Modern Spanish-America Prose Fiction

HISP-S420 - Prof. Cohn — spring 2023

Deborah Cohn
GA 0007
Days and Times
TR 9:45A-11:00A
Course Description

Prerequisite: HISP-S 328 or equivalent.

In this course, we will study highlights in the trajectory of Spanish American and Caribbean prose fiction from the modernista movement of the late 1800s-early 1900s through the present.  We will examine the ways that content, structure, and style work together to convey themes, and we will explore how texts engage with—reflect, respond to, and, often, seek to change—their historical, cultural, social, and/or political contexts.  

Throughout this course, we will repeatedly engage with questions of power—who wields it, how they grant or deny legitimacy and structure society and social roles, and the discourses and institutions that support and enforce (the) social order. With an eye towards our own, current, circumstances, we will explore these questions and their implications in several texts dealing with different kinds of plagues (e.g., disease, insomnia, zombie) as a means of probing how their authors/directors represent their intersections with struggles for social justice, self-governance, autonomy, and more.   

Related themes that we will consider include:  questions of imperialism, revolution, industrialization, and the impact of modernity and modernization; and efforts to construct collective and individual identities (national, regional, racial, class, gender/sexuality). The last few weeks of the semester, we will explore representations of Caribbean identity in the diaspora—and, by extension, relations between the Caribbean nations (and their inhabitants) and the U.S. We will pay close attention to texts’ problematizations of reality and representations of time (and the implications thereof), to the challenges that texts pose to traditional roles (again, national, regional, racial, class, gender/sexuality), and to how gender, sexuality, and racial hierarchies may be reflected and refracted through private actions and political movements.   

We will also focus on strengthening writing skills, including thesis development and follow-through, analysis, and organization, among others. 

This course carries CASE AH distribution credit

HISP-S 420    #31196      9:45A-11:00A    TR        GA 0007        Prof. Deborah Cohn

Note: S420 is combined with HISP-S 498 #31433     

Interested in this course?

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

See complete course details