Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Modern Languages Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 31 - 60 of 119

Full-Text Articles in Modern Languages

The Biblical Ruth As Dama Principal: Tirso’S La Mejor Espigadera, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2012

The Biblical Ruth As Dama Principal: Tirso’S La Mejor Espigadera, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The comedia mined a variety of source texts for its plots—Italian novelle, Spanish history, Greek and Roman mythology, and, of course, the Bible—but always managed to adapt plot, setting, and characters to the conventions of the Spanish national theater. This process offered great benefits, such as audience familiarity, as well as challenges, including inherent and unavoidable limitations on artistic freedom. One of the more interesting adaptations is Tirso de Molina’s reworking of the Biblical story of Ruth in La mejor espigadera, primarily because of the lack of dramatic potential offered by the original: there are no villains ...


Dirt Theory And Material Ecocriticism, Heather I. Sullivan Jan 2012

Dirt Theory And Material Ecocriticism, Heather I. Sullivan

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

This essay speaks for dirty aesthetics. Although aesthetic landscapes readily inspire environmental thinking, a case can be made for grappling with the truly local dirty matter right at hand. Dirt, soil, earth, and dust surround us at all scales: we find them on our shoes, bodies, and computer screens, in fields and forests, and floating in the air. They are the stuff of geological structures, of the rocky Earth itself, and are mobile like our bodies.


Performing Violence In Rotrou’S Theater, Nina Ekstein Feb 2011

Performing Violence In Rotrou’S Theater, Nina Ekstein

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Violence has a significant and varied role in the theater of Jean Rotrou. Discord and strife are natural to the stage and violence is one of the ways such conflict may be expressed. The inherently spectacular nature of violence makes it particularly theatrical. At the same time, violence pleasingly tantalizes audiences. In this examination of Rotrou’s entire theatrical corpus, I first consider the use of “real” violence, both on stage and off. More interesting and even more common is potential violence, which includes threats of all sorts, as well as fortuitous interruptions. Potential violence avoids the serious difficulties that ...


Transnational Transgressions: Multidisciplinary Approaches To Global Mexican Cultural Productions, Rosana Blanco Cano, Rita Urquijo-Ruiz Jan 2011

Transnational Transgressions: Multidisciplinary Approaches To Global Mexican Cultural Productions, Rosana Blanco Cano, Rita Urquijo-Ruiz

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The city of San Antonio, Texas, historically has maintained close artis-tic, political, social, and economic relations with Mexico. Because it embodies the complexity of transcultural and transnational exchanges in everyday life, in 2008 it became the site of a series of academic and artistic exchanges, out of which this text on global Mexican cultural productions emerges. A variety of artistic and theoretical perspectives were conceptualized to reflect the multiple transcultural dynamics of San Antonio and also other transnational Mexican areas physically and metaphorically located on both sides of the border.


Affinity Studies And Open Systems: A Non-Equilibrium, Ecocritical Reading Of Goethe's Faust, Heather I. Sullivan Jan 2011

Affinity Studies And Open Systems: A Non-Equilibrium, Ecocritical Reading Of Goethe's Faust, Heather I. Sullivan

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Ecocriticism’s contributions to the current rejection of dualistic thinking are noteworthy, particularly when this interdisciplinary field concentrates on hybridity and “relations” that preexist essences. In this mode, ecocriticism participates in a broader development of “affnity studies” that encompass the many efforts across the disciplines toward reconfiguring our “intraactions” with the world in terms that avoid dichotomies and Newtonian linearity and that utilize instead nonlinear, nondualistic forms of “hybridity.” Hybrids, in Steve Hinchliffe’s words, are “more or less durable bodies made up of similarly hybrid and impermanent relations.


Nature In A Box: Ecocriticism, Goethe’S Ironic Werther, And Unbalanced Nature, Heather I. Sullivan Jan 2011

Nature In A Box: Ecocriticism, Goethe’S Ironic Werther, And Unbalanced Nature, Heather I. Sullivan

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Ecocriticism emphasizes how our bodily and ecological boundaries are just as porous, inter-penetrable, and open as are our cultural and linguistic realms. As individual bodies and communities, we are fully immersed in our material environment and participating in constant exchanges of matter and energy. In this essay, I nevertheless advocate for a cautious approach to the ecocritical question of contested boundaries. After all, some boundaries and membranes are necessary to maintain living organisms. Regarding Timothy Morton’s assertion that we are “radically open,” I note the need for stable and healthy membranes to sustain life, such as our porous yet ...


Ecocriticism, The Elements, And The Ascent/Descent Into Weather In Goethe’S Faust, Heather I. Sullivan Jan 2010

Ecocriticism, The Elements, And The Ascent/Descent Into Weather In Goethe’S Faust, Heather I. Sullivan

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The ostensibly religious and ethical significance of Faust's final ascension after his death tends to distract, if not blind, readers to other possible implications of that upwards movement and to the idea that he may continue and return "back to earth." The assumption that heavenly powers reward Faust leads to the claim that Goethe's tragedy validates the quest of "land developers" or those who would strive regardless of the consequences. I propose, in contrast, that we read Faust's "final" ascension alongside Goethe's weather essay, "Witterungslehre 1825," and thereby note that this upward motion is not necessarily ...


Undocumented And Queer: Carlos Manuel’S La Vida Loca, Rita Urquijo-Ruiz Jan 2010

Undocumented And Queer: Carlos Manuel’S La Vida Loca, Rita Urquijo-Ruiz

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

No abstract provided.


De La Biblia Hebrea A La Comedia Española: El Clavo De Jael De Mira De Amescua, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2010

De La Biblia Hebrea A La Comedia Española: El Clavo De Jael De Mira De Amescua, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Abundan en la comedia española del Siglo de Oro las mujeres protagonistas que no se contentan con las restricciones y limitaciones impuestas sobre ellas por la sociedad patriarcal. De Rosaura en La vida es sueño de Calderón a La monja alférez de Juan Pérez de Montalbán, es frecuentemente la mujer la que promueve la acción y determina los perfiles del drama.


Staging The Self, Staging Empowerment: An Overview Of Latina Theater And Performance, Rita Urquijo-Ruiz Jan 2010

Staging The Self, Staging Empowerment: An Overview Of Latina Theater And Performance, Rita Urquijo-Ruiz

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The origins of U.S. Latina1 theater and performance can be situated in the Southwest during the time this geographical region was still under Spanish colonial domination.2 Historically, Latinas have contributed to all the creative and technical components of U.S. theater and performance from its incipiency. I begin this chapter with a brief overview starting in the twentieth century and offer an example of an early type of performance, and then I proceed to focus, primarily, on the works created since 1980, briefly analyzing three Latina plays. Anglo American theater has slowly begun to recognize and incorporate ...


Re-Membering Lesbian Desire In Belle Epoque, Soldados De Salamina, And Las Trece Rosas, Debra J. Ochoa Jan 2010

Re-Membering Lesbian Desire In Belle Epoque, Soldados De Salamina, And Las Trece Rosas, Debra J. Ochoa

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The presidency of Jose Luis Zapatero Rodriguez has seen significant legisla tion in Spain that includes the legalization of same-sex marriage in 2005 and La ley de la memoria historica in 2007.1 Upon consideration of the changes in Spain during the first decade of the twenty-first century, we as critics must pause to consider how literature and film respond to the topics of homosexuality and history. Since the death of Franco in 1975, writers and directors have created a significant body of films and literature that uncovers previously prohibited topics in order to make, "the once hidden visible" (Creekmur ...


Rotrou’S Bélisaire: Hierarchy And Meaning, Nina Ekstein Jan 2010

Rotrou’S Bélisaire: Hierarchy And Meaning, Nina Ekstein

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Bélisaire (1643) differs significantly from the bulk of Rotrou’s theater, perhaps above all in its array of profoundly disparate features. The notion of hierarchy offers a means of organizing the dissimilar elements and understanding the play as a whole. Like so many of Rotrou’s plays, the subject is not original. Its source is Mira de Amescua’s El ejemplo mayor de la Desdicha.


Les Pères Lourds Dans La Comédie Classique Française, Christine A. Lietz Apr 2009

Les Pères Lourds Dans La Comédie Classique Française, Christine A. Lietz

Modern Languages & Literatures Honors Theses

No abstract provided.


Time, Space, And The Question Of Heroism In Sertorius, Nina Ekstein Apr 2009

Time, Space, And The Question Of Heroism In Sertorius, Nina Ekstein

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

This article examines the exceptional role Corneille gives to the dimensions of time and space in Sertorius, one of the playwright’s later tragedies. In contrast to Corneille’s general dramatic practice, in which the two dimensions are relatively neglected, here they are foregrounded and serve as a framework for Sertorius’s tragedy. His relationship to time—he is essentially a man of the past to whom the future will be denied—and to space—immobilized in Nertobridge while aching to return to Rome—restricts him and prevents forward movement in either realm. Furthermore, time and space provide a vital ...


Tomboy, Rita Urquijo-Ruiz Apr 2009

Tomboy, Rita Urquijo-Ruiz

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

No abstract provided.


Artistic Distance And The Comedia: Lessons From Don Quijote, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2009

Artistic Distance And The Comedia: Lessons From Don Quijote, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Don Quijote is a novel, perhaps even the first modern novel (Fuentes 15, Bloom 145). Practically from the date of its writing, however, it has been almost irresistibly viewed through the lens of theater—"Como casi es comedia la historia de don Quixote de la Mancha [ ... ]"in the words of Avellaneda (fol.lllr)—and a growing body of scholarship acknowledges the importance of theatricality to both the structure of the work and the way one interprets it. "Theatricality," as it turns out, is a very flexible term in many of these studies and the widely varying definitions of it have ...


The Conversion Of Polyeucte’S Félix: The Problem Of Religion And Theater, Nina Ekstein Jan 2009

The Conversion Of Polyeucte’S Félix: The Problem Of Religion And Theater, Nina Ekstein

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The relationship between religion and theater gave rise in seventeenth-century France to much discussion and dissent, commonly referred to as the Querelle de la moralité du théâtre. The 1640s were a rare period during which religious subjects were popular on the French stage; almost all of the major playwrights wrote at least one play that could be thus categorized (Pasquier 201). I propose to examine the friction between the domains of theater and religion through a discussion of the two most enduringly famous religious plays of this period, Pierre Corneille's Polyeucte (1643) and Jean Rotrou's Le Véritable Saint ...


Supersession, The Comedia Nueva, And Tirso's La Mejor Espigadera, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2009

Supersession, The Comedia Nueva, And Tirso's La Mejor Espigadera, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Given Spain's self-identification with the Roman Catholic Church under the Hapsburgs, what is one to make of the great number of comedias that take as their protagonists figures from the Hebrew Bible, individuals revered by Jews as righteous ancestors, models of behavior, and illustrious examples of the triumphs of the Hebrew people faced with endless persecution and oppression? Most of these plays focus on the actions of men (e.g., King David in Tirso’s La venganza de Tamar, and Joseph and Jacob in Mira’s El más feliz cautiverio), but a number of them focus on righteous Hebrew ...


The Play Of Means And Ends: Justice In Lope's Fuenteovejuna, Matthew D. Stroud Apr 2008

The Play Of Means And Ends: Justice In Lope's Fuenteovejuna, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Lope’s masterpiece, Fuenteovejuna, is generally considered to be a glowing endorsement of the reign of Fernando and Isabel, who represent not just a glorious and hopeful Spanish history but political acumen, justice, and the triumph of good over evil. A closer examination of several key plot elements, however, reveals that almost every time characters are called upon to make decisions, they choose the option that at best circumvents the requirements for justice and at worst actively works to the detriment of the proper administration of justice and law. This study focuses on four pivotal moments—when Frondoso takes the ...


The Dangerous Quest For Nature Narratives In Goethe’S Werther: A Reading Of The Ruptured Monologue And The Ruptured Body, Heather I. Sullivan Jan 2007

The Dangerous Quest For Nature Narratives In Goethe’S Werther: A Reading Of The Ruptured Monologue And The Ruptured Body, Heather I. Sullivan

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Assessing Goethe's narrative ruptures, this essay follows their trail in three directions: first through the editor's sudden interruption of Werther producing the post-epistolary multiplicity of voices, second in the alterations Goethe made to the 1787 version of Werther that enhance the theme of rupture itself, and third along the fault-lines delineated in three exemplary "letters of nature" from Werther.


Memory And Exile In María Teresa León’S Las Peregrinaciones De Teresa (1950), Debra J. Ochoa Jan 2007

Memory And Exile In María Teresa León’S Las Peregrinaciones De Teresa (1950), Debra J. Ochoa

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

María Teresa León (1903-1988) is most well known for her autobiography Memoria de la melancolía (1977), written during her last years of exile from her native Spain. The year 2003 marked the centenary of her birth and a reevaluation of her fiction, including a new edition of her short stories edited by Gregorio Torres Nebrera. [1] In the twenty-first century León finally receives much overdue recognition. [2] This article will examine León‘s conception of memory and exile, through a close textual reading of her short stories ―Primera peregrinación de Teresa," ―El noviciado de Teresa," ―Cabeza de ajo," and ―Esplendor ...


Defining The Comedia: On Generalizations Once Widely Accepted That Are No Longer Accepted So Widely, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2006

Defining The Comedia: On Generalizations Once Widely Accepted That Are No Longer Accepted So Widely, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Defining the comedia is a challenge that is rarely addressed directly in the pages of the Bulletin of the Comediantes. Those of us who spend our professional lives working with the plays that are brought together under this cover term have a visceral or intuitive understanding of what falls into the category of comedia and what lies outside of it. We are hardly exempt from having to articulate our definitions in concrete terms, however, because students, colleagues, and organizations to whom we write grants all want us to establish the limits, scope, and parameters of our field of study. Sometimes ...


Another Look At Calderón’S El Príncipe Constante As Tragedy, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2006

Another Look At Calderón’S El Príncipe Constante As Tragedy, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The forms and definitions of tragedy have been a frequent preoccupation for James Parr over the course of his distinguished career. One of his more influential articles was "El príncipe constante and the Issue of Christian Tragedy," published in 1986. Parr's approach was primarily ethical and formalist, dealing with the Aristotelian requirements of tragedy: areté, hubris, catharsis. He countered the long and distinguished scholarship that maintains that Christian tragedy is an impossibility by reconsidering, even redefining, hamartia and anagnorisis, and essentially ignoring peripeteia. Hamartia, in his reading, is much more than a flaw or an error. Instead, relying on ...


The Closest Reading: Creating Annotated Editions, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2006

The Closest Reading: Creating Annotated Editions, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Teaching old literature of any kind to undergraduates is a challenge. The language is difficult, the themes often lack resonance for today's students, and the cultural references are abstruse. When one adds to the mix that the works are in an archaic version of Spanish, not the native language of most students in the United States, and that the plays are written in florid, baroque poetry, the task of helping students to appreciate the Spanish comedia for its literary value is made considerably more demanding. A great many students simply do not understand what is going on with the ...


Critiques Of The "Novela Rosa": Martín Gaite, Almodóvar, And Etxebarría, Debra J. Ochoa Jan 2006

Critiques Of The "Novela Rosa": Martín Gaite, Almodóvar, And Etxebarría, Debra J. Ochoa

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

At the end of the twentieth century, film director Pedro Almodovar (b. 1949), in La flor de mi secreto (1995), and writer Lucia Etxebarria (b. 1966), in Beatriz y los cuerpos celestes, una novela rosa (1998), continue to analyze the novela rosa, a project begun by Carmen Martin Gaite in El cuarto de atrds (1978) and Usos amorosos de la postguerra (1987). Martin Gaite argues that women of her generation were victims of the Francoist ideology found in popular romance novels. Like many others, including Franco's own daughter Carmen, she received a limited education that did not allow women ...


The Odd Man Out: The Kings In Corneille's Machine Plays, Nina Ekstein Oct 2005

The Odd Man Out: The Kings In Corneille's Machine Plays, Nina Ekstein

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Andromède and La Conquête de la Toison d’or have a largely unenviable status in Corneille’s oeuvre. They are often either dismissed or marginalized, and almost inevitably read as different from, and therefore inferior to, the more canonical Cornelian works. In fact, both plays are richer and more interesting than commonly thought, as I hope to suggest by an examination of the curious and curiously similar role of the king.


Infallible Texts And Righteous Interpretations: Don Quijote And Religious Fundamentalism, Matthew D. Stroud Jan 2005

Infallible Texts And Righteous Interpretations: Don Quijote And Religious Fundamentalism, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

Religion in Don Quijote has been a frequent subject of inquiry over the past century. As a "vehicle for religious expression," to use Ziolkowski's terminology (1), Cervantes's masterpiece has been studied as an analogy of the relationship between religious faith and the world around it (Ziolkowski 8), as a manifestation of the historic clash between the secularization of the modern era and the waning medieval domination by "religious institutions and symbols" (Ziolkowski 9, citing Berger 107), as a vessel of both the spirit and the letter of selected pronouncements of the Council of Trent (Descouzis 479), as a ...


Over The Top: From The Tragic To The Comic In Corneille, Nina Ekstein Jan 2005

Over The Top: From The Tragic To The Comic In Corneille, Nina Ekstein

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The notions of tragedy and comedy that one can intuit from the theater of Corneille are markedly different from those found in other authors of the period. This is but one aspect of a larger issue concerning Corneille's placement in the hallowed pantheon of literary history. He is one of the major canonical authors and yet he often disconcerts. He was one of the principal theorists of drama in the seventeenth century and yet he took a number of stands in direct and lonely opposition to his peers. Alain Couprie points out that Corneille "a toujours été un auteur ...


The Director’S Cut: Baroque Aesthetics And Modern Stagings Of The Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud Apr 2004

The Director’S Cut: Baroque Aesthetics And Modern Stagings Of The Comedia, Matthew D. Stroud

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The last twenty-five years have witnessed a relative explosion in the number of staged productions of Spanish comedias. Whether the performances take place in Madrid, Almagro, New York, or El Paso, the experience has changed forever the way those who have attended performances view plays previously known only by reaing [sic] the text. One cannot fail to have been affected by the interaction between literature and theater, between professors and directors, between text and performance. A debate that has arisen as a result of this spectator's experience, especially after the production of a particularly well-known comedia, is that between ...


Corneille's Absent Characters, Nina Ekstein Jan 2004

Corneille's Absent Characters, Nina Ekstein

Modern Languages and Literatures Faculty Research

The relationship between presence and absence in theater is intertwined and complex. For Kibédi Varga, a work of art invariably signifies absence in that it proposes an image, a representation, rather than the thing itself (341-42). This is obviously true of theater. At the same time, theater is essentially about presence. The empty stage is a space that derives its potential for force and meaning from the expectation of live bodies engaged in concrete actions there. Perhaps more to the point, theater is about the dialectical relationship between absence and presence. According to Fuchs, "theatre is ever the presence of ...