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Contemporary Spanish American Cinema                                                3 credits

This course provides an overview of the significant National Cinemas of Spanish-speaking countries in the hemisphere.  Within the overarching framework of society and culture, specific topics are integrated through readings, screenings, and close-film analysis to uncover markers of meaning and competing perspectives on Latin America today: representation, adaptation, ideological constructs, docudrama, cinematic theories and techniques.  Ten feature-length films are studied in their entirety, with approximately thirty additional films introduced and considered through clips. The course is conducted in Spanish.


Colliding Images: Representation and Reality in Latin America                   3 credits

Differing and contrastive images are offered through written and visual texts to challenge the notions of established truth and reality. Both the processes used to construct the images and the mechanisms employed to merchandise the image as truth product are explored and analyzed. The multidiscipllinary approach encompasses the fields of literature, audio and written testimony, government documents, feature films, shorts, documentaries, the arts.

Comparative and point-counterpoint postures anchor the course, with an emphasis on analysis, persuasion, and defense of a POV. Silmulation games foster problem solving through higher-level language use, and debate and reformulation encourage expansive and deeper treatment of the topics and the sharpening of specific rhetorical skills and structured argumentation. Attention is given to the incorporation of props as enhancers of meaning and promoters of effective communication: film clips, citations, visuals, icons, the internet, artifacts, non-verbal behaviors and expression. The course is conducted in English.


The Hispanic World: From Books To Film - Adaptation                           3 credits

This course aims to establish how a formal structure converts a story or argument into a discourse or other artistic elaboration. It uses as a point of departure some six works by outstanding contemporary writers and six films based on these works that focus on Hispanic society and mark particular cultural perspectives (example: "In the Time of the Butterflies" by Julia Alvarez and the made-for-TV movie [2002]). Adaptation is explored in its varying degrees of formal, loose and inspirational structuring, with additional consideration given to cross-cultural film-film adaptation (example: "Evita" and "Eva Perón: the True Story"). The course also examines the relationship between the receptors of these works and the indications present in the literary and filmic texts themselves. The course is conducted in English.