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Sex, Violence, and (Poetic) Justice: Spanish and New World Classical Theater
SPAN 231
Spring 2011 not offered
Crosslisting: COL 313, IBST 315, THEA 231

From 1580 to 1660 Spanish-language playwrights in Spain and the New World created a repertory comparable for inventiveness, variety, and influence to the classical Greek and Elizabethan English traditions and unmatched by any for the sheer magnitude of the outpouring. Through it a collective identity is shaped and projected and conflicts, often violent, between freedom and authority, desire and conformity, acted out. Designed to please paying popular as well as learned courtly audiences and distinguished for its innovative exploration of hybrid forms such as tragicomedy, Spanish Golden Age theater is typically vital, surprising, and refined all at once. Two fascinating plays by women playwrights are included. Attention will be given to performance: stagecraft, women on the stage, and theater as ritual. Scenes from the plays will be performed informally in class.

Essential Capabilities: Interpretation, Writing
The readings, the oral presentation, class discussion, and the papers are regarded as complementary, mutually reinforcing activities, designed to help you develop your ability to recall and interpret your readings. Class will be given over to detailed imaginative discussion of the main readings, as well as group or team work. Supplementary readings will be brought in regularly to introduce concepts and interpretive gambits (including the broad themes of the course announced in the description), to model ways of reframing and nuancing your responses to the readings, and to encourage a deeper--at once historically informed, textually grounded, and playful--engagement with this classic text. Writing is improved by thoughtful reading, previous discussion, and revision. The course is structured in such a way as to provide you with practice in the use of your reading, of class discussion, and of revision to improve your writing skills (understood in terms of argument, organization, and rhetorical pertinence and flair). The main focus will be the development of a formal, yet personal register of Spanish writing, but you will find that your writing in English also improves as a result of this kind of reflection on what goes into good writing. An oral presentation will be scheduled over the course of the second half of the term in order to encourage you to begin to think carefully about a topic for your final paper.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: HA RLAN
Course Format: DiscussionGrading Mode: Graded
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (COL)(HISP)(RMST)(THEA)

Last Updated on APR-22-2024
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