The City As Text: Barcelona And Madrid

HUM4615 The City as Text: Mapping Cultural Histories in Barcelona and Madrid
4 Advanced Liberal Arts (Elective Abroad) Credits
Program fee is paid to Glavin Office - program fee includes: accommodations, breakfast, metro passes in Madrid and Barcelona, airport and train transports in country, program planned meals, and cultural excursions. Not included: tuition, international flight, visa costs, additional meals and personal expenses.

This course is framed as "City as Text" because the city becomes our laboratory and our classroom - an extended text not limited to what is housed in a library; rather we will learn first-hand through direct encounters with each city's public places and often more hidden histories. Approaching these two cities from a design thinking perspective, each day includes explorative mapping of the city as a source and outgrowth of invention and creativity. In this course, we will consider the social and political history of both cities by actively examining the characteristics and innovations of their urban spaces. Why is each city designed as it is? How has it changed, and in response to what factors? We will delve critically into how Barcelona and Madrid have sought to market or "brand" their images, and - delving into the cityscape - what constitutes genuine tradition versus touristic or nationalistic myths. Students will conduct field research in various neighborhoods, using strategies like trendspotting and coolhunting to consider how the use of urban space and its potential are being redefined through restaurants and food markets, art and architecture, fashion and culture, and smart uses of technology. A key part of this course for students will be the opportunity participate in their own choice of what to "read" -- neighborhood mapping; observation decision making; which foods to try; interesting pathways.

Prerequisites: 3 Intermediate liberal arts courses (CVA, LVA, HSS, CSP, LTA in any combination) and admission into the course

  • Program: Undergraduate
  • Division: Arts and Humanities
  • Level: Advanced Liberal Arts 4600 Requirement (UGrad),Advanced Elective (UGrad),Advanced Liberal Arts (UGrad)
  • Course Number: HUM4615
  • Number of Credits: 4