The Spanish-Speaking World: Cultural Crossings

Quarters
Fall Open
Location
Olympia
Class Standing
Sophomore
Junior
Senior
Alice Nelson
Catalina Ocampo

This program, open to students of Spanish at all levels, integrates intensive Spanish language study with study of the culture, politics, and history of Latin America, focusing on cultural production by Latin American and U.S.-based Latinx communities in historical context. We study the impacts of colonialism and ongoing coloniality in Latin America as well as vibrant resistance movements, both past and present. We also explore the interrelationships between politics and cultural production, and how literature and the political imagination impact processes of social change. Community-based work is integrated into the year-long program in order to build skills for working in community settings as well as cross-cultural skills. Each week includes seminars on readings in English (or Spanish for Advanced Spanish language students), Spanish language classes at the appropriate level, a lecture in Spanish, and a workshop or film. Writing assignments include seminar responses, synthesis essays, and creative work.  Note: all Spanish language classes are integrated into the program—students do not have to register for them separately. We welcome students with any level of Spanish, from beginner to advanced. (For only Advanced/Advanced Intermediate students who need to enroll part-time, we offer an 8-credit option that includes just the Spanish classes and Spanish lecture; speak with faculty for more information- signature permission to register for this option is required)

Fall quarter will explore cultural encounters in Latin America prior to the 20th century and lay the conceptual foundations for work in subsequent quarters. After a brief look at medieval Spain, we will examine violence against Indigenous and Black peoples during Spain's process of imperial expansion, its subsequent decline as an empire, and how colonial institutions were contested by diverse thinkers and social movements, concluding with Latin America's struggles for independence in the 19th century.

Winter quarter will turn to the 20th and 21st centuries, considering multiple perspectives on iconic historical and cultural events.  We will explore some of the following: revolutionary movements, indigenous communities, and the challenges of peacemaking and social transformation in Mexico, Nicaragua, and Colombia; transitions to democracy in the contexts of authoritarianism, neoliberalism, resistance and memory in the Southern Cone; immigration to the U.S.; and ways that intersectional feminist lenses complicate and enrich our understandings of the aforementioned contexts.

Spring quarter offers an option for study abroad in Mexico, or, for students staying in WA, ongoing classes plus an internship option. Our study abroad in Mérida, Mexico is coordinated with the HABLA Language School and Culture Center, and is open to 15 or more students of all language levels: the program includes immersive language-learning, field trips around the Yucatán peninsula, work with local community organizations, and seminars focused on the history and culture of Mexico and the Yucatán peninsula. For students staying in WA, the program will have an on-campus core of Spanish classes and seminars focused on Latinx communities in the U.S., and the opportunity for student-originated projects and/or internships with organizations supporting Latinx and immigrant communities. All classes during spring quarter, in Olympia and abroad, will be conducted entirely in Spanish.

 

Anticipated Credit Equivalencies:

Fall quarter: 6 - Spanish Language (at the appropriate level); 4 - History of Latin America before 1900; 4 - Literature of Latin America before 1900; 2 - Cultural Studies: Coloniality and Decoloniality.

Winter quarter: 6 - Spanish Language (at the appropriate level); 4 - History of Latin America after 1900; 4 - Literature of Latin America after 1900; 2 - Community-Based Learning.

Spring quarter:

For students staying in Olympia: 4 - History and Literature of US-Latinx Communities (in Spanish); Spanish Language: Conversation and Composition (at the appropriate level); 0-8 - Independent Project or Internship.

For students enrolled in Mexico Study Abroad: 8 - Intensive Spanish (at the appropriate level); 4 - Mexico: History and Culture; 4 - Community-Based Learning.

Registration

The 8-credit option is open only to Advanced Intermediate and Advanced students who wish to take the Spanish-language portion of the program only. To enroll in this version of the program, students need to contact faculty to verify their level of Spanish.

The 8-credit option is open only to Advanced Intermediate and Advanced students who wish to take the Spanish-language portion of the program only. To enroll in this version of the program, students need to contact faculty to verify their level of Spanish.

The 8-credit option is open only to Advanced Intermediate and Advanced students who wish to take the Spanish-language portion of the program only. To enroll in this version of the program, students need to contact faculty to verify their level of Spanish.

Academic Details

Latin American, Latinx, and international studies, literary and cultural studies, politics, history, education, writing, community-based work, including non-profit work and human and social services, and any career where Spanish language is a plus. This program also builds cultural competencies for working with Latinx and Latin American communities in a broad range of professional fields.

8
16

For the fall and winter, the 8-credit option is open only to Advanced Intermediate and Advanced students who wish to take Spanish-language portion of the program only (grammar and advanced reading, excludes seminar and workshops). To enroll in this version of the program, students need to contact faculty to verify their level of Spanish.

For the spring, a variable credit option (8-16 credits) is available to students staying in Olympia for internships and projects. The program in Olympia will consist of a program core of 8 credits, with 0-8 additional credits of internships or individual projects. The Mexico study abroad program in the spring does not have a variable credit option (all students going to Mexico take the program for 16 credits).

50
Sophomore
Junior
Senior

Fall quarter: $150 fee for overnight field trip. No fees in the winter. Students studying abroad in Mexico should consult study abroad fees section.

Winter and spring quarters offer possibilities for creative or research projects (optional).

Students remaining on campus spring quarter may intern with organizations serving local Latinx communities. Students must complete an in-programInternship Learning Contract in consultation with the faculty and Academic Advising. For more information about developing in-program internships, see Evergreen web pages for Individual Study and for the Center for Community-Based learning and Action.

Schedule

Fall
2024
Open
Winter
2025
Open
Spring
2025
Open
In Person (F)
In Person (W)
In Person (S)

See definition of Hybrid, Remote, and In-Person instruction

Day
Schedule Details
Olympia
<p><span>Fall 2026 - Spring 2027.</span></p>