Topics: Iberian Modernities

HISP-S638 — Spring 2023

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Rhi Johnson
WH 108
Days and Times
R 4:45P-7:15P
Course Description

VT:  Gender, Sex and Deviance in the 18th & 19th Centuries

Prerequisite: Must be a Graduate student

This course explores the expectations, developments, deviations and imaginaries in the construction of gender and sexuality in modern Spain. We will read social and political discourse from across the 18th and 19th centuries against literary texts that turn against those norms or that demonstrate other alterities, as well as some foundational theory in gender studies. Authors include Josefa Amar y Borbón, Felix Samaniego, Juan Meléndez Valdés, Rosalía de Castro, Antonio Ros de Olano, Concepción Arenal, Eduardo López Bago, Benito Pérez Galdós, and Ramón del Valle Inclán, among others.

The course will cover three main periods: 1) the social and sexual “dark side” of the siglo de las luces, with manuals for negotiating sex work amidst the danger of syphilis and erotic and deviant forms of seemingly innocent Neoclassical genres; 2) Romantic liminality, the passionate tubercular ideal, and the confluence of thanatos and eros in an epistemology of affect; and 3) the New Woman, the rise of liberation politics within a Catholic system, and sex work and homosexuality in the fin de siglo. Through this trajectory, this course will raise questions about the relationship between societal expectation and the lived experience of desire, and chart the roots of many contemporary discourses on gender and sexuality.

Reading knowledge of Spanish required, but students from other disciplines are welcome; students are encouraged to develop final projects that bring their areas of study into dialogue with course content. Please contact Dr. Johnson with any queries or questions:

HISP-S 638       #31241      4:45P-7:15P          R       WH 108            Prof. Rhi Johnson

Interested in this course?

The full details of this course are available on the Office of the Registrar website.

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