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Latina/o Literature and Culture

ENGL 070.401
instructor(s):
TR 1:30-3

This course is an introduction to Latina/o literature and culture, with "Latina/o" meaning people of Latin American descent living and writing in the U.S. As we study the cultural and aesthetic questions that inform the texts, we will also attend to the distinct historical conditions in which they were produced. Some of the historical narratives that will inform our discussions include U.S. economic and political interest in the Caribbean after 1898; the Mexican Revolution; anti-colonial sentiments in Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic; the prominence of social protest literature that emerged alongside the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 1960s and 70s; and the role of articulations of ethnic, gender, class and sexual identities throughout these literatures. We will also interrogate the possibilities, limitations, and the viability of studying these diverse literatures under the rubric of "latinidad." Writers and artists will probably include Américo Paredes, Piri Thomas, Sandra Cisneros, Julia Alvarez, Cherrie Moraga, John Leguizamo, Coco Fusco and Junot Diaz.