The Image of Barcelona in Literature

Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona

Course Description

  • Course Name

    The Image of Barcelona in Literature

  • Host University

    Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona

  • Location

    Barcelona, Spain

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

    Hours & Credits

  • Contact Hours

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview


    After the Olympic Games of 1992, Barcelona became known to the world and an international tourist destination; but a short touristic visit cannot account for the cultural complexities of the Catalan capital. In order to know any city, to ?dwell? in it, we need to become familiar with its oral history, paintings, architecture, sculpture, and literary texts.

    More specifically, the more we learn about the literature of Barcelona, the more we shall know about its culture past and present. For this reason this course will explore the city through the eyes of its writers. We shall start in the nineteenth century with the rise of the modern metropolis that we know today and finish with the post-Olympic urban reality of the twenty-first century.

    Students will encounter a wide variety of materials- poetry, novel, theater and essay- and will be expected to study them with a critical eye, applying additional historical, cultural and theoretical readings. Our goal will be to arrive at a greater knowledge of the city and its context, as well as the literature surrounding it.


         - Fluency in English
         - Interest in literature



    The content of the course might be subject to minor changes depending on the class
    dynamic. ALL readings will be provided by the instructor.

         • The literary Image: Imagology
         • Brief history of Spain, Catalonia and Barcelona
         • Barcelona in the XIX Century: The birth of a new city
         • European Romanticism and the rebirth of Catalan culture
         • Jacint Verdaguer and Ode to Barcelona: Idealization of the City
         • Demolishion of the medieval walls and The Cerdà Plan
         • European Realism
         • Narcís Oller and The Stockbroker: A city under construction
         • The crisis of 1898 and The Tragic Week
         • Joan Maragall and New Ode to Barcelona and Ode to Spain
         • Revolutionary Barcelona: The Rose of Fire
         • Joan Salvat Papasseit and Nostalgia for Tomorrow and The job I like best: The working class perspective
         • The Civil War
         • George Orwell and Homage to Catalonia
         • Genaral Franco’s Dictatorship
         • Mercè Rodoreda and The Time of the Doves
         • The transition to democracy
         • Quim Monzó’s short stories: The Postmodern dissolution of the urban center

Course Disclaimer

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits are converted to semester credits/quarter units differently among U.S. universities. Students should confirm the conversion scale used at their home university when determining credit transfer.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations


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