|Title||Representations of War in Spanish Culture|
|Dr Antonio Sanchez||Co-ordinator|
|Module Eligibility & Prerequisites|
NB: This module will be running in Spring 2013.
This module introduces students to the historical context of the Spanish Civil War and the importance that the representation of that historical trauma had had in the development of modern Spanish culture. This will be achieved by looking at different modern representations of war. The study of a broad range of cultural representations (although most will be of the Spanish Civil War, some examples of the war of Independence against France and a Nazi propaganda film will also be included) will provide an opportunity to explore the different roles played by art throughout History and the particular limitations and possibilities of different mediums.
We will be looking at the importance of the representations of the Spanish Civil War in terms of their political value within the context from which they emerge but also examine at how cultural representations of that event are unavoidably shaped by the current conditions. The Spanish Civil War experience radically transformed the way in which war was understood, represented and images of war disseminated. The representations of war in the Spanish Civil War became important cultural artifacts involved in an ideological struggle mirroring that in the battlefields but with the years, the representations of the civil war have become useful strategies to highlight also current socio-political concerns such as the return of the repressed and the importance of coming to terms with the traumatic past.
In the first session of this module we will be looking at the socio-political context and development of the Spanish Civil War. The reading of The Spanish Civil War: A very short introduction by Helen Graham is compulsory. We will also be looking at some pictorial representations of war, including works by Spanish painters such as: Velasquez, Goya, Picasso and Dali.
This will be followed by a close analysis of some of the posters used during the Civil War as part of the war effort and Robert Capa’s and Agustí Centelles’ photograps of the conflict. 1930s films Raza,written by Franco himself (Global Cinema degree students will look instead at the nazi propaganda film The Triumph of the Will directed by Leni Riefenstahl) will bring the first part of this module to an end. The coursework essay will cover these materials.
Throughout the rest of the module we will be exploring the Spanish films: La caza, The Spirit of the Beehive, (Global Cinema students will be studying Land and Freedom instead of La caza ) The Devil’s Backbone and Pan’s Labyrinth as well as the novel Soldados de Salamina. The module will conclude by looking at the current validity of the traumatic past, the idea of memory as a burden and/or lesson as well as exploring other forms and uses of representing war like, for example, those associated with the US wars ins Vietnam and Irak.
The novel Soldados de Salamina will be available in the University bookshop and is reading is strongly recommended prior to the beginning of the module.
The films included in this module will be available at the University RBR DVD collection.
|Module Aims and Learning Outcomes|
To develop students’ ability to analyse and evaluate cultural materials, including painting, posters, photographs, films and novels.
To give students a sense of the historical and political significance of the Spanish Civil War.
To place textual and filmic representations of the Civil War in their historical and cultural context.
To provide intellectual stimulation and enjoyment.
To develop students’ ability to write about literature and films in an appropriate critical style and register.