The Romance Languages and Literatures
(For 2016–2017 academic year)
Professors Gallucci, Luciani (Chair), Naughton, Plata, Rojas, Rugg
Associate Professors Julien, Riley, Stolova, Zegarra
Assistant Professors Barreto, Facchini, Pérez-Carbonell
Visiting Assistant Professors Lee, Monsalve, Raducanu, Robles
Senior Lecturers Mejía-Barrera, Merklin, Ramakrishnan
Lecturer Escudero Moro
The aim of this department is to provide students with a solid foundation in the languages, literatures, and cultures of the French-, Italian-, and Spanish-speaking worlds. Language courses work to improve students’ abilities in speaking, comprehending, reading, and writing in French, Italian, or Spanish, while providing an introduction to culture. Structured in levels of increasing complexity, literature courses foster the improvement of analytical and critical skills, an enhanced aesthetic appreciation of works of literary art, and a broader understanding of linguistic and cultural diversity. Many of the courses offered in the department may be taken by students who do not plan to major in French or Spanish but who would like to maintain or develop their knowledge of these languages and cultures. Given the multi-cultural nature of the United States today, familiarity with a second language and culture will enhance a student’s preparation for a career in any profession. Advanced study of Spanish or French (300 level and higher) makes the student eligible for the intimate contact with a foreign culture available through the department’s study groups abroad. A major in French or Spanish can be particularly useful in the fields of law, business, international trade, journalism, education, and public administration.
The department offers majors and minors in both French and Spanish, but not in Italian. Courses counting toward these majors are conducted entirely in the appropriate language. The following regulations apply to majors and minors in both languages:
- With some restrictions, only 300- and 400-level courses in language and literature may be counted.
- FREN 361 and SPAN 361 may be taken for major or minor credit on campus only. An exception is made for students who have received credit for these courses by scoring 5 on the AP language exam.
- A student who has completed a 400-level course may not take a 350-level survey course.
- No course with a grade of less than C– is credited toward a major or minor. For graduation, the minimum GPA required in courses counting toward a major or minor is 2.00 (C); all departmental courses taken in the major are used to calculate this average.
- No more than two departmental courses counting toward a major or minor may be taken in any one term. Exceptions to this rule can be made only under very unusual circumstances and with the approval of the department chair.
Major Program in French or Spanish A major in French or Spanish is a program of study of French or Hispanic language and literature. It consists of a minimum of eight courses at the 300 and 400 levels. It must include FREN 361, or SPAN 361, and five 400-level literature courses. Students majoring in French must take two courses at the 350 level before enrolling in a 400-level literature course. Exceptions to this rule can be made only with the approval of the department chair. The 400-level courses are divided into the following categories: Spanish: Pre-1900 (category 1) and Post-1900 (category 2); French: Pre-1800 (category 1) and Post-1800 (category 2).
French: (1) 421, 423, 425, 427, 429, 431, 433, 469; (2) 430, 441, 443, 445, 447, 449, 450, 453, 455
Spanish: (1) 460, 461, 462, 465, 466, 467, 476; (2) 472, 473, 474, 475, 477, 478, 479
French majors must take at least two courses in each category. FREN 401 may be counted toward the French major but may not fulfill the requirement for any category. Spanish majors must take at least two courses from category 1.
Independent study courses are permitted only when the above distribution requirements are met.
FREN or SPAN 490 is open only to candidates who are studying independently for honors.
Majors who qualify are strongly encouraged to participate in the France or Spain Study Group. See below.
Minor Program in French or Spanish
A minor in French or Spanish consists of a minimum of six courses at the 300 and 400 levels. In French this must include FREN 361, two courses at the 350 level (taken before enrolling in a 400-level literature course), and a minimum of three 400-level literature courses, excluding FREN 401, with at least one course taken from each of the two categories listed above, under “Major Program in French or Spanish.” The Spanish minor must include SPAN 361, and at least three 400-level literature courses, including at least one course from category 1. No independent study courses may be credited toward the minor.
Students with minors in French or Spanish are strongly encouraged to apply for the France or Spain Study Group. See below.
Honors and High Honors
Departmental honors requires a cumulative GPA of 3.00 and an average in all major courses of 3.30. After selecting a topic and adviser, the student registers for FREN or SPAN 490 during one of the semesters of the senior year and writes a paper of significant length and depth. The quality of the paper determines whether the student receives honors (A– or higher required).
Departmental high honors requires a cumulative GPA of 3.00 and an average in all major courses of 3.70. After selecting a topic and adviser, the student registers for FREN or SPAN 491 in the seventh term in order to compile a bibliography, gather materials, and begin the preparation of a thesis. The student then registers for FREN or SPAN 490 in the eighth term in order to complete the thesis. The final version serves as the basis for an oral examination by three or more members of the faculty. The quality of the thesis and of the oral defense determines whether the student receives high honors (A or higher)or honors (A–).
A 490-course registration must be in addition to the minimum major requirement. The expected length of an honors paper or high honors thesis is established by the adviser in consultation with the department chair.
See “Honors and Awards: Romance Languages” in Chapter VI.
Advanced Placement and Transfer Credit
University credit is automatically granted to entering students who achieve a score of 4 or higher on AP examinations in French language and Spanish language or literature. Major credit is granted for a score of 5.
The following course equivalents are established: In French, language grade of 4 = 202; language grade of 5 = 361. In Spanish, language grade of 4 = 202; language grade of 5 = 361; literature grade of 4 = 202; literature grade of 5 = 202, and exemption from a major credit at the 350 level.
Students with an AP language grade of 3 may take FREN 202 or SPAN 202 or higher. Students with an AP language or literature grade of 4 or higher must register at the 300 level to continue their study of French or Spanish. No more than two AP or transfer credits, or combination of the two, may be counted for a French or Spanish major or minor.
No more than one major or minor credit may be transferred from an approved program. To be accepted, such courses must be comparable in quality and scope to courses offered at Colgate. Students who hope to transfer a credit from an approved program must provide the department chair with documentation about the course for approval prior to enrolling in that program, and may be asked to present their work to the chair for evaluation upon return.
France and Spain Study Groups
Each spring the department sends a study group to the University of Burgundy in Dijon, France. In order to be eligible to participate, students must satisfactorily complete FREN 361 and one literature course at the 400 level.
The Spain Study Group operates in Santiago de Compostela and Madrid each fall semester. In order to be eligible, a student must satisfactorily complete at least one 350-level survey and SPAN 361.
The study group experience is an integral part of the French and Spanish programs, and all qualified majors are expected to participate. Preference is given to majors and minors, but qualified non-majors are encouraged to apply.
The department has established the following policies for its study groups in Dijon and Madrid: two credits toward the French or Spanish major or minor may be earned; students must register for a full load of courses; students may not take a fifth course; all courses must be taken for a standard letter grade. Only in unusual circumstances will the department chair grant exceptions to these rules.
For more information, see “Off-Campus Study” in Chapter VI.
Italy Study Group
Several university departments, including the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, collaborate in organizing the Venice Study Group. Students who complete one year of Italian are eligible to apply. Eligibility may also be gained in other ways. See “Off-Campus Study” in Chapter VI.
La Casa Pan-Latina Americana
Students have an additional opportunity for language and cultural study through residence in La Casa Pan-Latina Americana. The house provides a focal point for Latino students and a way for other students to share cultural knowledge and language skills.
Language Placement Regulations
Students wishing to continue a Romance language studied in secondary school should register for the appropriate courses indicated by the prerequisites in the course descriptions listed below. Credit will not be granted to a student taking a course at a lower level than a course for which the prerequisites have been completed. Written permission from the department chair is required for an exception to this regulation. In all matters of language placement, the department makes the final determination.
Course Offerings: French
FREN courses count toward the Human Thought and Expression area of inquiry requirement, unless otherwise noted.
121, 122 Elementary French
This course is designed to introduce students to basic skills of understanding, speaking, reading, and writing the French language, as well as to introduce various aspects of Francophone culture. Online tools and resources are integral parts of this course. FREN 121 is primarily for students with no previous study of French. Exceptions are made for students with fewer than two years of secondary-school French or students with two years of secondary-school French who must meet the language requirement. This course is offered in the fall only. FREN 122, while primarily intended for students continuing from 121, may also be taken as a refresher conversation course by students who studied French in secondary school some time ago, as follows: two years of study ending at least one-half year before, three years of study ending at least one and one-half years before, or four years of study ending at least two and one-half years before. This course is offered in the spring only. Written permission is required for seniors. Final decisions on appropriate language placement rests with the instructor, in consultation with the department chair. (Formerly FREN 101-102.)
201 Intermediate French
This course is designed to improve students’ ability to understand, speak, read, and write French. Class time is devoted to communication activities, to a study of intermediate grammar, conversational vocabulary, and Francophone culture. This course includes an audiocassette and video program. Prerequisite: two or three years of secondary-school French, or a one-year college elementary French course. It may be taken as a refresher course by students who studied French in secondary school some time ago, as follows: three years of study ending at least one-half year before, four years of study ending at least one and one-half years before, or more than four years of study ending at least two and one-half years before. Students with more than three years of secondary school French may not register for FREN 201. Exceptions to this policy are made only by the instructor in consultation with the department chair.
202 Intermediate French: Conversation, Culture, and Literature
Designed to increase the student’s ability to understand, speak, read, and write French, this course emphasizes development of reading comprehension. A review of the more difficult points of intermediate grammar is included. A major focus is the acquisition of skills necessary for the study of literature. This course includes vocabulary study, conversational practice, and short compositions based on readings. Prerequisite: three to four years of secondary school French, or FREN 201, or the equivalent. Students with more than four years of secondary-school French should not register for FREN 202. Those students should register for the appropriate 300-level courses. Instructors will determine eligibility of students with more than three or four years of secondary school French following review of language background in the student’s academic record. Not open to students who have received credit for FREN 202 by scoring 4 on the AP exam.
222 French Literature in Translation
This course analyzes some outstanding works of French literature that are available in translation. Works are chosen from various periods and are considered within their historical and cultural context. Taught in English.
223 Introduction to French Cinema
This course introduces students to major trends and issues in French cinema, while giving them the necessary tools to perform critical analysis of French films and a wider exposure to French and Francophone culture and history. Students are required to attend weekly screenings in addition to regular class meetings. Taught in English. This course is crosslisted as FMST 223.
226 Interplay of Language, Culture, and Identity in Martinique
M. Ramakrishnan, Staff
This course explores the history of resettlement and development of cultural identities on the French Caribbean island of Martinique from 1635 to the present. The complex interdisciplinarity of the processes of créolization and cultural hybridization in Martinique is discussed within the context of the cultural narratives of the three major ethnic groups (French, African, and Indian), their reciprocal influences, and most importantly, their respective adaptive strategies to the process of resettlement. The course is taught in English and is crosslisted as ALST 226.
351, 352, 353, 354 Introduction to the Study of Literature in French
These four courses form an introduction to the reading and study of French and Francophone literature. Focusing on four crucial eras of literary development, students learn the techniques of close reading and literary analysis, as well as explore the general cultural contexts in which the literary work was created. The focus of each course may vary, but the reading consists of plays, poetry, and prose. The courses may be taken in any order. Students who have taken a 400-level literature seminar may not register for these introductory courses.
351 Introduction to French Literature I: From Chivalry to Versailles
J. Gallucci, P. Riley
As an introduction, through reading and discussion, to three diverse and formative periods of French literature, this course shows the inspiration and variety of expression that mark each period. Readings include selections from La Chanson de Roland, courtly romance, the fabliaux (all medieval writings are read in modern French versions); prose and poetry of Renaissance France; tragic and comic writers of the French classical theater. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school French or FREN 202.
352 Introduction to French Literature II: Birth of the Modern
This course studies major works, principal authors, and literary movements of French literature in the 18th and 19th centuries. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school French or FREN 202.
353 Introduction to French Literature III: Literary Innovations in the 20th to 21st Centuries
This course offers a close reading of some representative works of the 20th and 21st centuries. Selections are chosen from the shorter fiction and essays of outstanding French writers and include such authors as Apollinaire, Gide, Sartre, Camus, Ionesco, Ponge, Ernaux and Modiano. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school French or FREN 202.
354 Introduction to French Literature IV: The Francophone World
This course offers an overview of various bodies of literature written in French outside of France, focusing on five main geographical areas that historically constituted the French empire: the Caribbean, North Africa, West and Central Africa, Asia, and North America. Full texts as well as excerpts from a variety of genres are studied in the context of the history and geography of those regions. Through the exploration of key literary texts, particular attention is given to the effects of colonialism on language, identity, and artistic creation. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school French or FREN 202.
361 Advanced French Composition, Grammar, and Conversation
This course is structured as a review of grammatical principles with emphasis on correctness in expository composition in French. Assignments include frequent essays as well as translation exercises. Prerequisite: at least one 350-level course. Not open to students who score 5 on the AP language exam, except by special permission of instructor. Students required to take this course may do so only on campus.
A study of cultural expression through the writing of formal compositions and the analysis and translation of texts. The course is designed to give advanced students a finer feeling for French style, an awareness of shades of meaning, and a mastery of certain difficulties not discussed in lower-level language courses. Enrollment is limited to students participating in the France Study Group (Dijon).
421 The Baroque, Classic, and Romantic Theater in France
This seminar traces the development of French theater through close readings of representative works from the 17th through the 19th centuries. Major dramatic genres such as tragedy, comedy, and romantic drama and their development are examined in their historical, intellectual, and literary contexts. Through critical readings of these plays, the course identifies a developing sensibility concerning the definition of the hero, the historical workings of masculine and feminine roles, and the contingencies of fate, love, and personal choice. The course considers as well the shifting set of literary conventions through which playwright and audience negotiated these ideas. Course work includes primary literary works as well as video recordings of selected performances of some of the plays. Authors studied may include Corneille, Racine, Molière, Marivaux, Beaumarchais, Hugo, Vigny, Musset, and Rostand.
423 The 18th-Century Epistolary Novel in France
This course examines some of the French 18th century’s most celebrated “letter novels.” Through readings of Montesquieu, Graffigny, Rousseau, and Laclos, the course focuses on the formal and thematic development of the epistolary genre over a period of some 60 years. The novels are read against a historical background stretching from the reign of Louis XIV through the French Revolution.
425 Libertine Fiction of the French 18th Century
Beginning in the 17th century under the label libertinage érudit, libertine fiction evolves into a major genre in the Enlightenment. The course follows its development through readings of Prèvost, Crébillon fils, Diderot, Denon, and Sade, and explores the following questions: How do philosophy, fiction, and sexual politics coalesce in libertine literature? How can one reconcile libertinage — a way of living and writing frequently reduced to passion and sensuality — with the broader currents of the most “rational” century in French literary history? An exploration of libertine literature thus entails a focus on cultural history, and serves as a point of departure for a broader reflection on the Enlightenment.
427 Literature of the Renaissance
A detailed study of the lyric poetry of Louise Labé, Pierre Ronsard, Joachim du Bellay, and Clément Marot. The course explores how each writer seeks to create his or her own unique poetic style within the context of the intense literary creation and experimentation that characterize Renaissance France. Special attention is given to the themes of love and Classical mythology as sources of poetic inspiration. Some attention to Renaissance painting, to the lyric poetry of François Villon, and to selected prose of Marguerite de Navarre, Montaigne, and Rabelais is given in order to illustrate the enormous and varied impact of humanism and the Italian Renaissance.
429 The Age of Enlightenment
This course examines some of the relationships between Enlightenment thought and the dominant forms of written expression in the French 18th century. Through readings, students consider a number of the Enlightenment’s most pressing concerns, such as moral and political philosophy, religious and civil tolerance, natural law, and the role of literature and the arts in society, among others. Authors read include Voltaire, Rousseau, Diderot, Beaumarchais, and Sade.
430 Literature of Adventure and Quest
This course studies the evolution and transmutation of conventions of quest literature from the Middle Ages to the present day. The course examines the significance of the changes within the genre as reflections of the cultures from which they emerge. Readings range from the romances of Chrétien de Troyes to the contemporary French novel.
431 Molière and La Fontaine
The course provides a detailed study of two major comic writers of French classical literature, emphasizing especially the creation of individual comic and satirical styles within the classical tradition. The course examines both specific themes such as the images of king, court, and society, and also more general literary and cultural questions. These include the nature of comedy, the relationship between popular culture and literary art, and the problem of literary translation. Readings are drawn from the farces, short plays, and major works of Molière and from the Fables, the Contes et nouvelles, and selected minor poems of La Fontaine, as well as from La Fontaine’s legacy in pictorial art and folklore.
433 The Court of Louis XIV
The theme of the court is used to explore the major works in prose and poetry of classical France, reading these works as examples both of insightful social analysis and of outstanding achievements in literary style and art. Readings are drawn primarily from the works of Madame de Sévigné, Racine, Pascal, La Rochefoucauld, Madame de Lafayette, and La Bruyère. Key topics include the relationship between writer and society in 17th-century France, Versailles as a theatrical setting for the Sun-King, and literature as both social commentary and divertissement. The seminar also studies the theme of the court as it is expressed in 17th-century painting and music.
440 Contemporary French Civilization
This course examines, by means of lecture and discussion, the impact of geography, demography, history, politics, economics, patterns of behavior, and the French cultural heritage on contemporary France. Enrollment is limited to students participating in the France Study Group (Dijon).
441 Readings in French Poetry I
This course focuses on some of the major poets of the 19th century, by studying their work in the context of the greater political, social, and historical events of the time. Readings concentrate on representative texts of the following poets: Lamartine, Alfred de Vigny, Marceline Desbordes-Valmore, Hugo, Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Mallarmé, and others.
443 Readings in French Poetry II
This course analyzes some major poets of the 20th century in the context of greater artistic, political, and social movements. Readings focus on representative texts of the following poets: Apollinaire, Claudel, Valéry, Breton, Jouve, Emmanuel, Bonnefoy, Ponge, Jaccottet, and others.
445 20th-Century French Autobiography
This seminar examines the development and specificities of 20th-century autobiographical texts. While the main focus is on the texts themselves, some related theoretical problems are also considered, such as the conditions and possibility of writing the “self”, autobiography’s link to other types of personal writings, its relationship to fiction, and its role in our modern definition of “humanity.” This genre being rooted in questions of the emergence of the “self,” particular attention is given to women, homosexuals, and francophone writers, who were traditionally regarded as “other.” Authors read may include Proust, Gide, Sartre, Beauvoir, Sarraute, Leiris, Yourcenar, Bigras, Laye, Leduc, and Roy.)
447 The French Novel in the Romantic Period
This course focuses on the novel in the first half of the 19th century. The texts selected for discussion, as well as the visual materials used in the course, are centered on the representation of the hero in crisis in post-revolutionary France. The course examines critically such issues as le mal du siècle, changing conceptions of the self and gender relations in the wake of the French Revolution, social ambition and the desire to succeed, and the impact of the city on the individual. Works by such authors as Chateaubriand, Mme de Duras, Hugo, Sand, Constant, Stendhal, and Balzac are studied in the context of the dominant literary mode of Romanticism and the changing political and social scene under the Restoration and the July Monarchy.
449 The Realist and Naturalist Novel
This seminar focuses on the novel in the second half of the 19th century. Works by such authors as Dumas fils, Flaubert, Maupassant, Daudet, and Zola are studied in the context of the literary modes of realism and naturalism, and their reaction against Romanticism. The texts selected for discussion, as well as the visual materials used in the course, are usually centered on the representation of women, changing definitions of femininity and masculinity, and leading social and ideological issues of the time.
450 20th-Century French Literature
This seminar examines some of the most important novels and plays of the first half of the 20th century, until World War II. Authors read generally include Gide, Proust, Breton, Malraux, Giraudoux. The following questions are discussed: How did these writers see their role in the rapidly changing social and political climate of the period? How did they transform the two dominant literary modes of the end of the 19th century (naturalism and symbolism) to express more modern concerns? How is one to understand the emergence of an introspective hero who so often searches for his or her identity on the margins of society?
453 Contemporary French Literature
This seminar examines how questions of identity, agency, intersectionality, and individual and collective responsibility inform major works of French literature of the late 20th and 21st centuries, and how literature can be used to make sense of them. Authors may include de Beauvoir, Duras, Sarraute, Djebar, Bey, and Cixous.
455 Francophone Voices from North Africa
This seminar examines the literature written in French by Maghrebi and Beur women authors since the early 1980s. The product of a colonial and post-colonial history, this is a literature where cultures, histories, identities, genres, and languages intersect. It gives voice to new questions of identity and self-definition through the exploration of traditional as well as innovative forms of writing. In order to establish the historical and cultural contexts in which this body of literature has emerged and is growing, the course includes an overview of the history of Franco-Maghrebi relations and Maghrebi immigration to France. Through the reading of texts by Maghrebi and Beur authors, this course explores and discusses issues such as imperialism and colonialism, post-colonialism, cultural translocation, identity politics, gender and race, religion, multilingualism, sexuality, urban development and design, etc. Prerequisites: two 350-level literature courses.
469 Topics in French Literature
This course is taught at the University of Burgundy and limited to France Study Group participants.
485 Words into Paintings: Paintings into Words
The course focuses on the way in which painters often paint subjects taken from literature and on the way writers, particularly poets, are fascinated by images from the visual arts. We will explore the interrelated topics of “poets on painting and paintings on poetry” and on the transposition of paintings into words and words into paintings. The seminar concentrates on such painters as Poussin, Chardin, Delacroix, Manet, Gauguin and Van Gogh and on a number of writers whose work focuses very specifically on painters and paintings — Diderot, Baudelaire, Yves Bonnefoy, among others.
195, 295, 395 Language Courses Taken Abroad
These numbers are used only for language courses taken abroad with a Colgate study group, an approved program, or in a foreign institution of higher learning.
200, 300, 400 Courses Taken Abroad
These numbers are used only for courses taken abroad with a Colgate study group, an approved program, or in a foreign institution of higher learning. They designate non-language courses for which there are no exact Colgate equivalents.
291, 391, 491 Independent Study
Independent study courses are designed to fulfill individual study needs in languages and literature not otherwise provided in this department. FREN 491 study in literature may not be undertaken until seminar distribution requirements are satisfied.
Course Offerings: Italian
ITAL courses count toward the Human Thought and Expression area of inquiry requirement, unless otherwise noted.
121 Elementary Italian I
This first-semester Italian course is designed for students with no or very little previous knowledge of Italian. Students will be guided in developing the four language skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing in the context of everyday topics. The exclusive use of Italian in dialogue situations and vocabulary building encourages students to develop skills in a personalized context. Mastery of the basic structures, vocabulary and culturally acceptable ways of oral and written communication are stimulated through a vast variety of authentic props. As part of the syllabus movie screenings outside of class are mandatory. Students with a grade of C– or below in ITAL 121 are urged to repeat the course before continuing.
122 Elementary Italian II
This course is designed as a second semester Italian course for students who have taken ITAL 121 or an equivalent. ITAL 122 provides students with a thorough grounding in all four language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students will be guided to fine-tune their oral and written communication skills by incorporating more complex grammatical structures and a wide range of new vocabulary. They will also be introduced to some fundamentals of Italian history, and select current social and political issues. As part of the syllabus movie screenings outside of class are mandatory. Students with a grade of C– or below in ITAL 122 are urged to repeat the course before continuing.
201 Intermediate Italian
This course is designed to improve students’ ability to understand, speak, read, and write Italian and to expand students’ knowledge of Italian culture. It includes review of basic Italian grammar and introduction to new grammar structures, conversational practice, short compositions, cultural and literary readings, and films. Prerequisite: two or three years of secondary-school Italian, or ITAL 122, or the equivalent. Students with a grade below C– in ITAL 122 are urged to repeat the course before continuing. Students with previous secondary-school Italian should consult with instructor for proper language placement.
202 Intermediate Italian: Language and Literature
This course is designed to build proficiency in all four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) and to improve their knowledge of Italian culture. Besides reviewing and improving students’ grammar and vocabulary competency, this course aims will focus on the reading of short works of Italian literature, short compositions, and class discussions. Students will engage with a wide variety of literary and nonliterary materials, such as books, newspapers, magazines, and videos. Prerequisite: three to four years of secondary-school Italian, or ITAL 201, or instructor permission.
223 Introduction to Italian Cinema
This course is an introduction to major works of Italian cinema from Neorealism to contemporary productions. Students will watch and discuss groundbreaking films by Italian directors such as Rossellini, Fellini, Antonioni, Pasolini, Wertmüller, Benigni, and others. Placing Italian cinema within the context of European art cinema and film theory, we will focus on the ways these films represent diverse Italian historical and cultural situations. Emphasis is placed on the study of cinematic analysis and filmmaking techniques, as well as on the historical and cultural situation in Italy from World War II to the present. Students are required to attend weekly screenings in addition to regular class meetings. Taught in English, with the option of a discussion group in Italian.
280 Dante’s Divine Comedy
This course covers all three stages of Dante’s journey through the afterlife — Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. Through close reading and by placing the poem within its literary, political, and philosophical contexts, it seeks to provide an informed understanding of one of the greatest works of world literature. Taught In English.
301 Advanced Grammar and Composition
This course provides a review of grammatical principles with emphasis on correctness and style in composition in Italian. Assignments include frequent essays, text analyses, and translations. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school Italian or ITAL 202.
353 Introduction to the Study of Italian Literature III: Modern and Contemporary Italian Literature
This course offers a close reading of the most representative works of outstanding Italian writers from the early 1900s to the present. The class focuses on questions of aesthetics, national identity, politics, and gender, and race as well as on the special relationship between texts and society. The course will discuss both canonical works of Italian literature from Risorgimento (1860) to present as well as migration literature (from and to Italy), which continually questions the parameters of national identity. Prerequisite: ITAL 201 or at least four years of secondary-school Italian.
354 Modern Italian Culture
This course critically introduces students to the very diverse facets of modern and contemporary Italian culture. Students will engage with a wide variety of literary and nonliterary texts, such as books, newspapers, music, theatrical works, films, etc. The course aims at investigating the concept of Italian identity in its relationship to issues of class, gender, race, and ethnicity. Students will enhance their linguistic skills through reading materials, writing compositions, listening activities and oral productions. Prerequisite: ITAL 201 or at least four years of secondary-school Italian.
Course Offerings: Spanish
SPAN courses count toward the Human Thought and Expression area of inquiry requirement, unless otherwise noted.
121, 122 Elementary Spanish
This beginning course introduces students to the basic skills of understanding, speaking, reading, and writing the Spanish language. It is designed primarily for students with no previous study of Spanish. Work in the Keck Humanities Resource Center complements class work. Written permission from the instructor is required for seniors. Students with a grade of C– or below in SPAN 121 or D+ or below in SPAN 122 are urged to repeat the course before continuing. Students with previous secondary school Spanish may not register for any 100-level courses in Spanish without prior approval of instructor. Final decisions on appropriate language placement rests with the instructor, in consultation with the department chair. (Formerly SPAN 101-102.)
201 Intermediate Spanish
This course is designed to improve the student’s ability to understand, speak, read, and write Spanish. It includes a comprehensive review of grammar, regularly scheduled vocabulary study, conversational practice, short compositions, and laboratory exercises. Prerequisite: two or three years of secondary-school Spanish, or SPAN 121, 122. Students with a grade of D+ or below in SPAN 122 are urged to repeat the course before taking SPAN 201. Students with more than three years of secondary school Spanish may not register for this course. Exceptions are made only by the instructor in consultation with the department chair.
202 Intermediate Spanish: Language and Literature
This course is designed to improve the student’s ability to understand, speak, read, and write Spanish and emphasizes development of reading comprehension. It includes a review of the more difficult points of intermediate grammar and focuses on the acquisition of skills necessary for the study of literature. Vocabulary study, conversational practice, and short compositions based on readings are included. It is recommended for students who have a good background in grammar but need further training in reading before undertaking courses at the 350 level. Prerequisite: three to four years of secondary school Spanish, SPAN 201, or the equivalent. Not open to students who receive credit for SPAN 202 by scoring 4 on the AP language exam or 4 on the AP literature exam. Students with more than four years of secondary school Spanish may not register for this course and should select a 300-level course instead. Instructors will determine eligibility of students with more than three or fou years of secondary school Spanish following review of language background in students’ academic records.
225 Modern Latin American Literature in Translation
This course is a close study of major modern and contemporary Latin American authors from Borges to García Márquez. The literary works are studied in their socio-cultural contexts. Taught in English.
226 Latin American Women Writers
This course is a close study of the literature written by women in modern-contemporary Latin America. Representative authors are studied within the general framework of their socio-literary contexts. Taught in English.
351, 352, 353, 354, 355 Spanish and Latin American Literature Surveys
These courses may be taken in any order. Reading assignments in these 350-level courses are made on the assumption that most registrants are first-year students taking their first course at this level. These courses are for students who have both good grammar training and a year of reading in secondary school, or who complete SPAN 202 or the equivalent. Students who complete a 400-level course may not register for these surveys.
351 Spanish Literature: Knights and Troubadours in Medieval Spain
This course offers an introduction to Spanish literature from its medieval origins through the 15th century, with emphasis on the relations among literature, culture, and civilization. Works from different genres are studied, including epic poetry, Hispano-Arabic poetry, folk ballads, early theater, historical works, and short stories. The course explores issues of authorship, as well as the cultural, religious, and historical contexts that produced each work. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school Spanish, or SPAN 202.
352 Spanish Literature: Love and Honor in the Golden Age
This survey examines the interrelated notions of love, sex, and honor as they appear in the prose, theater, and poetry of Spain. Emphasis is placed on the Renaissance and the Baroque, the so-called Golden Age of Spanish literature (16th and 17th centuries); readings, however, may include works from the Middle Ages and/or the 18th century. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school Spanish, or SPAN 202.
353 Spanish Literature: Modern Spain in Crisis
Beginning with the loss of the empire in the 19th century and moving through a series of political upheavals, including civil war and fascism, the history of modern Spain has been one of turmoil and continual conflict. The numerous political crises both resulted from and resulted in larger crises of a social, spiritual, and moral nature. Questions of national identity, religious faith, and moral values, as they appear in Spanish literature from the late 19th century to the present day, are the focus of this course. Readings include works of prose, theater, and poetry drawn from a range of literary movements, and emphasis is placed on the socio-historical context and its relationship to literary innovation. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school Spanish, or SPAN 202.
354 Latin American Literature: Illusion, Fantasy, Magical Realism
Through a survey of Latin American literature from its pre-Columbian origins through the 20th century, this course examines the many forms of alternative reality that Latin American writers have created and explored. The course relates those realities to the cultural and sociological history of Latin America as well as to larger Western literary modes, such as the baroque, romanticism, and surrealism. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school Spanish, or SPAN 202.
355 Latin American Literature: The Many Voices of Latin America
The course explores the diversity of literary voices in Latin America, from pre-Columbian texts to the contemporary writings of Castellanos, Rulfo, and García Márquez. This survey introduces students to the most important developments in Latin American literary history as it examines questions of cultural, ethnic, gender, and class identities. Prerequisite: at least four years of secondary-school Spanish, or SPAN 202.
361 Advanced Composition and Stylistics
This course is structured as an intensive composition class. Emphasis is placed on mastering the fine points of Spanish grammar in order to improve writing skills. In addition to regular class meetings, students are required to attend a series of cultural events, which may include film, theater, etc. Prerequisites: at least four years of secondary-school Spanish, or SPAN 202. Not open to students who score 5 on the AP language exam, except by special permission of instructor. Students required to take this course may do so only on campus.
460 The Spanish Renaissance
This seminar studies the poetry of the 16th and 17th centuries. Particular attention is paid to three currents: the Petrarchan tradition of love poetry, neostoic moral poetry, and the burlesque. Emphasis is placed on the works of Garcilaso, Fray Luis de León, Góngora, Lope de Vega, and Quevedo.
461 Theater of the Golden Age
This seminar studies the techniques and themes of the comedia as exemplified primarily in the works of Lope de Vega, Calderón de la Barca, and Tirso de Molina.
462 Cervantes’ Don Quijote
This seminar is an undergraduate introduction to Cervantes’ masterpiece, based on an analytical study supported by critical bibliography.
465 19th-Century Spanish Literature
This course first explores the historical and literary circumstances surrounding the rise of realism in 19th-century Spain, paying particular attention to aspects of the tradition that are peculiar to the Spanish tradition. Representative works from the height of Spanish realism are examined, and the course ends with the study of texts from the last decades of the century that sought to transcend the limitations inherent in the realist movement.
466 Colonial Latin American Literature
This course studies selections from the major genres of the colonial period through the end of the 17th century: the chronicles of the discovery and conquest, lyric and epic poetry, and colonial theater. The course pays particular attention to the diverse literary representations of the encounter between Spanish and indigenous cultures, and to the writings of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz.
467 19th-Century Latin American Literature
This course examines literary works in prose and verse through about 1870, with an emphasis on the varied manifestations of romanticism in Latin America. These works are studied in the context of the continent’s struggle for political and cultural independence and the project of nation-building.
468 Visions and Re-visions of the Spanish Conquest: An Interdisciplinary Perspective
This course combines historical and literary approaches to examine early representations and interpretations of the Spanish discovery and conquest of the Caribbean and Mexico. The first half of the course compares texts produced by indigenous and Spanish actors during the Conquest period. The analysis of letters, chronicles, treatises, codices and other documents offers insight on the diverse Spanish and Native understandings of the events and ways of portraying them, and on the fierce legal and moral debates that the Conquest engendered among Spaniards. The second half of the course focuses on retrospective representations of the Conquest during the established colonial regime. The analysis of plays, poetry, works of art, and other texts of the 16th and 17th centuries reveals how the Conquest and its aftermath were reimagined by Spanish and Creole subjects, enabling them to articulate new forms of power, authority and hybrid identity.
472 From the Generation of ’98 to the Contemporary Period
From the turn of the century until the Civil War, Spanish literature enjoyed an artistic explosion the likes of which had not been seen since the Golden Age. A profusion of literary movements — including the Generation of ’98, modernism, and the avant-garde — reflected the creative vibrancy of the nation even as it slipped into political and social chaos. This course analyzes the novels of this period, both in terms of literary innovation and relationship to ideological trends and social reality in 20th-century Spain.
473 Post-Civil War Spanish Novel
In post-Civil War Spain, the prolonged tenure of Franco and strict censorship seriously crippled the process of cultural regeneration. For literature, the repression was particularly severe, forcing most promising writers into political exile. Those who remained, however, cloaked their literary discourse on war, repression, and other themes, in an array of new narrative forms and languages. This course analyzes the most significant works of this period, both in terms of their literary innovativeness and their relationship to the sociocultural context.
474 Contemporary Spanish Theater
Through close study of representative dramatists and their respective artistic visions, this course acquaints the student with major formal and thematic developments in contemporary peninsular Spanish theater. Dramatic texts of the pre- and post-war periods are studied within the general framework of their sociocultural context.
475 Spanish as a Global Language
This course explores the historical, social, and cultural elements represented in the dialectical diversity of the Spanish language. Some of the issues studied are the development of Spanish as the national language of Spain; the contemporary status of regional languages and dialects within Spain; the spread of Spanish in the Americas, Africa, and Asia through conquest and colonization; language policies toward indigenous languages in Latin America; and the future of the role of Spanish as a minority language in the United States. Emphasis is put on the role of language in cultural and social identity as well as in political power and conflict. Although primarily a linguistics course, this course counts toward the Spanish major and minor. Taught in Spanish.
476 Linguistic History of Spain
This seminar provides advanced-level language students with the understanding of the evolution of the Spanish language. It focuses on the external history (i.e., cultural, social, historical, and political factors that contributed to the evolution of Spanish from Latin to early romance, and then to the modern language), as well as the internal linguistic changes (i.e., changes in sounds, word formation, sentence structure, and vocabulary). These external and internal developments are considered within the context of linguistic diversity of pre-modern Iberia. Special attention is paid to historical explanations of “irregularities” found in modern Spanish. Therefore, the course is of interest to students who wish to improve their understanding of the idiosyncrasies of the Spanish language. The class also linguistically analyzes a selection from pre-modern texts. This analysis is of particular interest to students who plan to take courses in medieval, Golden Age, and colonial Spanish literature. The course does not presuppose knowledge of linguistics or languages other than Spanish, but does require interest in them. Taught in Spanish.
477 Women Writing in Latin America
An in-depth study of the relationship between gender and genre in literary texts written by women in contemporary Latin America and the Hispanic Caribbean, the course addresses questions of authorship within the development of Latin American women’s literary traditions, as well as the relationship between patriarchal societies and women’s literary discourses.
478 Literature of the Caribbean
This course is a close study of the Hispanic literature of the island nations of the Caribbean, with particular attention to ethnic and cultural diversity. Representative authors in the various genres are studied within the general framework of their social and literary contexts. Emphasis is placed on contemporary writers.
479 Contemporary Latin American Literature
This course offers critical study of selected contemporary Latin American texts in the light of current modes of writing and interpretation. The course delineates the major patterns of formal and thematic development within the literary history of Latin American letters, but emphasizes the analysis of structural and linguistic problems posed by the texts.
481, 482 Major Hispanic Authors
This seminar, offered on an irregular basis, provides the opportunity for extensive study of the works of the most distinguished authors writing in the Spanish language. It is taught by a staff member who has particular interest and expertise in the literature to be examined. SPAN 481 is a category 1 course and SPAN 482 is a category 2 course.
484 Hispanic Writers and the Spanish Civil War
This seminar will undertake an in-depth study of a wide range of literary texts (including poems, short stories, chronicles, and memoirs) by significant Hispanic writers that demonstrate these authors’ literary and political engagement with the Spanish Civil War (1936–39). Other forms of cultural production (such as films, paintings, political speeches, and propaganda posters) will also be analyzed in an exploration of the close connection between literary practice and political commitment in times of war.
200, 300, 400 Courses Taken Abroad
These numbers are used only for courses taken abroad with a Colgate study group, an approved program, or in a foreign institution of higher learning. They designate either language or non-language courses for which there are no exact Colgate equivalents.
291, 391, 491 Independent Study
Independent study courses are designed to fulfill individual needs in language and literature not otherwise provided in this department. SPAN 491 study in literature may not be undertaken until seminar distribution requirements are satisfied.