SPAN233: Power and Resistance in Spain and Spanish America: From the Spanish Empire to the 21st Century

Year 2

This core module is divided into three topic areas comprising of the following: (1) Power and Resistance in Spanish America from the Colony to the 21st Century; (2) War, Dictatorship and Transition in Spain in the 20th and 21st Century; (3) Culture and Resistance in Catalunya in the 20th and 21st Century. The students will study texts which both encourage an engaged reading of Spanish and open up alternative avenues towards traditional fields of study in Hispanism (empire and colonialism, nineteenth-century nation-building, revolution, dictatorship, Francoism, regionalism, neo-liberalism and globalisation.) These disparate fields of study are conceptually unified and made more accessible for the students in two ways. Firstly, we refer students to the theme of power and resistance which concerns them all in various ways. Secondly, we divide the module by geographical region which, given the array of varying cultures and histories in the Spanish-speaking world, represents the least mystifying and most logical method of study. We will employ a text-based approach in which the texts chosen allow us to operate within certain very specific historical and geographical parameters whilst never losing sight of the main theme. Throughout, students will be encouraged to interrogate the meanings of terms such as colony, revolution, rebellion, republic, empire, dictatorship and democracy with close readings of cultural texts which themselves question the assumptions which underpin these terms.