Module LXS-3041:
Iberian Identities on Screen

Module Facts

Run by School of Languages, Literatures and Linguistics

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 2

Organiser: Dr Eva Bru-Dominguez

Overall aims and purpose

The module explores the construction of cultural identity in visual culture, through analysis of a range of contemporary Iberian films (Basque, Catalan, Spanish, Galician), from the mid 1960s to present day. Through a combination of visual and critical methodologies, the module helps students engage with some of the most topical issues shaping contemporary Iberia, including enduring forms of national conflict, rural vs urban identity and spaces; sexual politics; memory politics and trauma. The film also functions as an introduction to key areas of twentieth-century Iberian film studies, including specific components on the Catalan cinematic tradition, the second avant-gardes and the Barcelona School of Film, Spanish documentary film and cinema blockbusters.

Course content

The module explores the construction of cultural identity in visual culture, through analysis of a range of contemporary Catalan, Basque and Galician films, from the mid 1960s to present day. It draws on theories of the nation and nationalism and how these can be applied to film studies and national cinema in particular, through a variety of topics including a) the Catalan cinematic tradition, the second avant-gardes and the Barcelona School of Film; b) the multiplicity of identities on the screen (gender, sexuality, racial, ethnic, regional, urban and transnational); c) memory and the recovery and reconstruction of history; d) trauma and territory; and e) post-ETA films.

Assessment Criteria

threshold

D- - D+: For the award of credit, students should demonstrate a satisfactory comprehension of the various topics studied, with some understanding of the correlations and interrelations highlighted.

good

C- - B+: For the award of higher grades, students should demonstrate a solid comprehension of the various topics studied, with clear understanding of the correlations and interrelations highlighted, having also analysed and evaluated key sources.

excellent

A- - A*: For the award of the highest grade, students should demonstrate a detailed comprehension of the various topics studied, with a nuanced understanding of the correlations and interrelations highlighted, having also analysed and evaluated key sources thoroughly.

Learning outcomes

  1. Conduct close textual reading of core films. Analysis should draw on film studies theory and cinematic techniques as well as on historical contextual studies of contemporary Spain and its nations.

  2. Conduct in-depth critical analysis of Catalan, Basque and Galician socio-political contexts.

  3. Evaluate deployment of key cinematic genres, concepts and techniques in the films studied.

  4. Engage critically with historical and cultural processes as well as artistic movements relevant to the period spanning from mid-1960s to early twenty-first century Spain and its nations.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
ESSAY Film Review

The review has to get the reader hooked immediately , use catchy language. Consider aspects such as actors, directors, cinematography and/or special effects. Give a clear and concise opinion of the film earlier on, move beyond obvious scene analysis and bring your review full-circle in the ending. Remember, this is not a piece of academic writing.

10
EXAM Analysis of Scene

After three viewings of a scene studied in the course of the module, provide an analysis of its main aspects. Focus on elements such as aesthetics, cinematic techniques, image composition, acting and/or use of music. Use technical language (bridging shot, close-up, voice over narration, etc.).

20
ESSAY Essay

Answer one of the set essay questions about one the core films studied. If you wish to write your own essay question, get in touch with the module coordinator by the end of S2 to agree on the title of the assignment.

70

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
Lecture
  1. 1-hour lecture to cover main weekly contents (11 weeks)
12
Seminar
  1. 1-hour seminar for film analysis and critical discussion (11 weeks)
12
Private study

Self study includes viewing of core films and background reading prior to each of the lectures as outlined in module dossier, this includes articles on film theory and cinematic movements particular to each of the cultural spaces discussed as well as socio-historical context.

176

Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting

Subject specific skills

  • Critical skills in the close reading, description, reasoning and analysis of primary and secondary sources in the target language and/or English or Welsh (incl. filmic, literary and other sources). (Benchmark statement 5.13, 5.14, 5.15)
  • Competence in the planning and execution of essays, presentations and other written and project work; bibliographic skills, including the accurate citation of sources and consistent use of conventions and appropriate style in the presentation of scholarly work. (Benchmark statement 5.10, 5.14, 5.15)
  • The ability to gather information, analyse, interpret and discuss different viewpoints and to place these in a wider socio-cultural and/or geo-historical and political and/or socio-linguistic context and to revise and re-evaluate judgements in light of those of the course leader, certain individuals or groups studied and/or fellow students. (Benchmark statement 5.13, 5.15 and 5.16)
  • The ability to grasp and discuss how films reflect objective or subjective positions in their treatment of their subject matter. (Benchmark statement 5.7 and 5.10)
  • The ability to engage in analytical, evaluative and original thinking. (Benchmark statement 5.14)
  • The ability to organise and present ideas and arguments in presentations, classroom discussions and debates. (Benchmark statement 5.14, 5.16)
  • The ability to analyse, interpret and historically contextualise a range of films in the target language using different forms of critical analysis (cultural, historical, socio-political, literary etc.). (Benchmark statement 5.7, 5.10 and 5.14)
  • Sensitivity to and critical evaluation of key cinematic techniques and the use of cinematic imagery and language. (Benchmark statement 5.10)
  • The ability to critically understand, analyse and interpret the main events shaping Spanish history and culture (benchmark statement 5.7, 5.10 and 5.11)
  • The ability to critically understand Spanish and Hispanic culture and its relationship to other cultures. (Benchmark statement 5.7)
  • The ability to critically understand a specific aspect of Spanish or Latin American culture. (Benchmark statement 5.7, 5.10)
  • The ability to analyse Spanish-language texts (incl. films, visual materials and ideas) and place them in a wider historical-political and socio-cultural context. (Benchmark statement 5.4, 5.7, and 5.11)
  • The ability to write an analytical film and/or book review in English / Welsh.
  • The ability to critically understand the impact and effects of the Civil War and the Francoist dictatorship in Spanish contemporary society (Benchmark statement 5.7)
  • The ability to critically understand the on-going debates about the role played by memory and forgetting in Spanish contemporary history (Benchmark statement 5.7)
  • The ability to analyse, interpret and historically contextualise a range of Spanish, Galician and Catalan films using different forms of critical analysis (cultural, historical, socio-political and literary). (Benchmark statement 5.7, 5.10 and 5.14)
  • 11, The ability to analyse key cinematic techniques and to provide a critical evaluation of cinematic imagery and language in Catalan cinema (Benchmark statements 5.7, 5.10)
  • The ability to write a film review about a Catalan film (Benchmark statement 5.15)

Resources

Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses:

Optional in courses: