Cervantes' Don Quixote

About the Course

The course facilitates a close reading of Don Quixote in the artistic and historical context of renaissance and baroque Spain. Students are also expected to read four of Cervantes' Exemplary Stories, Cervantes' Don Quixote: A Casebook, and J.H. Elliott's Imperial Spain. Cervantes' work will be discussed in relation to paintings by Velázquez. The question of why Don Quixote is read today will be addressed throughout the course. Students are expected to know the book, the background readings and the materials covered in the lectures and class discussions.

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Course Structure

This Yale College course, taught on campus twice per week for 75 minutes, was recorded for Open Yale Courses in Fall 2009.

Course Materials

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About Professor Roberto González Echevarría

A native of Cuba, Roberto González Echevarría is Sterling Professor of Hispanic and Comparative Literature at Yale. He has a Ph.D. from Yale, and honorary doctorates from Colgate, the University of South Florida, and Columbia. In 1999 he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and in 2011, President Barack Obama awarded him the National Medal for the Humanities. A speaker of Spanish, English, French and Italian, González Echevarría covers Spanish, Latin American, French, and Italian literatures. The author of many books in English and Spanish, his Myth and Archive: A Theory of Latin American Narrative won awards from the Modern Language Association of America and the Latin American Studies Association. The Pride of Havana: A History of Cuban Baseball won the first Dave Moore Award (Most Important Book on Baseball). In 2005 Yale published his Love and the Law in Cervantes. He has written for The New York Times Review of BooksThe Wall Street JournalThe Village VoiceThe Nation, and USA Today. His work has appeared in Spanish, English, French, German, Portuguese, Polish, Italian and Persian.

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Syllabus

Professor

Roberto González Echevarría, Sterling Professor of Hispanic and Comparative Literature

Description

The course facilitates a close reading of Don Quixote in the artistic and historical context of renaissance and baroque Spain. Students are also expected to read four of Cervantes' Exemplary Stories, Cervantes' Don Quixote: A Casebook, and J.H. Elliott's Imperial Spain. Cervantes' work will be discussed in relation to paintings by Velázquez. The question of why Don Quixote is read today will be addressed throughout the course. Students are expected to know the book, the background readings and the materials covered in the lectures and class discussions.

Texts

De Cervantes, Miguel. Don Quixote de la Mancha. Translated by John Rutherford and introduction by Roberto González Echevarría. New York: Penguin, 2001.

De Cervantes, Miguel. Exemplary Stories. Translated by Leslie Lipson. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.

González Echevarría, Roberto, ed. Cervantes' Don Quixote: A Casebook. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.

Elliott, John Huxtable. Imperial Spain, 1469-1716. New York: Penguin, 2002.

For those reading Cervantes in Spanish:

De Cervantes, Miguel. Don Quijote de la Mancha, ed. Francisco Rico. Madrid: Real Academia Española, 2004.

Requirements

A midterm, a take-home final exam, four two-page papers (500 words) on topics provided by the professor. One of the papers will be on an "exemplary story." Students are required to come to class prepared to discuss the chapters, stories, and background readings assigned for that week, and to attend sections. Class attendance and discussion will be an important component of the final grade. Those wishing to use the course to fulfill the language requirement for the Literature major will write the papers in Spanish. A section in Spanish will be available if there is sufficient student demand.

Grading

Midterm examination: 20%
Final examination: 25%
Short papers: 40%
Attendance and participation: 15%

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Course Books and Other Related Titles

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