Spanish

Director of undergraduate studies: Noël Valis, Rm. 216, 82–90 Wall St., 432-1157, noel.valis@yale.edu; language program director: Ame Cividanes, Rm. 210, 82–90 Wall St., 432-1159, ame.cividanes@yale.edu; span-port.yale.edu

The Department of Spanish and Portuguese provides instruction in the languages, literatures, and cultures of the Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian worlds. Courses in Portuguese and the requirements of the major are described under Portuguese; the names of faculty teaching Portuguese courses are included in the faculty roster.

The major in Spanish is a liberal arts major that offers a wide range of courses in the language, literatures, and cultures of the twenty Spanish-speaking countries in Europe, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Today, Spanish is the second language of the United States, one of the three most widely spoken languages in the world, and one of the five diplomatic languages of the United Nations. The program in Spanish offers students the opportunity to acquire thorough linguistic proficiency as well as in-depth knowledge of both cultural and literary topics. The major explores literature, history, philosophy, art, and cultural studies, and provides excellent preparation for careers in law, diplomacy, medicine, business, the arts, academics, journalism, and education.

Course Numbering

Courses numbered SPAN 110–199 include beginning and intermediate language courses designed to help students develop fluency in understanding, speaking, reading, and writing Spanish. Courses numbered SPAN 200–299 seek to provide students with a broad but solid introduction to the fields of Hispanic literatures and cultures while strengthening their linguistic competence. Courses numbered 300–499 allow students to perfect their linguistic and critical skills through study of a specific problem or issue, e.g., a literary genre, a type of literary or cultural representation, or a specific writer or text. Students desiring more information about either language or literature offerings should consult the DUS.

Prerequisite

Prerequisite to the major is SPAN 140142, or 145, or the equivalent through advanced placement or study abroad. Equivalent preparation to SPAN 140142, or 145 may be demonstrated by the test scores indicated below under "Language Courses and Placement Procedures."

Language courses and Placement Procedures

Students with no previous formal or informal Spanish study ordinarily enroll in SPAN 110. Students who take SPAN 110 are strongly encouraged to continue with 120 in the following term. Students wishing to take intensive beginning Spanish may, with the instructor's permission, enroll in SPAN 125, which covers the same material as SPAN 110 and 120, but in one term. SPAN 132 and 142 are designed for heritage speakers and are available only to them. Admission to SPAN 132 and 142 is based on results of the departmental placement examination; interested students should contact the instructor.

All students, including native speakers, who have previously studied Spanish formally or informally must take the departmental placement examination in order to enroll in a Spanish course. The only exception to this rule is made for students who have demonstrated advanced ability in the language by 1) receiving a score of 5 on either of the Spanish Advanced Placement tests, 2) receiving a score of 6 or 7 on the Advanced-Level International Baccalaureate examination, or 3) attaining a proficiency level of C1 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. These students may enroll directly in any L5 course.

Information about the departmental placement examination and about preregistration procedures for Spanish L1–L4 language courses is available on the departmental website.

Requirements of the Major

The major for the Class of 2022 and subsequent classes A maximum of one course taught in English may be counted toward the major requirements. With DUS approval, students who declared their major under previous requirements may also avail themselves of this change. 

Beyond the prerequisite, ten term courses numbered SPAN 200 or higher are required, five of which must be numbered SPAN 300 or higher. SPAN 491, The Senior Essay, counts as one of the ten required courses. A maximum of one course may be numbered SPAN 200–230. First-year seminars taught in Spanish count toward the major in the SPAN 231–299 range.

Intensive major Students in the intensive major fulfill the requirements for the standard major, and take an additional two courses numbered SPAN 300 or higher. 

Senior Requirement

Seniors write the senior essay in SPAN 491 in the spring of their senior year under the individual direction of a faculty adviser. Students expecting to complete their degree requirements in December write the senior essay in SPAN 491 in the fall of their senior year. Seniors in SPAN 491 are expected to submit their completed essay to the DUS at 82–90 Wall Street by 4 p.m. on December 7 in the fall term, or by 4 p.m. on April 19 in the spring term. If the essay is submitted late without an excuse from the student's residential college dean, the penalty is one letter grade, though no essay that would otherwise pass will be failed because it is late.

Advising

Two majors Students electing Spanish as one of two majors should consult the DUS about a specialized course of study.

Courses in the Graduate School Juniors and seniors majoring in Spanish may, with permission of the instructor and the director of graduate studies, enroll in graduate literature courses in Spanish. A list of pertinent graduate courses is available at the office of the DUS.

Study Abroad

Students at the intermediate level of language study are encouraged to apply to the eight-week summer language courses offered by Yale Summer Session in New Haven and Bilbao, Spain. Advanced students may apply for the five-week Yale Summer Session course offered in Valencia, Spain. More information about these programs is available on the Yale Summer Session Website. For information about the Year or Term Abroad program, see under Special Arrangements in the Academic Regulations. Students who wish to count courses taken abroad toward the major should consult with the DUS before going abroad.

REQUIREMENTS OF THE MAJOR

Prerequisite 1 from SPAN 140, 142, 145, or equivalent

Number of courses 10 term courses (including senior requirement)

Distribution of courses 10 term courses numbered SPAN 200 or higher, 5 of which are numbered SPAN 300 or higher; max of one course numbered SPAN 200–230; max of one SPAN course taught in English with DUS approval

Senior requirement Senior essay (SPAN 491)

Intensive major 2 addtl courses numbered SPAN 300 or higher, totaling 12 term courses

The Department of Spanish and Portuguese provides instruction in the languages, literatures, and cultures of the Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian worlds. Courses are devoted to the language and literatures of Spain and Spanish-speaking countries in Latin America, and to the Portuguese language and its literatures and cultures from Portugal, Brazil, Africa, and other Portuguese-speaking areas. For information about the major and language placement in Portuguese, see under Portuguese.

The major in Spanish is a liberal arts major that offers a wide range of courses in the language, literatures, and cultures of the twenty Spanish-speaking countries in Europe and Latin America. Today Spanish is the second language of the United States, one of the three most widely spoken languages in the world, and one of the five diplomatic languages of the United Nations. The program in Spanish provides students with the opportunity to acquire thorough linguistic proficiency as well as in-depth knowledge of cultural and literary topics. The Spanish major opens up a world of literature, history, philosophy, art, and culture, and offers excellent preparation for careers in law, diplomacy, medicine, business, the arts, academics, journalism, and education.

First-year students who are interested in the Spanish major and have met the prerequisite (SPAN 140142145, or equivalent) are encouraged to consider taking SPAN 060SPAN 246SPAN 247, or any of the literature survey courses at the 200 level, such as SPAN 261SPAN 262SPAN 266, or SPAN 267. Students may also select Spanish as one of two majors and, in that case, should consult with the director of undergraduate studies (DUS) about a specialized course of study.

Yale Summer Session (YSS) offers a summer study abroad program at the intermediate level (combined L3/L4) in Bilbao, Spain. In addition, YSS offers five-week summer courses at the L5 level in Valencia, Spain and in Quito, Ecuador.

Placement

The departmental placement examination in Spanish is offered online during the summer. The exam places students at the proper level of study, allowing them to get the most out of their academic experience in Spanish courses. Additional information is available on the departmental website.

First-year students who have achieved a score of 5 on the Advanced Placement test in Spanish or 6 or 7 on the International Baccalaureate examination or have attained a proficiency level of C1 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages are not required to take the departmental placement examination. They may enroll directly in courses designated L5 in Yale College Programs of Study (YCPS).

All other students, including native speakers, who have previously studied Spanish formally or informally must take the departmental placement examination in order to enroll in a Spanish course. Students who score L5 on the departmental placement examination may enroll in courses designated L5 in the YCPS. All other students begin with a course at the level indicated by the placement examination.

FACULTY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF SPANISH AND PORTUGUESE

Professors Rolena Adorno, Howard Bloch (Chair), Roberto González Echevarría, Aníbal González, K. David Jackson, Noël Valis

Associate Professor Leslie Harkema

Senior Lectors II Sybil Alexandrov, Margherita Tortora, Sonia Valle

Senior Lectors I María Pilar Asensio-Manrique, Mercedes Carreras, Ame Cividanes, Sebastián Díaz, María de la Paz García, María Jordán, Rosamaría León, Juliana Ramos-Ruano, Lissette Reymundi, Lourdes Sabé-Colom, Virginia Santos, Terry Seymour

Lectors Marina Henriques Gomes de Andrade, Carolina Baffi, Deborah K. Symons Roldán, Giseli Tordin, María M. Vázquez

Courses

* SPAN 060a, First-Year Colloquium: Literary Studies in SpanishNoël Valis

Introduction to the study of literature in general and to some of the most important texts in Hispanic literature. Selected texts in Spanish include short stories, essays, lyric, and theater. Open to students who have placed into L5 courses. Counts toward the requirements of the Spanish major with permission of the director of undergraduate studies. Enrollment limited to first-year students. Preregistration required; see under First-Year Seminar Program.  L5, HU
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

* SPAN 110a or b, Elementary Spanish IStaff

For students who wish to begin study of the Spanish language. Development of basic skills in understanding, speaking, reading, and writing through a functional approach to the teaching of Spanish grammar. Includes an introduction to the cultures (traditions, art, literature, music) of the Spanish-speaking world. Audiovisual materials are incorporated into class sessions. Conducted in Spanish. To be followed immediately by SPAN 120.  L1RP1½ Course cr
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SPAN 120a or b, Elementary Spanish IIStaff

Further development of understanding, speaking, reading, and writing skills. Class sessions incorporate short authentic texts in Spanish, audiovisual materials, and film. Cultural topics of the Spanish-speaking world (traditions, art, literature, music) are included. Conducted in Spanish. After SPAN 110 or in accordance with placement results. Admits to SPAN 130 or 145.  L2RP1½ Course cr
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* SPAN 125a, Intensive Elementary SpanishMaria-Lourdes Sabé Colom

An intensive beginning course in spoken and written Spanish that covers the material of SPAN 110 and 120 in one term. Conducted in Spanish. Admits to SPAN 130 or 145. Not open to students who have completed SPAN 110 or 120.  L1, L2RP2 Course cr
MTWThF 9:25am-11:25am

SPAN 130a or b, Intermediate Spanish IStaff

Development of language proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing through communicative activities rather than a sequence of linguistic units. Authentic Spanish language texts, films, and videos serve as the basis for the functional study of grammar and the acquisition of a broader vocabulary. Cultural topics are presented throughout the term. Conducted in Spanish. Admits to SPAN 140.  L3RP1½ Course cr
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* SPAN 132a, Spanish for Heritage Speakers ISybil Alexandrov

A language course designed for students who have been exposed to Spanish—either at home or by living in a Spanish-speaking country—but who have little or no formal training in the language. Practice in all four communicative skills (comprehension, speaking, reading, writing), with special attention to basic grammar concepts, vocabulary building, and issues particular to heritage speakers. Admission in accordance with placement results.  L3
MWF 11:35am-12:25pm

SPAN 140a or b, Intermediate Spanish IIStaff

Continuation of SPAN 130. Development of increased proficiency in the four language skills. Greater precision in grammar usage, vocabulary enrichment, and expanded cultural awareness are achieved through communicative activities based on authentic Spanish-language texts, including a short novel. Conducted in Spanish. Admits to L5 courses.  L4RP1½ Course cr
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* SPAN 142b, Spanish for Heritage Speakers IISybil Alexandrov

Continuation of SPAN 132. Examination of complex grammar structures; consideration of problems particular to heritage speakers through the reading of both literary and journalistic texts. Practice in all communicative skills (comprehension, speaking, reading, writing). After SPAN 132 or in accordance with placement results.  L4
MWF 11:35am-12:25pm

* SPAN 145b, Intensive Intermediate SpanishSonia Valle

An intensive intermediate course in spoken and written Spanish that covers the material of SPAN 130 and 140 in one term. Conducted in Spanish. Admits to L5 courses. Not open to students who have completed SPAN 130 or 140.  L3, L4RP2 Course cr
MTWThF 9:25am-10:15am

SPAN 150a or b, Advanced Oral and Written Communication in SpanishStaff

Instruction in refining reading, writing, aural, and oral skills. Students reach proficiency at the advanced high level (according to ACTFL guidelines) in the four language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Conducted in Spanish. Open to heritage speakers placed at the L5 level.  Prerequisite: SPAN 140 or 145, or in accordance with placement results.   L5RP
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* SPAN 222a / LAST 222a, Legal SpanishMercedes Carreras

An introduction to Spanish and Latin American legal culture with a focus on the specific traits of legal language and on the development of advanced language competence. Issues such as human rights, the death penalty, the jury, contracts, statutory instruments, and rulings by the constitutional courts are explored through law journal articles, newspapers, the media, and mock trials. Enrollment limited to 18. A maximum of one course in the 200-230 range may count as an elective toward the Spanish major.  L5
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* SPAN 223a / LAST 223a, Spanish in Film: An Introduction to the New Latin American CinemaMargherita Tortora

Development of proficiency in Spanish through analysis of critically acclaimed Latin American films. Includes basic vocabulary of film criticism in Spanish as well as discussion and language exercises. Enrollment limited to 18.  L5
MW 1pm-2:15pm

* SPAN 227a / LAST 227a, Creative WritingMaría Jordán

An introduction to the craft and practice of creative writing (fiction, poetry, and essays). Focus on the development of writing skills and awareness of a variety of genres and techniques through reading of exemplary works and critical assessment of student work. Emphasis on the ability to write about abstract ideas, sentiments, dreams, and the imaginary world. Enrollment limited to 18. A maximum of one course in the 200-230 range may count as an elective toward the Spanish major.  L5
TTh 1pm-2:15pm

* SPAN 243a / LAST 243a, Advanced Spanish GrammarStaff

A comprehensive, in-depth study of grammar intended to improve students' spoken and written command of Spanish. Linguistic analysis of literary selections; some English-to-Spanish translation. Enrollment limited to 18.   L5
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* SPAN 266a / LAST 266a, Studies in Latin American Literature IRolena Adorno

Origins of Latin American literary tradition from preconquest Aztec poetry to Baroque poetry of the seventeenth century. Study of works that helped define the future Latin America, from the Caribbean, to Mexico, and to the Andes of South America. Readings from the works of fifteenth century Texcocan poet, prince Nezahualcoyotl, through to seventeenth century Mexican Baroque poet, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz.  L5, HU
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

SPAN 267b / LAST 267b, Studies in Latin American Literature IIRolena Adorno

An introduction to Latin American literature from the nineteenth century to the present. Works by Borges, García Márquez, Paz, Neruda, Cortázar, and others.  L5, HU
TTh 11:35am-12:50pm

* SPAN 282b / JDST 282b / LITR 437b / RLST 238b, Judeo-Spanish Culture, Language, and LiteratureAllyson Gonzalez

This course explores the rich body of culture, language, and literature that emerged in the Sephardi (Judeo-Spanish) diaspora following the expulsion of Jews from Iberia in 1492, and continuing to the present. This course is taught in English. TR  HU
Th 9:25am-11:15am

* SPAN 324b, Lorca: Poetry and PlaysNoël Valis

A reading of several Lorca plays and selected poetry and an examination of the Lorca legend. Topics include Lorca's place in Spanish and world literature; myths and realities of Lorca as a cultural icon; sexuality and gender in the plays and poetry; and social issues and aesthetic practices. Open to students who have placed into L5 courses or who have successfully completed an L4 course in Spanish. Counts toward the Spanish major.  L5, HU
MW 11:35am-12:50pm

* SPAN 355a, Truth to Power: Introduction to Roberto BolañoAníbal González Perez

Readings of the poetry, short stories, novellas, novels, and essays of the Chilean-Mexican author (1953-2003), regarded as a founding figure of early 21st-century Spanish American narrative. Topics explored include: issues of truth and reality; ethics; materiality; self-fictionalization; post-nationalism; gender; Bolaño’s politics; humor; fractals; and narrative. Prerequisite: L5 competency in Spanish.  L5, HU
MW 1pm-2:15pm

* SPAN 387a / LITR 287a, The Borges EffectRoberto González Echevarría

Study of the decisive influence of Jorge Luis Borges on literature and literary theory; his recognizable and often acknowledged presence in the work of novelists and short-story writers, as well as in that of philosophers and literary theorists. A Borges "effect" is studied in the works of John Barth, Julio Cortázar, Gabriel García Márquez, Italo Calvino, and Umberto Eco, and in Maurice Blanchot, Michel Foucault, Gérard Genette, and Jacques Derrida, among others. Class discussions in English and readings in English or the French, Spanish or Italian originals.  HU
W 3:30pm-5:20pm

* SPAN 388a / LITR 304a, Law and Literature in Modern Latin AmericaRoberto González Echevarría

A study of major modern narrative works in Latin America from the independence and post-independence period in the nineteenth century to the age of drug trafficking and the AIDS epidemic today. The course begins with the Cuban Cirilo Villaverde's antislavery novel Cecilia Valdés (1880), moves on to the regionalist classic Doña Bárbara (1929) by the Venezuelan Rómulo Gallegos, and the dictator novel El señor presidente (1946) by the Guatamalan Miguel Ángel Asturias; peaks with Gabriel García Márquez´s total novel Cien años de soledad (1967), and finishes with the Colombian´s Fernando Vallejo´s La virgen de los sicarios (1994) and the Mexican Mario Bellatin´s Salón de Belleza (2009). The course follows the thematics of the law, particularly Roman Law, and the way in which the characters are controlled or driven by civil and criminal law issues that constitute the plots of the novels.  Prerequisite: SPAN 140, 142, 145 or equivalent.  L5, HU
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm

* SPAN 392b / LAST 391b / LITR 289b, Literature of the Americas, North and SouthRolena Adorno

Readings of U.S. and Latin American short stories and novels to explore related themes and narrative structures. Topics include the literary dialogue between Anglo and Latin American writers and their comparative treatments of history, myth, memory, and war. Paired readings of Poe and Cortázar; Bierce and Fuentes; Crane and Borges; and Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom! and García Márquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude. Conducted in English; a section in Spanish available depending on demand. Readings of Latin American texts in Spanish for Spanish and Literature majors. Prerequisite: SPAN 140, 142, 145, or equivalent.  HU
MW 1pm-2:15pm

* SPAN 478a and SPAN 479b, Directed Readings and/or Individual ResearchNoël Valis

Individual study under faculty supervision. The student must submit a bibliography and a written plan of study approved by the faculty adviser to the director of undergraduate studies. No reading or research course credit is granted without prior approval from the director of undergraduate studies. The student must meet with the instructor at least one hour a week. A final examination or essay is required.
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* SPAN 491a or b, The Senior EssayNoël Valis

A research project completed under faculty supervision and resulting in a paper of considerable length, in Spanish.
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