Course Descriptions Fall 2022

This page lists descriptions for some of our department's available courses for Fall 2022. Additional courses and information will be added periodically. For a list of all courses offered by our department, please view the Course Catalog page.

Fall 2022

SPAN 429 – Spanish Phonetics & Phonology

Instructor: Professor Antônio R.M. Simões

Office: WES 2638 – Phone: 785.864-0285

Department Phone: 785-864-385


Class Time and Location: MW 12:30PM-1:45PM | Wescoe 4012 & online synchronous

Course Materials:

Textbook required: None.

All the information for this class will come from the Glosario and the instructor’s materials in Blackboard or yet from reliable internet sites. If you feel that you must have a textbook, buy this one as soon as possible:

Sonidos en contexto, by Terrell A. Morgan. Yale University Press: 2010. ISBN 978-0-300-14959-3

I often consult this book, and students can use it confidently for their projects and presentations.

Course Description:

SPAN 429 is a social-cultural analytical and practical study of Spanish pronunciation (Phonetics & Phonology). Its overall objective is to understand the basics of the physical features of Spanish sounds in comparison to English, and the phonological processes that form syllables, words, and sentences in authentic contexts. Students are expected to apply what they will have learned from class discussions to their classroom interactions and oral presentations. Phonetics and Phonology are powerful tools to improve listening and speaking skills in Spanish or any other language. In addition to the study of Phonetics and Phonology, we will also survey some of the regional pronunciation features of Spanish like the seseolleísmoyeísmoceceozheísmo, different types of distinción, and other features depending on how the class progresses. Class discussions are in Spanish.

SPAN 442: Ecopistemologies: Knowledge and/of Nature in the Spanish-speaking World

Instructor: Sean Gullickson

Time/Location: MW 11:00am - 12:15pm | Wescoe 4025

Course Description:

Humanity and the natural world are inextricably connected. No technological, cultural or civic achievement will ever fully separate us from nature – or nature from us. Climate continues to play a larger and larger role in our curricula writ large through STEM programs focused on environmental studies and sustainability as well as humanities programs built on ecological criticism. This course seeks to center the natural world in the context of Spanish-speaking literatures and cultures. With a focus on Latin America, we will explore representations of the natural world, indigenous perspectives and forms of knowledge, land rights, climate change and more.

SPAN 451: Early Modern Spanish Studies: The Pícaro, Race and Gender in Early Modern Spanish Society

Instructor: Patricia Manning

Time/Location: Thursdays 2:30pm - 3:45pm | Wescoe 4025

Course Description:                               

The pícaro first hit the literary scene circa 1554 with the publication of Lazarillo de Tormes.  So provocative was the social critique delivered by this mock first-person autobiography, that Lazarillo was one of the few texts published in Spanish that was prohibited by the Inquisition. Race, religion, social class and gender play significant roles in marginalization of the characters in this fictional first-person autobiography.  Although some works in other genres that we will study-like poetry and visual culture-idealize the state of race, gender and religious relations, others follow in the footsteps of the picaresque and problematize them.

Course readings will include:

  • Poetry by Luis de León, Francisco de Quevedo, Lope de Vega and others
  • Lazarillo de Tormes
  • Enriqueta Zafra, forthcoming graphic novel version of Lazarillo
  • An entremés (a short play) written for Juan Rana
  • María de Zayas, “El castigo de la miseria”

In addition to active participation in class discussions, course work will include one brief paper, two longer papers (including a final research paper), a presentation in small groups and a mid-term exam.

SPAN 463: National Traditions

Instructor: Rafael Acosta

Time/Location: MWF 9:00am - 10:50pm, Strong Hall 307 - August 22 to October 14

Course Description:

There are few ways to criticize reality more than by escaping it. Realisms in Latin America have been varied, spanning a wide array of options going from social realism to magical realism. During this course, we will read short stories of the XXth and XXIst centuries in order to understand what does it mean to change what seems to be possible, what seems to be real and what seems to be realistic.

Realism is a constructed idea, changing throughout time and culture, and is often challenged by reality itself. Whereas once it could have been unrealistic to see Mexicans or Cubans in space, it has happened. Whereas once it could have been unrealistic to think of a black President of the U.S.A., it has happened. Where to some it seems unrealistic that alternatives to liberal republics and dictatorships can exist, some do. Students will be encouraged to think, through the many ways in which the Latin American short story has reimagined the realistic, of all the ways in which their reality could be constrained by an unfounded notion of realism.

This course will mingle the analysis of realist techniques by reading with practice, as students will during the semester participate in writing short stories of their own.

SPAN 520: Structure of Spanish

Instructor: Professor Antônio R.M. Simões

Office: WES 2638 – Phone: 785.864-0285

Department Phone: 785-864-385


Class Time and Location: MW 3:00PM-4:15PM | Wescoe 4034

Course Materials:

Textbook REQUIRED: En otras palabras: Perfeccionamiento del español por medio de la traducción, segunda edición, Patricia V. Lunn and Ernest J. Lunsford, Georgetown University Press; 2013, 130 pages. ISBN-10: 1589019741, ISBN-13: 978-1589019744

Additional books (not required):

  • Investigación de gramática, 2nd. Edition, Patricia V. Lunn and Janet DeCesaris, Cengage Learning, 2006. ISBN10: 141301996X, ISBN-13: 978-1413019964
  • Gramática española: Variación social, Kim Potowski and Naomi Shin, Routledge, 2018  
  • Introducción y aplicaciones contextualizadas a la lingüística hispánica, Manuel Díaz Campos, Kimberly L. Geeslin and Laura Gurzynski-Weiss, Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN-13: 978-1118990216
  • Introducción a la lingüistica hispánica, Manuel Díaz Campos, Wiley-Blackwell, 2014. ISBN: 978-0-470-65798-0
  • Latin American Spanish, John Lipski, Longman, 1996 ISBN-13: 978-0582087606 ISBN-10: 0582087600
  • Sociolingüística y pragmática del español, segunda edición, Carmen Silva-Corvalán and Andrés Enrique-Arias, Georgetown University Press, 2017, ISBN: 9781626163959 (1626163952)
  • Introducción a la lingüistica hispánica, José Ignacio Hualde, Antxon Olarrea, Anna María Escobar. Second edition (2009) Cambridge University Press. Soft back, if possible, ISBN:9780521513982
  • Language and culture, by Claire Kramsch. Oxford University Press, 2008. ISBN-10: 0194372146 | 
  • The Handbook of Hispanic Linguistics (2012), Editors José Ignacio Hualde, Antxon Olarrea, Erin  O'Rourke. Wiley-Blackwell ISBN: 978-1-4051-9882-0
  • Spanish/English Contrasts – A Course in Spanish Linguistics, Second Edition, by M. Stanley Whitley. Georgetown, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 408 pp. ISBN: 9780878403813 (0878403817)
  • An Introduction to language, by Victoria Fromkin, Robert Rodman and Nina Hyams (2007). Thomson  Wadsworth (7th Edition)

SPAN 520 is a course on the structure of the Spanish language. It deals with grammar through translation from Spanish to English and from English to Spanish, as presented in the textbook. The course still deals with the structure of Spanish and it is based on socio-cultural interpretations of the normative and descriptive grammars. Although it is a grammar course that uses Linguistics approaches to study Spanish, it is tailored for undergraduate and graduate students with little or no previous experience in Linguistics analysis.  

SPAN 522: Advanced Studies in Spanish Language: Translation

Instructor: Jonathan Mayhew

Time and Location: TuTh 09:30 - 10:45 AM BA 202

Course Description:

This course will explore translation as a set of skilled practices: things to do with texts in order to produce new texts in the target language. We will also see translation from a theoretical point of view. Students will translate and evaluate other translations using very specific criteria. We will work mainly from Spanish (source language) into English (target language).     

As students at the advanced level of the Spanish major (or equivalent) you have gained valuable skills, learning to speak and write Spanish fluently at an educated level. Translation is a specific skill not covered in other courses in our department, since most of our curriculum is oriented toward getting you to do, in Spanish, what you can already do in English. Yet the fact that you also know English is an extremely important skill as well, since it permits the development of other capabilities.

SPAN 540: Colloquium in Hispanic Studies: Don Quijote

Instructor: Robert Bayliss

Time and Location: MW 12:30 - 01:45 PM | Strong 338B

Course Description:

Why is Don Quijote, according to several accounts, the second-most read book in the world (after the Bible)? How can it be used so often today as an analogy to explain our current circumstances? This course will entail both a detailed study of Cervantes’s masterpiece (and the extensive body of criticism that it has generated) and an exploration of the “afterlife” of Don Quijote in Spain, Latin America and beyond. After a close reading of the novel and a study of the major issues that have been treated in Quijote scholarship, we will study a number of adaptations in print, on stage and on screen. Apart from shorter written assignments given as homework, students will write two longer papers: one textual analysis of Don Quijote due at midsemester (4-7 pages) and a final research paper (12-15 pages).

Prerequisites: SPAN 324, SPAN 340, SPAN 424, and two 400-level Hispanic literature courses

SPAN 722: Special Topics in Spanish Literature: Strategies of Adaptation—From the Comedia de Calisto y Melibea (1499) to Areúsa en los conciertos (2002)

Instructor: Isidro Rivera

Time/Location: TuTh 2:30 - 3:45pm | Wescoe 2600

Course Description:

This course will focus on the literary evolution, cultural reception, and critical interpretation of Fernando de Rojas’s Comedia de Calisto y Melibea (Burgos: Fadrique de Basilea, 1499). The class will utilize Hutcheon’s A Theory of Adaptation as the basis for the exploration of practices associated with the adaptation of the Comedia in different periods and with diverse media.

The readings will include


     Arce, Melibea no quiere ser mujer

     Delicado, Retrato de la Loçana andaluza

     García Jambrina, El manuscrito de piedraMuñiz-Huberman: Areúsa en los conciertos.

     Nin-Culmell, La Celestina [ópera]

     Picasso, La Célestine (La femme à la taie)

     Rojas, (Tragi)Comedia de Calisto y Melibea

     Vera, La Celestina [cine]

     Ximénez de Urrea, Égloga de la

tragicomedia de Calisto y Melibea


In this course, students will take an active role in planning essential aspects of the class. Each student will write one long analytical/research paper on an original topic related to the course and will be responsible for oral reports on secondary materials and for directing one class sessions. The research paper should reflect theoretical and research interests of the individual members of the class as they pertain to the Comedia and its reception.

For more information, contact Prof. Rivera at

SPAN 780: Intro to Hispanic Studies

Instructor: Verónica Garibotto

Time/Location: Wednesdays 4:30 - 7:00pm | Wescoe 2600

Course Description:

What does the field of Hispanic Studies encompass? How do we understand our roles as scholars, as teachers, and as members of our communities? How does the field of Hispanic Studies reflect and act upon the dialectics between our thoughts, our actions, our words, and our worlds? With specific attention to incoming graduate students (yet open to graduate students in all stages of their career) this course sets out to show how Hispanic Studies is a venue to engage in transdisciplinary work and through a variety of methods and approaches. SPAN 780 invites students to reflect on their current career path, and on their role as scholars in Hispanic Studies. The course combines theoretical texts with various forms of cultural expression -including the literary- providing graduate students with a glimpse at the multiple directions and possibilities in the field. In addition, it exposes students to resources available to them at KU, both in and outside the department.

Prerequisite: Graduate student status in Spanish (students who have taken this course previously may repeat as contents varies). Undergraduates in Spanish may be admitted with consent of instructor. 

SPAN 801 - Teaching Spanish in Institutional Higher Learning

Instructor: Amy Rossomondo

Time/Location: Mondays 4:30 - 7:30pm | Wescoe 2600

Course Description:

Required of all teaching assistants who teach beginning Spanish at the University of Kansas for the first time. Instruction in classroom procedures for first year Spanish, demonstration of teaching techniques, and survey of current methodology.

SPAN 985: Borderlands, Archive, Territory: Cultural and Literary Expressions of the Frontera Norte

Instructor: Araceli Masterson-Algar

Time/Location: Wednesdays 4:30 - 7:00PM | Wescoe 4012

Course Description:

This course will address literary and cultural production from the Mexico/US borderlands since the 1980s to present, and with a focus on works by women writers, filmmakers and performance artists from the Frontera Norte. The course will engage with multiple theoretical frameworks, including postcolonial and decolonial studies, mobility and migration studies, cultural geography, and queer and performance studies. Through the analysis of visual, sonic, and literary texts that speak from/about historically specific contexts along the Mexico-US borderlands, we will address the colonial histories traversing the geopolitical border, and with attention to the configurations of Mexicano, Indigenous and Chicano identities along its territory. Some of the questions running through the course include:  How do various authors represent the cultural, sociopolitical and linguistic experience of the borderlands? How does cultural expression offer venues to engage, respond, undo, and push against U.S. and Mexican national histories? How does cultural production constitute an archive of lived and imagined experiences from the borderlands? How can we understand the Mexico-U.S. borderlands from the varied experiences of those who understand themselves as part of its territories and histories?