1. History of the American People: Memory and Identity [Detailed information]
This course examines aspects of the historical development of the US, considering the geographical conditions of the country and the ethnic diversity that has always characterized it. The course will outline the country’s history from its colonial origins to the present: the formation and evolution of social and cultural practices; the American political system; the social struggles to reconcile the realities experienced by citizens with the theory of democratic ideology; and the international projection of the US since its inception.
2.The Hispanic Heritage (“La Hispanidad”) in the United States [Detailed information]
The course deals with the study of the Hispanic presence in the territories that now form the US, from colonial times to the present day. The main objective is to trace the roots of the different Hispanic groups that are present in contemporary American society. To this end, a large variety of verbal and nonverbal texts are used. The focus of the course will be on the literary and cultural representations of the different Hispanic groups today.
3. American Studies and Research Methodologies [Detailed information]
This subject aims to study and understand the US, employing the methodologies used in American Studies courses for the interdisciplinary study of American culture. We will include an introduction to the analysis of the arts and literature, social issues, popular culture, material culture, cultural diversity, and social change. The aim is to familiarize students with the major schools of thought of American Studies and their methods of research.
4. American Thought and Political Tradition [Detailed information]
The purpose of this course is to study the political culture of the USA, and its roots in Enlightenment thought, particularly in the English-speaking world, and referring primarily to the political experiences of the metropolis. The American democratic experiment will be analyzed as a point of reference for social life as different from Europe and, therefore, giving rise to a different tradition with major figures.
5. American Visual Cultures [Detailed information]
This course focuses primarily on the history and current status of formal analysis, genre studies, and cultural interpretation of film narratives and other visual texts in America. The aim is for students to be able to analyze a broad spectrum of films, to perceive these texts in the context of the larger American cultural history, to explain the aspects of formal design, ideology and rhetoric, and to develop their argumentative skills related to this discipline.
6.Institutions and Organizations: Meaning and Function [Detailed information]
In this course, the primary aspects of the US political system will be analyzed under the premise that its institutions are a true reflection of its citizens. We will study the historical origin of the US government, its constitutional framework, and the different branches into which its power is divided. We will pay special attention to the figure of the president. We will study the strengths and weaknesses of the different presidents, reviewing their mandates. We will discover the importance of the power that is in the hands of the different States and local institutions in the daily life of Americans, and we will evaluate the importance of the media, lobbies, and pressure groups and their influence on politics.
7.The Exported America: The Social History of Americanization in the World [Detailed information]
This course will enable students to learn and understand the key impact of Americanization since the early twentieth century in Europe, with special emphasis on the economic and cultural dimensions during the inter-war period. The process of Americanization had political, economic, social and cultural ramifications (among many others) that have continued to this day.
SPECIALIZATION I: LITERATURE AND CULTURE
1. Key Authors and Texts of American Literature [Detailed information]
The main objective of this course is for students to become acquainted with those texts and authors of US literary canon who have shaped the textuality of American identity. The course will investigate how the identity of America is based on texts supported by the aesthetic principles of the rationality of the Enlightenment, the imagination of Romanticism, and the spirituality of Puritanism.
2.Multiculturalism: Ethnic American Cultural Expressions [Detailed information]
This course provides an overview of literary production (in English) by contemporary authors of ethnic descent in the US, whose communities have been historically affected by conflicts in the past. The subject is divided into two main sections. The first includes the literature of a selection of authors addressing immigration, “the American dream,” ethnic identity, the canon, and genocide. The second section focuses on the representation of history and memory in contemporary literature.
SPECIALIZATION II: POLITICS AND INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
1. US Foreign Policy [Detailed information]
This course will familiarize students with the main issues in US foreign policy, their ideological bases, historical development, institutional structures, and players. In addition, they will study the doctrines and traditions of American foreign policy from the Puritans to the present day. The imperialist phase and the First World War will be analyzed in relation to the development of US domestic policy, as will the arrival of Idealism and the impact of the Great Depression and the Second World War.
2. American Natural Heritage and Environmentalism: History, Policy, Science, Thought, and Culture [Detailed information]
The course is divided into two modules. The first module aims to ensure that students gain the necessary knowledge of the territorial structure of the US, and of how the progressive occupation of the territory from the earliest discoveries through the viceroys and colonies to the final occupation of the whole continent in 1875-1890 with the defeat of the latest native tribes, has configured the regional and national identity of Americans. The second module aims to address the philosophical and ethical dimensions of contemporary environmental thought, in addition to its influence on various American cultural representations, such as film and literature.
SPECIALTY III: HISTORY AND SOCIAL SCIENCES
1. The History of the United States as a Land of Immigrants [not in the course schedule in 2023/2024]
2.US Domestic and Foreign Economic Policy [Detailed information]
The aim of this course is to analyze the main pillars on which the current US economic policy is based, both on a domestic level and in its external dimension. In addition, the US role in the major multilateral financial institutions will be analyzed, focusing on the strategies designed to fight poverty during the second decade of the 1990s.