2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog

2008-2009 Catalog


Students may complete a major or minor in Spanish. Majors may pursue state certification to teach at the secondary level.


Inés Arribas, Senior Lecturer
Dina Breña, Instructor
Lázaro Lima, Associate Professor and Major Adviser
Kaylea Mayer, Instructor
María Cristina Quintero, Professor and Senior Major Adviser
(on leave semester I)
Enrique Sacerio-Garí, Professor and Chair
H. Rosi Song, Associate Professor and Major Adviser

The major in Spanish offers a program of study in the language, literature, and culture of Spain, Latin America, and U.S. Latino communities. The program is designed to develop linguistic competence and critical skills, as well as a profound appreciation of the culture and civilization of the Hispanic world.

The language courses provide solid preparation and practice in spoken and written Spanish, including a thorough review of grammar and vocabulary, supplemented with cultural readings and activities. SPAN 202 prepares students for advanced work in literature and cultural studies while improving competence in the language. The introductory literature courses treat a selection of the outstanding works of Spanish and Spanish-American, and U.S. Latino literature in various periods and genres. SPAN 206 is devoted to advanced language training and affords practice in written Spanish. SPAN 240 considers the political, social, and cultural history of the Hispanic and Hispanic-American peoples. Advanced literature courses deal intensively with individual authors, topics, or periods of special significance.

Students in all courses are encouraged to make use of the Language Learning Center and to supplement their coursework with study in Spain or Spanish America either in the summer or during their junior year.

All students who have taken Spanish at other institutions and plan to enroll in Spanish courses at Bryn Mawr must take a placement examination. The exam is administered by the Spanish department during first-year student orientation for the incoming class or on the day before classes begin for returning students.

The Department of Spanish also cooperates with the Departments of French and Italian in the Romance Languages major (see page 288).

College Foreign Language Requirement

The College’s foreign language requirement may be satisfied by completing SPAN 105 (intensive) with a grade of 2.0, or by completing SPAN 101 and 102 (non-intensive) with an average grade of at least 2.0 or with a grade of 2.0 or better in SPAN 102.

Major Requirements

Requirements for the Spanish major are SPAN 200 (formerly 110, Temas culturales), SPAN 202 (formerly 120, Análisis literario), four 200-level courses, three 300-level courses, and SPAN 398 (Senior Seminar). Two courses must be in Peninsular literature, and one should focus on pre-1700 literature. Students whose pre-college training includes advanced work in literature may, with the permission of the department, be exempted from taking SPAN 202. SPAN 399 (Senior Essay) is optional for majors with a grade point average of 3.7 who want to graduate with honors, and may not be counted as one of the 300-level requirements. This major program prepares students appropriately for graduate study in Spanish.

Please note: the department offers some courses taught in English. In order to receive major and minor credit, students must do substantial reading and written work in Spanish. No more than two courses taught in English may be applied toward a major, and only one toward a minor.

Independent research (SPAN 403) is offered to students recommended by the department. The work consists of independent reading, conferences, and a long paper.


Departmental honors are awarded on the basis of a minimum grade point average of 3.7 in the major, the recommendation of the department and a senior essay (SPAN 399).

Minor Requirements

Requirements for a minor in Spanish are six courses in Spanish beyond Intermediate Spanish, at least one of which must be at the 300 level. At least one course should be in Peninsular literature.

Concentration in Hispanic and Hispanic-American Studies

The Department of Spanish participates with other departments in offering a concentration in Hispanic and Hispanic-American Studies (see page 204).

Teacher Certification

The department also participates in a teacher-certification program. For more information see page 135 for a description of the Education Program.

SPAN B001, B002 Elementary Spanish Intensive

Grammar, composition, conversation, listening comprehension; readings from Spain, Spanish America, and the Hispanic community in the United States. This is a year long course. One section of this course is intensive and meets nine hours a week. (Arribas, Breña, Rooney)

SPAN B101, B102 Intermediate Spanish

Intensive grammar reviews, exercises in composition and conversation, selected readings from modern Spanish. This is a year long course. Prerequisite: SPAN 002 or placement. (Breña, Lima, Mayer, Song)

SPAN B105 Intensive Intermediate Spanish

A thorough review of grammar with intensive oral practice, frequent writing assignments, readings, and oral presentations. Prerequisite: Intensive Elementary Spanish or the recommendation of the department. (Mayer)

SPAN B107 Conversación: Intensive Practice in Conversational Spanish

This course seeks to enhance speaking proficiency through the development of vocabulary, pronunciation skills, and correct grammatical usage. Students participate in daily practice of speaking on a wide variety of topics, as well as give formal presentations. This course will not count towards the major or minor. Prerequisite: SPAN 102 or 105. (Song) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B200 Estudios culturales de España e Hispanoamérica

An introduction to the history and cultures of the Spanish-speaking world in a global context: art, folklore, geography, literature, sociopolitical issues, and multicultural perspectives. This course does not count toward the major, but may be counted for the minor. Prerequisite: SPAN 102 or 105, or placement. (Lima, Song, Division III)

SPAN B202 Introducción al análisis literario

Readings from Spanish and Spanish-American works of various periods and genres (drama, poetry, short stories). Main focus on developing analytical skills with attention to improvement of grammar. Prerequisite: SPAN 102 or 105, or placement. (Arribas Quintero, Division III)

The prerequisite for all the following 200-level courses is SPAN 200 or 202, placement, or permission of instructor.

SPAN B203 Tópicos en la literatura hispana

Topics course: content varies. Topic for Fall 2008: Modernismo y Generación del 98. Topic for Spring 2009: Memoria y Guerra Civil Española. (Song, Division III)

SPAN B206 Composición (nivel superior)

A course designed to develop a student’s written expression in Spanish. This course includes a systematic study of the structure of modern Spanish and a variety of frequent written assignments. (Song) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B208 Drama y sociedad en España

A study of the rich dramatic tradition of Spain from the Golden Age (16th and 17th centuries) to the 20th century within specific cultural and social contexts. The course considers a variety of plays as manifestations of specific sociopolitical issues and problems. Topics include theater as a site for fashioning a national identity; the dramatization of gender conflicts; and plays as vehicles of protest in repressive circumstances. (Quintero, Division III)

SPAN B211 Borges y sus lectores

Primary emphasis on Borges and his poetics of reading; other writers are considered to illustrate the semiotics of texts, society, and traditions. (Sacerio-Garí, Division III; cross-listed as COML B212) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B214 Encuentros caribeños: entre imperios y diásporas

This course examines Hispanic Caribbean literary and cultural production from the early colonial chronicles of exploration to contemporary Caribbean performance artists. By studying pivotal moments in Caribbean literary and cultural history we will engage the “New World’s” first multicultural center through the analysis of its complex legacies: racism, slavery, mestizaje, empire building and its dissolution, and emancipation. Course taught in Spanish. Prerequisite: SPAN B200 or B202, or any 200-level Spanish course, placement, or permission of instructor. (Lima, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B215 “Memoria Negra”: La literatura afro-hispánica

A study of the major works of African and Afro-Hispanic literatures written in Spanish with comparative examples from the literatures of the “Black Atlantic,” including Lusophone African literature. The course considers how racially-marked aesthetic expression (Criollismo, Negritude, the Harlem Renaissance, etc.) fashioned literary Modernism and the ensuing “Black Atlantic” polemic. Representative writers may include Martin Bernal, Lydia Cabrera, Franz Fanon, Edouard Glissant, Nicolás Guillén, Donoto M’game, Nancy Morejón, Fernando Ortíz, Manuel Rui, and Laudino Viera. (Lima, Division III; cross-listed as COML B215) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B223 Género y modernidad en la narrativa del siglo XIX

A reading of 19th-century Spanish narrative by both men and women writers, to assess how they come together in configuring new ideas of female identity and its social domains, as the country is facing new challenges in its quest for modernity. (Song, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B225 La poesía hispanoamericana

Study of poetic language from the Avant-garde movements to the present. Special attention to key figures. (Sacerio-Garí, Division III)

SPAN B227 Genealogía de la literatura latina de los Estados Unidos

This course examines the emancipatory and sometimes collusive appropriation of “American” literature by Latina/os. The course begins a genealogical survey of Latino writing and cultural production from the 19th century to the present in order to contextualize the eventual rise of Latino ethnic particularisms from the 1960s. We will analyze how Latina/os, often living inside two languages and cultures, inflect the national landscape by erasing both literal and linguistic “American” borders in a country made up largely of immigrants. We will analyze how the mass media constructs “insiders” and “outsiders” by delimiting access to cultural capital with demands for assimilation. (Lima, Division III)

SPAN B231 El cuento y novela corta en España

Traces the development of the novella and short story in Spain, from its origins in the Middle Ages to our time. The writers will include Pardo Bazán, Cervantes, Clarín, Don Juan Manuel, Matute, María de Zayas, and a number of contemporary writers such as Julián Marías and Soledad Puértolas. Our approach will include formal and thematic considerations, and attention will be given to social and historical contexts. (Quintero, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B240 Historia y cultura en América Latina

A brief survey of the political, social, and cultural history of Spain and Spanish America. Topics include Spanish nation/state/empire, indigenous cultures, polemics about the “Indians” in the new world, Spanish-American independence, current social and economic issues, Latin America’s multiculturalism, and Latinos in the United States. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. (Sacerio-Gari, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B260 Ariel/Calibán y el discurso Americano

A study of the transformations of Ariel/Calibán as images of Latin American culture. (Sacerio-Gari, Division III; cross-listed as COML B260)

SPAN B265 Escritoras españolas: entre tradición y renovacion

Fiction by Spanish women in the 20th century. Breaking the traditional female stereotypes during and after Franco’s dictatorship, the authors explore sociopolitical and cultural issues through their creative writing. Topics of discussion include gender marginality, feminist literary theory, and the portrayal and role of women in modern society. (Song, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

The prerequisite for 300-level courses is SPAN 202 plus another 200-level course in Spanish or permission of instructor.

SPAN B307 Cervantes

A study of themes, structure, and style of Cervantes’ masterpiece Don Quijote and its impact on world literature. In addition to a close reading of the text and a consideration of narrative theory, the course examines the impact of Don Quijote on the visual arts, music, film, and popular culture. (Saad-Maura, Division III)

SPAN B308 Spanish Drama of the Golden Age

A study of the dramatic theory and practice of 16th- and 17th-century Spain. Topics include the treatment of honor, historical self-fashioning and the politics of the corrales, and palace theater. (Quintero, Division III; cross-listed as COML B308) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B309 La mujer en la literatura española del Siglo de Oro

A study of the depiction of women in the fiction, drama, and poetry of 16th- and 17th-century Spain. Topics include the construction of gender; the idealization and codification of women’s bodies; the politics of feminine enclosure (convent, home, brothel, palace); and the performance of honor. The first half of the course will deal with representations of women by male authors (Calderón, Cervantes, Lope, Quevedo) and the second will be dedicated to women writers such as Teresa de Ávila, Ana Caro, Juana Inés de la Cruz, and María de Zayas. (Quintero, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B311 Crimen y detectives en la narrativa hispánica contemporánea

An analysis of the rise of the hardboiled genre in contemporary Hispanic narrative and its contrast to classic detective fiction, as a context for understanding contemporary Spanish and Latin American culture. Discussion of pertinent theoretical implications and the social and political factors that contributed to the genre’s evolution and popularity. (Song, Division III; cross-listed as COML B312) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B318 Adaptaciones literarias en el cine español

Film adaptations of literary works have been popular since the early years of cinema in Spain. This course examines the relationship between films and literature, focusing on the theory and practice of film adaptation. Attention will be paid to the political and cultural context in which these texts are being published and made into films. Prerequisite: A 200-level course in Spanish, SPAN 208. (Song, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B320 Surrealismo español poesia, arte, y cine

A multimedia study of the development of a surrealistic ethic in Spain in the 20th century as represented chiefly in the works of Federico García Lorca, Luis Buñuel, and Salvador Dalí, among others. The scope and validity of the Spanish surrealistic movement will be examined in relation to its originating principles: Freud’s psychoanalytic theory, and the artistic and political manifestos of the avant-garde. Through the study of works of poetry, art, and film, we will also discuss the relationship between the theoretical and historical background of this artistic movement as we contrast art and politics, artistic freedom and political commitment. (Song, Division III)

SPAN B321 Del surrealismo al realismo mágico

Examines artistic texts that trace the development and relationships of surrealism, lo real maravilloso americano, and magic realism. Manifestos, literary and cinematic works by Spanish and Latin American authors will be emphasized. Prerequisite: a 200-level Spanish course. (Sacerio-Gari, Division III)

SPAN B327 La novela latina en la edad de la globalización

In the United States Latino literature is often construed as a “minority” literature, charting immigrant experiences. In Latin America, it is often seen as testing the limits and considered “inferior.” This course studies this phenomenon in relation to the linguistic, historical, racial, ethnic, and sexual assumptions that undergird the study of national literatures. (Lima, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B329 Brown Affect: Narrating Latina and Latino Lives

This course studies the construction of Latino lives in and through autobiographies and autobiographical fiction in the context of the civil rights movement and the rise of Latino nationalism. The course will focus on the Latino subversion of genre from the bildungsroman to its more recent (post)modernist traditions to its more culturally specific grounding in the Latin American crónica. We will study how “feeling brown” has made Latino life-writing a political and literary act of self-creation. Course is taught in English. Students seeking major credit in Spanish must do appropriate assignments in Spanish. Prerequisite: SPAN 220, ENGL 250 or equivalent. (Lima, Division III; cross-listed as ENGL B340) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B331 TransNation: U.S. Latino and Latin American Queer Diasporas

Engages current U.S. Latino and Latina American debates about state formation in the construction of citizenship from the perspective of queer and transgender studies. Explores recent theoretical and cultural works to consider the challenges posed to understanding gender, sexuality, ethnic identity, nationalism, state-formation, citizenship, and the body. Analyzes the limits of cultural and theoretical interface between U.S. Latino/Latin American and Anglo-American cultural theory. Prerequisites: SPAN B202 or ENGL B250 or equivalent. (Lima, Division III)

SPAN B351 Tradición y revolución: Cuba y su literature

An examination of Cuba, its history and its literature with emphasis on the analysis of the changing cultural policies since 1959. Major topics include slavery and resistance; Cuba’s struggles for freedom; the literature and film of the Revolution; and literature in exile. (Sacerio-Garí, Division III) Not offered in 2008-09.

SPAN B398 Senior Seminar

The study of special topics, critical theory and approaches with primary emphasis on Hispanic literatures. Topics will be prepared jointly with the students. (Sacerio-Garí)

SPAN B399 Senior Essay

Available to students whose proposals are approved by the department. (staff)

SPAN B403 Supervised Work

Independent reading, conferences, and a long paper; offered to senior students recommended by the department. (staff)

Updated August 25, 2008 by Tracy Kellmer