Hispanic Literatures and Culture

Spanish is the second most widely spoken language in the world and the second language of the United States. In our society, knowing Spanish is not just an asset; it is increasingly a necessity. The Hispanic Literatures and Culture concentration enables students to develop advanced Spanish skills while acquiring a solid background in the complex history, literature, cultures, and intellectual traditions of Spain, Latin America, and the Latino-U.S. The department offers a variety of courses on topics related to literary history and theory; multicultural contact; linguistics and the history of the language; visual culture, film, and performance studies. Interdisciplinarity is a hallmark of the department, and students in this concentration are encouraged to broaden their perspectives by taking relevant courses in other departments. Most choose to strengthen their academic preparation by participating in a study abroad program in Spain or Latin America and by engaging with Hispanic communities in the United States.

The Department of Hispanic Studies offers a standard concentration program in Hispanic Literatures and Culture, which requires comprehensive work in the Spanish language and in-depth study of Hispanic literatures and cultures. 700 level courses provide basic tools for critical analysis and opportunities for advanced Spanish language skill-development, while upper (1000) level courses offer opportunities to explore a particular author, genre, period, or special topic, and to master diverse analytical approaches. The overall requirement is a minimum of ten courses.

Advanced Spanish II (Pre-requisite)
Required courses: one of the following 0700 level courses
Early and Contemporary Writers of Spanish America
Intensive Survey of Spanish Literature
Transatlantic Crossings: Readings in Hispanic Literatures
Up to two more 0700 level courses including, additionally:
HISP 0710 Culture and Advanced Spanish Language (any course in the series)
HISP 0750 Topics in Hispanic Culture/Civilization (any course in the series)
Elective Courses
Select at least three 1000-level courses in Hispanic Studies at Brown. These provide more specialized preparation in major areas of Hispanic Studies, including works and topics from across the centuries and pertaining to both Spain and Latin America. Concentrators must take at least six courses (at either the 0700 or1000 level, with a maximum of three 0700 level courses) in Hispanic Studies at Brown, including one with the WRIT designation.
Concentrators are reminded that up to four related courses from Study Abroad, transfer credit, and other departments at Brown (e.g., Comparative Literature, History, Ethnic Studies, Anthropology) may be applied toward the concentration in Hispanic Studies as long as they deal with Spanish or Latin American themes and/or Peninsular or Latin American culture. While there is a list of acceptable related Brown courses on the Hispanic Studies website, individual courses may be discussed with the Concentration Advisor on a case by case basis.
Total Credits = 10

E-Portfolio: All Hispanic Studies concentrators will be expected to complete the required sections of the concentration E-Portfolio in ASK. We encourage you to share your written work, your projects, and your reflections on concentration-related experiences (study abroad, community work, internships, etc.) with the wider public at Brown and beyond, but only as you see fit

Honors Thesis or Project

Students with an excellent record in their Hispanic Studies courses will be eligible to write an Honors Thesis or write and produce an Honors Project. Typically the Honors Thesis is a major research paper of approximately 40 to 80 pages in Spanish, depending on the topic and treatment necessary. Alternatively, a student may, with prior permission of the Hispanic Studies Concentration Advisor, present a film, gallery exhibition, or other appropriate project, together with a paper that clearly demonstrates the academic foundations and relevance of the project. 

Students should begin thinking about an Honors Thesis or Project in their third year at Brown. Those who study in Spain or Latin America in the spring of their junior year may want to write to professors they might want to work with, indicating their potential thesis interests. Ideally, students will begin to research topics and prepare a reading list for the thesis during the summer before their senior year.

The Department expects students to have two readers for their honors thesis or project. Typically, the first reader and advisor for the project will be a faculty member in Hispanic Studies. Both readers and the students will agree on the amount of consultation required and deadlines for submitting drafts and completing readings, It is important that all parties have a clear sense of procedures and deadlines.

Students planning to write an Honors Thesis in Hispanic Studies must submit the titles and abstracts of their project, along with the names and signatures of their advisor and second reader by October 14. If the honors proposal is accepted, students will register in HISP 1980 for the spring semester.

Most students require two semesters to plan and complete an Honors Thesis or Project. Students will complete at least an outline and a bibliography for their project during the fall semester. Optimally, a substantial portion of the writing will also be submitted to the advisor before Winter Break. The second semester is devoted to completing the writing or the project work, and a full draft of the thesis or project must be submitted to the advisor by March 13.

The final, complete version of the thesis or project must be submitted by April 13. Students should submit one copy to each reader and one electronic and one hard copy to the Department.

Important dates:

October 14: Honors Thesis Proposal due

December 14: Detailed outline and bibliography due

March 13: Full draft of thesis to Advisor

April 13: Final, complete version of the thesis due

Concentration Advisor:

To be confirmed.