SPAN205-23S1 (C) Semester One 2023

Journey through Hispanic Civilisation and Culture

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 20 February 2023
End Date: Sunday, 25 June 2023
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 5 March 2023
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 14 May 2023


This course employs a historical approach to study Hispanic civilisation and culture. The first part of the course will focus on Spanish history and culture and the second part will be devoted to the history and the culture of Latin America. This course does not require any previous knowledge of Spanish as it will be taught in English.

SPAN205 is a half-year course designed to introduce the student to significant people, events, places and cultural practices throughout the Spanish-speaking world from the early days of their civilisations until the present. This course employs a historical approach to study Hispanic culture, thus creating an inter-textual dialogue between the past and the present. It is structured so that the first part of the course will focus on Spanish history and culture, and the second part will be dedicated to the history and the culture of Latin America; emphasis will be placed throughout the course on their interaction and its consequences. Since it is impossible to cover in depth all aspects of civilisations that have existed for a period of more than 2,000 years, the course will cover only those features most important to the exploration of the ways in which both Spain and Latin America have evolved to its present state.  

This course does not require any knowledge of Spanish as it is taught in English.

Learning Outcomes

  • Have a general overview and understanding of the history and the development of Spanish and Latin American culture and civilisation, and their inter-textual dialogue between the past and the present, through the knowledge of major events and important movements, figures, and influences on and from Spain and Latin America throughout history;
  • Have an understanding of the multifaceted nature of the people who inhabit Spain and Latin America today, and be able to develop a sense of solidarity with the hopes, dreams and struggles of the people in Latin America;
  • Have a general knowledge of the major European/Spanish and Latin American cultural and artistic movements, and of a variety of examples of art, literature and architecture of Spain and the native people of the Americas before the conquest, as well as artistic, literary and architectural examples resulting of the cultural blending after the conquest. By analogy, this knowledge can make students more attuned to bicultural contexts in the modern world;
  • Have developed intellectual curiosity and be able to comprehend the influence of global conditions on Spain and Latin America and, thus, acquired enhanced global and intercultural understanding and competency in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts;
  • Have acquired a heightened understanding of biculturalism in New Zealand, by reflecting on and establishing parallels between the processes of colonisation of Hispanic America and Aotearoa.
  • Be able to conduct research and write some appropriate length papers (informative and analytical) on Spanish and Latin American culture;
  • Show a good level of critical thinking and argumentative skills, thus further engraining critical competence in students, which extends far beyond Spanish studies, through active participation in class and the writing up of analytical essays.
    • University Graduate Attributes

      This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

      Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

      Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.

      Employable, innovative and enterprising

      Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.

      Biculturally competent and confident

      Students will be aware of and understand the nature of biculturalism in Aotearoa New Zealand, and its relevance to their area of study and/or their degree.

      Engaged with the community

      Students will have observed and understood a culture within a community by reflecting on their own performance and experiences within that community.

      Globally aware

      Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.


Any 15 points at 100 level from SPAN, or
any 60 points at 100 level from the Schedule V of the BA.


Course Coordinator / Lecturer

Victoria Escaip


Assessment Due Date Percentage  Description
Test 1 30%
Test 2 30%
Analytical essay 1 15%
Analytical Essay 2 15%
Participation 10% Weekly attendance and class discussion

Textbooks / Resources

Required Texts

Fuentes, Carlos; The Buried Mirror : Reflections on Spain and the New World ; 1st Mariner Books ed; Houghton Mifflin, 1999.

Some additional materials will be handed out in class. Links for additional material for homework and/or self-learning will be posted on Learn.

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $821.00

International fee $3,750.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see Language, Social and Political Sciences .

All SPAN205 Occurrences

  • SPAN205-23S1 (C) Semester One 2023