SPN 385M • QUIÉN HABLA? IDENTITY CONSTRUCTION AND SENSE OF SELF IN SPANISH WOMEN'S WRITING
6:30 PM-9:30 PM
This course will map some of the literary strategies twentieth-century Spanish women writers have deployed to revise inherited notions of female identity. Students in this course will analyze both the thematics and the language of the construction of female identity. Pre-Spanish Civil War writers included in the course are Carmen Conde, one of the earliest women writers to challenge the church's negative construction of the female in her poem, Mujer sin Edén. Rosa Chacel writes of two adolescent girls in Pre-Civil War Madrid and their development of self-awareness in Barrio de maravillas. In the Post-Civil War era, women's writing has proliferated into a wide-ranging articulation of women's search for self. Themes of emergence from feminine passivity ( Ana María Matute, Primera memoria), and breaking out of the confinements of the family (Martín Gaite's Entre visillas) are predominant in the late 1950's and 1960's. In the late 1970's it is Martín Gaite who, for the first time in Spanish literature, writes woman as professional writer in Cuarto de atrás. During the Franco dictatorship, women were forbidden to work outside the home without permission of the (male) head of the household. This enforced long absence from the working world resulted in a collision of women's identity with the world of male professionals. Rosa Montero chronicles this collision with humour and despair in Crónica de desamor. The course concludes with the Catalán writer, Montserrat Roig's Tiempo de cerezas. This is a novel that considers the consequences of changes in marital relations brought about by the forging of a uniquely feminine consciousness.
1 oral presentation 30% 1 term paper or final exam 30% Class discussion 40%
1. Carmen Conde, Mujer sin Edén 2. Rosa Chacel, Barrio de maravillas 3. Ana Mª Matute, Primera memoria 4. Martín Gaite, Cuarto de atrás 5. _________, Entre visillos 6. Rosa Montero, Crónica de desamor 7. Montserrat Roig, Tiempo de cerezas 8. El sur. Adelaida García Morales CRITICAL READINGS: Textual Liberation: European Feminist Writing in the Twentieth Century. Ed. Helena Forsas-Scott, 1991.