Spanish Theatre

A.Y. 2020/2021
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course aims at introducing the study of the wide dramatic corpus in Spanish language, with a focus on a specific and ever changing period; when possible, a series of classes will be devoted to Latin American theatre. The course is a useful companion to the basic formation in literary studies both for specialist of Spanish and Latin American literature. For students at M.A.level it is possible to take it twice, thus centering on several periods; this option is highly recommended for students graduating in the field. Apart from studying the evolution of the dramatic genre in a given period, the course offers an overview of drama fundamentals, such as staging, difference between scenic and dramatic space, the commercial dimension of playwriting. The basic terminology of theatre studies is presented, and a few videoclips of significant plays are discusseed in class. During the year, students are strongly encouraged to go to theatre, even if scheduled works are not fully related to the contents of the course.
Expected learning outcomes
Knowledge and understanding: students will know the evolution of Spanish drama history in the period analysed during the course; they will have read some of the most significant dramatic works of the period considered. Applying knowledge and understanding: students will be able to position correctly authors, works and movements or schools in the period considered; they will be able to compare dramatic texts and to recognise similarities and differences among them, pointing out the most significant features of every one; they will be able to use the basic terminology of theatre studies; they will connect plays with their historic and social context, and will be able to analyse different strategies of staging and directing; they will develop a sensibility for the ethic values of drama and their impact on audience and readers.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
Classes will be held on line through Microsoft Teams; the teacher will share notes, texts, and videoclips. Class materials will be uploaded on Ariel (, following the schedule. Classes will be registered and will be kept online according to MS Teams licence; they will not be uploaded on Ariel.
Course syllabus
The title of the course is "Relaciones y conflictos familiares en el teatro español del siglo XX". It is focussed on the three main 20th century playwriters, each one related to the fundamental periods of Spanish recent history. The first part of the course will centre on 1898-1936 and Federico García Lorca. The second part of the course, referring to the Francoist dictatorship (1939-1975), will analyze the work of Antonio Buero Vallejo. The third part, covering the last decades of the 20th and the beginning of the 21st century, will revolve around Juan Mayorga.
Students who are taking the course for 6 credits will read the bibliography corresponding to 1898-1975 (the first two parts of the course); students who are taking the course for 9 credits will read the complete bibliography. Students of other B.A. programmes who are taking the exam to acquire only 6 CFU will agree with the teacher which units to prepare.
The course syllabus is valid until February 2022. Starting from the summer session 2022 it will be possible to take the examination only on the syllabus for academic year 2021-22.
Prerequisites for admission
The course is held entirely in Spanish, and the bibliography request a solid linguistic competence. Students of programmes other than Foreign Languages and Literatures that are beginners or anyway not proficient in Spanish, are not guaranteed the availability of Italian translations. They are kindly invited to check with the teacher in advance to adjust the syllabus and the bibliography, if possibile. Incoming students (Erasmus+ or other forms of mobility) are allowed to take the course, provided that they have a solid linguistic competence in Spanish.
Teaching methods
The course adopts the following teaching methods: frontal teaching with the use of slides; close reading of selected scenes from the works studied; viewing and commentary of videoclips, stage photographs, and documentaries.
Teaching Resources
The course has a webpage on distance learning platform Ariel (, where students can find lecture notes, slides and other material uploaded by the teacher. Following is the requested reading list. Other editions may also be used, provided they are complete and accompanied by adequate critical introductions and commentary; in this case it is advisable to consult with the teacher in advance.

First part (Federico García Lorca)
"Nozze di sangue", con testo originale a fronte, a cura di E. Pittarello, Venezia, Marsilio, 2013. Text available online: in "Obras completas", Madrid, Aguilar, 1954, pp. 1079-1180 (Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes)
"Yerma", ed. I. Manuel Gil, Madrid, Cátedra, 1997. Text available online: in "Obras completas", Madrid, Aguilar, 1954, pp. 1181-1258 (Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes)
"La casa de Bernarda Alba", ed. M.F. Vilches de Frutos, Madrid, Cátedra, 2016. Text available online: in "Obras completas", Madrid, Aguilar, 1954, pp. 1347-1440 (Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes)

Second part (Antonio Buero Vallejo)
"Historia de una escalera", ed. V. Serrano, Madrid, Espasa Calpe, 2010.
"La doble historia del doctor Valmy", in "La doble historia del doctor Valmy. Mito", ed. C. Álvarez, Madrid, Espasa, 1992
"El tragaluz", ed. L. Iglesias Feijoo, Madrid, Espasa, 2011

Third part (Juan Mayorga)
"Cartas de amor a Stalin", in "Teatro 1989-2014", Segovia, La uÑa RoTa, 2014, pp. 219-258
"Hamelin", in "Teatro 1989-2014", Segovia, La uÑa RoTa, 2014, pp. 385-424
"El chico de la última fila", in "Teatro 1989-2014", Segovia, La uÑa RoTa, 2014, pp. 425-474

Students will prepare also the following book chapter: Simone Trecca, "Teatro spagnolo contemporaneo", in AA.VV., "Letteratura spagnola contemporanea", Milano, Pearson, 2020, pp. 405-485.
More critical studies will be uploaded on the course website.

Advise for non attending students
The bibliography for students not attending classes is the same. Obviously, given the difficulty of preparing independently, it is recommended that non-attending students devote sufficient time to studying and elaborating the requested materials and do not approach the examination with excessive ease.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The examination consists in an individual interview, with specific questions by the teacher, free interaction between the teacher and the student, and commentary of one or more excerpts taken from the works studied.
The duration of the interview depends on how many units the student is taking; the interview is held entirely in Spanish for students of the M.A. in European and Extraeuropean Languages and Literatures, preferably in Spanish for students of the B.A. in Foreign Languages and Literatures, and in Italian or Spanish for other students. The interview aim to ascertain the solid knowledge of the works studied, the ability to put in their context authors and works, the oral exposition skills, a correct use of the specific theatre studies terminology, the ability to critically think and elaborate on the course themes. If the interview is taken in Spanish, the level of linguistic competence will be evaluated.
The final grade is expressed on a 0-30 scale, where 18 is necessary to pass, and a lesser grade means a failure; in this case, the final grade will be recorded as "failed". Students are entitled to to reject the grade proposed by the teacher; in this case, the final grade will be recorded as "withdrawn".
International students or incoming Erasmus students are invited to contact with the teacher in advance.
The assessment methods and criteria for students with disabilities and/or learning disorders must be arranged with the teacher, in agreement with the competent Office.
Unita' didattica A
L-LIN/05 - SPANISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica B
L-LIN/05 - SPANISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica C
L-LIN/05 - SPANISH LITERATURE - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Educational website(s)
Due to Covid-19 emergency, office hours are suspended indefinitely. For urgent matters, please send an e-mail to arrange a Skype meeting.
Sezione di Iberistica, Piazza S. Alessandro 1 - 1st floor (first room on the left)