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Chinese

24 Stories of Filial Piety vs. Zhuangzi

The Twenty-four Stories of Filial Piety are well known Chinese stories that exemplify the devotion of children to their parents that is the chief virtue in Confucianism. The Daoist Tales of Zhuangzi on the other hand offer a much different set of values. These tales ""translated"" from classical Chinese into modern Mandarin at the student's language level will serve as a starting point for an exploration into two complimentary and competing schools of thought that have shaped the character and culture of the Chinese. Students will learn basic vocabulary and grammar through a four skills approach while comparing and contrasting the basic concepts of these two important Chinese philosophies. Prerequisites: At least 3 terms Chinese at the college level.

  • Ginger Lin | SP2013 | MTh, 6:30PM- 8:20PM | CHI4213.01
  • Ginger Lin | SP2014 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | CHI4213.01

China Opening

Since the economic reforms begun by Deng Xiaoping in 1979, China has voluntarily opened itself economically. So far, political opening has been limited at best. However, there has been some social opening and no doubt much social change. Selected articles from various types of comtemporary Chinese periodicals serve as a rich source of authentic texts for this course, which integrates language learning with social study. Through reading and discussing these articles as well as writing short essays in Chinese, students will gain insights into contemporay Chinese society. They will do so while building on their competencies in listening, speaking, reading and writing Mandarin Chinese. Intermediate/high level. Conducted in Chinese. Prerequisites: At least four terms of intensive Chinese study. Student must be able to read and write simplified Chinese as well as listen and speak Mandarin at intermediate level.

  • Ginger Lin | FA2011 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | CHI4208.01

Chinese Chan (Zen)

Although commonly thought of as Japanese and known in America by its Japanese name, Zen, Chan Buddhism was truly developed in China and was heavily influenced by Daoism. Chan has had a profound influence on Chinese and East Asian art and thought, but this philosophy remains relevant to modern life in both the East and West. Students will be introduced to the spirit of Chan through modern Mandarin interpretations of classic Chinese, Chan poems and stories. Students will explore Chan while building on their competencies in listening, speaking, reading and writing Mandarin Chinese. Each class or every other class, students will be given a different Chan classics translated into modern Chinese along with a vocabulary list and grammar points for that reading. Students will be expected to read the text and prepare to discuss it in Chinese with the teacher and classmates during the next class meeting. Prerequisites: Two terms of Chinese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ginger Lin | FA2011 | MTh, 6:30PM- 8:20PM | CHI4114.01
  • Ginger Lin | FA2012 | MTh, 6:30PM- 8:20PM | CHI4114.01
  • Ginger Lin | FA2013 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | CHI4114.01
  • Ginger Lin | FA2010 | MWTh, 4:30PM- 6:00PM | CHI4114.01

Chinese Characters and Chinese Culture

All the children of ones parents siblings are all just called cousin in English. However in Chinese there is a different word for each particular relationship. This stems from how in traditional Chinese Confucian culture each individuals duties and obligations towards others are dictated by their relationships, with family relationships being the most important. But then in Chinese everyone is da jia, literally big family. By studying the etymology and morphology of the most basic Chinese characters students will simultaneously gain insights into traditional Chinese cultural values. This course introduces students to spoken and written Mandarin Chinese, paying particular attention to practical vocabulary and sentence patterns. Students learn the Pinyin(romanized) system of writing and to read and write the most basic Chinese characters. After they master 200 characters, students are able to create skits and write short essays about their daily lives. By the end of the term they are able to recognize up to 500 Chinese characters. Prerequisites: None.

  • Ginger Lin | FA2012 | MWTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI2116.01
  • Ginger Lin | FA2013 | MWTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI2120.01

Chinese Culture in Film

While movies such as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon have helped Chinese cinema broadened its appeal and consolidate its position as a significant force in international cinema, such historical fantasies may not do much to help us understand modern Chinese culture. Fortunately, there is much more to contemporary Chinese cinema and many fine Chinese language films are available that may shed more light on modern Chinese culture. Such films and scripts of selected scenes from them serve as a rich source of authentic texts for this course, which integrates language learning with cinema study. Through viewing these films, reading and discussing excerpts from their scripts as well as writing short essays in Chinese, students will gain insights into the changing culture of modern China. They will do so while building on their competencies in listening, speaking, reading and writing Mandarin Chinese. Conducted in Chinese. Advanced level. Prerequisites: At least more than 2 years Chinese at college level.

  • Ginger Lin | SP2013 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | CHI4116.01

Confucianism and Daoism in Chinese Culture

Daoism and Confucianism can be thought of as the Yin and Yang of Chinese culture respectively. While Daoism emphasizes the individual's attempt to live in harmony with the Way of Nature, Confucianism emphasizes society, family and the individual's responsibilities within hierarchical social structures. Through in-class discussion, reading, and writing, students will explore, compare, and contrast these two philosophies and how they have influenced Chinese culture, while building on core competencies in Mandarin Chinese. The material for the course consists of, among other things, teacher prepared texts and multimedia presentations based on classic Daoist and Confucian texts. Conducted in Chinese. Intermediate-high level. Prerequisites: Five terms of Chinese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ginger Lin | SP2012 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | CHI4209.01

Contemporary Chinese Culture in Music

In this course we will explore the ways in which modern and contemporary Chinese culture is expressed in music. Using authentic materials, such as popular songs, music videos and music articles as springboards, students will communicate about current events and culture in China. Each class or every other class, students will be given a different song, video or article with a vocabulary list and grammar points for that material. Students will be expected to prepare to discuss it in Chinese with the teacher and classmates during the next class meeting. Prerequisites: At least 2 years college level Chinese.

  • Ginger Lin | FA2013 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | CHI4118.01

Contemporary Chinese Poetry

While the language of classical Chinese poetry is practically inaccessible to even today's native speakers of Chinese, the poetry of the five contemporary poets studied in this course is written in the vernacular and serves as a rich source of authentic texts for this course, which integrates language learning with poetry study. The five poets, all born after 1980, each offer a unique perspective into the changing society and culture of modern China. Through reading and discussing these poets as well as writing their own poems in Chinese, students will gain insights into the changing culture of modern China, while building on their competencies in listening, speaking, reading, and writing Mandarin Chinese. Conducted in Chinese. Introductory level. Prerequisites: One term of Chinese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ginger Lin | SP2012 | MWTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI2115.01
  • Ginger Lin | SP2013 | MWTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI2115.01
  • Ginger Lin | SP2011 | MWTh, 6:30PM- 8:20PM | CHI2115.01
  • Ginger Lin | SP2014 | MWTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI4119.01

Decade of Change: The Chinese Cultural Revolution

On May 16, 1966, Mao Zedong, the Chairman of the Communist Party in China, launched the Cultural Revolution initiating a decade of widespread social and political upheaval. As Chairman Mao sought to eliminate capitalism with all of its accompanying evils, he changed the structure of Chinese society as well as the rhythm of everyday life for all of its citizens. The impact on the country was profound. By analyzing selected stories, movies, and dramas, students will understand the main events and initiatives of the Cultural Revolution and their impact on everyday people. Conducted in Chinese. Advanced-level course. Prerequisites: Five terms of Chinese or permission of the instructor.

  • Yinglei Zhang | SP2011 | WF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | CHI4701.01

East Meets West

The stories of Chinese immigrants to America and their children provide a rich source of material for the study of comparative cultures and intercultural encounters. In this course we will read and discuss a selection of these stories in Chinese. Students will build on their competencies in reading, writing, listening and speaking Mandarin Chinese while seeking to find insights into Chinese culture, how it differs from Western culture and how these differences may cause misunderstandings and miscommunications. Conducted in Chinese. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Three terms of Chinese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ginger Lin | SP2011 | MWTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI4115.01

Modern Chinese History in Propaganda

Whether on banners hung in public places or in shrill voices blaring from one of millions of loudspeakers spread across the country, propaganda slogans have been a major aspect of the Chinese Communist Party's efforts to forge a modern socialist society. In this course, a selection of these slogans from the beginning of the communist era up to the present will be used as a source of authentic texts for study. Students will explore the role of government social propaganda in shaping modern Chinese culture through in-class discussions and essay writing while developing their competencies in listening, speaking, reading and writing in Mandarin Chinese. Intermediate-high level. Conducted in Chinese. Prerequisites: Four terms of Chinese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ginger Lin | FA2012 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | CHI4210.01

Special Projects in Advanced Chinese

This course is designed for students to research/complete a project in their field of interest/concentration. In order to take this course, students are required to write a proposal of their projects and be accepted by the instructor. Conducted in Chinese. Advanced level. Prerequisites: Six terms of Chinese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ginger Lin | FA2011 | T, 2:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI4710.01

Special Projects in Advanced Chinese II

This course is designed for students to research/complete a project in their field of interest/concentration. In order to take this course, students are required to write a proposal of their projects and be accepted by the instructor. Conducted in Chinese. Advanced level. Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor.

  • Ginger Lin | SP2012 | T, 2:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI4711.01

The Daoist Tales of Zhuang Zi

If Confucianism is the Yang of Chinese culture, then Daoism is the Yin. Not only has Daoism had a profound influence on traditional Chinese art and thought, but this philosophy remains relevant to modern life in both the East and West. Students will be introduced to the main precepts of Daoism through modern Chinese interpretations of the Tales of Zhuang Zi. Students will explore Daoist concepts while building on their competencies in listening, speaking, reading and writing Mandarin Chinese. Each class or every other class, students will be given a different one of the Tales of Zhuang Zi translated into modern Chinese along with a vocabulary list for that reading. Students will be expected to read the tale and prepare to discuss it in Chinese with the teacher and classmates during the next class meeting. Conducted in Chinese. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Three terms of Chinese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ginger Lin | SP2012 | MTh, 6:30PM- 8:20PM | CHI4113.01

The Modern Chinese Family

Mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, sons and daughters are all just called cousin in English. However in Chinese there is a different word for each relationship. This stems from how in traditional Chinese Confucian culture each individual's duties and obligations towards others are dictated by their relationships, with family relationships being the most important. But then in Chinese everyone is da jia, literally big family. In this course students will explore traditional Chinese family values and we will discuss how these values are evolving in modern Chinese society.This course introduces students to spoken and written Mandarin Chinese, paying particular attention to practical vocabulary and sentence patterns. Students learn the Pinyin (romanized) system of writing and to read and write the most basic Chinese characters. After they master 200 characters, students are able to create skits and write short essays about their daily lives. By the end of the term they are able to recognize up to 500 Chinese characters. Introductory level. Conducted in Chinese. Prerequisites: None.

  • Ginger Lin | FA2011 | MWTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | CHI2113.01
  • Ginger Lin | FA2010 | MWTh, 6:30PM- 8:20PM | CHI2113.01

The Visual Art of China

Whether it is the serenity of a classical Chinese landscape, the heroism of a CCP propaganda poster, or the humor of "The history of Chinese painting and the history of modern western art washed in the washing machine for two minutes", art is always somehow a reflection of the culture. In this class we will explore the ways in which art expresses culture. Each class or every other class, students will be given a packet with visual and written information on a particular work of art with a vocabulary list and grammar points for that material. Students will be expected to prepare to discuss it in Chinese with the teacher and classmates during the next class meeting. Prerequisites: At least 5 terms College level Chinese

  • Ginger Lin | SP2014 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | CHI4496.01

Foreign Language Education

Discourse and Thinking

Humans can be defined as thinkers and as knowers of language, but it is in discourse that thinking and language intersect. At this intersection, we can see that thinking is not simply a private, mental phenomenon, but is enabled and constrained, supported or blocked in discourse as speakers engage in their practical and intellectual activities. In this course we make connections between discourse and thinking within ordinary communicative activities and trace the influence and impact of discourse on the activities and products of thinking. Throughout the course, students gather discourse data on thinking within ordinary talk, classrooms, and other contexts. Students draw on several discourse analytic tools rooted in the social sciences, especially linguistics and sociology, to make sense of their data. Prerequisites: None.

  • Peter Jones | SP2013 | W, 8:00AM-12:00PM | EDU2520.01
  • Peter Jones | FA2010 | W, 8:20AM-12:00PM | FLE2520.01

Latin: Katabasis

This intermediate Latin course will examine the theme of katabasis -- descent into the underworld. Special attention will be paid to book six of Virgil's Aeneid and its relationship to Homeric precedents. We will read selections from Ovid (Orpheus and Eurydice) and examine Lucretius' philosophical vision in De rerum natura. Lucan's unique adaptation of epic katabsis in the Pharsalia will serve as a basis for a consideration of epic's transformation in the Silver Age. We will conclude by looking at katabasis in European literature, particularly in Dante. Grammar review, vocabulary development, and the fundamentals of Latin metrics will be important focus points. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor and previous study of Latin at the intermediate level.

  • Stephen Shapiro | SP2014 | T, 6:10PM- 8:00PM | FLE4326.01

Pronounced: the International Phonetic Alphabet

The International Phonetic Alphabet is an important and very useful tool for language and voice students. It allows one to pronounce an alphabet of symbols that represent sounds used in all languages. Singers of classical music perform music in a minimum of five languages. They are not expected to be fluent in all of these languages, but they are expected to pronounce them convincingly, as if each were their mother tongue. Similarly, many language students have difficulty with sounds that are not part of their native language. For these students too the IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) is an invaluable tool: learning the IPA and the rules of pronunciation can help classical singers and language students master the pronunciation of many different languages. The course will focus first on learning the IPA for the English language. We will then go on to use poetry as a tool for learning the basic rules of additional symbols and pronunciation in other languages - Italian, French, German and Spanish. Depending on the individual needs of the students, the rules for pronunciation of other languages can also be included in this course. Prerequisites: None.

  • Martha Herr | SP2012 | W, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | FLE2110.01

Second Language and Culture Acquisition

Language and cultural learning are potentially transformative, yet can seem evanescent, elusive, and difficult to name and deliberately provide for. What conditions contribute to second language and cultural learning of the transformative kind? How does schooling both cooperate with, and block, opportunities for learning new languages and cultures? Sociocultural, interactionist, and linguistic perspectives structure our exploration of the conditions, processes and outcomes of second language learning. Course participants will engage in second language tutoring in the local school district with English as a Second Language students. The course is particularly recommended for preparation for a semester abroad and can also serve as an opportunity to reflect and theorize upon return. Prerequisites: None.

  • Peter Jones | FA2013 | T, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | EDU2521.01
  • Peter Jones | FA2011 | T, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | FLE2521.01
  • Peter Jones | FA2012 | T, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | FLE2521.01

French

"Francophonie" Through the Eyes of a Child

Through a study of theoretical/critical texts, short stories, novels, and films, this course will offer a literary and cultural exploration of the Francophone world of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries through the eyes of a child. In order to illustrate the plurality of Francophone literature outside of the Hexagon, readings will include works by North and Sub-Saharan African and Caribbean writers. By preparing personal reflection papers and exposés, and participating in discussions and debates, students will learn to develop, communicate, and defend their ideas via writing and speaking. They will also be asked to compose a research paper that demonstrates critical analysis and effective argumentation concerning a problematic related to the course materials and/or themes. Conducted in French. Advanced level. Prerequisites: Six terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Wakaba Futamura | FA2011 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4716.01

Absolutism and Its Discontents

This course will examine the relationship between cultural forms (architecture, garden design, art, music, opera, ballet, literature, etc.) and power at the court of Louis XIV. We will focus our attentions on primary texts and cultural artifacts from the period while examining modern perspectives (including film) on the Golden Age of French Classicism at Versailles. We will also examine the counterculture that questioned the royal cultural machine in order to place the monolithic century of Louis XIV in a new perspective. Our study of seventeenth-century France will draw us into important contemporary debates concerning the relationship between art and power as well as dissent and public action. Conducted in French. Advanced level. Prerequisites: Six terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Stephen Shapiro | SP2011 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4715.01
  • Stephen Shapiro | SP2014 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4715.01

Art of Persuasion: French Literature and Rhetoric

In this course we will read closely different genres of texts ranging from drama and fiction to poetry and oratory, from the sixteenth century to the present. Through the analysis of these texts we will discover all the subtleties and complexities of communication, rhetorical devices and the art of persuasion. Students will be responsible for regular assignments and oral presentations that will help them not only to improve their reading, speaking and writing skills but also to develop their ability to recognize, deconstruct and analyze the different rhetorical devices used by writers. Conducted in French. High intermediate level. Prerequisites: Four terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Jean-Frederic Hennuy | SP2011 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4212.01

Behind the Veil

What provokes fear? The unknown, or the preconceived stigmas associated with the unknown? Through a study of articles, novels, films, and current events, students will have a chance to unveil the circumstances of the Muslim woman in the Francophone world of the twentieth and twenty-first century as a step toward dispelling preconceptions and/or blind fear. In order to illustrate the plurality of images of the Muslim woman, assignments will include readings of texts by French, North and Sub-Saharan African authors, and viewings of films on Francophone North and Sub-Saharan African cultures. Students will be asked to prepare reaction papers, undertake individual research on current events, give exposés, and participate in debates in order to learn to not only critically analyze texts and themes covered in class, but also articulate their ideas via writing and speaking. Conducted in French. Intermediate-high level. Prerequisites: Four terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Wakaba Futamura | FA2011 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4220.01

Chocolat

Introduced in France after a complex trajectory from the New World, chocolate constituted, when it arrived in Paris, a medical and cultural catalyst for the French seventeenth-century aristocracy and haute-bourgeoisie. In this course, students will explore the economic, historical, social, political, artistic and cultural legacy of chocolate production and consumption in French-speaking contexts to understand how the "food of the gods" has shaped societies throughout the world. Students will hone their linguistic skills using films, videos, literary excerpts, ads, and articles. Written assignments, oral presentations will help develop students their listening and speaking, reading and writing as well as their critical skills. Conducted in French. Intermediate-high level. Prerequisites: At least 3 semesters of college-level French.

  • Noelle Rouxel-Cubberly | SP2014 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4223.01

Creatrices

Their films, their books, their work, their lives have marked and shaped other lives. This course will focus on selected works of French and francophone women creators- authors, painters, scientists, stand up comedians, entrepreneurs. We will explore a variety of genres and forms of expressions (essays, novels, films, Skype and live interviews, stand up acts, etc). Readings include excerps from La Princess de Cleves (Madame de Lafayette, 1678), Histoire de ma vie (George Sand, 1855), Le duexieme sexe (Simone de Beauvoir, 1949), Reves de femmes: une enfance au harem (Mernisse, 1996), and the book Kiffe kiffe demaine (Guene 2006). Course material also includes three films: Rue Cases-Negres (Palcy 1983), Les Silences du palais (Tlatli, 1994), Inch'Allah dimanche (benguigui, 2008), paintings by Berthe Morison, scientist Marie Curie's biographical texts, skits by humorists Florence Foresti and Valerie Lemercier. Students will also learn their live discussions with contemporary French women, Maboula Soumahoro, creator of the Black History Month in France, and entrepreneur Samia Ait-Hellal whose life and work reflect contemporary France. Written assignments and oral presentations will help students improve their reading, speaking and writing skills in french. Students will also exchange with native speakers on a conversation exchange platform. Advanced level. Conducted in French. Prerequisites: Coursework at the intermediate-high level and permission of the instructor.

  • Noelle Rouxel-Cubberly | FA2013 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4721.01

Creole Identities/ Identites creoles

This course examines literary and cultural expressions of Creole identities in several regions of the French-speaking world, especially the Caribbean, the Indian Ocean, and Louisiana. Forged primarily in former slave societies, where populations of diverse origins created new identities and languages, Creole cultures resist easy categorization. Theorist Édouard Glissant argues that the process of creolization provides a vital, intercultural paradigm for our globalized world. In that spirit, we will explore (1) how larger cultural issues are treated in French depictions of "Creoleness" and, conversely, (2) how texts from Creole cultures challenge dominant assumptions about identity and language itself. The texts studied in the class span from the colonial era to the twenty-first century; they include two novels, short fiction, historical documents, poetry, theater, folktales, songs, and film. Conducted in French. Advanced level. Prerequisites: Six terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Clint Bruce | SP2013 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4719.01

Francophone Cinema: Images of Otherness

This course will introduce students to the diverse cinematic production of the French-speaking world, focusing on countries and regions outside of metropolitan France, namely Quebec, the Caribbean, the Maghreb, and sub-Saharan Africa. We will analyze films that challenge how "the Other" - in terms of ethnic, racial, religious, linguistic, gender, and class differences - is perceived and constructed; considerations of identity, community, and intercultural relations will inform discussion. Students will be responsible for researching topics dealing with relevant history, film-makers, and the regions depicted. Written assignments and oral presentation will develop students' level of comprehension, mastery of grammar, and critical faculties in French. Intermediate-low level. Conducted in French. Prerequisites:Two terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Clint Bruce | FA2012 | TWF, 8:30AM-10:00AM | FRE4120.01
  • Clint Bruce | FA2012 | TWF, 4:10PM- 5:40PM | FRE4120.02

French America

This course will examine French representations of America in literature, political philosophy, and film. We will focus on the paradoxes inherent in the French fascination with America as well as how America has served as a figure for the expression of French anxieties about modernity and a changing world. Beginning with Montaigne, Buffon, and Tocqueville we will analyze the association of America with an idealized simplicity; later we will study America as a symbol of dehumanizing industrialization and modernity in the work of Celine and Duhamel. The work of Stephane Bouquet and Bernard-Henri Levy will offer a view of contemporary France's ever-changing fascination with America. Intermediate-high level. Prerequisites: 2 courses at the intermediate-low level or 1 course at the intermediate-high level in French at Bennington or the permission of the instructor.

  • Stephen Shapiro | FA2013 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4221.01

Insider Perspectives on the Francophone World II

Viewed from the outside, the French-speaking world offers enticing images of beauty, pleasure, and freedom. From the inside, however, it is a complicated, often contradictory world where implicit codes and values shape the most basic aspects of daily life. This course will give you an insider's perspective on a cultural and communicative system whose ideas, customs, and belief systems are surprisingly different from your own. Together, we will examine how daily life and activities reflect culturally specific ideologies and values. Emphasis will be placed on developing ease, fluency, and sophistication in oral and written expression. Class will be conducted in French and revolve around authentic materials from the Francophone world (video, music, advertisements, literary texts). Conducted in French. Introductory level. Prerequisites: FRE2103 Insider Perspectives on the French-Speaking World or one term of introductory level French at Bennington.

  • Noelle Rouxel-Cubberly | SP2014 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | FRE2104.01
  • Stephen Shapiro | SP2012 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | FRE2104.01
  • Stephen Shapiro | SP2013 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | FRE2104.01

Insider Perspectives on the French-Speaking World

Viewed from the outside, the French-speaking world offers enticing images of beauty, pleasure, and freedom. From the inside, however, it is a complicated, often contradictory world where implicit codes and values shape the most basic aspects of daily life. This course will give you an insider's perspective on a cultural and communicative system whose ideas, customs, and belief systems are surprisingly different from your own. Together, we will examine how daily life and activities (friendship and family relationships, housing, leisure, work, and food culture) reflect culturally specific ideologies and values. Emphasis will be placed on developing ease, fluency, and sophistication in oral and written expression. Designed for students with no previous study of French, this class will revolve around authentic materials from the Francophone world (video, music, advertisements, literary texts). Introductory level. Conducted in French. Prerequisites: None.

  • Stephen Shapiro | FA2011 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | FRE2103.01
  • Stephen Shapiro | FA2012 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | FRE2103.01
  • Stephen Shapiro | FA2013 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | FRE2103.01

Introduction to French & the Francophone World I

In this year-long course, students will discover the language and the cultures that make up the French-speaking world. During the fall term, we will engage with a variety of subjects and concepts, such as family, education, lifestyle, and self. From the first day of class, students will speak and write in the language, learning to express their opinions and ideas and to communicate effectively through conversation, dialogues and expository writing. Attention will be given to using proper language structures and register as well as to developing good pronunciation. Conducted in French. Introductory level. Prerequisites: None.

  • Jean-Frederic Hennuy | FA2010 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | FRE2101.01

Introduction to French & the Francophone World II

In the continuation of this year-long course, students will discover the language and the cultures that make up the French-speaking world. From the beginning, students will read, watch and listen to various media about a variety of subjects, such as families, leisure, education, and growing up and getting old in today's society. Media will include newspaper articles, poems, songs, Web sites and video clips. From the first day of class, students will speak and write the language, learning to express their feelings and ideas, and communicate effectively through role plays, short dialogues, spontaneous conversations and expository writing. Attention will be given equally to developing good pronunciation and enunciation, and using proper language structures and register, while learning how to write, talk about, and present a variety of topics in an effective and interesting way. Conducted in French. Introductory level. Prerequisites: One term of French at Bennington or permission of the instructor.

  • Jean-Frederic Hennuy | SP2011 | MWTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | FRE2102.01

La Francophonie in Song

A cultivated person is like a music box, wrote French philosopher Alain. They always have two or three songs in their belly. In this course, students will cultivate their knowledge of la Francophonie through an exploration of its songs. From opera to opra-rock, folk to hip-hop, pop to punk, zouk to zydeco and beyond, Francophone musical traditions offer not only a window onto the cultures and geographical areas that produce them, but also an opportunity to study the French language in uniquely creative forms. Through analysis of the interplay of sound and lyrics, students will increase their level of comprehension, mastery of grammar, and critical faculties in French. Throughout the term, they will complete a variety of written and oral exercises, with emphasis placed on recognizing underlying cultural principles. Intermediate-low level. Conducted in French. Prerequisites: Three semesters of French or instructor permission.

  • Clint Bruce | SP2013 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4218.01

Libertinage

This course examines libertinage, the movement of early-modern freethinkers who championed individual autonomy and questioned the authority of religious, moral, social, and political thought. We will focus particular attention on questions of pleasure and morality, sexuality and power, authority and subversion. Authors will include Montaigne, Descartes, Molière (Dom Juan), Cyrano de Bergerac (Voyage dans la lune), Diderot (La religieuse), Laclos (Les Liasons dangereuses), and Sade (La Philosophie dans le boudoir). Regular assignments and oral presentations will help students improve their reading, speaking and writing skills in French. Advanced level. Conducted in French.

  • Stephen Shapiro | FA2012 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4718.01

Life Stories

This course will focus on perfecting your written French through creative autobiographical writing. Literary readings will offer both a critical perspective on a wide variety of autobiographical genres as well as models for inspiration and imitation in your own writing. We will also examine style and register while striving to master some of the stylistic and grammatical difficulties which confound even native speakers. Workshop sessions will allow students to present each others' work in a workshop setting. Conducted in French. Intermediate-high level. Prerequisites: Five terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Stephen Shapiro | SP2012 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4214.01

Literature and Liberte', 1815-1900

This course explores the complex relationship between esthetic freedom, on the one hand, and political and social freedom, on the other, in nineteenth-century French literature. In the decades following the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars, the issue of liberté/freedom in modern France would fuel continual debate, drive social movements, and spark repeated revolutions. We will thus examine the assumptions and aftereffects of Victor Hugo's call for "freedom in art, freedom in society," seeking out the tension between these values. Writers studied will include Lamartine, Hugo, Balzac (La Peau de chagrin), Sand, Baudelaire, Flaubert (Trois contes), Rimbaud, Maupassant, and Zola (Germinal). Written assignments and oral presentations will focus on language skills and critical analysis with a firm grounding in historical context. Intermediate-high level. Conducted in French. Prerequisites: Four terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Clint Bruce | FA2012 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4217.01

Love and Friendship in Contemporary French Cinema

The concepts of love and friendship are central to many cultures, but their defining parameters and the degree to which they are understood as interrelated can vary widely from culture to culture. In this course, we will examine the ways in which elements of the romantic and platonic relationships depicted in a number of French films maintain or contradict stereotypes about the French. We will also study the ways in which cinema as a form lends itself to reconstructing human relationships. Throughout the term, students will complete a variety of written and oral exercises, with particular emphasis placed on recognizing underlying cultural principles and on the development of narrative, descriptive, analytical, and research skills. Films include: Un Cur en hiver (Sautet 1992), Nelly et M. Arnaud (Sautet 1995), Marius et Jeanette (Guediguian 1997), Le dner de cons (Veber 1998), and Le Fabuleux Destin dAmlie Poulin (Jeunet 2001). Conducted in French. Low-intermediate level. Prerequisite: Two terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Isabel Roche | FA2010 | MWTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4108.01

Paris on Screen: Tradition and Modernity

In this course, we will study the representation of the city of Paris on film in order to examine modernity's challenges to tradition. In particular, we will focus on the question of how urban communities and city dwellers react to increasing disconnectedness, anonymity, and solitude. Films will include Le Fabuleux destin d'Amelie Poulain, La Haine, Chacun cherche son chat Paris, Playtime, and Paris, je t'aime. Class discussions, activities, written assignments, and oral presentations will allow students to improve their linguistic proficiency and analytical skills. Conducted in French. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Two terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Stephen Shapiro | FA2011 | TWF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4117.01
  • Stephen Shapiro | SP2014 | TWF, 8:30AM-10:00AM | FRE4117.01

Sartre and Existentialism: Literature & Engagement

Sartre is often portrayed as the prototype of the politically engaged intellectual. In this seminar, the first half of the term will be dedicated to the reading of Sartre's extensive work: his fiction, his drama, as well as his philosophical and critical texts. We will study the emergence of a new philosophy of politics and society based on Existentialist thought. During the second half of the term we will analyze the centrality of Sartre's thought in 20th century existentialism. We will also examine Sartre's enduring influences on his best-known French philosophical contemporaries Camus, Merleau-Ponty and de Beauvoir - in terms of their relationship to Sartre's thought and their own philosophical thinking. Students will conduct independent research, make regular in-class presentations, and read a variety of critical texts, culminating in a 20-page research paper on a topic related to the course. Advanced level. Conducted in French. Prerequisites: Six term of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Jean-Frederic Hennuy | FA2010 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4702.01

Shaping Perspectives in the News

In France and French-speaking countries, the news isn't always presented in the same way as in the US. The topics are not the same and neither is the way in which they are reported/covered. Differences arise in function of the country, the region, where the newspaper is produced, notwithstanding the type or the political leaning of the paper. Throughout the term, you will analyse and study the ways in which the news is presented in France and in French speaking countries around the world. You will learn different reading strategies that will help you to tackle a variety of subjects/articles (politics/economics/culture/sports/arts). All the articles that we will read you will be able to find on the Internet (but their original medium may have been a newspaper/radio/television) and we will look at a different country every 15 days. Every week you will be expected to produce a written piece of work in which you will express your opinions and critical analysis and at the end of the term there will be a final project. Prerequisites: Three terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Jean-Frederic Hennuy | SP2012 | TWF, 8:30AM-10:00AM | FRE4118.01

The Film Trailer Project

In this course, French films are used as linguistic and cultural textbooks. While honing their language skills (listening, reading, speaking and writing), students will focus on selected cultural topics (food, clothes, history, gestures, etc.). Students will create film trailers that reflect their understanding of the French language and cultural realities. Films include L'argent de poche (Truffaut, 1976), Rue Cases Negres (Palcy 1983), Au revoir les enfants (Malle, 1987), Chocolate (Denis 1988), Le Diner de cons (Veber, 1998), Les glaneurs et la glaneuse (Varda 2000), Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran (Dupeyron, 2003), Comme une image (Jaboi 2004), and Cache (Haneke 2005). A common website and in-class presentations will allow students to share and discuss their findings. Conversatione exchanges with native speakers will enrich this exploration of these representations of the French-speaking world. Conduced in French Prerequisites: Two terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Noelle Rouxel-Cubberly | FA2013 | TWF, 8:30AM-10:00AM | FRE4119.01

Thinking Freely: Montaigne

Why read Montaigne (1533-92) in the 21st Century? How can a French author from the 16th Century help us understand and think about our contemporary lives? We will read Montaigne's essays not only because he was the writer who influenced figures as diverse as Shakespeare, Descartes, Rousseau, Nietzsche, and Virginia Woolf, but mainly because he is the originator of modern thought. Through the study of Montaigne's essays we will discuss and mainly think, like him, aloud and discursively, using his innovative method of philosophical inquiry which mixes the anecdotal and the personal with serious critiques about friendship; solitude; colonialism; the relationship between children and their parents; the power of poetry to encapsulate the workings of desire, fanaticism and cruelty; tolerance and acceptance of otherness; and also death, sex, travel, friendship, kidney stones, the human thumb, and above all, "the power of the ordinary and the unremarkable, the value of the here-and-now." Students will be responsible for regular assignments and oral presentations that will help them not only to improve their reading, speaking and writing skills but also to develop their ability to think, speak and write critically in French. Conducted in French. Advanced level. Prerequisites: Seven terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Jean-Frederic Hennuy | SP2012 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4717.01

Travel and Discovery

In this course, we will explore the representation of travel and discovery in a variety of genres (essay, theater, novel, poetry, film). By examining both fictive and real travel narratives, we will look at how reality is transformed into a text and how fictions help us to imagine and discover new ways of thinking and living. Central themes will include exile and homecoming, utopia, and the opposition between the primitive and the civilized. We will study works from the 16th through 20th centuries by Montaigne, Du Bellay, Baudelaire, Michel Tournier, Lopold Senghor, Marjane Satrapi, and others. This course will introduce you to French literary genres as well as writing and speaking about literature in French. It aims to provide you the basic critical vocabulary for the study of literature. Frequent written and oral assignments will give you opportunities to communicate your own insights and observations about the texts we will study. Conducted in French. High intermediate level. Prerequisites: Four terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Stephen Shapiro | SP2013 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE4213.01
  • Stephen Shapiro | FA2010 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4213.01

Who is Really French?

The notion of French exceptionalism is deeply embedded in the nature of the French national identity. This course will explore the French nation's self-image, how it portrays itself in both texts (fiction and non-fiction) and visual arts (such as painting and cinema). Throughout the term, students will complete a variety of written and oral exercises, with particular emphasis placed on the ability to use language to analyze and discuss specific cultural aspects of France. Conducted in French. Low-intermediate level. Prerequisites: Three terms of French or permission of the instructor.

  • Jean-Frederic Hennuy | SP2011 | MWTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | FRE4116.01

Your French Films

Never seen a Godard film? You couldn't name a French female filmmaker? You wonder what French-speaking Arabic films look like? In this exploratory course in French cinema, each student will select, with the help of the instructor, the film they want to include in the syllabus. Critique and theoretical readings will be included in the analysis of the films. Group work and scene analysis as well as work on cultural specificities will allow students to shape their understanding of French cinema in its cultural context. Some French preferred. Conducted in English. Among the films suggested: Zero de Conduite, Un chien andalou, Boudu sauve des eaux, A bout de souffle, Les 400 coups, Mon ONcle, Trafic, Bled Number One, La Noire de..., Les Plages d'Anges, Prete-moi ta main, L'Emploi du temps, Mon ONcle d'Amerique, White Material, De L'autre cote, Bab el Oued City, La Folie ALmeyer, Xala. Prerequisites: None.

  • Noelle Rouxel-Cubberly | SP2014 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | FRE2112.01

Italian

America in Italy

Whether as a myth, or as a geopolitical space, the United States of America hold a unique place in the history and in the collective imagery of Italians. How does Italian culture confront its own cultural construct of the U.S.A. and what is it that makes Italians rediscover and reinvent America still today? What is the myth made of? This course focuses on ideas of America through Italian literature and film, exploring also TV productions and journalistic reportage, in particular for the section devoted to the post-9/11 years. Students will expand their knowledge of Italian culture, history, and literature while improving their critical analysis, writing, and research skills. Conducted in Italian. Intermediate-high and advanced levels combined. Prerequisites: Five terms of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | SP2014 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA4602.01
  • Barbara Alfano | SP2011 | T, 2:10PM- 6:00PM | ITA4602.01

Canta che ti passa: Social Commentary in Music

Canta che ti passa," "Sing and you'll feel better," says an old Italian adage. Yet, Italians do not always sing to forget their troubles. Much of the Italian musical tradition expresses social and political commentary, seriously or ironically. Songs as diverse and far apart in time as Toto Cotugno's populist "L'italiano" (An Italian, 1983), Giorgio Gaber's intellectually engaged "Io Non mi sento italiano" (I'm Not Really Italian, 2003), and Nilla Pizzi's tongue-in-cheek "Papaveri e papere" (Poppies and Ducks, 1952) are equally representative of the many cultural faces of Italy. Through music, but not only, students will learn what Italians have to say about their own cultural, social, and political habits, and possibly sing along. Journal articles, interviews, advertisements, web sites, film, and videos will also be part of this course. Students will strengthen their speaking skills and become familiar with the linguistic structures that will enable them to express their viewpoints with a certain ease, developing, on the writing side, paragraph-level discourse. We will focus in particular on the use of the subjunctive and the conditional, and on the agreement of verbal tenses, while also reviewing the basic grammar covered in the first two terms of Italian. Intermediate-low level. Conducted in Italian. Prerequisites: Two terms of Italian, or permission by the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2013 | F, 8:10AM-10:00AM | ITA4117.01

Humor in Italian Literature and Culture

Humor is a powerful tool to understand the deepest tenets of a culture, its history, and the nuances of its language. This course explores the use of humor in contemporary Italian literature, film, theater, and television. Through in-class analyses and discussions of primary sources, students will further improve their speaking skills in Italian. Writing abilities will be developed according to the students linguistic levels. A final, research project will cap the course. This course combines the high-intermediate and advanced levels. Conducted in Italian. Prerequisites: Four term of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2010 | Th, 2:10PM- 6:00PM | ITA4601.01

Italian Genius Through the Centuries

The course focuses on a few accomplishments of the Italian genius that have had a strong impact on the development of world civilization. Italy as a nation did not exist either when the city of Cremona produced the first violins, or when Michelangelo painted the Sistine Chapel. There was no Italy as such when Dante was imagining his "Italia," nor when Da Vinci painted La gioconda. The nation had existed only for twenty years when Carlo Collodi set out to write Pinocchio in 1881 --not all Italian children could understand his language. Yet, for centuries the world had had no doubt about who and what was Italian. We will explore the lives and works of figures recognized and acclaimed world wide, and the Italy(ies) they lived in; particular attention will be given to the Renaissance. The following is only a short list of the personalities with whom we will get acquainted: Dante and Boccaccio (literature), Monteverdi (music), Brunelleschi (architecture), Leonardo Da Vinci (arts and sciences), Saint Francis of Assisi and Saint Catherine of Siena (religious activism), Saint Thomas Aquinae (philosophy), The Medici family (artistic patronage and the banking system in the Renaissance), Federico Fellini (film), Dario Fo (Nobel for literature), Maria Montessori (pedagogy), Rita Levi-Montalcini (Nobel for medicine). Prerequisites: None.

  • Barbara Alfano | SP2014 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA2110.01

Italians About Their World(s)

Come with a lot of curiosity as well as critical sense to discover what Italians say about their own cultural, social, and political habits and what they fail to comment upon. Through journal articles, interviews, advertisements, web sites, film, e-mails, and conversations with Italians, we will see what Italy has to say about issues such as family and familism; the role of women in society and at home; gay marriage; education and the relevance of humanities; unemployment and the young; style and taste; the constant turmoil of politics and its historical causes; immigration and how it is changing the country; the dreams and nightmares of Italians; religion; and other relevant and apparently irrelevant topics. Students will strengthen their speaking skills and get a grip on the linguistic structures that will enable them to express their ideas and perspectives with a certain ease, developing, on the writing side, paragraph-level discourse. Students will conclude the term with a guided research project. Intermediate-Low level. Conducted in Italian. Prerequisites: Two terms of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2011 | MWTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA4108.01
  • Barbara Alfano | FA2010 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA4108.01

Italo Calvino: Narrating the Unfamiliar

The course focuses on Calvino's novels _Le citta` invisibili_ (1972); _Il Castello dei Destini Incrociati_ (1973); _Se una notte d'inverno un viaggiatore_ (1979); and the autobiographical _Eremita a Parigi_, a collection of his notes written between 1967 and 1984 when living and traveling abroad. These works narrate of odd and unfamiliar spaces, and of bizarre situations in which imagination plays the main role. Travel, but not only, relates the stories to one another. The reading of the novels will be supported by Calvino's _Lezioni Americane_ (1985)and by secondary, critical literature. Students will focus on creative writing to advance toward written proficiency, and so they will keep practicing complex grammatical structures, while also experimenting with tone, style, and register, and with narrative structures. By the end of term, students will produce either a short memoir, or a short story in Italian. Prerequisites: Four terms of Italian, or permission by the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2013 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA4213.01

Italy Through Regional Contexts

There are as many Italies as the regions that make up the country. There are, in fact, more since dialects, cuisine and social behavior may vary significantly in any one region. This course takes a path beyond the obvious and apparent to lead students into an exploration of the differences, peculiarities and singularities of Italian regional cultures and of how the puzzle stays together in a manner that is called Italian. The investigation of regional history, culture, and literature will be supported by individual research on the matter that will culminate in a final, original project. Students will continue developing their speaking skills, enlarging their vocabulary and strengthening the use of complex linguistic structures. As students develop their writing, they will initiate their transition from a paragraph-level discourse to a more sophisticated and analytical text. Conducted in Italian. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Three terms of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | SP2012 | MTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | ITA4102.01
  • Barbara Alfano | SP2011 | MWTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA4102.01

Love and Other Italian Disasters

In his film _Ricomincio da tre_ (Im Starting Back at Three) the Italian director and protagonist Massimo Troisi responds to his girlfriend who reminds him that When you have love, you have everything: No, youre wrong that is health. This course focuses on the representation of love, partnership, and their (im)possibilities in contemporary Italian literature and film as they narrate of cultural landscapes caught between modernity and tradition. Students will get acquainted with Italian thought on love. They will expand their knowledge of Italian culture, history, literature, and film while improving their critical analysis, writing, and research skills. Conducted in Italian. Intermediate-high and advanced levels combined. Prerequisites: Five terms of Italian, or permission by the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | SP2013 | TTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | ITA4607.01

Mother Figure and Motherly Figures

This course explores the concept of motherhood and the role of the mother in Italian culture through literature, film, art, and music. Some of the questions that the course will try to answer are: What are the implications and ramifications of such a crucial institution as motherhood in Italian society, for both women and men? How does motherhood affect the modern family, and how has the modern family changed that same institution? This course combines the high-intermediate and advanced levels, and is conducted entirely in Italian. Prerequisites: Four terms of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2011 | T, 2:10PM- 6:00PM | ITA4603.01

Persuasion in Italian Culture

This is an introductory course in Italian that will open the door to the inner aspects of the Boot's culture through the analysis of advertisement. We will take into consideration mostly TV, radio, and magazine commercials. Focusing on the power of persuasion of Italian advertisement, we will explore the tenets of Italian culture whose social life revolves around close interpersonal relationships and attachment to places. Both aspects, for the good and the bad, shape an Italian's day from the morning coffee to the late dinner at home and do affect an individual's entire life. Furthermore, through role play, music, film, videos, the internet and plenty of different texts you will plunge into Italian real life, understand its mechanisms, learn Italian sense of friendship, sense of humor and self-irony, passion for dressing and eating well, and the downsides of it all. By the end of the term you will be able to carry out many everyday tasks in Italian and produce simple sentence-level discourse. Emphasis is on oral communication and performance. Introductory level. Conducted in Italian. Prerequisites: None.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2012 | MTTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | ITA2109.01

The Culture of Italian Opera

This course explores Italian culture through one of its most celebrated traditions--opera. Students will discuss plots, settings, characters, and themes while strengthening their speaking skills and acquiring new vocabulary. Through the comparison of past and present cultural norms and habits, and through the relationship between those cultural norms and romantic love, students will also gain insight into contemporary Italian life and into Italian history. They will get a grip on the linguistic structures that will enable them to express their points of view with a certain ease, developing, on the writing side, paragraph-level discourse. Students will conclude the term with a guided research project. This class meets three times a week, two as per schedule. The third meeting is devoted to watch the operas and will be scheduled at the beginning of the term, with the students. Low-intermediate level. Conducted in Italian. Prerequisites: Two terms of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2012 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA4115.01

Travelling in Italian Film

In Italian culture, as it happens for every culture, the idea of travel is deeply connected to the country's social and historical contexts, and to the questioning of personal identity. In this respect, travel becomes a mirror for the traveler. In the case of Italian narratives, is the mirror sending back surprising images, disclosing secrets, or repeating stereotypes? Focusing on cultural and personal identity, this course will explore contemporary Italian travel narratives in film. We will look at very different travels whose points of departure are often rooted in the intricacies of Italian regional and local specificities (films as different as Caro Diario, Pane e Tulipani, Il ladro di bambini, and Nirvana). The films range from the eighties to the new millennium. Through class discussion in the form of debates, students will further improve their ability to express abstract thought in Italian. Writing skills will be developed through weekly analytical short assignments that will mark the transition from simple paragraph level discourse to the production of more complex/complete texts. A final project will cap the work done during the term. This class meets twice a week; however, students will be required to watch Italian films outside of class regularly. Conducted in Italian. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Three terms of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | SP2013 | TTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA4116.01

Unlocking Italian Culture II

Entering the worlds of Italy is an integral part of learning the language. Students will continue exploring Italian culture through ideas of space, supported by role-play, music, film, videos, and the Internet, along with different authentic materials. In this course, we will focus in particular on public spaces and their social activities. Meanwhile, students will also advance in the study of the language by continuing to develop their ability to carry out everyday and more complex tasks in Italian. By the end of the term, they will engage in discourse that moves beyond the sentence level and steps into the linguistic production of abstract thought, with an emphasis on oral communication and performance. Conducted in Italian. Introductory level. Prerequisites: One term of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | SP2014 | MTTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | ITA2108.01
  • Barbara Alfano | SP2011 | MWTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | ITA2108.01
  • Barbara Alfano | SP2012 | MWTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | ITA2108.01

Unlocking Italian Culture: I

This is an introductory course in Italian that will open the door to the inner aspects of the Boot's culture. Most of Italian social life revolves around close interpersonal relationships and attachment to places. Both aspects, for the good and the bad, shape an Italian's day from the morning coffee to the late dinner at home and do affect an individual's entire life. Through role play, music, film, videos, the internet, and with particular attention to advertising, you will plunge into Italian real life, understand its mechanisms, learn Italian sense of friendship, sense of humor and self-irony, passion for dressing and eating well, and the downsides of it all. You will study basic, Italian grammar. By the end of the term you will be able to carry out many everyday tasks in Italian and produce simple sentence-level discourse. Emphasis is on oral communication and performance. Introductory level. Conducted in Italian. Prerequisites: None.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2013 | MTTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | ITA2106.01
  • Barbara Alfano | FA2011 | MWTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | ITA2106.01
  • Barbara Alfano | FA2010 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | ITA2106.01

Women's Writing, Women's Voices

Moving from a specific query into how women describe themselves to a more general investigation into what shapes their gaze, this course explores Italian women's writing from the Renaissance to contemporary Italy. Studying the female condition in Italy and its inscription in womens narratives, students will discover what connects a courtesan of the XVI century (Veronica Franco), a revolutionary aristocrat of the XVIII (Eleonora de Fonseca Pimentel), feminists of the XX century (Sibilla Aleramo, Dacia Maraini, and Oriana Fallaci), and post-feminists of our time (Margaret Mazzantini and Simona Vinci). Students will focus on narrative structures and get acquainted with the different styles from various epochs. They will also undertake narrative writing. Through in-class analysis and discussion of primary texts, students will further improve their speaking skills in Italian. The course combines the intermediate-high and advanced levels. Conducted in Italian. Prerequisites: Four terms of Italian or permission of the instructor.

  • Barbara Alfano | FA2012 | TF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | ITA4605.01

Japanese

Analyzing Japanese Society Through Online News

This course is designed for students to deepen their understanding of Japanese society through the analysis of Japanese online news articles. Mass media is the reflection of a society and the mirror of a culture. Therefore, reading Japanese newspapers helps students to become more aware of the Japanese culture, which is reflected in newspaper articles. In the first half of the term, students will examine Japanese society by reading online news articles from various contexts and practice various reading strategies. These reading strategies are introduced to help students become independent learners and to help them conduct research independently. In the second half of the term, students will choose one research topic from an area of their interest such as politics, art, and/or science. They will conduct their own research on Japanese society and write a Japanese online newspaper article for local Japanese people. Prerequisites: Five terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2014 | Th, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | JPN4707.01

Cultural Cross-Fertilization in the 19th Century

In 1867, Japanese culture was introduced to the world at an International Exposition in Paris. It was also 1867 when Edo period ended after two hundred years and a new era, Meiji, brought rapid westernization to the Japanese society. In this course, students will study the historical events of the Edo and Meiji periods using paintings to analyze how one event in the history can have reverberations both within Japan and throughout the world. As students examine the western influences on Japanese society and the Japanese influences on Western society in the 19th century, they not only will practice linguistic skills, but also will obtain a deeper understanding of the Japanese society and culture. As the final project of this course, students are required to present their understandings of 19th century Japan and of how ideas and concepts specific to one culture travel and get adopted by another culture. Intermediate-low level. Conducted in Japanese. Prerequisites: Two terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2011 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4110.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2012 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4110.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2010 | TWF, 10:30AM-12:00PM | JPN4110.01

Deconstructing and Reconstructing Identity

The Japanese pop culture has gained popularity in the US, and many American children watch various Japanese animations, while growing up. However, lack of Japanese cultural knowledge sometimes makes it hard for the American audience to fully understand whats going on in the Japanese characters mind. Therefore, in this introductory Japanese language and culture course, students will not only examine how Japanese people communicate and why American and Japanese behave differently, but also perform various situations that students will face if attending a Japanese university. Students will practice listening, speaking, reading, and writing Japanese through various contexts and materials. Students will also experience deconstructing and reconstructing their identity by immersing themselves into a Japanese culture. Japanese writing systems - Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji - will be introduced. Prerequisites: None.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2013 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | JPN2108.01

Edo to Meiji: Isolation to Modernization

During the Edo period (1600 1867), Japan closed its doors to other countries for about two hundred years, and this isolation helped Japan develop its own unique culture. It, however, ended in 1867 when Japanese culture was introduced to the Western world at an International Exposition in Paris. On the contrary to the Edo period, the next era, Meiji, brought rapid westernization to the Japanese society. In this course, students will study the historical events of the Edo and Meiji periods using paintings to analyze how one event in history can have reverberations both within Japan and throughout the world. As students examine the western influences on Japanese society and the Japanese influences on Western society in the 19th century, they not only will practice linguistic skills, but also will obtain a deeper understanding of the Japanese history and society. As the final project of this course, students are required to present their understandings of 19th century Japan and of how ideas and concepts specific to one culture travel and get adopted by another culture. Prerequisites: two terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2013 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4168.01

Japanese Aesthetics Through the Tale of Genji

In this intermediate Japanese course, students will examine Japanese aesthetics and the Japanese perspectives on nature by reading excerpts and poems from the modern translation of the Tale of Genji. Lady Murasaki, a court lady, wrote this Japanese literature masterpiece around the eleventh century. They will also analyze the social hierarchy in Japanese society during the Heian Period (794 -1185) by examining different styles of speech that demonstrate the levels of politeness and respect. Materials such as scrolls, paintings, films, and comic books are used throughout the course to help students understand Japanese language and culture pragmatically. Class activities include oral presentations, discussions, and individual writing projects are required. Intermediate-high level. Conducted in Japanese. Prerequisites: Four terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2010 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | JPN4209.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2011 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | JPN4209.01

Japanese Aesthetics: Jomon Pottery to Superflat

In this intermediate course, students will learn various art in Japan from potteries in the Jomon Period (about 14,000 BC 300BC) to Takashi Murakamis so-called superflat, a postmodern art movement, in Heisei Period (1989 -). As they learn Japanese art, they will analyze elements of Japanese aesthetics that were shared in various art forms during each period. Students will also examine what societal changes influenced the changes in art. There are numerous points in the long Japanese history that styles of Japanese art changed drastically and/or new art forms arose because of what was happening in Japan during that time. Throughout the course, students will create their own digital art archive to demonstrate their understanding of art history in Japan and why and how new art forms/movements were brought to Japan. Students will continue to develop their linguistic and cognitive skills by investigating and researching answers to questions like: How did styles of pottery change when rice agriculture was brought to Japan from China?; How did Japanese isolation from foreign countries during the Edo period bring changes to Japanese paintings?; How did Buddhism influence Japanese art? Prerequisites: Prerequisites: five terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2013 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | JPN4216.01

Life and Death in Modern Japanese Films

In this course, students will examine how Buddhism has influenced Japanese thought about the after-life and analyze how Japanese views on the relationship between life and death are depicted in recent Japanese films. As a theme of Japanese films, the Buddhist belief of reincarnation is very popular and has been used in various genres. Therefore, in this course students not only learn and discuss the history and beliefs of Buddhism and its influences in society, but also they analyze how death and a common theme, reincarnation, are depicted in different genres such as love stories and fantasy. Throughout the course, students will develop both their linguistic skills and cognitive skills by discussing their understanding of Buddhist beliefs and analyzing Japanese perspectives on death and reincarnation. Individual projects are required. Conducted in Japanese. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Three terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2011 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4116.01

Life and Death: Buddhism in Modern Japanese Films

In this course, students will examine how Buddhism influenced Japanese thought on the after-life and analyze how Japanese views on the relationship between life and death are depicted in recent Japanese films. In the first seven weeks of the course, students will examine and discuss the history, beliefs, and deities of Buddhism and their influences on society. In the second half of the term, students will analyze how death and a common theme, reincarnation, are depicted in different genres of Japanese films such as love stories and fantasy. Throughout the course, students will develop both their linguistic skills and cognitive skills by discussing their understanding of Buddhist beliefs and analyzing Japanese perspectives on death and reincarnation. Individual projects are required. Conducted in Japanese. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Three terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2012 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4117.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2013 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4117.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2014 | TWF, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4117.01

Non-Fiction in Fiction: Writers and Their Work

This advanced level course is designed for students to learn about six prominent contemporary Japanese writers such as Haruki Murakami and Banana Yoshimoto and analyze their work. Students are required to research each Japanese contemporary writer and analyze how their personal background is reflected in their work of fiction. Students will also examine how Japanese society is depicted in their work and how the writers give reality into their work in fiction. Students will not only work with the original Japanese texts, but also they will read the translation of the six fictions by the contemporary Japanese writers. By examining the English translation of each work, students will learn translation techniques and theories. As the final project of the course, students are required to choose one short story by a Japanese contemporary writer and examine and translate his/her work. Prerequisites: permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2013 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4708.01

Reestablishing Identity: I'm Turning Japanese

This introductory Japanese language and culture course will allow students to immerse themselves and create their new identity in Japanese culture. Throughout the course, students will examine how Japanese people communicate and will compare and contrast their own culture with Japanese culture as they practice listening, speaking, reading, and writing Japanese through various contexts and materials. As a project of this course, students are required to create a new online character, which reflects their understanding of Japanese people and culture. Japanese writing systems - Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji - will be introduced. Introductory level. Conducted in Japanese. Prerequisites: None.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2010 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | JPN2103.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2011 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | JPN2103.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2012 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | JPN2103.01

Social Changes and Art in Japan

This intermediate course examines how social changes influenced art and how art brought societal changes. In this course, students will discuss the following topics: 1) Westernization and establishment of Japanese Aesthetics in the Meiji Period, 2) wars and art, and 3) exporting Japan's soft power, manga, to the world. Students will analyze and discuss the relationship between social changes and art as they read newspaper articles about Japan's social issues and foreign policies, excerpts from art history books, and popular manga, comic books. In addition, throughout the term, students will practice new grammar points and Kanji, which help students to understand how social issues in Japan are reflected in Japanese art movements and how art changed Japanese society. Individual writing projects are required. Intermediate-high level. Conducted in Japanese. Prerequisites: Four terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2012 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | JPN4213.01

Social Expectations for Japanese Children

This course is designed for students to learn Japanese through Japanese childrens books and animation. In this course, students will read Japanese childrens books and watch Japanese animation that is based on childrens books to examine how Japanese children are expected to behave and communicate with others. Students will also analyze cultural values in Japan, how those cultural values are taught, and how gender differences are depicted in childrens books and animation. Students will continue to develop their skills by interacting in Japanese through stating and supporting their opinions during discussions than focus on narrative texts. Approximately 60 new Kanji will be introduced. As a part of the course, students are required to read/perform Japanese childrens books to children at the Albany Japanese Language School, Schenectady, New York. As the final project of the course, students will write their own childrens book in Japanese.Conducted in Japanese. Introductory level. Prerequisites: One term of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2011 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | JPN2107.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2012 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | JPN2107.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2013 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | JPN2107.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2014 | TWF, 8:10AM-10:00AM | JPN2107.01

Special Projects in Advanced Japanese

This course is designed for students to research/ complete a project in their field of study/interest. In order to take this course, students are required to write a proposal of their project and be accepted by the instructor. Advanced level. Conducted in Japanese. Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2010 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4705.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2011 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4705.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2012 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4705.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | FA2013 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4705.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2011 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4705.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2012 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4705.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2012 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | JPN4705.02

What Do Japanese Students Learn About WWII?

In this course, students study World War II from the Japanese point of view, as well as reinforcing their previous knowledge of Japanese language and culture. Historical events such as the bombings of Pearl Harbor and Hiroshima can be perceived differently depending on whether you study them in Japan or in America. In other words, history textbooks in Japan and in America don't necessarily share the same perspectives on the same event. Students will examine the Japanese point of view by reading Japanese history textbooks, novels, and essays. Films are used throughout the course to help students understand Japanese language and culture pragmatically. Individual writing projects are required. Conducted in Japanese. Intermediate-high level. Prerequisites: Five terms of Japanese or permission of the instructor.

  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2011 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | JPN4201.01
  • Ikuko Yoshida | SP2012 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | JPN4201.01

Spanish

After Borges

Whether he is the last modernist, or the first postmodern, the least Latin American of all Latin American authors or perhaps the most, the grand destroyer of all illusions or ultimately their victim, in the wake of his own statement that "Every writer creates his own precursors," Jorge Luis Borges has already provided the theoretical premise for so much subsequent work that this can only be a selective course. While we will read Borges, therefore, with initial forays into the work of Silvina Ocampo, Adolfo Bioy Casares, Mara Luisa Bombal, and Juan Jos Arreola, we will also study his influence on Julio Cortázar, Luisa Valenzuela, Cristina Peri Rossi, and Roberto Bolaño. The course will include at least some consideration of Borges's impact on the visual arts, and his abiding legacy beyond Latin America in the work of Leonardo Sciascia, Donald Barthelme, Danilo Kis, Martin Amis, and Ian McEwan. Students will develop their oral and written skills, progressing from paragraph-level exposition to imitation to an initial defense of ideas. This course should also provide contextual support for future studies in Spanish, not to mention other fields. Low-intermediate level. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: Two terms of Spanish at Bennington or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | FA2012 | MTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | SPA4117.01

After Utopia

This is a course on the postcolonial philosophical projects of Latin America, though that may be a misnomer. Even the most cursory glance at studies on the continent's appropriation of the Western philosophical tradition would show that the appropriation is so distinctive that apparently it is still possible to question its existence as philosophy. The course will include some historiography of thought, analysis of failed ontological theories and politico-economic models, some hare-brained, some practical, but will emphasize current trends in cultural studies. Students will debate their own perspectives, both in conversation and in writing, thus developing analytical and linguistic skills, and will undertake a short research project. The usual array of media will be included. Intermediate-high level. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: Four terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | FA2011 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4212.01

Cartoon Culture

What are cartoons? Why study them? What do they have to do with Spanish culture? Students in this course will consider the theoretical and artistic concerns that graphic narratives raise, especially in the interaction between text and image. We will examine the gradual evolution of the so-called historieta from its historical relegation to the realm of the juvenile and lowbrow, to the more recent boom in the academic and critical legitimacy of graphic novels. Our exploration will encompass comic strips, cartoons, and graphic novels from Spain, critical analyses, articles about the art form, as well as films and works of literature inspired by cartoons. Throughout, we will investigate what these media expose about, and how they simultaneously influence, the cultures from which they emerge. The focus of the course will be on student-generated discussion and critical thinking about these media, but continual practice in all four major areas of language (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) will be essential. Students will learn to defend their own ideas in spoken and written language. We will explore grammatical and linguistic questions as they arise naturally in the classroom. Conducted in Spanish. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Three terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Sarah Harris | SP2013 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | SPA4112.01
  • Sarah Harris | SP2011 | MWTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | SPA4112.01

Contemporary Issues on Film

Students in this course will continue to learn the Spanish language through an examination of contemporary issues in films in Spanish. While there will be some necessary discussion about cinematographic components, the focus of discussion will be on social and political issues present in the films. A consideration, for instance, of national and regional identity, violence, border crossing, intolerance, and gender issues, will drive the student-generated conversation. The course will also provide specific and explicit support for the linguistic development necessary to communicate in increasingly complex ways, in both written and oral Spanish. Conducted in Spanish. Introductory level. Prerequisites: One term of college-level Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Sarah Harris | SP2014 | MWTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | SPA2109.01
  • Sarah Harris | SP2012 | MWTh, 8:30AM-10:00AM | SPA2109.01

Daily Life in the Arts of Latin America

The publication of Poemas y Antipoemas in 1954 by the Chilean poet Nicanor Parra signaled the introduction and development of a new form of poetry in Latin America. Like the Pop-Art of Andy Warhol in the USA, the Latin American poets tried to create poetry using the language of every day people. This phenomenon, whose origin is in the poetical works by the Americans TS Eliot and Ezra Pound (whose emblematic slogan was Poetry is Speech), became a modern rejoinder in Latin American poetry. It dealt with the restitution of art in daily life, leaving behind any rhetoric or solemnity in poetry. This course will study this new poetry and its relationship with the historic and political context of that time. It also will be related to movies of that era, songs of protest, and the neo Avant-guard groups such as El Techo de la ballena in Venezuela, the Colombian Nadaísmo and Hora Zero movement in Peru. Students will conduct independent research, make regular in-class presentations, and read a variety of critical texts, culminating in a 20-page research paper on a topic related to the course. Advanced level. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: Six terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Roger Santivanez | FA2010 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4701.01

Haunted Spain: Trauma, Memory, and Literature

Spain is still coming to terms with its recent violent and dictatorial past, a past that has caused psychological wounds in its people and emerged in symptomatic works of narrative fiction. Haunted Spain will be a case study of the literature of trauma, giving students overviews of both post-Civil War Spanish fiction and theories of trauma literature at large. We will read representative literature by Juan Goytisolo, Juan Marse, and Isaac Rosa Camacho, alongside compelling and recent literary commentary. In order to develop an appropriate theoretical background, students will also explore major contributions by theorists such as Freud, Herman, Caruth, Farrell, and Whitehead, whose writings offer constructs that resonate deeply with the primary literary texts we'll read. Conducted in Spanish. Advanced Level. Prerequisites: Seven terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Sarah Harris | SP2013 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4712.01

How the "Boom" Went Bust

In 1961, Jorge Luis Borges shared the Formentor prize with Samuel Beckett, thus internationalizing Latin American culture and supposedly initiating the Boom. Whether the swagger of the ensuing decades marked the apex of the continent's artistic production, or was simply the result of a single Spanish publishing house's hype, feeding a neo-imperialist world's expectations of Latin America back to itself, is open to debate. The proposal is not merely to study the rather difficult literary work of the Big Four magical realists, but also to compare it to the pre- and post-Boom periods, to contextualize it as a social, even economic, phenomenon. The course will therefore include historical texts, art, film, and innumerable clouds of yellow butterflies. Students will forge, write and debate opinions with evidence gleaned from research. Conducted in Spanish, and not for the fainthearted. Advanced level. Prerequisites: Six term sof Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | SP2011 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4706.01

Imported Identities: The Language of Persuasion II

Students with burgeoning linguistic skills will learn the language through an immersion in Latin American painting over the second half of this full-year introduction to the Spanish-speaking world. While there will be some discussion of standard tactics such as stylistic nuances and artists biographies, it is expected that we will continue to develop sufficient linguistic ability to focus on movements, ranging from the republican art of nation-building in the 19th century to modernism, magical realism, and the postmodern, thus treating the works as ideologemes, representations of political and social import. The material traditionally associated with introductory language courses - explicit grammar sessions, vocabulary, oral and aural practice, text will be on offer, but it will generally be student-driven, servicing the content, corroborating the hope that in confronting our own preconceived notions of the Spanish-speaking world we will simultaneously debunk those regarding how a language is taught. Students will therefore learn to speak, listen, read and write in increasingly meaningful scenarios. Conducted in Spanish. Introductory level. Prerequisites: One term of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | SP2011 | TWF, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | SPA2105.01

Inner Travel

Beyond Columbus's errant journey into the abyss and the ensuing quest for El Dorado, or Darwin's Voyage of the Beagle, Latin America's interior has often enticed its own learned population. Their travels, in space, time and thought, do not merely present a physical confrontation with alterity, with the continent's supposed heart of darkness, but an intellectual clearing, an origin, from which a more equitable politics may begin. To name but one example, Alejo Carpentier's Los pasos perdidos, the tale of a New York composer's journey to the origin of society and that of music, is often seen as the touchstone of Latin American identity. Through accounts of real and fictitious travels, from Carpentier to the crassest of guidebooks, we will study such quests for self. Discussions and presentations will facilitate the development of oral fluency. Students will expand their descriptive, analytical and polemical vocabulary. Written work, including an appropriate research project, will solidify familiarity with linguistic structures. Conducted in Spanish. Intermediate-high level. Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | SP2013 | MTh, 6:30PM- 8:20PM | SPA4207.01

Language through Film

Students with burgeoning linguistic skills will learn the language through an immersion in Latin American and Spanish film in the second half of this full-year introduction to the Spanish-speaking world. While there will be some discussion of more common tactics such as stylistic nuances, script-writing, acting, dubbing, and directors biographies, it is expected that we will continue to develop sufficient linguistic ability to focus on cinematographic and social movements, thus treating the films as ideologemes, representations of political import. The paraphernalia associated with mastering a foreign language explicit grammar sessions, vocabulary, oral and aural practice, text will be on offer, but will generally be student-driven, servicing the content, corroborating the hope that in confronting our own preconceived notions of the Spanish-speaking world we will simultaneously debunk those regarding how a language is taught. Students will therefore learn to speak, listen, read and write in increasingly meaningful scenarios. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | SP2013 | MWTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | SPA4118.01

Metafiction and Authorship

This course will be an exploration of metafiction and authorship in Spanish literature, film, and other arts. Through a careful consideration of several important, often playful, yet sharply critical works in Spanish, as well as their most significant theoretical underpinnings, students will read and discuss text that calls attention to itself as an artifice, and therefore, highlights broad questions of reality and fiction. This will also be a course on the socio-historical context that has surrounded the production and consumption of specific canonical works. The focus of the course will be on student-generated discussion and critical thinking about texts and concepts. Students will develop and defend ideas in spoken and written language. Conducted in Spanish. Intermediate-high level. Prerequisites: Five terms of college-level Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Sarah Harris | SP2012 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4213.01
  • Sarah Harris | SP2014 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4213.01

More Unhomely Thoughts from Abroad

From Simon Bolivar's recruitment of the exiled Francisco de Miranda in early nineteenth-century London, to the counter-revolutionary Guillermo Cabrera Infante's Tres tristes tigres, written in a Hampstead flat, much of Latin America's postcolonial identity has been forged outside its borders. Beyond defining home, exiles have defined their alternate environments. De Miranda's statue still stands in Fitzroy Square, and Cabrera Infante lived in London for the rest of his life. Exile, whether a political necessity or voluntary, is more than a discursive conceit in this context, and language an act of memory. The proposal is to study Latin America's exilic thought, one of its most formative traditions, from Independence to the present. Students will debate their own perspectives, both in conversation and in writing, thus developing analytical and linguistic skills, and will undertake a research project. The usual array of media will be included. Conducted in Spanish. Advanced level. Prerequisites: Seven terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | SP2012 | TF, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4713.01

Our Monsters, Ourselves

We live in a time of monsters,"" writes Jeffrey Jerome Cohen in Monster Theory. As beings who mix categories or defy categorization altogether, monsters may be apt emblems for a postmodern age, yet it would be a mistake to imply that monsters are a creation of postmodernity. The monstrous figures that dominate popular contemporary culture come from a long artistic tradition, and their depictions both promote and reveal fears. The fears underlying the monstrous, universal or particular to moments and places, call special attention to the darkness that dwells within all of us, even in our denial of it. This course will build theoretical underpinnings with Frederich Nietzsche, Umberto Eco, James Twitchell, Michel Foucault, and Adam Douglas. Together, we will consider concrete literary examples from the Spanish Baroque and the Nocilla Generation, before students' individual research will begin to drive the content. Therefore, we will create ample opportunity to consider examples from any time and place in the Hispanophone world. We will, in the end, hope to uncover more about the values of normative groups that vilify and externalize, than about the monsters these norms denigrate. Advanced level. In Spanish. Prerequisites: Six terms of college Spanish or permission of instructor.

  • Sarah Harris | FA2013 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | SPA4715.01

Reading Silence and Voice

Silence arises from reverence, fear, politeness, rejection, repression, or censorship, to name a few reasons. It may result in such varying states as peace, awkwardness, or offense. It can even be deafening. Meanwhile, voices (containing lies, cries, song, or testimony, for instance) exist within their own infinite constellations of meaning. As Miguel de Unamuno has said, "At times, to remain silent is to lie." These myriad ideas will guide our consideration of the many roles of silence and voice in contemporary Spanish fiction and film. Students can expect to engage with works by Unamuno, Luis Martn-Santos, Miguel ngel Gallardo, Montxo Almendriz, Luis Romero, Blas de Otero, and Dulce Chacn. Advanced Level. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: Six terms of college-level Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Sarah Harris | FA2011 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4702.01

Roberto Bolano

This is a paradoxical course. Roberto Bolao explicitly shunned magical realism, the Boom years, the subsequent imitations, supposedly liberating Latin American literature from its hobnobbing with the establishment, and yet maintained filial ties to Dadaism, surrealism, modernism, Jorge Luis Borges and Julio Cortzars Rayuela, perhaps the first Boom novel. Despite the breadth of the oeuvre, it was almost entirely produced during the last decade of his life, published and translated with alarming rapidity, ranging from cryptic mysticism to dime-store elegance. Branded as infrarrealista, thief, terrorist, bookish, and, more apothegmatically these days, as the most influential writer of his generation, we will read Bolao, even though he probably wouldn't have liked that. Advanced level. Conducted in appropriately searing, slangy Spanish. Prerequisites: Six terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | FA2012 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4714.01

The Art of Spanish I: Language Through Painting

Students with little or no Spanish will learn the language through an immersion in Latin American painting. While there will be some discussion of standard tactics such as stylistic nuances and artists' biographies, it is expected that we will rapidly develop sufficient linguistic ability to focus on movements, ranging from the republican art of nation-building in the 19th century to modernism, magical realism, and the postmodern, thus treating the works as ideologemes, representations of political and social import. The equipment associated with mastering a foreign language - explicit grammar sessions, vocabulary, oral and aural practice, text - will be on offer, but it will generally be student-driven, servicing the content, corroborating the hope that in confronting our own preconceived notions of the Spanish-speaking world we will simultaneously debunk those regarding how a language is taught. Students will therefore learn to speak, listen, read and write in increasingly meaningful scenarios. Introductory level. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: None.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | FA2013 | MWTh, 6:30PM- 8:20PM | SPA2107.01
  • Jonathan Pitcher | FA2011 | TWF, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | SPA2107.01

The Contradictions of Progress in Latin America

The American Way of Life spread throughout Latin America in the 1950's and 1960's. This way of life could be symbolized by the daily presence of domestic appliances in every Latin American home as an expression of modern life and technology. This modus vivendi, which was greatly accepted, also had its counterpoint in a certain anti-imperialist attitude led by the Cuban Revolution and its iconic hero Ernesto Che Guervara. At the same time this climate had literary-artistic manifestations such as the renovated Indigenismo of Juan Rulfo in Mexico and José María Arguedas in the Andean zone of Peru. But more than a political response, the renovated esthetics claimed the ethnic view of the Latin American communities in the frame of modern literary techniques. It also proposed great expectations of the development of its people, who through centuries were excluded from the feast of life. With regular writing assignments and presentations, emphasis will be placed on oral and written language skills such as developing ways to construct an argument, analyze literary and non-literary texts, and support one's ideas. Conducted in Spanish. High-intermediate level. Prerequisites: Four terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Roger Santivanez | FA2010 | MTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | SPA4204.01

The Creation of Spain's Image: Myths & Archetypes

The Spanish philosopher Jos Ortega y Gasset once remarked of his compatriots, "We prefer the lively sensation of things to the things themselves." This course will focus on these "lively sensations," national myths of Spain that may or may not maintain much direct connection to the original "things themselves." National myths contain symbolic cultural significance and can affirm or set shared values. In Spain, throughout many centuries, people have exalted figures and events as representative of national values, or as part of an attempt to project a particular image within or beyond the nation's borders. In our exploration of this topic, we will examine such media as newspapers, television news reports, political posters, history books, music, film, photographs, and brief works of literature. The focus of the course will be on student-generated discussion and critical thinking about these media, but practice in all four major areas of language (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) will be essential. Students will learn to defend their own ideas in spoken and written language, and we will explore grammatical and linguistic questions as they arise naturally in our classroom. Intermediate-low level. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: Two terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Sarah Harris | FA2011 | MWTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | SPA4102.01
  • Sarah Harris | FA2013 | MWTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | SPA4102.01
  • Sarah Harris | FA2010 | MWTh, 8:30AM-10:00AM | SPA4102.01

The Generation of 1898

Paradoxically initiated by the loss of its last colonies in the Spanish-American War of 1898 and a Nicaraguan poet's invention of modernism, Spain's rebirth, its Silver Age, was marked by an increasingly cosmopolitan, radical egoism. This cultural revitalization, particularly the newfound gravitas of the philosophical essay, fed by America to Europe then back to America once again, is sometimes referred to as the essence of Hispanicism. The course will consider the Generation of '98, emphasizing the work of the leader of its intelligentsia, Jose Ortega y Gasset, and that of its darkest associate, Ramon Maria del Valle-Inclan. Students will expand their descriptive, analytical, polemical, and creative vocabulary. Discussions, presentations, tacky puppetry and makeshift, flamboyant performances will facilitate the development of oral fluency. Written work will include both analysis and fiction, and should solidify familiarity with linguistic structures. Conducted in Spanish. Intermediate-low level. Prerequisites: Three terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | SP2012 | TF, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | SPA4116.01

The Language of Persuasion

Students with little or no background in Spanish will learn the language through an immersion in the study of advertising and propaganda from the Spanish-speaking world. An examination of Spanish and Latin American print, radio, film, and television advertisements, as well as political cartoons and propaganda, will allow students to consider critically the truths, half-truths, and downright lies about the people and cultures that these media depict and target. In the process of observing and discussing such media, the course will introduce the material traditionally associated with introductory language courses: grammar, vocabulary, spoken and written practice, and reading and listening activities. As a result, in conjunction with learning about the cultures of Spain and Latin America and the concept of persuasion, students will understand increasingly sophisticated textual input and be able to express themselves in increasingly complex scenarios. Introductory level. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: None.

  • Sarah Harris | FA2012 | MWTh, 8:10AM-10:00AM | SPA2103.01
  • Sarah Harris | FA2010 | MWTh, 10:10AM-12:00PM | SPA2103.01

The Textual City

This course will chart the development of identity within the postcolonial Latin American city. The latter will be read both literally and as a guiding metaphor, as a reality ordered by ideas. We will use interdisciplinary theoretical models as discursive markers, selected from architecture, politics, philosophy, literature, and photography, in order to problemantize urban design, the site of real dystopia, as the organizer of symbolic space, and vice versa. Spatio-cultural discussion will focus on the dominant narratives of public topography, most notably that of capitalism, and private, individualized responses to them. Conducted in Spanish. Advanced level. Prerequisites: A minimum of six terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | SP2014 | MTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | SPA4704.01

Theories of Revolution

Over the past two centuries, in an apparently perpetual movement towards democratic independence, Latin America has confronted ruptures in tradition and experimented with a variety of revolutionary discourses to project its multiple pasts into the future. This course will read the postcolonial back into the European and US epistemai, and vice-versa, exploring how Latin Americans have given voice to their views on political transitions, both democratic and otherwise. Discussions and presentations will facilitate the development of oral fluency. Students will expand their descriptive, analytical, and polemical vocabulary, not to mention their sense of dignity. Conducted in Spanish, at the low- to mid-intermediate level. Prerequisites: 3 terms of Spanish, or the permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | SP2014 | W, 6:30PM- 7:30PM | SPA4119.01

Thresholds of Identity

In Thresholds of Identity, we will consider the concept of migrations, domestic and international, through contextualized readings of contemporary Spanish texts. We will study examples that correspond to the three recent major waves in migrations for Spain: 1) movement from rural to urban areas in the early twentieth century 2) emigration from Spain to other countries during and after the Civil War and 3) immigration to Spain during and after the nation's transition to democracy. In our exploration of these Spanish migrations, we will consider the loaded significance of terms such as refugee, immigrant, alterity, hybridity, and transculturation. The focus of the course will be on student-generated discussion and critical thinking about texts and concepts, and students will learn to defend their ideas in spoken and written language. Intermediate-high level. Conducted in Spanish. Prerequisites: Four terms of Spanish or permission of the instructor.

  • Sarah Harris | FA2012 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4215.01
  • Sarah Harris | SP2011 | MTh, 2:10PM- 4:00PM | SPA4215.01

Women in Latin America

Latin American feminism is conventionally read like any other form of feminism, as an absence attempting to become present. Pivoting around a selection of short stories by the likes of the Ocampos, Bombal, Garro, Valenzuela, Poniatowska, Peri Rossi, Mench, Allende, and Schweblin, along with criticism and political contextualization, we will discuss such conventional readings, comparing different responses to superstructural power within Latin America while also asking whether more general, pan-American points can or should be made. Discussions and presentations will be conducted in Spanish, appropriate to the high intermediate level. Some background reading may be conducted in English. Prerequisites: 4 terms of Spanish, or permission of the instructor.

  • Jonathan Pitcher | FA2013 | MTh, 4:10PM- 6:00PM | SPA4256.01