evolution, spread, retention, and erosion of languages cannot be fully understood without taking into consideration the impact of ecological factors. At the same time, ensuring ecological validity is both a major imperative and a major challenge in all fields of linguistics, including historical and corpus studies, theoretical modeling, field and classroom research, language planning, and laboratory-based experimental inquiries. This class will examine the major issues in linguistic ecology, as well as their application to a variety of scenarios. Some representative topics include diasporic retentions (e.g. Sephardic Spanish); scenarios of creolization (enslavement, marronage, trading and military posts, multi-ethnic commerce); heritage languages stemming from voluntary immigration, labor recruitment, and settlement of religious minorities; recent politically- and economically-based migratory trends and their linguistic consequences; ecological considerations in field and laboratory research (including the impact of technology as well as working with diverse participant pools). Each student will choose a topic related to the student’s ongoing or proposed research, will explore the ecological implications and propose approaches that take them into account.

SPAN 510 – Spanish Descriptive Linguistics: Phonology

Instructor: Matthew Carlson
Course Description: This is a second graduate course in phonology, with a primary focus on Spanish. Our main goals will be to understand the Spanish sound system and to engage the field by generating and pursuing research questions that have the potential to contribute to advancing our knowledge of this topic. This is an ambitious goal. To achieve it, students will conduct focused explorations of the literature to explore what is known about each topic we will address, generate focused research questions that extend that knowledge, develop methods that will provide answers to those questions, and conduct mini-studies and assignments in which they will apply various techniques for data collection and analysis, and then interpret and communicate their findings. In this way, our goals are as much methodological as theoretical: we aim for a critical evaluation of how we know what we (think we) know about phonology. We will therefore stress the perspective and techniques of Laboratory Phonology, but the course also relies on and assumes familiarity with the major schools of thought in phonology (from LING 504), to achieve a comprehensive approach.

SPAN 597 – Writing for Publishing

Instructor: Rena Torres Cacoullos
Course Description: Students will come to class with a previously completed or well advanced linguistics research project and will work on converting it into a submission to a suitable peer reviewed journal.

SPAN 597: Corpus Analysis of Child Data

Time: TR 1:35-2:50 p.m.
Instructor: Karen Miller

LING 597: Linguistics and Language Science

Time: TR 12:05-1:20 p.m.
Instructor: John Lipski
Course Description: The goal of this course is to familiarize students interested in linguistic diversity and human-computer interaction with fundamental theories and approaches in linguistics and language science. Primarily designed for students in the NSF NRT LINDIV program, this course presents key topics in linguistics, with emphasis on research techniques and interfaces with other scientific disciplines (e.g. engineering, information technology, health sciences). The primary focus is on linguistic diversity across the life span, including within-language regional and social variation, bilingualism, and language disorders. The presentations target practical applications such as automatic speech recognition, speech synthesis, voice identification, corpus analysis, and machine translation.
Representative topics:

  • PHONETICS. Acoustic properties of speech. Visualization, manipulation, and analysis with PRAAT software. Applications for speech synthesis.
  • PHONOLOGY. Sound systems; regional and social variation of phonological patterns. Laboratory phonology paradigms.
  • SYNTAX. Deep and superficial structures. Parsing; variation and ambiguity. Experimental investigation of well-formedness.
  • LEXICON AND SEMANTICS. Models of lexical storage. Spreading activation. Priming and lexical decision.
  • LANGUAGE VARIATION. Geographical and social variation; qualitative and quantitative modeling. Perceptual dialectology vs. dialect mapping. Available resources for U. S. English.
  • MORE THAN ONE LANGUAGE. Parallel activation. Bilingualism in the brain. Bilingualism and cognition. Code-switching in production and processing.

SPAN 597: Theorizing Multilingualism

Time: TR 10:35-11:50 a.m.
Instructor: Matt Carlson
Course Description: There is now widespread recognition that most humans speak more than one language. This has contributed to increasing criticism of monolingual bias in linguistic theorizing and to the acknowledgment that a full understanding of the human language capacity must include multilingualism. In this course we will survey what has become a wide array of theoretical approaches to multilingualism, seeking to identify the major questions to be answered, and asking what kinds of data can help us answer them. In course projects, we will seek to advance our theoretical understanding through both exploratory data analysis and hypothesis testing.

SPAN 597 – Usage-based approaches to Second Language Acquisition

Time: TR 1:35-2:50 p.m.
Instructor: Manuel Pulido
Course Description: Usage-based approaches view linguistic knowledge as emerging from input experience and general cognitive mechanisms. This course explores second language learning and generalization, with a particular emphasis on the notion of constructions. By examining data from experimental methods and corpus linguistics, we will explore the question of how the distributional patterns of linguistic input affect the learnability of a second language. In problem sets, students will be introduced to essential skills for the computational analysis of text corpora (tagging; automatized extraction of n-grams, collocations, collostructions, etc.). Students will also complete an original project, analyzing the learnability of L2 constructions based on the quantitative analysis of linguistic data.

SPAN 597- Code-switching: a usage-based perspective

Time: TR 10:35-11:50 a.m.
Instructor: Rena Torres Cacoullos
Course Description: This seminar will provide an examination of codeswitching (CS), drawing on corpus- and lab-based methods. We will attend to bilinguals’ linguistic experience and community norms as impacting the cognitive representation of language and thus linguistic structures.  We will address (1) linguistic concerns with constraints on CS by asking: Is CS favored at particular syntactic and prosodic junctures of the two languages? and (2) psycholinguistic concerns with the facilitation of CS by asking: Is CS predicted by “triggering” (either situational, e.g., by the interlocutor, or linguistic, e.g. by cognates)?  Rather than assume that bilingual patterns need be derivable from syntactic principles for monolingual grammar, our goal will be to identify bilingual CS strategies–quantitative preferences to switch at particular sites and structural adjustments for switching at dispreferred sites. Students will present and evaluate published articles; learn to extract and code CS data; and conduct a pilot study toward an original research proposal.

SPAN 597 – Language Acquisition and Variation

Time: TR 12:05-1:20
Instructor: Karen Miller
Course Description: This course brings together research in sociolinguistics, psycholinguistics, and first and second language acquisition in order to prepare students to investigate how learners acquire and process sociolinguistic variation. The course will cover various corpus and experimental studies on the acquisition of variation and review how these studies inform models of L1 and L2 acquisition.

LING 520 – Seminar in Psycholinguistics

Time: TR 9:05-10:20
Instructor: Giuli Dussias
Course Description: The exponential growth of the use of experimental methods in linguistic research has extended our ability to examine the cognitive processes underlying human language, thus making psycholinguistics an increasingly important branch of linguistics. In this seminar we will examine psycholinguistics through the lens of bilingualism. Bilingualism is of interest for a number of reasons. First, despite the prevalence of monolinguals in the United States, most people of the world are bilingual. To have a genuinely universal account of human cognition will therefore require a detailed understanding of the relations between language and thought in individuals who speak and understand more than one language. It will be essential that research on basic cognitive functions in bilinguals examine both the course and the consequence of second language acquisition.

The primary goal of this course will be to introduce the core themes of psycholinguistics, using multilingual speakers as the case study. We will begin with issues concerning the acquisition of core linguistic levels, continue with lexical (e.g. how do multilingual speakers process cognates [piano] and false cognates [fin]?) and sentence processing (e.g. How do the two languages influence each other in predictive processing or when resolving syntactic ambiguity?), and finish with the cognitive neural consequences of bilingualism on general cognition, examining both production and comprehension throughout. A secondary goal for the course, is to help students become familiar with current experimental methods used in psycholinguistic and increasingly in traditional linguistic research, e.g. self-paced reading tasks, syntactic priming, eye-tracking methodologies, EEG recordings, and fMRI.

SPAN 509 – Functional Syntax

Time: TR 1:35-2:50 p.m.
Instructor: Rena Torres Cacoullos
Course Description: In a usage-based perspective, grammatical structures are shaped by their frequency and discourse contexts, as domain-general cognitive processes are at work. In this course, the data to be accounted for are usage frequencies and the factors conditioning speakers’ choices between forms with a shared grammatical function. Our objectives are for students (1) to sample approaches in this area–grammaticalization, typology, discourse-based syntax, construction grammar–and (2) to carry out an original quantitative syntactic analysis, developing corresponding argumentation. The report on this analysis should result minimally in submission of a conference abstract.

SPAN 519 – Current statistical practice in language science

Time: TR 10:35-11:50 a.m.
Instructor: Matthew Carlson
Course Description: This course is designed to help students become active participants in the use and development of quantitative data analysis in the language science community. Students will gain familiarity with basic statistical concepts and techniques as well as more advanced techniques that are commonly used in our field. More importantly, students will consider the motivations behind researchers’ choices in how to analyze their data, by reading contributions to the growing literature on quantitative methodology in language science, critiquing published work, and conducting their own analyses of published and unpublished data. The goal is to equip students with the tools to both begin analyzing their own data, and to expand their knowledge by critically examining current practice, and assessing new developments in our field.

SPAN 597 – Trends and topics in second language acquisition

Time: TR 9:05-10:20 a.m. 
Instructor:
 Manuel Pulido
Course Description: The course provides an overview of topics and theories in second language acquisition (SLA), with a focus on the linguistic and cognitive aspects of learning a language during adulthood. The course will explore in depth the specificities of adult language learning (as opposed to L1 acquisition) through topics that include age effects, input processing, salience and attention, implicit/explicit learning, error prediction and feedback, social interaction, desirable difficulties, and individual-based differences. While most readings will be provided, students will be responsible for exploring a linguistic topic of their interest and for contributing additional papers. Students will be encouraged to build on previous and/or current interests and to pursue them within approaches to second language acquisition.

SPAN 508/LING 500 – Generative syntax

Time: TR 1:35-2:50
Instructor: Karen Miller
Course Description: This course serves as an overview of principle elements involved in the formal analysis of syntactic structure in natural language. Using a wide array of cross-linguistic data, we will explore which elements of syntactic structure are essential building blocks in the human language. The theoretical approach adopted in this course combines both formal and functional factors, and will function as an essential grounding for the combination of theoretical and experimental research moving forward.

LING 504 – Phonology

Time: TR 12:05-1:20
Instructor: John Lipski
Course Description: Phonology is concerned with understanding sound patterns in language. This course introduces current theories of the basic organizational units of phonology:  features, segments, autosegments, suprasegmentals, syllables, and words.  Special emphasis will be placed on the role of the syllable, feature geometry, and general non‑linear approaches to phonology.  Constraint-based phonology/optimality theory will be introduced as used in contemporary research paradigms. We will begin by studying the grounding of phonology in phonetics, including the fundamentals of acoustic, articulatory, and auditory phonetics. Students will analyze data in formal problem sets and we will examine particular problems through reading various journal articles treating the same topic from different experimental and theoretical approaches.

GER/LING 597 – Morphology: structure, acquisition, & attrition

Time: TR 9:05-10:20
Instructor: Mike Putnam
Course Description: Although the term and concept word is omnipresent is foreign language instruction and linguistic research, its attributes and functions are poorly understood. In this course we attempt to define the concept of wordhood through the formal study of its content, i.e., morphology. Developing a derivational approach, we will gain a better understanding of the structural properties of words and their relationship with other aspects of grammar (i.e., phonology, semantics, & syntax). Our discussion of the structural properties of words will aid us in enhancing our understanding of the acquisition (in both L1 and L2 contexts) and attrition of morphology.

SPAN/LTNST 479 – U.S. Latina/o Culture en Español (3 credits)

Course Description: This course is conducted in Spanish and will analyze some of the central themes that shape the diverse Latina/o experiences in the United States. Some of the main topics that the course will address include: the politics of labeling; definitions of displacements; the politics of language; imaginary homelands and geographic spaces; and conceptualizations of race, gender, and sexuality. These themes will be seen through the lens of Latina/o literature and film. The main objective of this course is to help students think critically about the conceptual, theoretical, historical, and social issues that inform the Latina/o experience in the United States.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN/LTNST 315N – Spanish and Spanish-speakers in the U.S. (3 credits)

Course Description: In this course, we investigate various aspects of the language(s) and language behaviors of U.S. Latinos. The course is premised on the idea that language is a crucial component in the formation of identity. To understand Latina/o identity formation in the U.S., then, one must analyze what role languages–Spanish and English–have played in identity formation. The class commences with a brief historical assessment of the various U.S. Latino communities, including Mexican-American, Cuban-American, and Puerto Rican communities. Such a historical purview proves significant in the study of the cultural traditions that persist in these communities, chief among these, the Spanish language. In exploring the Spanish language in U.S. Latino communities, we consider several major sets of questions, among them the following: In what ways do the languages of U.S. Latino communities differ from those of monolingual Spanish- (and English-) speaking communities? What factors contribute to the maintenance and loss of Spanish in these communities? How does language contribute to the creation of individual and societal identity? How is language exploited in the representation of other U.S. Latino cultural traditions? We consider these questions across a variety of genres: poetry, prose (autobiography in particular), film, art, television, and music. These texts reveal how social environments determine language use as well as how artists have used language to reshape social environments, through, for example, the development of new language practices such as Spanish-English code switching. The course also connects these cultural practices to debates on Spanish in public life and policy.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 497F – Idiomatic Expressions and Regionalism Across the Spanish-speaking World

Course Description: The student will study the different idiomatic expressions from Latin America and Spain, using short-stories, articles, and interviews as a main source. Students will write an essay based on their research.  
Prerequisite: SPAN 001, SPAN 002, SPAN 003, SPAN 200

SPAN 497E – The Social Life of Spanish Phonetics

Course Description: This course focuses on variation in Spanish phonetics and phonology causes by dialectal differences and other social factors (age, gender, socioeconomic status, identity). In this course you will also learn how to conduct your own research experiment to investigate the influence of these factors on pronunciation.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 215

SPAN 497D – How Languages are Learned

Course Description: (1) how do humans learn additional languages after they have learned their first langauge? (2) How does bilingual language development compare to monolingual language development? (3) Why do we find variability in rates and outcomes of second language acquisition? (4) What does it take to acquire advanced language skills in a second language? By answering these questions, this course introduces students to the field of first, second, and bilingual language acquisition.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 215

SPAN 497C – Living Breathing Language

Course Description: There are nearly 7000 language spoken in the world today. Where did they come from? What makes them different? How are they similar? What happens when they die? This course will explore linguistic diversity, historical change and dialectal variation through the lens of evolutionary biology. Using examples from Spanish, both modern and historical, we will learn how language can be characterized as a living, growing, changing organism.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497C – Avant-Garde Primitivisms

Course Description: In this course we will explore the ways in which the tension between the drive for futurity and the appeal of the “primitive” plays out in the visual art, poetry, prose, theater, and films of Latin American and European artists commonly regarded as “avant-garde.”
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 253W

SPAN 497B – Women in the Contemporary Spanish-speaking World: Literature and Films

Course Description: This course explores the contributions of women throughout the Spanish- speaking world to contemporary literature and film, so as to deepen the understanding of its complex and rich cultures.

SPAN 497B – How Languages are Learned

Course Description: (1) How do humans learn additional languages after they have learned their first language? (2) How does bilingual language development compare to monolingual language development? (3) Why do we find variability in rates and outcomes of second language acquisiton? (4) What does it take to acquire advanced language skills in a second language? By answering these questions, this course introduces students to the field of first, second, and bilingual language acquisition.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497A – Ink and Gunpowder: Detention and Interpretation in Spanish and Spanish American Detective Short Stories

Course Description: The goal of this undergraduate course is to give students the theoretical grounding to analyze detective texts, and to introduce them to major trends in Spanish and Spanish-American detective fictions. By reading a collection of short stories, which adopt and adapt different elements of the genre (the criminal, the law, the motivation, the investigation, etc.) we will examine how several Spanish and Spanish American writers use the crime model as a pre- text and a pretext to undergo social criticism, self-inquiry and meta- fictional questionings that expand the scope of the classical whodunit.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497A – Cuba and Jose Marti

Course Description: The writings and thoughts of Jose Marti have been foundational for Cuba’s literary, political, and cultural expressions and educational institutions before and after the Cuban Revolution (1959). This course will expose students to those writings and ideas from the point of view of post-revolutionary Cuba. Students will be able to compare what they learn in Cuba with other writings and ideas about Marti, related to Latin American in general, ideas on government, society, freedom and independence. During the two weeks in Cuba, Penn State students will be able to learn from different lectures and classes given by university professors and researchers on different aspects of Marti’s life and thoughts. They also will be able to participate in Cuba’s celebration, May 2015, of Marti’s 125th commemoration of his death (1895).  
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497A – Contemporary Latin American Cinema

Course Description: This course explores Latin American cultures through the study of films of the past quarter of a century.

SPAN 497 (Section 5) – Spanish for Business and International Trade II

Time: MoWeFr, 11:15 a.m.-12:05 p.m.
Instructor: Melanie Archangeli
Course Description: Spanish for Business and International Trade II, is a continuation of Span 420, Spanish for Business and International Trade.  Thus, Spanish 420 is a prerequisite for Spanish 497-005.   Participants will continue to broaden and deepen their ability to apply their Spanish skills (reading, writing, listening, speaking, and cultural knowledge) in a professional setting by using what they have learned in Spanish 420 to read, analyze, and discuss current articles and case studies related to business issues and companies in various Hispanic countries; examine the intersection of business and culture in the Spanish-speaking world; view current news/business videos in Spanish; and participate in other written and oral activities such as conducting a business meeting and presenting a project focused on their particular major.
Prerequisite: SPAN 420

SPAN 497 (Section 4) – La vida es sueño and Calderón de la Barca’s Theatre: Performing a Symbolic World

Time: TR, 12:05-1:20 p.m.
Instructor: Juan Udaondo Alegre
Course Description: De acuerdo con la mayoría de especialistas, La vida es sueño es la mejor obra de teatro de la literatura española del Siglo de Oro, de manera parecida a Hamlet entre las letras inglesas. Como podremos comprobar durante los primeros días de clase, en La vida es sueño la belleza de los versos no está reñida con la profundidad filosófica, la complejidad de los personajes y una trama casi perfecta; de hecho, todos ellos son rasgos que  Calderón de la Barca desarrollaría en el resto de su producción, una significativa selección de la cual examinaremos durante el resto del cuatrimestre, incluyendo piezas como El alcalde de Zalamea, El médico de su honra, Amar después de la muerte, El gran teatro del mundo, El príncipe constante, etc. En el análisis de las obras, además de contextualizar y estudiar los temas principales se insistirá especialmente en dos cosas: en primer lugar, su condición de teatro en verso, y cómo Calderón hizo que su poesía reflejase todas las tendencias del Siglo de Oro, desde el Romancero a Góngora pasando por Garcilaso y Lope; en segundo lugar, que estamos leyendo obras escritas primero para ser representadas y después leídas. Por ello, en todas las clases abordaremos tanto el análisis del texto dramático (personajes, conflictos, acotaciones, etc.) como poético (incluyendo métrica, verso y recursos retórico-expresivos). Además, y teniendo en cuenta que las mejores compañías de teatro de España y Latinoamérica han apreciado y representado los textos de Calderón, durante las clases veremos fragmentos en escena de las obras que estamos leyendo, y discutiremos cómo los profesionales del teatro se han acercado al mundo simbólico y la variedad dramática de este autor.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497 (Section 3) – Cultural Trends in Contemporary Spain and Hispanic America

Time: MoWeFr, 12:20-1:10 p.m.
Instructor: Mary Barnard
Course Description: This course explores literary texts, art works, and films from twentieth-century Spain and Hispanic America and the cultural currents that subtend their production.  It will study the Industrial Revolution and reactions by modernist writers; colonialism and neocolonialism; slavery and questions of race and hybridity; transatlantic crossing of people and ideas that nourish new ways of thinking and new ways of knowing; material culture, with discursive objects and artefacts serving as carriers of culture and bearers of identity; the African roots of Caribbean poetry; and the plight of minorities, women and gypsies, in Spanish society. Films by Pedro Almodóvar and Alejandro González Iñárritu will be included.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497 (Section 2) – Modern Hispanic Short Story

Time: MoWeFr, 2:30-3:20 p.m.
Instructor: Matthew Marr
Course Description: This course will offer an in-depth study of the genre of the modern/contemporary short story as cultivated in Spanish by some of Spain and Latin America’s most vibrant narrative voices of the twentieth century through the present.  Primary texts will include selections by, among others, Horacio Quiroga, Jorge Luis Borges, Julio Cortázar, Juan Rulfo, Rosario Castellanos, Rosario Ferré, Roberto Bolaño, Ana María Matute, Miguel Delibes, Rosa Montero, Javier Marías, Juan José Millás, and Javier Cercas.  Special attention will be given to the mechanics of form and suspense, an evolving aesthetics of “the real,” engagement with social critique, and short narrative’s commentary on the (post)modern human condition. The cultural referents at play in each text will also be closely examined, as will transatlantic patterns of literary influence and cosmopolitanism (vs. regionalism) among the authors considered.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497 (Section 1) – ABCs of Bilingualism: Acquisition, Brain, and Community

Time: MoWeFr, 10:10-11:00 a.m.
Instructor: Lauren Halberstadt
Course Description: Around the world, the ability to speak more than one language is the norm. However, bilingualism can take on many forms. Throughout the course, we will adapt a broad understanding of bilingualism and what it means to be a bilingual speaker. We will examine how multiple languages are learned, how the brain deals with multiple languages, and who are these bilingual speakers.
Course Objectives:
a. Develop an understanding of the theories surrounding the study of bilingualism.
b. Situate our understanding within the scope of specific communities.
c. Apply what we know about linguistics to new bilingual communities.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497 – Voices from the Margin: The Poetry and Drama of Federico García Lorca

Instructor: Mary E. Barnard
Course Description: Poet, playwright, musician, and friend of artists, poets and bullfighters–privileged figures that were outcasts, figures on the margins of society. This course will focus on several of these figures in his poetry and drama, placing them within historical, political, and social contexts, including Lorca’s own controversial presence in the years leading to the Civil War (1936-39): the gypsy as rebel, brawling with his own kind and confronting his enemy, the Civil Guard, in the Romancero gitano; the woman who rebels against the tribal rituals and misguided codes of conduct of a provincial town in the rural tragedy La casa de Bernarda Alba; the black from Harlem in the surrealist Poeta en Nueva York; the noble, bloodied bullfighter in the elegiac Llanto por Ignacio Sánchez Mejías. To address questions of theater and drama in relation to social issues, the students will perform scenes (time permitting) La casa de Bernarda Alba and watch and discuss a film production of this play. The course will also include Lorca’s sketch art and musical scores, and the relation of his works to those of his artist friend Salvador Dalí. The course will include a film about Lorca’s life and works, including his mysterious death at the hands of the Nationalists, The Spirit of Lorca (Michael Dibb, 1986).

SPAN 497 – The Spanish your teachers never told you about.

Time: MoWeFr, 1:25-2:15 p.m.
Instructor: Matthew Carlson
Course Description: Have you ever failed to understand someone because they didn’t use the word “whom” properly? There is often quite a difference between how one is “supposed to” use a language, and how the language is actually used in the world. Where does this difference come from? Why are some ways of speaking considered to be more correct, more logical, or more polite, and others are disdained, discouraged, or ridiculed? More importantly, how do these judgments spread, and what are their consequences? Our focus in this course will be on stigmatized varieties of Spanish. Through that focus, we will explore why languages vary and change, why some forms come to be considered wrong or just plain bad, who uses these forms and why, and how people come to be judged, profiled, and discriminated against on the basis of how they speak. A central aspect of this course will be the exploration of primary data, both to study how Spanish is spoken by different people in different places, and to discover what different people say about varieties of Spanish, and about those who use those varieties.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497 – The Many Faces of Early Modern and Modern Hispanic Culture.

Time: MWF,1:25-2:15 p.m.
Instructor:
 Mary Barnard
Course Description: This is an interactive course that examines works of literature and art within aesthetic, social, and political contexts in early modern (sixteenth century) and modern Spain. It will study early modern cross-cultural excursions into Africa, Italy, and the American colonies and modern topics dealing with the Spanish Civil War, feminism, and the culture of the Roma. Three films will be included, Tierra y libertad (Land and Freedom-director: Ken Loach; Diarios de motocicleta(director: Walter Salles), and Un chien andalou (An Andalusian Dog, director: Luis Buñuel, script by Buñuel and Salvador Dalí).  Works of art by Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dalí, and Frida Kahlo will be included.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497 – The ABCs of Bilingualism: Acquisition, Brain and Community

Instructor: Lauren Halberstadt
Course Description: Around the world, speaking more than one language is the norm. Have you ever considered what it takes to learn a second language? How the brain manages to juggle two languages in one mind? How communities work and live together while speaking two languages? This course will explore bilingualism, the ability to speak and understand two languages. We’ll discover how bilinguals acquire their languages and how they live with them through the lens of bilingual communities.

SPAN 497 – Spanish Social-Issue Cinema

Instructor: Matthew J. Marr
Course Description: Since the 1990s, a growing number of filmmakers in Spain have gravitated toward projects concerned with socially charged topics: domestic abuse, terrorism, national memory/amnesia, rural depopulation, immigration, economic malaise, secularization, assisted suicide, disability, etc. In doing so, directors have carved out a heretofore underdeveloped space in a national cinema which, until 1975, saw authoritarian censorship under Franco force directors’ hands with respect to critical openness—and where in the 1980s a flair for art-house experimentation (fueled by the fresh air of democracy) often left real-world issues checked at the cinema door. Yet, just as themes inseparable from a nuanced understanding of contemporary Spanish society have recently moved to the fore of its cinema, so too has the macrogenre of social-issue film diversified in stylistic terms. This course will explore Spanish social-issue cinema through a close analysis of several feature films, documentaries, shorts, frequent theoretical readings, and assignments designed to develop students’ skills as critical viewers.

SPAN 497 – Spanish in Contact with Other Languages

Instructor: Isabel Deibel
Course Description: This class provides a comprehensive historical, social and linguistic overview of Spanish in contact with other languages in its major contexts – in Spain, the United States, and Latin America.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497 – Representation, Reenactment, and Revolution in Latin America: 1910-present

Time: MWF, 2:30-3:20 p.m.
Instructor: Lily Ryan
Course Description: This course offers a multidisciplinary, multimedia approach that examines incidences of social upheaval that have taken place in Latin America throughout the last century. Using literature, photography, and cinema, it traces how state violence, natural disasters, and political instability have been represented in the Americas, while questioning the critical and geopolitical implications of these representations in the space that we consider to be “Latin America.” These works emanate from a variety of sources that include, but are not limited to, the autobiographical, the historical and the journalistic. We will look at how truth, authority, memory, and fiction give way to our historical understanding of each event. Rather than be all-encompassing, this course examines specific incidents of turmoil and change and combines a historical outlook with analyses of how these events have been represented. In doing so, it serves as a survey course for modern Latin American culture and as an introduction to media studies, as each week’s primary texts will be supplemented with secondary sources on media.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497 – Playing with your mind: What linguists do to find out how humans learn and process language

Instructor: Giulia Togato
Course Description: Language is a vehicle that we use to express our personal and cultural norms and orientations. The whole essence of our thought as individuals is expressed through language. This course will explore the importance that language acquires in social interaction adopting a psycholinguistic approach. Psycholinguistics is the study of the psychological and neurobiological factors that enable humans to acquire, comprehend, process and produce language. Accordingly, the course will offer the possibility to explore the cognitive processes underlying language use (both in comprehension and production: at the lexical, syntactic and discourse level); the main empirical methods psychologists use to approach and analyze language competence will be reviewed. Hence, the main goal of this course will be to understand how the brain makes way for language learning, both for native and non-native languages. The relationship between language, cognition and culture will also be analyzed.  This course integrates traditional lecture classes and student-centered learning (i.e. lecture classes will always be matched with active exercises, both individual and collaborative).
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497 – No, all Latinos don’t sound the same: Sociolinguistic variation in US Spanish

Instructor: Grant Berry
Course Description: Has a relative confused Puerto Rico with Costa Rica? Do they think every Spanish speaker they hear is from Mexico? Can you tell the difference? Migrant and longstanding Spanish-speaking communities in the US are extremely diverse, and those diverse backgrounds are reflected in the way they use Spanish. Speakers from different geographic regions speak differently, of course, but individuals within the same community also have distinct ways of speaking from one another. This course will explore variations in the Spanish-speaking world as they are observed in Spanish speakers living in the US (e.g., Puerto Ricans in Philadelphia, Spanish speakers in the Southwest, Latinos in New York and Miami), focusing on linguistic variables in the sound system of Spanish (phonology). Geographic patterns of linguistic variation will be identified and examined, and we will explore social factors—age, sex, socioeconomic status, speech style—that influence how those linguistic variables are used in conversation. Although English will be the primary language used in class discussion, required readings will be in both Spanish and English. Advanced intermediate proficiency or higher is strongly recommended.

SPAN 497 – Modern Hispanic Short Story

Instructor: Matthew J. Marr
Course Description: This course will offer an in-depth study of the genre of the modern (and, in some instances, postmodern) short story as cultivated—in Spanish—by some of Spain and Latin America’s most vibrant narrative voices of twentieth century through the present.  Primary texts will include selections by, among others, Horacio Quiroga, Jorge Luis Borges, Julio Cortázar, Juan Rulfo, Gabriel García Márquez, Camilo José Cela, Ana María Matute, Miguel Delibes, Juan Goytisolo, Rosa Montero, Javier Marías, and Juan José Millás.  Special attention will be given to the mechanics of form and suspense, as well as to an evolving aesthetics of “the real.”  The cultural referents at play in each short story will also be closely examined, as will transatlantic patterns of literary influence and cosmopolitanism (vs. regionalism) among the authors considered.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497 – Lyric(s) Culture in Modern Spain & Latin America

Time: TR, 10:35-11:50 a.m.
Instructor: Matthew Marr
Course Description: This course will examine the creative deployment of verse, song, and the lyrical across a diverse range of Spanish and Latin American cultural productions of the modern period, including film, fiction, performance, official propaganda, and social movements.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 497 – Latin(o) American Graphic Novel

Instructor: Marco A. Martínez
Course Description: This interdisciplinary seminar combines literary, visual, and historical approaches to study one of the most rapidly growing and increasingly influential forms of literature: the graphic novel. We will focus on the production made by Latin American and Latinx writers and visual artists, beginning in the late 1990s and continuing to the present day. Through reading, discussion, and presentations, students will develop the literary and visual vocabulary to analyze the conventions and possibilities of the graphic novel. Some of the topics we will be examining are national history, dystopian worlds, migration and racism, literary adaptations, and race, gender and sexuality conceptions. Class will be taught in Spanish.

SPAN 497 – How languages are learned

Instructor: Karen Miller
Course Description: What does it mean to be bilingual? (2) How does acquisition of a second language compare to acquisition of a first language? (3) How does bilingualism impact human cognition? (4) What are the social contexts that support language learning and language maintenance? (5) What are the various languages spoken in Spain and Latin America? By answering these questions, this course introduces students to bilingualism in the Spanish-speaking World.

SPAN 497 – Facts and Myths about learning Spanish

Time: TR, 10:35-11:50 a.m.
Instructor: Manuel Pulido
Course Description: This course focuses on key aspects of the acquisition of Spanish as a second language. The course will address questions such as: Can watching Netflix help me learn Spanish? What type of practice, and how much, can help me learn Spanish? Does the native language change when we learn second languages? Is computer-based learning as effective as face-to-face learning? The course goes from theory to practice, and emphasizes hands-on experience based on examining data and experiments.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497 – Don Quijote and Errant Subjects in a Global Context

Instructor: Elizabeth Lagresa-González
Course Description: This course examines Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra’s masterpiece Don Quijote de la Mancha, focusing on close readings and literary analysis of major themes such as reality/fiction, perspectivism/ ambiguity, and deeds/words, covering a range of topics from  gender and race relations to economic crises, religious turmoil and social inequality. Special emphasis will be placed on examining the representation of “others,” within the context of the expulsion of Jewish and Moorish minorities. The course will consider “errant” subjects in its two dimensions: as those straying from the accepted course, unacceptable actions; and traveling in search of adventure, a wondering journey. By applying a cross-disciplinary approach, Cervantes’ work will be discussed in relation to the artistic and historical context of renaissance and baroque Spain, drawing upon the visual arts and J.H. Elliott’s Imperial Spain, while deconstructing the different kinds of fiction — pastoral, picaresque, the Moorish novel, the Italian novella, and the romance of chivalry — that inhabit this novel.

Attesting to its global reach, Don Quijote has been influential to thinkers from Lukács to Foucault to Bakhtin to Girard to the Frankfurt School, and to writers from Nabokov to Borges to Flaubert to García Márquez and beyond. No other book, with the exception of the Bible, has been translated to more languages, or undergone more editions and reprints. A herald of modernity, Cervantes’ novel casts a vast influence on both Western and Latin American literature.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W 

SPAN 497 – Bilingualism in the U.S.: Acquisition, Cognition, & Community

Instructor: Dora LaCasse
Course Description: This course will focus on the study of bilingualism in the United States. We’ll discover how bilinguals acquire their languages, how they manage their two languages, and how they use them, as members of bilingual communities. We will take a cross-disciplinary view, exploring major questions from both corpus-based and laboratory approaches.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497 – Bi(lingual) Curiosity: Identity and Language in the Spanish-speaking world

Time: MWF, 12:20-1:10 p.m.
Instructor: Ashley Pahis
Course Description: This course explores the many ways in which we as language users construct, maintain, and express ourselves through language both orally and physically. We as humans possess similar means by which to produce language. How, then, do we manipulate the ways in which we speak and act to express ourselves and make our voices heard? We will discuss topics such as the performative aspects of gender and the acoustic manifestations of sex, gender, and sexuality in Spanish and other languages, as well as more recent movements striving for more inclusive language.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215

SPAN 497 – Being Bilingual in a Monolingual World

Instructor: Mike Johns
Course Description: Linguistic scholar Francois Grosjean once famously wrote that “the bilingual is not two monolinguals in one person”. But what does this mean, and what does it imply? This question will be at the center of the course, divided into three broad sections: the language science of bilingualism, where students will be introduced to recent topics on bilingual research; the social aspects of bilingualism, which focuses on the cultural and political discussions surrounding bilingualism; and the cognitive ramifications of bilingualism, centered around the “bilingual advantage”. Students will read articles and participate in class discussions, participate in a class debate on the “bilingual advantage”, and complete a final project on a topic of their choosing. The goal of this course is to broaden students’ understanding of the science of bilingualism and further their critical thinking and argumentation skills.

SPAN 497 – A Thousand Faces

Instructor: María Izquierdo
Course Description: In this course, we will develop our capacity to observe our surroundings in new ways and use the written word to manipulate different types of readers. We will also consider the introduction of images, gifs, and videos into the production of some of the stories that we will create. We will write stories as short as 140 characters, participating in Twiteratura, and as long as 6 pages. Topics discussed may be controversial, absurd, or sensitive in nature, and we will learn to navigate them while offering and receiving constructive criticism in a respectful manner.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 496A – Spanish in Technical Fields

Course Description: Study of words and phrases unique to petroleum engineering. Study of grammar including technical and research semantics and grammatical structure. Also, additional cultural component as student examines the how the presence of a pipeline industry has affected the local and national culture in Mexico. 

SPAN 496A – Bilingualism and Second Language

Course Description: Research on bilingualism and second language use through reading background literature and developing experimental stimuli and designs. 

SPAN 491 – Masterpieces of Spanish Drama and Poetry (3 credits)

Course Description: Reading, analysis, and discussion of selected masterpieces of Spanish drama and poetry.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 490 – Masterpieces of Spanish Prose (3 credits)

Course Description: Reading, analysis, and discussion of selected masterpieces of Spanish novels, short stories, etc.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 488 – War, Revolution, and the Struggles for Modernity: Spain 1898-1939 (3 credits)

Course Description: This course, conducted in Spanish, examines Spanish literature from 1898 to 1939.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 479 – U.S. Latina/o Culture en Español (3 credits)

Course Description: This course is conducted in Spanish and will analyze some of the central themes that shape the diverse Latina/o experiences in the United States. Some of the main topics that the course will address include: the politics of labeling; definitions of displacements; the politics of language; imaginary homelands and geographic spaces; and conceptualizations of race, gender, and sexuality. These themes will be seen through the lens of Latina/o literature and film. The main objective of this course is to help students think critically about the conceptual, theoretical, historical, and social issues that inform the Latina/o experience in the United States.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 476 – Masterpieces of Spanish American Literature (3 credits)

Course Description: Reading, analysis, and discussion of selected major works representative of Spanish American prose and poetry.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 474 – Many Mexicos (3 credits)

Course Description: Overview of Mexican literature, culture and history from pre-colonial period to present.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 472 – The Contemporary Spanish American Novel (3 credits)

Course Description: The regionalist and social novel since 1910, together with the social background.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 470 – Youth Cultures in Latin(a/o) America (3 credits)

Course Description: Young people have been at the center of political and cultural revolutions around the world and throughout history. For example, revolutions, urban movements, ethnic/racial pride, LGBTQ+, feminist movements, music basaars, DJs and rave parties, and “barras de futbol” are only some of the manifestations associated with young people in Latin(a/o) American literature, film, music, and journalism. Nevertheless, the concept of “youth” as an academic category only appeared in the 1960’s. In this course, we will study different manifestations of youth cultures in the Hemispheric Americas, paying special attention to the Latinx communities in the U.S. and Latin America, since the 1960’s and until the contemporary moment. The key question that will guide us is: How does each of these literary, artistic, and media representations of youth enter into dialogue with political events in which young people have been at the center of efforts to bring about political changes in the U.S. Latinx communities and Latin American? Using short fiction, film and documentaries, songs, blogs, and other cultural materials (YouTube clips, images, graffiti, etc.), we will identify and compare different youth cultures in Latinx communities in the U.S. and Latin America in terms of their productions, representations, and effects in the public sphere. We will enrich our analysis of primary materials with theoretical and critical readings that will help us to contextualize the different manifestations in our study.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 439 – Don Quijote (3 credits)

Course Description: Thorough study of the masterpiece, including its sources, genesis, language, style, success, and influence.
Prerequisite: SPAN 253W

SPAN 420 – Spanish for Business and International Trade (3 credits)

Course Description: Spanish 420, Spanish for Business and International Trade, is an introduction to business administration (organizational structure, human resources, marketing, accounting, cross-cultural etiquette, business ethics, etc.) within the context of the Spanish language and Hispanic cultures against the backdrop of the global economy. Participants will broaden and deepen their ability to apply their Spanish skills in a professional setting by reading and evaluating current business articles, discussing and analyzing business issues in various Hispanic countries, examining the intersection of business and culture in the Spanish-speaking world, viewing short videos, preparing a resume in Spanish, and participating in other written and oral activities. To complement the core content, various assignments also allow students to focus on their individual majors.
Prerequisite: SPAN 100A or SPAN 200 and SPAN 215 or SPAN 253

SPAN 418 – The Evolution of Spanish (3 credits)

Course Description: The emergence and development of the sounds and forms of Spanish.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 215

SPAN 417 – How Languages Are Learned (3 credits)

Course Description: This class is a linguistics course that focuses on language acquisition in children and adults. Linguistics is the scientific study of language and its structure, and linguistic inquiry focuses on various levels of language: phonology examines the sounds of language, morphology examines the structure of words (e.g., root words and their inflections), and syntax focuses on the structure of phrases and sentences. Using the tools of phonology, morphology, and syntax, this course will address the following questions. What is unique about human language? How is language learned in infancy? How do humans learn additional languages after they have learned their first language? How does bilingual language development compare to monolingual language development? Can knowing more than one language actually be detrimental? What are the different languages spoken by bilinguals in the Spanish-speaking world? What sorts of bilingual education programs are there in the Spanish-speaking world, including in the U.S.? By answering these questions, this course introduces students to bilingualism and bilingual language acquisition.
Prerequisite: SPAN 215 

SPAN 413 – Interpretation (3 credits)

Course Description: Introduction to the art of interpretation, with particular attention to the professions for which it is most commonly required. Spanish 413 will provide students with demonstrations and exercises designed to develop the skills required in sight translation and in consecutive, simultaneous and summary interpretation. The course does not presume to provide the training needed for entrance into the profession; it is intended to give students sufficient understanding of the rigors and demands of the profession and to help them determine whether they have the interest and skills to pursue further training in this area. At the same time, it will provide students with a unique opportunity to improve their listening comprehension and fluency in the target language, whether English or Spanish.
Prerequisite: SPAN 412

SPAN 412 – Translation (3 credits)

Course Description: Techniques of written translation from Spanish to English and vice versa, particularly for business, literature, and social work. Students will learn translation theory and best practices, as well as strategies for overcoming the most common translation problems in Spanish-English translation. Some time will be spent on a review of grammar issues that most commonly result in errors in translation. Students will also learn how to deal with colloquial language and cultural references in a Spanish source text, and will be taught to consider the function of dialect, style and register in a source text and their impact in translation. In the final weeks of the semester, the focus shifts from the theoretical to the practical, as students apply their skills to the translation in advertising, scientific and technical texts, documents, and literary and artistic translation.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200

SPAN 410 – Advanced Oral Expression and Communication (3 credits)

Course Description: Emphasis on achieving practical command of spoken Spanish and the comprehension of native speech. Use of journalistic materials.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200

SPAN 397 – Modern Spanish Short Story

Course Description: This course will examine the genre of the Spanish short story from the mid-nineteenth century through the post-Franco years of the Transition to democracy and beyond, focusing on such topics as: an evolving aesthetics of “the real,” the mechanics/stylistics of short narrative fiction in the Peninsular context, voices and perspectives from Spain’s cultural margins, conceptions of national identity, the metafictional mode, the subgenre of the fantastic, and a longstanding tradition of humor and social critique.

SPAN 356 Topics in the Cultures of the Americas (3 credits)

Course Description: This course offers a comparative study of the literatures and cultures of the Americas, bringing Latin America into dialogue with the United States (and in some instances Canada). This course offers a comparative study of the literatures and cultures of the Americas, bringing Latin America into dialogue with the United States (and, in some instances, Canada). Throughout the course, we will explore the (dis) continuities that both connect and divide the hemisphere, and we will trace the movement of people, artistic practices, and ideas across borders while paying attention to the distinctive aspects of national and local cultures. Topics will vary by semester and may include: empire and colonialism, the literary and cultural legacies of slavery, the figure of the “native,” crime literature or science fiction in the Americas, theater of the Americas, literatures and cultures of the Spanish-American War, media and the U.S./Mexico border, and cultures of the Caribbean diaspora. Although the course may cover English-language materials, or works in translation from Brazil and/or the French-speaking Caribbean, most of the texts/recordings/films will be in Spanish, as will all assignments written by students.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 253W

SPAN 355 – Topics in the Cultures of Latin America (3 credits)

Course Description: This course offers a comparative study of the literatures, artistic manifestations, intellectual traditions, and cultural productions of the Latin American region. This course offers a comparative study of the literatures, artistic manifestations, intellectual traditions, and cultural productions of the Latin American region. Throughout the course, we will reflect on the (im)possibility of characterizing a vast region by taking into account ongoing factors its broader history and culture, as well as national and local particularities. Topics will vary by semester and may include: literary and artistic periods and movements, (post)coloniality and decoloniality, the politics of race, gender, and sexuality, urban and rural sociopolitical movements, (self-)representations in old and new media, discourses of the political (populisms, revolutions, dictatorships, and neoliberalism), and migration studies. Students will engage with literary texts, historic documents, art, music, and other materials in order to understand different kinds of writing and forms of representation. While most materials will be in Spanish, the course may also include works in translation from Brazil, as well as the English- and/or French-speaking Caribbean.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 253W

SPAN 354 – Topics in Border Studies (3 credits)

Course Description: This course offers a study of borders as key sites of contact, exchange, conflict, hybridity, and identity production in and across varied contexts of Spanish, Latin American, and/or Latina/o culture(s). This course offers a study of borders – geopolitical, social, intellectual, literary, artistic, and/or historical – as key sites of contact, exchange, conflict, hybridity, and identity production in and across varied contexts of Spanish, Latin American, and/or Latina/o culture(s). While diverse variables (including diaspora, gender, race and ethnicity, sexuality, colonialism, nationhood and transnationalism) will inform particular iterations of the course, approaches and text selection will be shaped by an understanding of borders as constructs defined by conditions of dynamic interaction and transformation. Materials to be considered in the course, which will vary according the focus, may include literary, artistic, and intellectual works, film, media-based texts, music, and/or historical documents.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 253W

SPAN 353 – Topics in the Cultures of Spain (3 credits)

Course Description: This course offers a comparative study of the literature, artistic manifestations, intellectual traditions, and cultural productions of Spain. This course offers a comparative study of the literature, artistic manifestations, intellectual traditions, and cultural productions of Spain. Depending on the semester focus, topics related to literary movements, comparative approaches to genre, and/or connections between textual representation and politics, social movements, and/or Spain’s long and complex history (both locally and globally) may be at the center of discussion. Additionally, varied issues of gender, race and ethnicity, rural and urban environments, religion, and evolving conceptions of nationhood may be included as overarching themes. Particular literary genres and representative works may be foregrounded in yet another iteration of the course, wherein students will study and discuss principal readings against cultural backdrops framed by exposure to art, film, music, and/or other historical, intellectual, sociopolitical, and/or media-based materials of relevance to the semester-specific context at hand.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 253W

SPAN 326 – Reading the Border/Lands (3 credits)

Course Description: This course examines representations of the U.S.-Mexico border in relation to the actual geographic space. SPAN 326 centers on discussions of the U.S.-Mexico borderlands in cultural theory and practice. “Borderlands” is understood as a transcultural space filled with physical, cultural, economic, political, and mythical elements. The aim is to view how different artists from the Borderlands, both northern Mexican and Chicano, mediate their borderlands reality. That is to say, the goal of the class is to examine the different “imaginative geographies” in the borderlands. We examine a wide-ranging mix of cultural texts that includes prose, poetry, essays, and performance art, as well as film and video art. We explore how writers have historically rethought notions of citizenship, identity, and culture to create more fluid spaces of representation in cultural contact zones. We will in particular, pay close attention to the relationship between national geography and the shaping of regional identities and popular cultures between the maps that nations draw and the cultural forms that cut across them.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 316 – Building Words and Sentences in Spanish (3 credits)

Course Description: Building words and sentences in Spanish. Analysis of Spanish work structure and its relationship to syntactic structures. SPAN 316 is an introduction to the study of Spanish morphology and syntax. In linguistics, morphology is the study of the morphemes (e.g. affixes, words, roots) of language and how they combine together to form words. Syntax is the study of how words combine together to form phrases and sentences. Because this course is for Spanish majors and minors, the focus in this course is on the structure of words, phrases, and sentences in Spanish, how Spanish compares to other languages, and how morphology and syntax vary across Spanish dialects. Special focus will be made on explaining the kinds of errors typical of English-speaking learners of Spanish as a second language, and a primary goal of the course is for students to improve their proficiency in using Spanish morphosyntax. The course is taught in Spanish.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200, SPAN 215

SPAN 314 – Spanish Sounds (3 credits)

Course Description: Spanish phonetics and phonemics; systematic means of correcting pronunciation defects; other audio-lingual applications.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200, SPAN 215

SPAN 310 – Business Spanish (3 credits)

SPAN 305 – Spanish for Social Services (3 credits)

Course Description: Provides practical language applications for students going to social work, psychology, and the legal and medical professions. SPAN 305 Spanish for Social Services (3) provides practical language applications for students going into social work, psychology, and the legal and medical professions. At the same time, there is an emphasis on the wide range of historic, linguistic and cultural influences that make up the Hispanic community in the US today.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200 and SPAN 215 or SPAN 253W

SPAN 301 – Advanced Writing and Stylistics in Spanish for Spanish (3 credits)

Course Description: This course will enhance writing proficiency in Spanish of Spanish speaking students by targeting common problems characteristic of Spanish speakers.
Prerequisite: SPAN 100A

SPAN 300B* – Advanced Grammar and Composition for Students in Medical-Related Fields (3 credits)

Course Description: Advanced Grammar and Composition for Students in Medical-related Fields.
Prerequisite: SPAN 100B
*Note: Students may take either SPAN 300 OR SPAN 300B but not both

SPAN 300 – Advanced Grammar and Composition Through Reading (3 credits)

Course Description: Development of advanced grammar and composition skills through reading texts by native speakers and adapting their techniques for original compositions.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200

SPAN 297B – Introduction to Latin America Visual Culture

Course Description: Photographs, cartoons, graffiti, movies, cartels, blogs, advertisement, music videos, newspaper, underground magazines, blogs, are some of the manifestations of the contemporary visual word. This course offers an introduction to the Latin American visual culture in its nearly infinite manifestations.
Prerequisite: SPAN 100

SPAN 297A – Spanish Through Art

Course Description: Spanish language and culture at the advanced level through art from Spain and Latin America. Review of the artists’ biographies and their works in light of the historical moment, significance, and culture. 

SPAN 297 – Spanish in the Digital Age: Culture, Language, and New Technologies

Instructor: Alejandro Ramírez-Arballo
Course Description: This course provides an opportunity to enhance acquisition of the fundamental elements of the Spanish language. Reading, writing and speaking skills are polished as students build on knowledge of the target culture through research, discussion and projects using the latest technology.

SPAN 297 – Multilingual and Intercultural Communication

Time: TR, 12:05-1:20 p.m.
Instructor: Lauren Halberstadt
Course Description: The Multilingual and Intercultural Communication (MIC) course focuses on linguistic strategies for succeeding in multilingual environments (e.g. dialect variation, second language acquisition strategies) as well as intercultural communication practices for navigating new environments (e.g. understanding cultural norms, skills for global leadership). The course will have an interdisciplinary focus on social science and the humanities. The mission of the course is to develop transferable skills, expand professional opportunities, and enhance intercultural communication in our students.
Learning objectives:
Develop and enhance intercultural communication skills
Improve language and language learning skills
Provide an understanding of global professional experiences in a range of fields through global leadership assignments
Give Spanish-, Italian-, and Portuguese-learning students opportunities to practice their languages as well as cooperate with each other to navigate cultures in languages which they do not yet speak
Teach students strategies for successful intercultural communication and global competency
Instill confidence in students to participate in international experiences, during their education and afterward in their careers
Prerequisite: SPAN 100

SPAN 297 – Introduction to Latin American Visual Culture

Instructor: Marco A. Martínez
Course Description: Photographs, cartoons, graffiti, movies, cartels, graphic novels, advertisement, music videos, magazines, blogs, are some of the manifestations of the contemporary visual word. This course offers an introduction to the Latin American visual culture in its nearly infinite manifestations. Through careful looking, reading, writing, and discussions, students will be encouraged to think the visual word in the construction of the historical, political, social and subjective dimensions from the end of the 19th century to our times. Among the issues to be examined are: the function, production, and consumption of visual images in different cultures; the foreign gaze; war and propaganda (Mexican Revolution and the Spanish Civil War), the margins of the city; sexuality and abjection; political power; and death and memory.

SPAN 253W – Introduction to Hispanic Literature (3 credits)

Course Description: Introduction to generic distinctions, critical methods, and approaches to Hispanic literature. This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements. During the semester students will learn how to write, and will practice writing, critical and analytical essays based upon the different genres of literature studied in class. All students will write three compositions during the semester, which will be written twice incorporating in the final draft suggestions made by their peer editors and by their instructor. The writing of the second version will be preceded by a conference with the instructor in which s/he will make comments and suggestions to the students about how to avoid the same errors made in the first draft. The themes for all papers must be chosen in consultation with the professor.
Prerequisite: SPAN 100 and SPAN 110

SPAN 230 – Masterpieces of Spanish Literature in English Translation (3 credits)

Course Description: Study of works and authors of international importance; lectures, readings, and written works in English.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200

SPAN 220 – Readings in Ibero-American Civilization (3 credits)

Course Description: Intermediate level Spanish readings dealing with Ibero-American life from the pre-conquest to the present.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200

SPAN 215 – Introduction to Spanish Linguistics (3 credits)

Course Description: Introduction to the fundamental components of linguistics using data from the Spanish language. Spanish 215 will introduce students to the fundamental components of linguistics (phonology, morphology, syntax, lexicon, and semantics) using data from the Spanish language. The course requires no previous knowledge of linguistics, but presupposes familiarity with Spanish at the 15 credit level or higher. The underlying purpose is to awaken the student’s interest in Spanish linguistics; to provide them with a foundation in the terminology and concepts necessary for studying higher level courses that are part of Spanish major and minor curricula; and to help them to decide which of the upper level classes they would be most interested in taking. Student performance in the course will be evaluated by (a) exams designed to verify their familiarity and understanding of linguistic terminology and concepts, their skill in doing phonetic transcription, and their ability to solve problems in phonology, morphology, syntax, and semantics, and (b) their preparedness and participation in classroom activities.
Prerequisite: SPAN 100

SPAN 210 – Readings in Iberian Civilization (3 credits)

Course Description: Intermediate level Spanish readings dealing with Iberian life from pre-historic times to the present.
Prerequisite: SPAN 200

SPAN 200 – Intensive Grammar and Composition (3 credits)

Course Description: Intensive grammar review; composition. Designed primarily for majors and prospective majors.
Prerequisite: SPAN 100 or by placement

SPAN 197A/NURS 197A – Conversational Spanish for Health Care Providers

Course Description: A conversational Spanish speaking course designed to prepare students interested in a health care field to communicate with Spanish speaking patients. 

SPAN 197A – Costa Rica: Pura Vida

Course Description: This course will prepare you to undertake travel to Costa Rica as a respectable representative of the United States and Penn State Altoona as well as a willing student of Spanish and international culture. Students will be fully engaged in Costa Rica culture in a very up-close and personal way, utilizing their Spanish skills in an engaging fashion on a daily basis. Excursion to Costa Rica will take place May 17-25. 

SPAN 132 – Afro-Hispanic Civilization (3 credits)

Course Description: A general introduction to human and cultural elements of African origin in Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries of Latin America. This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements. The nations and peoples of Latin America have a unique, interesting history and cultural heritage that are rooted in the traditions, beliefs, experiences, values, and struggles of Native American, European, African and other populations. This course focuses on the presence and participation of African peoples and their descendants in the formation and development of societies and cultures in representative areas of the Caribbean, South America, and CentralAmerica and on the evolution, diversity, and richness of the African heritage therein. Course content includes the African background, the experience and impact of slavery, the social, cultural, and economic heritage of slavery, the role of race in Latin America, and Afro-Hispanic intellectual, literary, and artistic developments (e.g., aspects of folklore, music). The course aims to provide students with a general introduction to human and cultural elements ofAfrican origin within the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking nations of theAmericas so that they may be more knowledgeable of the meaning, significance and widespread influence of the African diaspora. It proposes to provide the student with a better understanding of Africa’s contribution to Latin American identity, diversity, culture, and development; to promote appreciation for the values and practices of other cultures, and greater awareness of the relations between the nations of the region and the United States.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 131Y – Ibero-American Civilization (3 credits)

Course Description: Spanish American and Brazilian life from the Conquest to the present; literature, art, the indigenous heritage, and contemporary problems. The nations and peoples of Latin America have a unique, interesting history and cultural heritage that are rooted in the traditions, beliefs, experiences, values, and struggles of Native American, European, African and other populations. As close neighbors and major trading partners of the United States, Latin American republics have both benefited and suffered from the proximity and foreign policies of the northern capitalist democracy, and have contributed to its strength and growing ethno-racial diversity. This course aims to provide the student with a broad, general introduction to the lands, peoples, and history of Latin America; to inform the student about the region’s ethnic diversity, cultural background, and problems of development; and to promote appreciation for the values and practices of other cultures, and a better understanding of relations between the nations of the region and the United States. Classes will usually combine lecture and discussion of reading assignments, with an expectation of high student participation. Films, videos, and recordings will enhance and illustrate readings. Three examinations (each covering approximately one third of the lessons presented), an occasional quiz, a book report or an annotated bibliography, participation and attendance will be the basis for evaluation of student learning and grades. Students are required and expected to read assignments, to attend class regularly, and to be prepared to participate in class discussions by answering and raising questions relevant to the lessons. Poor attendance will adversely affect a students standing and grade. This course will fulfill the Humanities Breadth and Cultural Diversity requirements. The course does not count toward credits in the major or minor in Spanish because it is taught in English. Nevertheless, it will complement the department’s offerings by providing students with a greater appreciation of Latin America’s cultural origins, socioeconomic development, and everyday realities.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 131 – Ibero-American Civilization (3 credits)

Course Description: Spanish American and Brazilian life from the Conquest to the present; including studies of literature, art, the indigenous heritage, and contemporary problems. This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements.The nations and peoples of Latin America have a unique, interesting history and cultural heritage that are rooted in the traditions, beliefs, experiences, values, and struggles of Native American, European, African and other populations. As close neighbors and major trading partners of the United States, Latin American republics have both benefited and suffered from the proximity and foreign policies of the northern capitalist democracy, and have contributed to its strength and growing ethno-racial diversity. This course aims to provide the student with a broad, general introduction to the lands, peoples, and history of Latin America; to inform the student about the region’s ethnic diversity, cultural background, and problems of development; and to promote appreciation for the values and practices of other cultures, and a better understanding of relations between the nations of the region and the United States. Traditional resident classes will usually combine presentation of content and discussion of reading assignments, with an expectation of high student participation. Films, videos, and recordings will enhance and illustrate readings. This course will fulfill the Humanities Breadth and Cultural Diversity requirements. The course does not count toward credits in the major or minor in Spanish because it is taught in English. Nevertheless, it will complement the department’s offerings by providing students with a greater appreciation of Latin America’s cultural origins, socioeconomic development, and everyday realities.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 130 – Iberian Civilization (3 credits)

Course Description: Spanish 130 is a general education course on Iberian culture and civilization. The goal of this course is to provide the student with a broad, general introduction to the lands, peoples, history, and cultures of the area known as Spain and Portugal; to inform the student about the region¿s ethnic diversity, cultural heritages, and problems of development; to investigate vital symbols, myths, figures, icons, superstitions, and faiths; to foster critical thinking and associative skills; to suggest continuity and draw parallels between past and present; and to allow for a framework for undertaking further study. This course will survey the civilizations of these European lands and we will get an overview of the main historical events that make up this rich and complex history.The course is designed to expose students to the full range of Iberian history and diversity. Since we are covering centuries of history and several other variables (linguistic, artistic, ethnic, religious, political, economic, geographic, biologic, etc.), this tour will of necessity be pretty rudimentary. However, students will acquire an understanding of the diverse cultural currents and historical milestones that contributed to the creation of modern Spain and Portugal.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 106 – Elementary Spanish II for Students in the Agricultural Sciences (4 credits)

Course Description: Further development of basic Spanish skills and the cultural awareness needed to work with Spanish speakers in the agricultural industries. The class will focus on further development of the elementary language skills, socio-cultural awareness and discourse introduced in SPAN 105. It will also build on the agricultural concepts introduced in Spanish 105. The class periods will be used to develop further: (1) the student’s knowledge of Spanish as a linguistic code through further mastery of a personalized vocabulary as well as common idiomatic language structures important to the student’s ability to communicate with Spanish speakers employed in their area of agricultural interest; (2) the student’s understanding of major grammatical concepts critical to effective communication in work management within the food, agriculture and natural resources industries; (3) the student’s cultural awareness of the varied Spanish speaking cultures with which the student will come into contact in the workplace; and (4) the student’s ability to be creative with their knowledge of the language as it relates to the development of self-confidence and effective communicative proficiency in Spanish. Frequent short quizzes and the collection and grading homework assignments are important components of the course as they are used to encourage the use of Spanish on a daily basis. Classroom activities will be designed to require students to use and develop their communication skills in Spanish to communicate efficiently and relate personally to Spanish speakers. Students will be evaluated based on homework, quizzes, exams, and class participation. Students who have received high school credit for four years of Spanish may not schedule this course for credit, without the permission of the instructor. This course does not count toward Spanish majors or the Spanish minor.
Prerequisite: SPAN 105

SPAN 105 – Elementary Spanish I for Students in the Agricultural Sciences (4 credits)

Course Description: The course covers basic Spanish, grammar, and oral, aural, and writing skills for students in the Agricultural Sciences. Students who have received high school credit for two or more years of Spanish may not schedule this course for credit without the permission of the instructor. This course does not count toward Spanish majors or the Spanish minor. This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements. The class will focus on the development of basic language skills, socio-cultural awareness and discourse. The class periods will be used to develop: (1) the student’s knowledge of Spanish as a linguistic code through mastery of a personalized vocabulary as well as common idiomatic language structures important to the student’s ability to communicate with Spanish speakers employed in their area of agricultural interest; (2) the student’s understanding of major grammatical concepts critical to effective communication in work management within the food, agriculture and natural resources industries; (3) the student’s cultural awareness of the varied Spanish speaking cultures with which the student will come into contact in the workplace; and (4) the student’s ability to be creative with their knowledge of the language as it relates to the development of self-confidence and effective communicative proficiency in Spanish. Frequent short quizzes and the collection and grading of are important components of the course as they are used to encourage the use of Spanish on a daily basis. Classroom activities will be designed to require students to use and develop their communication skills in Spanish to communicate efficiently and relate personally to Spanish speakers. Students will be evaluated based on homework, quizzes, exams, and class participation. Students who have received high school credit for four years of Spanish may not schedule this course for credit, without the permission of the instructor. This course does not count toward Spanish majors or the Spanish minor.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 100H – Intermediate Grammar and Composition (3 credits)

Course Description: An intermediate level grammar review that also incorporates directed and original composition exercises.
Prerequisite: None

SPAN 100C – Intermediate Grammar and Composition for Students in Communication-related Fields (3 credits)

Course Description: This course focused on grammar and the media environment replaces Spanish 100 for students going into Communication majors. Intermediate Grammar and Composition for Students in Communication-related fields (Spanish in the Media) is an online content-based course for Spanish majors aimed to develop communication skills through a focus on mass media in Hispanic culture. This online course is a perfect match for double majors in Spanish and Media (Advertising/Public Relations, Media Studies, Journalism, etc). This course is restricted to students who are Communication majors or pre-majors. Completing this course achieves 15th credit level proficiency and replaces SPAN 100.
Prerequisite: SPAN 003 or placement

SPAN 100B – Intermediate Grammar and Composition for Students in Medical-Related Fields (3 credits)

Course Description: Intermediate Grammar and Composition for Students in Medical-Related Fields. The main goals of the course are to help students develop their competence in using medical terminology in Spanish and to become familiar with the cultural aspects in the health care of Latinos/Hispanics in the United States. In addition, the course will review intermediate level Spanish-language grammar and will provide structure to improve students receptive (listening and reading) and productive (speaking and writing) skills needed for this specialized vocabulary. During the semester students will learn and practice health terminology in Spanish, and they will apply the specialized vocabulary through case scenarios, noticias (news) and readings. Participants will be exposed to Spanish from the first day and are expected to stay up-to date with the current health news as it relates to the Hispanic/Latino population of the United States. The course is intended for those who are beyond the basic level of Spanish (must have taken Span 003), but participants are not expected to be fluent speakers.
Prerequisite: SPAN 003

SPAN 100A – Intermediate Grammar and Composition for Spanish Bilinguals (3 credits)

Course Description: A review of grammar and practice with composition focusing on needs and problems specific to Spanish-speaking bilinguals.
Prerequisite: Placement

SPAN 100 – Intermediate Grammar and Composition (3 credits)

Course Description: An intermediate level grammar review that also incorporates directed and original composition exercises.
Prerequisite: SPAN 003 or placement

PORT X99 Foreign Studies (1-12 credits)

Course Description: Courses offered in foreign countries by individual or group instruction.

PORT X97 Special topics (1-9 credits)

Course Description: Formal courses given infrequently to explore, in-depth, a comparatively narrow subject that may be topical or of special interest.

PORT 497: Through the Looking-Glass: Race in the United States and Brazil

Instructor: Sarah J. Townsend
Course Description: This course offers a comparative study of the political and cultural dimensions of race in the United States and Brazil. Among the topics we will discuss are constructions of the “Indian,” similarities and differences in the systems of slavery, Jim Crow versus the Brazilian myth of racial democracy, the influence of funk and rap in Brazilian music, and cases of collaboration between African-American and Afro-Brazilian activists. Materials will include historical and political writings as well as films, literature, and music. The class will be taught in English. Students can receive credit for either the Portuguese minor.

PORT 497: Race and Gender in Contemporary Luso-Brazilian Cinema

Instructor: Krista Brune
Course Description: By examining feature films and documentaries from the past two decades, the class explores how cinema approaches social, cultural, political, and economic realities of race and gender in Brazil, Portugal, Angola, and Mozambique. Our viewings and readings will lead us to address how histories of imperialism, colonialism, dictatorial regimes, and racial injustices emerge as thematic concerns in contemporary film. We also examine convergences and divergences between different parts of the Portuguese-speaking world and, in turn, consider the possibilities and limitations of studying these works in a comparative Lusophone framework. Secondary readings on film, history, and contemporary Lusophone culture, and interviews with filmmakers will complement our studies. This course will be taught in English. Students pursuing the Portuguese minor may count this course toward their requirements if they write their papers in Portuguese.

PORT 497: Luso-Brazilian Theater Workshop

Instructor: Sarah J. Townsend
Course Description: The first half of this course will be devoted to reading three plays by writers from Brazil and other Portuguese-speaking countries. During the second half of the semester, students will choose one of these plays and work on developing a performance production. This will entail doing additional research on the play and its cultural context, reading reviews and critical responses to prior performances, rehearsing scenes, making collective decisions about staging decision, designing a simple set, and possibly offering a public performance. For those who are shy about acting, there will be opportunities to participate in non-speaking roles such as set designer and dramaturg. While undertaking these activities we will also be reviewing grammatical structures and learning new forms of colloquial expression.
Prerequisite: PORT 405 (or equivalent)

PORT 497: Imagining Brazilian Cities

Instructor: Krista Brune
Course Description: This class focuses on artistic representations of the global metropolises of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, the modernist capital of Brasília, and the northeastern city of Recife. Readings will highlight the diverse experiences of urban life with chronicles of turn-of-the-century city life, avant-garde depictions of modernizing metropolises, and contemporary short stories. To ground our discussions of Brazilian cities, we will analyze a range of literary and artistic works, including short stories, chronicles, poems, songs, films, photographs, and paintings. Critical readings from the field of urban studies, architecture, anthropology, history, and other interdisciplinary fields will allow us to further explore cities in Brazil. This class will be conducted in Portuguese.
Prerequisite: PORT 405 or permission of the instructor

PORT 473 – Luso-Brazilian Cinema

Time: TR, 1:35-2:50 p.m.
Instructor: Krista Brune
Course Description: This course studies social, political, economic, and cultural issues in the Portuguese-speaking world through the lens of film. This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree attributes in Humanities and the International Cultures requirement. Through examinations of feature films and documentaries, the class explores how cinema approaches social, cultural, political, and economic realities in Brazil, Portugal, and Lusophone Africa. Students will learn about national histories, political struggles, social movements, and cultural practices of the Luso-Afro-Brazilian world as they gain the skills and appropriate vocabulary to analyze and discuss film. The course materials will invite students to consider how films examine legacies of imperialism, colonialism, and dictatorial regimes, as well as ongoing divisions and injustices on the basis of race, class, gender, and sexuality. Questions to be considered in this course include: How do filmmakers grapple with traumas of the past, questions of memory, and debates around truth and reconciliation? How do forms of fiction and documentary intersect, serve as complements, or contradict each other in film? How does film represent the convergences and divergences between different parts of the Portuguese-speaking world? What are the possibilities and limitations of studying these works in a comparative Lusophone framework? Readings on film, history, and Luso-Afro-Brazilian culture, and interviews with filmmakers will complement our studies of the films. The course will be conducted in English. No prior knowledge of Portuguese is necessary, as the films will have subtitles and required readings will all be in English. Students pursuing the Portuguese minor may receive credit for the minor if they complete all of their written assignments in Portuguese.

PORT 405 – Advanced Composition and Conversation (TuTh 12:05 – 1:20 PM)

Instructor: Dayse Bedê
Course Description: This course is a requirement for the Portuguese minor. It is intended to strengthen the advanced student’s ability to speak, read, and write in modern Brazilian Portuguese. The class uses crônicas, short stories, and other forms of cultural expression to strengthen students’ use of grammar, vocabulary, idiomatic expressions, and pronunciation in Brazilian Portuguese. Pre-requisites for this course are Portuguese 3, Portuguese 123, or permission of the instructor.
Prerequisite: PORT 003, PORT 123, or prior approval from the instructor

PORT 397: Brasil: Nossa Arte, Nossa Língua

Instructor: Dayse P. Bedê
Course Description: This advanced course that uses Brazilian cultural expressions in music, film, fashion, literature, and visual arts as a tool to refine students’ speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills. This course encourages students to explore the diversity of artistic expression in Brazil. By studying Brazilian art, students will also deepen their knowledge of the Portuguese language and Brazilian culture and history. In this class, students will increase their fluency and accuracy in spoken and written Portuguese through in-class discussions, oral presentations, and short compositions. Through guided analysis of artistic works, students will review finer aspects of grammar and colloquial uses of language in Brazil. Class will be conducted entirely in Portuguese.
Prerequisite: PORT 3 or PORT 197 (or equivalent)

PORT 365 Imagining Brazilian Cities (3 credits)

Course Description: This course traces the transformation of Brazilian cities, as represented in literature and the arts, from the modernization projects of the late 19th century through the exponential growth of urban areas in recent decades. Studying these urban transformations will provide students with insight into how contemporary Brazil developed into an urban nation with seventeen of its cities featuring populations of one million or more. This class focuses primarily on artistic representations of the global metropolises of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, the modernist capital of Brazília, and the northeastern city of Recife. Readings will highlight the diverse experiences and expressions of urban life in essays, poems, short stories, and avant-garde novels. Music, film, and photography will complement students¿ literary tour of an urban Brazil. Critical readings from urban studies, architecture, anthropology, history, and other interdisciplinary fields will allow us to further explore the question of the city in Brazil. This course will be conducted in Portuguese. Students must be able to complete the readings, informal and formal written assignments, and in-class discussion and activities in Portuguese.
Prerequisite: PORT 405

PORT 3 – Intermediate Portuguese (M 10:10-11, TuTh 10:35 – 11:50 AM)

Instructor: Dayse Bedê
Course Description: The third course in the basic Portuguese sequence is a continuation of Portuguese 1 and 2. This class is intended for students with no background in Portuguese or another Romance language.
Prerequisite: PORT 002

PORT 200 – Advanced Portuguese via the Arts (TuTh 1:35-2:50 PM)

Instructor: Dayse Bedê
Course Description: This course provides a more detailed study of the Portuguese language. Students will review and extend their abilities in all four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) as they learn more about the linguistic and cultural diversity of the Portuguese-speaking world. The course uses a textbook paired with written, audio, and video workbook activities and supplemented by authentic language materials and artistic works that generate communicative exercises that allow students to practice and refine their spoken and written Portuguese. As students improve their understanding of the Portuguese language, they also gain insight into Luso-Afro-Brazilian cultures by analyzing music, films, videos, paintings, photos, essays, chronicles, news articles, shorts stories, and poems. This course will be conducted in Portuguese.
Prerequisite: PORT 3, PORT 123, or permission of the instructor

PORT 2 – Elementary Portuguese II (M 10:10-11:00 AM, TuTh 10:35 – 11:50 AM)

Instructor: Dayse Bedê
Course Description: The second course in the basic Portuguese sequence is a continuation of Portuguese 1. This class is intended for students with no background in Portuguese or another Romance language.
Prerequisite: PORT 001

PORT 123 – Portuguese for Romance-language Speakers (MWF 12:20 – 1:10 PM)

Instructor: Krista Brune
Course Description: This course offers an introduction to Brazilian Portuguese for students who already have a good grasp of grammar and vocabulary in Spanish, French, Italian, or Latin. This course will cover the topics of the basic language sequence (PORT 1, 2, 3) in one semester to prepare you for advanced Portuguese courses, study abroad, or research. Our focus will be on acquiring linguistic fluency, but along the way we will also gain insight into aspects of Brazilian culture through our analysis of song lyrics, journalistic texts, and TV shows. This course counts for the 2nd foreign/world language and the 12th unit of foreign/world language. Register for this course if: you grew up speaking a Romance language or you have taken Spanish, French, Italian, or Latin 3 or higher.
Prerequisite: SPAN 3FR 3IT 3LATIN 3; or prior approval from the instructor

PORT 1 – Beginning Portuguese (M 11:15-12:05 PM, TuTh 12:05 – 1:20 PM)

Instructor: Dayse Bedê
Course Description: The first course in the basic Portuguese sequence. This class is intended for students with no background in Portuguese or another Romance language.

IT/AFR 497 – Italy & Africa: Narratives Across the Mediterranean

Instructor: Johanna Rossi Wagner
Course Description: In IT/AFR 497 we explore these relationships through an investigation of literary and cinematic works from both Italian and African writers and filmmakers. Looking at narratives spanning three centuries we will consider the following: 19th century travel essays, Futurist fiction and imperial Fascist propaganda shorts in the early 20th century, post-war novels and films as imperfect modes of decolonization in the 1950s and 1960s, contemporary autobiography and fictions written by Somali, Nigerian, Tunisian and Ethiopian writers migrating to Italy in the 1990s-today, and finally contemporary films addressing the untenable refugee crisis in the Mediterranean basin. I invite you to broaden your perception of the term Mediterranean and to forge a deeper understanding of the historical and political influences that underpin contemporary migrations.
Sample Syllabus

IT 497 Postcolonial Italy: Migration, Human Rights, and Citizenship (MWF 10:10–11:00 a.m.)

Course Description: “Postcolonial Italy” provides an opportunity for students to engage with Italian migration and postcolonial literature, film, music, and media that address many current societal, legal, human rights, and political questions in today’s Italian culture. Students will consider how Italian citizenship/belonging is dependent on racial and geographical tropes of italianitá devised during Italy’s colonial period. Students will reflect on the implications of pure, blood-based belonging for second- and third-generation multicultural and multiethnic Italians who are denied cultural citizenship in their own homeland. Students will examine literature, film, and other media and how they have been adopted as political instruments to polemicize fabricated notions of ethnically pure Italian citizen, but also how they provide representation for Italians with complex ethnic and national origins. 

  • Professor Carla Cornette 
  • In Italian
  • All IT major options and the minor
  • Prerequisite: any 300-level IT course or equivalent

IT 497 From Page to Screen: Rethinking Italian Adaptation (Tu/Th 12:05–1:20 p.m.)

Course Description: From Michelangelo Antonioni’s Blowup, to Matteo Garrone’s A Tale of Tales, to the television show Gomorrah, adaptations of literary and nonfiction texts continue to spread throughout Italian media. If these adaptations are created in a culture characterized by a reverence toward tradition and an obsession with authenticity, what might be gained by reversing the hierarchy between the so-called source text and these visual reworkings? In other words, what might a film do better than a written text? How can adaptations spark fresh interpretations of the adapted materials? Should a film always be faithful to the book, or do the most effective adaptations depart from the text? In order to answer these questions, we will examine a wide range of film (and television) adaptations and their adapted texts in the light of contemporary adaptation theory. Through guided writings and class discussions, we will seek to challenge our preconceptions about adaptation (i.e. “Books are always better than films”), analyze how these visual reworkings can modify our understanding of the adapted texts, and 

  • Professor Mike Edwards
  • In English
  • All IT major options and the minor; BA Humanities 
  • Prerequisite: Fifth Semester Standing 

IT 497 – Growing Up in the Italian Renaissance: Family, School, Sport

Instructor: Michele Rossi
Course Description: Imagine growing up in the Italian Renaissance. How would that be different from our current lifestyle? This course will explore topics such as family, education (with special attention to the physical training), and ethical values through various literary genres and authors: the epistle (Francesco Petrarca), the treatise (Pier Paolo Vergerio, Leonardo Bruni, Leon Battista Alberti), the short story (Giovanni Boccaccio’s Decameron), the poetry (Laura Battiferri, Veronica Franco, Gaspara Stampa), and the comedy (Machiavelli). We will also watch and discuss a movie (Wondrous Boccaccio by Paolo and Vittorio Taviani, 2015), and investigate the intersections between literature and art, with the final goal of illuminating the fascinating process of growing up during the Italian Renaissance.
Sample Syllabus

IT 475 Modern Italian Literature and Film (T/Th 10:35–11:50 a.m.)

Course Description: In IT 475, Modern Italian Literature and Film, students will engage with seminal works of Italian film and literature to consider pivotal transformations in Italian culture from post-World War II to contemporary times. Beginning with neorealist cinema that depicts the economic, political, and societal devastation of post-war Italy, students will examine artistic representations of the leading cultural revolutions in the Bel Paese up to the current moment: the transformation from a fascist to a Republic form of government, from an agricultural to an industrial society during the “economic miracle” of the 1950s and 1960s, evolving rights for women and the LGBTQ community, and policies/politics related to immigration and citizenship law. We will read a novel in Italian, L’amica geniale (My Brilliant Friend), written by a mysterious author who refuses to reveal her identity, to consider the divergent paths of two best friends in post-war Italy and the limited possibilities available to women (and the poor) at the time. Neorealist films included in the program are Roberto Rossellini’s masterpiece, Roma città aperta, which portrays a devastated Rome during fascist occupation and the partisan resistance movement, followed by Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Mamma Roma, the story of a single-mom prostitute who attempts to choose a different path for her and her son with disastrous results. An ambiguous portrait of the miracolo economico and its relation to internal migration in the 1950s and 1960s is painted by the film, Rocco e i suoi fratelli. Lastly, Ferzan Özpetek’s cinema will provide a window into still evolving human justice issues for LGBTQ individuals in Italy. Students will gain skills in analytical approaches to literary and cinematic texts and advance their ability to discuss and write about cultural, theoretical, and historical aspects of these works. 

IT 415 Dante (T/TH 1:35 p.m.–2:50 p.m.)

Course Description: As stated by Italo Calvino, “a classic is a book that has never finished saying what it has to say.” The Divine Comedy, Dante’s masterpiece, continues to speak to us even seven centuries after its composition. In this course, we will read Dante’s poem focusing on its famous characters—Francesca da Rimini, Pier delle Vigne, Ulisse, il conte Ugolino, Manfredi, Guido Gunizzelli, Virgilio, Beatrice—and we will explore different topics: love, power, and literature, among others. We will also investigate the relationships between the concepts of metaphor and metamorphosis, with the goal of illuminating Dante’s unique and complex poetics. In our journey from Hell to Heaven, we will place the Divine Comedy in the cultural, historical, and literary context in which it was conceived (Italy in the Middle Ages), without forgetting its enduring influence today, even in our pop culture, as demonstrated by contemporary books (Dan Brown’s Inferno), movies (Seven, Inferno), music bands (The Divine Comedy), and videogames (Dante’s Inferno). The course will be taught in Italian. 

IT 330W Greatest Books of Italian Literature (MWF 11:15 a.m.–12:05 p.m.)

Course Description: IT 330W is a survey of the greatest literary works of Italian literature (prose, poetry, drama). Course objectives are to read, discuss, and better understand the enduring relevance of Italy’s literary masterpieces, while strengthening linguistic skills in writing (especially), as well as reading, speaking, and listening. Course is appropriate for students who have successfully completed an intermediate Italian course (such as IT 003 or 020) and counts toward the Italian major (all tracks) and minor. Successful completion of this course may permit further Italian study at the 400-level. The course will be taught in Italian. 

IT 301 – Pathways to Fluency (3 credits)

Course Description: For majors, minors, and others with adequate preparation; deepening of grammatical skills, integrated conversation, composition, and reading. For majors, minors, and others with adequate preparation, students in this course review grammatical skills through conversation, class debates, reading, and writing assignments based on contemporary cultural materials (web sites, music lyrics, newspaper and magazine articles, etc.). Evaluation methods include class participation, in-class activities (both oral and written), composition, and exams.
Offered: Every Semester
Prerequisite: IT 3
Sample Syllabus

IT 3 – Intermediate Italian (4 credits)

Course Description: Advanced grammar; oral and written composition; reading of modern authors; Italian life and culture.
Prerequisite: IT 2
Offered: Every Semester
Sample Syllabus

IT 20 – Intensive Intermediate Italian (6 credits)

Course Description: Continuation of Intensive Elementary Italian, building on grammar and communication skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking). This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements. This course is for students who have successfully completed IT 10 Intensive Elementary Italian, and who seek an Intensive learning environment of Italian grammar (all aspects: reading, writing, listening, and speaking). Students learn intermediate Italian in an intensive language-learning environment. Extensive reinforcement of elementary Italian grammar (reading, writing, speaking, listening) and introduction to intermediate Italian grammar, speech, and culture through a variety of written and oral exercises. All work is done in Italian. Homework in the accompanying workbooks is assigned each week. Pronunciation practice in the language lab is also required weekly. There are also supplementary grammatical and cultural activities on the course web page. Equivalent to last half of IT 2 and all of IT 3.
Prerequisite: IT 10
Offered: Every Spring
Sample Syllabus

IT 2 – Elementary Italian II (4 credits)

Course Description: Grammar and reading continued; oral and aural phrases progressively increased; composition.
Prerequisite: IT 1
Offered: Every Semester
Sample Syllabus

IT 131 Introduction to Italian American Culture

Course Description: Between 1870 and 1920, more than five million Italians immigrated to the United States. Many returned to Italy, but those who remained, later immigrants, and their descendants left an indelible mark on the American cultural, political, and artistic landscape. Through a study of historical, sociological, literary, and cinematic texts, students will consider, among other topics: the conditions in Italy that generated this emigration, daily life in the ethnic neighborhoods, the roles of labor conditions, radical politics, and Catholicism in the lives of Italian Americans, forms and consequences of discrimination from lynching to media stereotypes, the intersections of gender and ethnicity over time, and the ways in which Italian American identity has been represented in American culture both as profoundly “other” and as emblematically “American.” 

IT 10 – Intensive Elementary Italian (6 credits)

Course Description: Intensive Italian basic reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills stressed. Equivalent to IT 1 and half of IT 2. This course meets the Bachelor of Arts degree requirements. This course is intended for students with no experience of Italian. It provides an intensive language-learning environment in which to complete 6 credits of elementary Italian (equivalent to IT 1 and the first half of IT 2). Students receive an extensive introduction to Italian grammar, speech, and culture. Evaluation methods include a variety of written and oral exercises (presentations, compositions, quizzes, exams, etc.). All work is done in Italian. The course is offered once per year. Enrollment is limited to 18. The course can count toward the completion of the Italian minor. This course prepares students for IT 20, a continuation of elementary and intermediate Italian.
Offered: Every Fall
Sample Syllabus

IT 1 – Elementary Italian I (4 credits)

Course Description: For beginners. Grammar, with reading and writing of simple Italian; oral and aural work stressed.
Offered: Every Semester
Sample Syllabus