This course will examine high, popular and mass cultural forms in twentieth century Spain and Latin America. It will discuss notions of mass reproduction and its cultural consequences for cultural form and audience response, including the appropriation of mass culture under postmodernity.
Aims and Objectives
Knowledge and Understanding
Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:
- Theories of high, popular, mass culture and more recent ones in context of globalisation and hybridity
- Issues of Spanish and Latin American cultural development and cultural management
- A range of high, popular, mass, hybrid/ globalised cultural texts in different media
- Techniques for analysing a variety of cultural forms
- An appreciation of the different modes of response of audiences of high, popular, mass/ globalised and hybrid culture
Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:
- Critically evaluate existing interpretations of the material studied
- Conduct independent research, thus obtaining training in the research required for the residence abroad investigative project
- Develop independent learning strategies
- Assess different theories of high, popular and mass culture as well recent debates on hybridity/globalisation
- Think critically about different kinds of audience response
- Understand a range of theoretical approaches and apply them to the material covered
- Analyse the relationship and interaction that existed between high, popular and mass culture during the twentieth and twenty-first century
This module examines high, popular and mass cultural forms in twentieth century Spain and Latin America. Attention is particularly paid to the political uses made of those different forms. The module explores the function of popular culture in predominantly rural societies where literacy is low, and the co-option of selective aspects of popular culture for high-cultural purposes. It discusses notions of mass reproduction and its cultural consequences for cultural form and audience response, including the appropriation of mass culture under post modernity and as developed in Cultural Studies. Recent developments in the field of Cultural Studies will also include notions of globalisation and cultural hybridity. This module will explore how the processes by which certain texts are incorporated into the high-cultural canon, paying attention to texts which have been read both as popular culture and as high culture. Material studied includes theoretical writings on high, popular and mass culture, as well as notions of cultural hybridity and globalisation; popular prints; photography; popular music; popular cinema; fiction.
Learning and Teaching
Teaching and learning methods
Following an introduction to theories of high, popular, mass culture, hybridity and globalisaton, the lectures will introduce you to a wide range of cultural expressions from Spain and Latin America. In the seminars, you will be expected to relate the theory to that material, and develop their own analyses. The oral presentation requires you to research a small project, to present their analysis lucidly to their peers, and to clarify and support points in the discussion that follows. The essays seek to test your grasp of the theoretical and analytical issues raised, their capacity for independent research, and their academic writing skills. The essays require you to demonstrate your knowledge of the material covered and their ability to address questions raised about the issues discussed and to develop their own analysis.
Teaching methods include:
- Seminars (including compulsory student presentations and group discussion)
Learning activities include:
- Close reading and analysis of varied forms of cultural expression
- Debating in class theoretical issues and differing interpretations of the texts
- Constructing arguments for presentation orally and in written work
- Independent research and study
|Total study time||150|
Resources & Reading list
Raab, Josef, and Martin Butler, eds (2008). Hybrid Americas: Contacts, Contrasts, and Confluences in New World Literatures and Cultures. https://www.uni- bielefeld.de/(de)/ZIF/FG/2008Pluribus/publications/raab-Butler_intro-hybrid.pdf.
Storey, John (ed), (1994). Cultural Theory and Popular Culture: a Reader. New York: Harvester Wheatsheaf..
Fredric Jameson and Masao Miyoshi (eds) (1998). The Cultures of Globalization. Durham: Duke UP.
Strinati, Dominic (1995). An Introduction to Theories of Popular Culture. London: Routledge.
Homi Bhabha. The Location of Culture (a difficult book but a foundational text of postcolonial theory; the chapter on stereotypes is especially useful).
William Rowe and Vivian Schelling (1991). Memory and Modernity: Popular Culture in Latin America. London: Verso.
Shaw, Debra (2017). Transnational Cinemas: Mapping a field of study - for the Routledge Companion to World Cinema, edited by Rob Stone, Paul Cooke, Stephanie Dennison & Alex Marlow-Mann.
Canclini, Nestor García (1995). Hybrid Cultures: Strategies for Entering and Leaving Modernity globalización.
Huyssen, Andreas. After the Great Divide: Modernism, Mass culture, Postmodernism. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
An Introductory Guide to Cultural Theory and Popular Culture. New York: Harvester Wheatsheaf.
Burke, Peter (2009). Cultural Hybridity. Cambridge: Polity Press.
Imagined Communities (1991). Imagined Communities. Imagined Communities: Verso.
Assessments designed to provide informal, on-module feedback
- Participation in seminar discussion;
- Preparation for seminar presentation and two essays.
Summative assessment description
Referral assessment description
Repeat type: Internal & External