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Spring 2018 Graduate Courses

Quick Links to Spring 2018 Graduate Course Schedules

French Graduate

Spanish Graduate

 French Graduate Course Descriptions

FR 525 Special Topic:  The Aesthetic Clinic
Instructor: Professor Fernanda Negrete
Meetings:  W 3:30-6:10 pm
Class #19827

When Gilles Deleuze dealt with Francis Bacon’s paintings in his 1981 essay, he invoked “an aesthetic clinic” where painting dealt with the powers of hysteria and music with “a galloping schizophrenia.” What does it mean to think about aesthetics as a clinical enterprise? This seminar will examine psychoanalytic and modern theoretical writings (by authors such as Charles Baudelaire, Sigmund Freud, Jacques Lacan, Marion Milner, Melanie Klein, Gilles Deleuze, Jean-François Lyotard, Félix Guattari, Luce Irigaray, Bracha Ettinger, Willy Apollon, and Suely Rolnik) alongside artworks from the 1960s to the present by figures such as Louise Bourgeois, Sophie Calle, Anne Carson, Hélène Cixous, Lygia Clark, Marguerite Duras, Roni Horn, and Clarice Lispector. We will see how these artworks confront the conjunction of two riddles Freud could never completely solve: “the riddle of femininity” and “the riddle of the artwork.” We will think of the experiments they put forth to think in new ways of the vital, clinical function of the aesthetic.

FR 526 Special Topic:  Contemporary French Linguistics
Instructor: Professor Jean-Jacques Thomas
Meetings:  T 4-6:40 pm
Class #20330

The purpose of this course is to study contemporary French phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics and pragmatics. All elements are first studied from a descriptive point of view. This leads to the acquisition of a more advanced competence in the area of French linguistics. Special emphasis is then laid on the functional regularity of verbal and syntactical components. Basic tendencies in the semantic development of contemporary French will also be stressed. Study of French texts and documents serves as support for the study of the general language evolution in the last 20 years. Finally, presentation of the fundamental elements of French pragmatics will encompass, among others, the following processes: ideational clauses, discursive categorization, speech acts and situational pragmatics, all aspects of French that could also be used to better understand contemporary French literary texts. In French.

FR 566 Literature, Subjectivity and Society
Instructor:  Professor Christian Flaugh
Meetings:  Th 4-6:40pm
Class # 24559

In this seminar, we explore the relationship between modern French-language literature writ large and its cultural and societal contexts. Specifically, we look at how works of varied genres relate to, evoke, or subvert notions of subjectivity and autonomy in various spaces of the world. We also study how the production of such literature involves the overlap of varied discourses and aesthetic systems, and its connections to questions such as citizenship, disability, gender, race, and sexuality. Typical assignments include course discussion, response papers, presentations, and a final paper. The course is conducted in French; no final exam is given.

Spanish Graduate Course Descriptions

SPA 509 Spanish American Modernismo
Instructor: Professor Margarita Vargas
Meetings:  T 4-6:40 pm
Class # 21583

Even though there are some detractors, most critics mark the beginning of Modernismo in 1888 with Rubén Darío’s Azul and its ending in 1916 with Enrique González Martínez’s “Tuércele el cuello al cisne.” These two works set up the well-known dichotomy between the sensorial/spiritual and the intellect. While the Modernistas, from their ivory tower, focused on beauty and the senses, González Martínez advocated for a return to rationality.

To study the above dichotomy as well as the claim that the Modernistas disregarded all moral, political and religious concerns; in the course we will read representative works by the major proponents of the movement (Rodó, Martí, Darío, Gutiérrez Nájera, Lugones, and Herrera y Reissing). We will also examine Spanish America’s disengagement from the motherland as well as the social and political changes that brought about economic modernization and the expansion of cities and education.

SPA 510 Prophetic Cultures of Iberia
Instructor: Professor Henry Berlin
Meetings: TH 4-6:40 pm
Class #19551

In this course, we will explore notions of time and of universal and political history across a variety of genres of medieval Iberian literature. In particular, we will examine how competing notions of Fortune and Providence, on the one hand, and rationalism and prophecy, on the other, conditioned debates about political destiny as Castile and Portugal were consolidating their Iberian territories and beginning the process of imperial expansion. Readings will include the historiographic texts of Alfonso X, Juan de Mena’s Laberinto de Fortuna, Gutierre Díaz de Games’s El Victorial, and selections from royal chronicles of the fifteenth century. Conducted in Spanish.

SPA 454/533 Spanish Subjunctive
Instructor:  Professor Jorge Guitart
Meetings:  W 4-6:40 pm
Class #23403

The course is intended to provide information on the meaning and use of the subjunctive mood, which is considerably richer in Spanish than it is in English. In Spanish a conjugated verb form that is not a command, i.e., not in the imperative mood, is either in the indicative or the subjunctive. The subjunctive appears frequently with both the imperative and the indicative in complex sentences. The language of the course will be English and all readings will be in English. You will not have to buy any books: all reading material will be given to you free of charge. Class will be a flexible combination of lecturing, English-to-Spanish translation, small group discussion, and in-class quiz taking. There will be three take-home exams. Graduate students must write a ten-page critical review of an article on the subjunctive appearing in a professional journal after 2007.


SPA 409/539:  The Age of Lorca
Professor Elizabeth Scarlett
Meetings: TTH 2-3:20pm
Class #23400

In this course, students will survey a fifty-year span of Spanish literature and culture known as the Silver Age. They will read and discuss texts from this period, centering on the figure of Federico García Lorca, but including his immediate predecessors and contemporaries, as well as follow-up on his impact into the present day. Students will learn theoretical approaches that can be employed to further interpretation and analysis of these texts. Students will also learn the essential features of the socio-historical context surrounding these figures. This course is designed to prepare graduate students to become active participants in Spanish modern literary studies.