Spang012A: Border Narratives in Latin America Course Convenor: Dr Claire Lindsay



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SPANG012A: Border Narratives in Latin America
Course Convenor: Dr Claire Lindsay (claire.lindsay@ucl.ac.uk)


The Mexico-US Border at El Paso/Ciudad Juárez
This course considers the notion of borders and border-crossing in Latin America. It focuses particularly on the discursive construction of the Mexico-US border since 1848, a space which is simultaneously liminal and central in the cultural imagination of the nation-states it bisects. In the course of the term we will consider the treatment and conceptualisation of this 2000 mile-long border in a range of written and visual narratives from north and south. Issues to be discussed will include the trans-nationalisation of identity, questions of gender, hybridity, migration and globalisation, as well as the interplay of poetics and politics in these myriad border narratives.
Week 1 : Introduction to the Mexico-US Border
Week 2: Border Theories
Gloria Anzaldúa, Borderlands/La Frontera (1986)

Guillermo Gómez Peña, The New World Border (1996)


Week 3: Border Fiction I
Carlos Fuentes, La frontera del cristal/The Crystal Frontier (1992)

Luis Humberto Crosthwaite, Instrucciones para cruzar la frontera (2002)


Week 4: Border Fiction II
Cormac McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses (1993) [from The Border Trilogy]
Week 5: Border Fiction III
Ana Castillo, The Mixquiahuala Letters (1986)

Excerpts from: Sandra Cisneros, Woman Hollering Creek (1991) and Rosario San Miguel, Bajo el puente: Relatos desde la frontera/Under the Bridge: Stories from the Border (2008)


Week 7: Border Travelogues
Luis Alberto Urrea, The Devil’s Highway (2004)

Rubén Martínez, Crossing Over: A Mexican Family on the Migrant Trail (2002)


Week 8: Border Cinema I
A Touch of Evil (Welles, 1958)

Lone Star (Sayles, 1996)
Week 9: Border Cinema II
Bring me the Head of Alfredo García (Peckinpah, 1974)

The Three Burials of Melquíades Estrada (Lee Jones, 2005)
Week 10: Border Cinema III
El jardín del edén (Novaro, 1994)

Bordertown (Nava, 2006)
Week 10: Border Cinema IV
Bajo California: El límite del tiempo (Bolado, 1998)

Babel (Iñárritu, 2007)

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