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.
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 director of undergraduate studies (DUS).
Prerequisite to the major is SPAN 140, 142, or 145, or the equivalent through advanced placement or study abroad. Equivalent preparation to SPAN 140, 142, 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 department 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.
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 6 in the fall term, or by 4 p.m. on April 17 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.
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.
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, or in Quito, Ecuador. 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 Academic Regulations, section K, Special Arrangements. Students who wish to count courses taken abroad toward the major should consult with the DUS before going abroad.
REQUIREMENTS OF THE MAJOR
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 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 140, 142, 145, or equivalent) are encouraged to consider taking SPAN 060, SPAN 246, SPAN 247, or any of the literature survey courses at the 200 level, such as SPAN 261, SPAN 262, SPAN 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 and in Quito, Ecuador. In addition, YSS offers five-week summer courses at the L5 level in Valencia, Spain and in Quito, Ecuador.
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 department 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.
Certificate of Advanced Language Study
The Department of Spanish and Portuguese offers a Certificate of Advanced Language Study in Spanish. A certificate adviser, typically the director of undergraduate studies (DUS), advises students on the certification process and certifies to the University Registrar's Office that students have completed the stated requirements before the end of eight terms of study. The Certificate of Advanced Language Study, once certified, is listed on student transcripts.
Students seeking to earn the certificate are required to take four courses, all beyond the L4 level in their chosen language, at least two of which must be Yale courses designated as L5, and at least one of which must be a Yale 300-level course advanced undergraduate lecture or seminar. All Yale Spanish courses at the 200- or 300-level, which carry an L5 designation, count toward the requirement. First-year seminars taught in Spanish count as courses in the SPAN 231–299 range. All courses must be taken for a letter grade, and students must achieve a grade of B or above. With the approval of the certificate adviser, one advanced non-L5 course conducted in the target language, such as an independent study course, a graduate seminar, or an advanced seminar may count toward certification requirements.
The certificate adviser may approve the substitution of one credit earned as part of a Yale or Yale-designated study abroad program and taught in the target language to count toward the certificate requirements. If the adviser approves courses taken outside of Yale for inclusion in the certificate requirements, students must take the necessary steps to ensure those courses appear on their transcript.
Credit/D/Fail No courses taken Credit/D/Fail may be counted toward the requirements of the certificate.
FACULTY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF SPANISH AND PORTUGUESE
Professors Rolena Adorno, Howard Bloch (Chair), Roberto González Echevarría, Aníbal González, K. David Jackson, Noël Valis, Jesús R. Velasco
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 Carolina Baffi, Deborah K. Symons Roldán, Giseli Tordin, María M. Vázquez
* SPAN 060a, First-Year Colloquium: Literary Studies in Spanish Leslie Harkema
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
* SPAN 100b, Spanish for Reading Staff
Overview of fundamental grammar structures and basic vocabulary through comprehensive reading and translation of texts in various fields (primarily humanities and social sciences, and others as determined by student interest). No previous knowledge of Spanish needed. Conducted in English. No preregistration required. Does not satisfy the Yale College language requirement.
* SPAN 110a or b, Elementary Spanish I Staff
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. L1 RP 1½ Course cr
SPAN 120a or b, Elementary Spanish II Staff
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. L2 RP 1½ Course cr
* SPAN 125a, Intensive Elementary Spanish Maria-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, L2 RP 2 Course cr
SPAN 130a or b, Intermediate Spanish I Staff
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. Prerequisites: Conducted in Spanish. Admits to SPAN 140. L3 RP 1½ Course cr
* SPAN 132a, Spanish for Heritage Speakers I Sybil 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. This course meets during Reading Period: the period between the last week of classes and finals week. Admission in accordance with placement results. L3
SPAN 140a or b, Intermediate Spanish II Staff
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. L4 RP 1½ Course cr
* SPAN 142b, Spanish for Heritage Speakers II Staff
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
* SPAN 145b, Intensive Intermediate Spanish Staff
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, L4 RP 2 Course cr
SPAN 150a or b, Advanced Oral and Written Communication in Spanish Staff
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. L5 RP
* SPAN 222a / LAST 222a, Legal Spanish Mercedes 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
* SPAN 223a or b / LAST 223a or b, Spanish in Film: An Introduction to the New Latin American Cinema Staff
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
* SPAN 225b / LAST 225b, Spanish for the Medical Professions Staff
Topics in health and welfare. Conversation, reading, and writing about medical issues for advanced Spanish-language students, including those considering careers in medical professions. Enrollment limited to 18. L5
* SPAN 227a / LAST 227a, Creative Writing María 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
* SPAN 243a or b / LAST 243a or b, Advanced Spanish Grammar Staff
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
SPAN 246b, Introduction to the Cultures of Spain Leslie Harkema
Study of various aspects of Spanish culture, including its continuing relation to the societies of Latin America. Examination of Spanish politics, history, religions, art forms, music, and literatures, from ancient times to the present. Primary sources and critical studies are read in the original. L5, HU
SPAN 247a / LAST 247a, Introduction to the Cultures of Latin America Rolena Adorno
A chronological study of Latin American cultures through their expressions in literature and the arts, beginning in the pre-Columbian period and focusing on the period from the nineteenth century to the present. Emphasis on crucial historical moments and on distinctive rituals such as fiestas. Open to students who have placed into L5 courses or who have successfully completed an L4 course in Spanish. Counts toward the major in Spanish. L5, HU
SPAN 261a / LAST 261a, Studies in Spanish Literature I Jesus Velasco
An introduction to Spanish prose, drama, and lyric poetry from their medieval multicultural origins through the Golden Age in the seventeenth century. Readings include El Cid, La Celestina, Conde Lucanor, and works by Miguel de Cervantes and Calderón de la Barca. Open to students who have placed into L5 courses or who have successfully completed an L4 course in Spanish. Counts toward the major in Spanish. L5, HU
* SPAN 262b / LAST 262b, Studies in Spanish Literature II Noël Valis
An introduction to Spanish prose, drama, and lyric poetry from the eighteenth century to the present, centered on the conflict between modernity and tradition and on the quest for national identity. Texts by Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer, Emilia Pardo Bazán, Antonio Machado, Federico García Lorca, Ramón Sender, and Ana María Matute, among others. Open to students who have placed into L5 courses or who have successfully completed an L4 course in Spanish. L5, HU
SPAN 302b / LITR 445b, El Quijote en español Roberto González Echevarría
A detailed and contextualized reading of Cervantes's masterpiece conducted entirely in Spanish. The study of this iconic text familiarizes students with its literary and cultural values and Cervantes' language. Prerequisites: SPAN 140, 142, 145, or equivalent. L5, HU
* SPAN 329b / LITR 459b, Golden Age Theater Roberto González Echevarría
The development and apogee of the Spanish comedia, as well as contemporary minor subgenres such as the auto sacramental and the entremés. Exploration of how the theater synthesizes post-Garcilaso lyric, the commedia dell’arte, renaissance epic, the romancero, Spanish history, and the European renaissance literary tradition. Works by Cervantes, Lope de Vega, Tirso de Molina, Guillén de Castro, Mira de Amescua, Juan Ruiz de Alarcón, Luis Quiñones de Benavente, Pedro Calderón de la Barca, and Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz. Comparison with English and French theater is encouraged. SPAN 140, 142, 145, or equivalent. L5, HU
* SPAN 334a, Migration and Multiculturalism in Contemporary Spanish Literature and Film Leslie Harkema
Overview and discussion of literary and cinematic reflections on immigration in Spain since the end of the Franco dictatorship and especially over the last thirty years. Students learn about the history of immigration and migration in Spain and the increasingly multicultural makeup of Spanish society today. Readings include short stories, novels, memoir, graphic novels, and drama—as well as several films—that explore the experience of (im)migrants from North and Sub-Saharan Africa, China, and Latin America, as well as that of second- and third-generation Spaniards of Asian and African descent. Prerequisite: L5 Spanish placement or previous completion of SPAN 140, 142, or 145. L5, HU
* SPAN 350a / LAST 351a, Borges: Literature and Power Aníbal González Perez
An introduction to the work of Jorge Luis Borges, focusing on the relation between literature and power as portrayed in selected stories, essays, and poems. Topics include Borges and postmodernity; writing and ethics; and Borges's politics. Works include Ficciones, Otras inquisiciones, El aleph, El hacedor, El informe de Brodie, and Obra poética. 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
* SPAN 353b, Spanish American Vanguardist Literature Aníbal González Perez
Introduction to the Vanguardist period in Spanish American cultural history. The effects of political and social change in the early twentieth century on Spanish American writers and artists. Tensions between playfulness and engagement, cosmopolitanism and regionalism, and creativity and conscience in Vanguardist works. L5, HU
* SPAN 367a / HIST 227a, The Spanish Civil War: Words and Images Noël Valis
An introduction to the history and cultural-literary impact of the Spanish Civil War (1936–39) from national and international perspectives. Views both from within and from outside the war; women and the war; memory and the war. Authors include George Orwell, Ernest Hemingway, Javier Cercas, Alberto Méndez, Mercè Rodoreda, Ramón J. Sender, W. H. Auden, and Stephen Spender. 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
SPAN 398a / AFAM 180a / LAST 398a / LITR 329a, Caribbean Baseball: A Cultural History Roberto González Echevarría
A study of the origins and evolution of baseball in the Caribbean (Cuba, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico) in the context of the region's political and cultural history and its relationship with the United States. The course begins with a consideration of the nature of games and the development and dissemination of sports by imperial powers since the nineteenth century: soccer, rugby, and tennis by the UK and basketball and baseball by the U.S. Topics to be considered: nationalism, the role of race, popular culture, the development of the media, the rise of stars and famous teams, the importance of the Negro Leagues, access of Caribbean players to the Major Leagues, the situation in the present. WR, HU
SPAN 404b / ANTH 264b / ARCG 264b, Aztec Archaeology and Ethnohistory Oswaldo Chinchilla Mazariegos
An anthropological and ethnohistorical examination of the Aztec civilization that dominated much of Mexico from the fourteenth century until the Spanish Conquest of 1521. SO
* SPAN 478a and SPAN 479b, Directed Readings and/or Individual Research Noël 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.
* SPAN 491a or b, The Senior Essay Noël Valis
A research project completed under faculty supervision and resulting in a paper of considerable length, in Spanish.