Fall 2011 - Undergraduate Course Descriptions
Description of Course:
This course will examine the 20th-century Spanish American short story. The short story tradition in Spanish America is the ultimate convergence; it synthesizes a vast range of different, often contradictory, elements such as pre-Columbian and contemporary traditions, European and “New World” experiences, magic and reality, and the local and the global, all of which reflects the experience of the region’s citizens. We will focus particularly on how these texts discuss national, cultural, political, and social identity. This class will approach these texts from multiple critical perspectives including the socio-historical (class struggle and gender issues), the political (such as guerilla warfare and the rise of socialist states) and the aesthetic (literary movements). We will also examine how different writers and different texts treat similar themes and issues based on their specific geography, gender, and other immediate contexts. Though the short story is our focus, we will also read excerpts from contemporary novels, essays, and poetry to further illuminate our understanding of the short story genre and tradition.
Assigned texts are posted on eLearning
Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:
Class participation, attendance, discussion questions (20%); two reaction papers (10%); critical papers (40%); and two exams (30%).