SPN 380K • Spanish American Centennials
3:00 PM-6:00 PM
Centennial dates always invite cultural evaluations, Spanish America being no exception. As indicated in the title, this course will be organized in three segments. It will begin with a brief overview of the intellectual and cultural concerns of the early national period in Spanish America as witnessed in writers like Simón Bolívar, Vicente López y Planes, José Joaquín de Olmedo, J.J. Fernández de Lizardi, and Andrés Bello. The second (and most extensive) segment of the course will look at literature published more or less around 1910, the first centennial of the 1810 revolutions. This is an abundant literature, much of which assesses and finds wanting the cultures that emerged in the 19th century, being particularly critical of the "materialism, positivism, utilitarianism, and nordomanía" of the writers who first imagined Spanish America. It is also the first time since Independence that Spanish Americans entered in close dialogue with Spanish intellectuals who were going through a similar re-evaluation of Spanish culture and hispanidad, provoked largely by the events of 1898. Given these contacts, this segment of the course will take a transatlantic perspective, looking at writers from both Spain and Spanish America who will include Rubén Darío, Angel Ganivet, Ramiro de Maeztú, Alfonso Reyes, José Enrique Rodó, and Manuel Gálvez. Finally, the course will consider trends now emerging in Spanish America that indicate that a similar re-evaluation has begun, perhaps in conscious or unconscious anticipation of 2010. While the list of writers to be studied in this last segment is still under consideration, Beatriz Sarlo and Néstor García Canclini will no doubt be included. I may include as well several recent films.
60% of the grade will be determined by the quality of the term paper. 15% will be based on the oral report. And 25% will be based on class participation.
Books: J.J. de Lizardi, Don Catrín de la Fachenda Miguel de Unamuno, En torno al casticismo José Enrique Rodó, Ariel Manuel Gálvez, El solar de la raza Beatriz Sarlo, Escenas de la vida posmoderna Xerox and .pdf Files: Copious quantities