Sustainable Development Discourses in Colonial Latin America

 

Spanish 364

Spring 2012

 

Dr. Rocío Cortés

Office: 321 Radford Hall

Class: Tuesdays and Thursdays 1:20-2:50  Place Nursing Ed 221

Office Hours T and TH 8:30-9:30, 3:00-4:00 and by appointment

 

Course Description:

We create our sense of place through processes that are rational and emotional. Our attachment to a particular place can be the result of our knowledge of its geography, of the richness of its landscapes, of the flora and fauna, of its history, and of the people who inhabit it. Our knowledge of our sense of place is also emotional. Our senses create a sense of familiarity, of belonging to a community and to nature. Our historical time reflects the preoccupation with sustainability, which, according to World Commission on Environment and Development, should meet “the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”.  Five centuries ago, when Europeans traveled and settled in the Americas, the view of the environment and the construction of a sense of place were also determined by their historical frame and cultural expectations. However, Spaniards in the regions of what we call now Latin America, where only a small part of the population. After the Spaniards took possession and populated lands that displaced natives, the indigenous population had to adapt their sense of place in new territories with the new arrivals. Not only the spaces had to be reconfigured to accommodate the new colonial situation but also, the use of natural resources by European and natives, reflected aspects of cultural idiosyncrasies and economic purposes. In this course, we will focus on how writers of European descent and those of native background perceived and rationalized the known and unknown lands, their survival and how they created a new sense of place.

 

For this course, we will read primary texts by writers of European and Indigenous descent. We will also read some articles that will bring theoretical approaches about how Europeans and Indigenous peoples interpret their environment and each other.

Three Indigenous narratives will open our course on the genesis of three major native groups: The Mayan’s Popol Vuh, The Aztec’s La leyenda de los soles (The Legend of the Suns) and the Andean’s Huarochiri. We will discuss how natives conceived the world and its creation to have a better understanding of their cosmovision. We will read narratives by Europeans written during the ages of exploration, conquest and colonization (sixteenth and seventeenth centuries) to examine how Europeans portray Indigenous peoples, how they use natural resources, and how they construct a sense of place in the new lands.  We will also read narratives written during the colony by Native writers: the Indigenous don Domingo Chimalpahin and the Mestizo (offspring of European and an Indigenous person) don Fernando de Alva Ixtlilxóchitl from Mexico. From Peru, we will read the Mestizo Garcilaso de la Vega el Inca and the Indigenous Guaman Poma de Ayala. Just as we will do with the writings by Europeans, we will examine how indigenous and Mestizo writers construct their discourses on sustainability, identity and sense of place real and mythical.

 

We will examine how assumptions and cultural baggage played an important role in the construction of space among the Europeans. We will revise the notion of the search for “El Dorado” and other mythical places that brought so much death to many explorers.

 

How will this course relate to our Winnebago sense of place? In the requirements for the course, students will write four short papers that I will call “reflexiones”. Two of the “reflexiones” will be on topics and texts we will read/discuss in class. The other two will be different. The third “reflexión” will have two parts. The first part will be a narrative from the point of view of an explorer who just came to Winnebago during the colonial times and sees for the first time the lake and the landscape.  The second part will be a narrative from the student’s point of view replying to the explorer from the twentieth-first century in which he/she creates a “Sense of Place” in Winnebago. Each student will have to go physically to a spot that will be his/her point of reference and familiarize himself/herself with the flora, fauna, geography, and resources to write an informed reply. The fourth “reflexión” will be on finding out what the native people from Winnebago county think about the lands and resources. Each student will interview or find an interview on the subject and examine what how those views compare to the Indigenous texts we will read in the course.

 

In addition to the four “reflexiones”, a final research project will be required. Students will research on the earliest narratives by Europeans on Winnebago (nineteenth century) and on their perception of the Indigenous people. Students will compare the descriptions to the ones we read during the course. The conclusions will have to be on what we learned about the past and how we can implement that knowledge to our future.

 

 

Required Readings:

 

The readings will be in pdf format in our course home in D2L. All discussions will be posted in D2L

Secondary readings to be presented by the students:

 

v First presentation Thursday February 18: Ulloa, Astrid. “Las representaciones de los Indígenas en los discursos ambientales y de desarrollo sostenible.”

v Second presentation Thursday February 23: Barela Vigal, Julia. “Naturaleza y paisaje en la literature española”Ecocríticas, literatura y medio ambiente. Madrid: Iberoamericana. 219-238 (Seth)

v Third and fourth presentation Tuesday March 6 Marrero Henriquez, José Manuel. Ecocrítica e Hispanismo” y Carmen Flys Junquera et al. “Ecocríticas: el lugar y la naturaleza como categorías de análisis”. Ecocríticas, literatura y medio ambiente. Madrid: Iberoamericana.

v Fifth presentation Thursday March 8: Hay, Robert. “A Rooted Sense of Place in Cross Cultural Perspective” Canadian Geographer Vol. 42 issue 3 pages 245-266. Sept 1998. (Hannah T)

v Sixth presentation Thursday March 29: Cameron, John. “Responding to a Place in a Post-colonial Era: An Australian Perspective” (Chapter 8) in Decolonizing Nature: Strategies for Conservation in a Post-Colonial Era. This is an Ebook, Link in Polk Library (Amanda B)

v Seventh presentation Thursday April 12:  Plumwood, Val. Decolonizing Relationships with Nature” (Chapter 3) in Decolonizing Nature: Strategies for Conservation in a Post-Colonial Era. This is an Ebook, Link in Polk Library (Deepti D)

v Eighth presentation Thursday April 17: Langton, Marcia. “The ‘Wild’ the Market and the Native: Indigenous People Face New Forms of Global Colonization” (Chapter 4) in Decolonizing Nature: Strategies for Conservation in a Post-Colonial Era. This is an Ebook, Link in Polk Library (Ana G)

v Ninth presentation Thursday April 17:  Maragia, Bosire. The Indigenous Sustainability Paradox and the Quest for Sustainable in Post-Colonial Societies: Is Indigenous Knowledge all that is Needed? (Ashley H)

 

 

 

Authors of our primary texts

 

Christopher Columbus Diario and “Letter to Santangel

Americo Vespucci “El Nuevo Mundo”

Gonzalo Fernandez de Oviedo Sumario de la historia natural de las India

Hernando Cortés “Segunda carta de relación”

Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca Naufragios

Jean de Léry “Visiones de la Francia Antártica”

Hans Staden “Viviendo con los caníbales”

Bernal Díaz del Castillo Verdadera historia de la Conquista de México (Selections)

Bernardino de Sahagun Florentine Codex (Selections)

Popol Vuh (Selections)

Legend of the Suns (Poem)

Don Fernando de Alva Ixtlilxóchitl Historia Tolteca Chichimeca (Selections)

Don Domingo Chimalpahin Diario (Selections)

Huarochiri (Selections)

Garcilaso de la Vega El Inca Comentarios Reales de los Incas (Selections)

Guaman Poma de Ayala Coronica y buen gobierno (Selections)

 

UW-Oshkosh is a liberal arts institution. What sets a liberal education apart from that of technical or vocational schools, is that an education at UW-Oshkosh will develop your analytical, contextual, communicative, critic, reflective and ethic capabilities. In addition, a liberal arts institution education will not only give you the tools to work in a variety of occupations but also, will help you to develop your potentiality in your personal life. The study of a second language will open possibilities of communication with other people, will make you know your own language in more depth and will open opportunities in a global world. Learning another language will give you the possibility to learn from other cultures alternatives views that will enrich your life.

Important:

1) Any paper written for this class will have to be original. Any idea or quoted text, paraphrased or refer, will have to be properly DOCUMENTED. Plagiarism is an offense penalized. All written work has to be done by the student alone. To view the discipline code of UW-Oshkosh, go to: http://www.tts.uwosh.edu/dean/studentdisciplinecode.html

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY

The University of Wisconsin is committed to a standard of academic integrity for all students. The system guidelines state: "Students are responsible for the honest completion and representation of their work, for the appropriate citation of sources, and for respect of others' academic endeavors." (UWS 14.01, Wisconsin Administrative Code)

Students are subjected to disciplinary action for academic misconduct, which is defined in UWS 14.03, Wisconsin Administrative Code. Students on the UW Oshkosh campus have been suspended from the University for academic misconduct.

Students are encouraged to review the procedures related to violations of academic honesty as outlined in Chapter WWS 14, Wisconsin Administrative Code. The system guidelines and local procedures are printed in the Univerisity of Wisconsin Oshkosh Student Discipline Code 2008-2009 and can be found on the Dean of Students website at http://www.uwosh.edu/dean/08.09DisciplinaryCode.pdf

Specific questions regarding the provisions in Chapter UWS 14 (and institutional procedures approved to implement Chapter UWS 14) should be directed to the Dean of Students Office. 

2) Class attendance and participation is very important. You need to actively participate. Students can only miss ONE class without penalty. You should reserve this absence for an emergency or short illness. After the first absence, the grade will go down for unjustified absences.  Some excused absences are permitted for religious holidays or in case of illness documented by a physician.

I will be giving a daily grade from 3 to 0 for participation as follows:

a.     3 Student participates actively in the discussion. Student shares observations that reveal analysis and illustrates that she/he has read the material carefully. Student asks questions, volunteers and/or leads in collective class activities.

b.     2 Student shows evidence of having read the readings assigned but does not make an effort to analyze of participate voluntarily in the discussion. He/she volunteers answers/discussions occasionally.

c.     1 Student is in class but has not read the reading assigned. Do not participates individually or in group.

d.     0 Student is not in class.

3)  There are not make up exams.

4) Absolutely prohibited to have cell phones on. If a phone rings, or if student texts in class, I will take the phone away for the duration of the class.

 

 

Important Dates:

First “Reflexión” paper due: Thursday March 1

Second “Reflexión” paper due: Tuesday April 3

Third “Reflexión” paper due: April 19

Fourth “Reflxión” paper due: April 26

Final Project due Thursday May 12 in D2L

 

Grade:

Attendance and class participation

20%

Presentations

10%

4 “Reflexiones

40% (10% each)

Research project

30%

                                                                                                           

                                   

Grading Scale:

A= 93-100

A- = 92-90

B+=89-87

B=86-83

B-=82-80

C+=79-77

C=76-73

C-=72-70

D+=69-67

D=66-63

D-=62-60

F=59-0

 

 

Program

January

Eight Week

First Week

Spring Break 18-26

Tuesday 31 Introduction, Imágenes  Mesoamerican and Andean Cultures

Ninth Week

February

Tuesday 27 Discusión de “Y también la lluvia”“El Dorado” film

Thursday 2 Popol Vuh pp 1-7 and 13-14 Leyenda de los soles

Popol Vuh English Youtube part 1

Popol Vuh English Youtube part 2

 

Second Week

Thursday 29 Jean de Lery Sixth presentation: Cameron, John. “Responding to a Place in a Post-colonial Era: An Australian Perspective” (Chapter 8) en Decolonizing Nature: Strategies for Conservation in a Post-Colonial Era. This is an Ebook, Link in Polk Library

Tuesday 7 Huarochiri

Tenth Week April

Thursday 9 Huarochiri, Guamn Poma “Los Cinco Mundos” y Generaciones de indiso. Imágenes de GP animadas sobre la agricultura incaica, ¿Qué es el quipu? Historia de Guaman Poma para entender mejor el texto Los Incas, animado youtube

Tuesday 3 Tour to the special place in Winnebago Second “Reflexión” due in D2L

Third Week

Thursday 5 Hans Staden Temas para los trabajos finales

Tuesday 14 First presentation Ulloa, Astrid “Las representaciones de los Indígenas en los discursos ambientales y de desarrollo sostenible.”

Eleventh Week

Thursday 16 Age of Exploration Primeras Imágenes de América Christopher Columbus “Carta a Santangel

Tuesday 10 Ulrico Schmidel Temas para los trabajos y presentación de escritos de Winnebago durante el siglo XIX

Fourth Week

Thursday 12 Seventh presentation: Plumwood, Val. Decolonizing Relationships with Nature” (Chapter 3) en Decolonizing Nature: Strategies for Conservation in a Post-Colonial Era. This is an Ebook, Link in Polk Library

Tuesday 21 Americo Vespucci

Twelfth Week

Thursday 23 Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo Second presentation Barela Vigal, Julia. “Naturaleza y paisaje en la literatura española” Ecocríticas, literatura y medio ambiente. Madrid: Iberoamericana. 219-238 (Seth B)

Tuesday 17 Eight presentation: Maragia, Bosire. The Indigenous Sustainability Paradox and the Quest for Sustainable in Post-Colonial Societies: Is Indigenous Knowledge all that is Needed? (Ashley H)

 

Ninth presentation: Langton, Marcia. “The ‘Wild’ the Market and the Native: Indigenous People Face New Forms of Global Colonization” (Chapter 4)

Fifth Week

Thursday 19 Third “Reflexión

Tuesday 28 Wendy Call’s presentation. Readings Chapter 11 of her book and her article “Seeing the Forest, not Just the Trees” in D2L.  Link to see Wendy’s bio Link to No Word for Welcome chapter 11. Link to a description of No Word for Welcome

Thirteenth Week

March

Tuesday 24 Presentation of interview with a Winnebago Native American

Thursday 1 Hernando Cortés First “Reflexión” due

Thursday 26 Trabajarán en los proyectos Fourth “Reflexión” due.

Sixth Week

Fourteenth Week

Tuesday 6 Third and fourth presentation: José Manuel. Ecocrítica e Hispanismo” (La profesora) y Carmen Flys Junquera et al. “Ecocríticas: el lugar y la naturaleza como categorías de análisis”. Ecocríticas, literatura y medio ambiente. Madrid: Iberoamericana. (Ernesto y Brittany)

Bernal Díaz del Castillo

May

Thursday 8 Cabeza de Vaca Fifth presentation Hay, Robert. “A Rooted Sense of Place in Cross Cultural Perspective” (Hannah T)

Tuesday 1 Trabajarán en los proyectos

Seventh Week

Thursday 3 Presentaciones de los proyectos

Tuesday 13 Cabeza de Vaca’s film.

Fifteenth Week

Thursday 15 También la lluvia (Even the Rain) film

Tuesday 8 “Reconsideraciones del curso

 

Thursday 10 Final Report Due

 

Un enlace importante sobre crítica y naturaleza