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Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics


Culture, history, and politics in Spanish cinema from 1939 to the present

Please note, this module is Film Specific but open to other MPhils. This module is borrowable

This module centres on the cultural, historical, and political underpinnings of Spanish

cinema from the dictatorship of Francisco Franco (1939-1975) to the present.

Seminars will focus on a variety of themes, ranging from repression and censorship

under the Francoist regime, political dissidence in cinematic discourse, the Spanish

star system, the Transition from dictatorship to democracy, the death of Franco and

la movida madrileña, regional identities and Spanish nationalism(s), the recuperation

of historical memory, Spanish national identity within the European Union, and issues

related to immigration, the Movimiento 15-M, and (post-) crisis cinema. Teaching will

take the form of open-discussion seminars for which students will be asked to

present short response papers (2-3 pages). Please note that many of the films set for

study in this module may not available with English subtitles and that a number of the

secondary readings will be conducted in Spanish.

Preliminary Reading:

(this information will appear on the Faculty website and on the document that is sent

out to students over the summer for them to make their module choices):


Introductory reading:


Benet, Vicente. El cine español: una historia cultural. Barcelona: Paidós, 2012.

Faulkner, Sally. A History of Spanish Film: Cinema and Society, 1910-2010. London:

Bloomsbury, 2013.

Kinder, Marsha. Blood Cinema: The Reconstruction of National Identity in Spain.

Berkeley: U of California P, 1993.

Labanyi, Jo, and Tatjana Pavlović eds. A Companion to Spanish Cinema. Malden,

MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2012.

Pavlović, Tatjana, ed. 100 Years of Spanish Cinema. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell,


Pérez Rubio, Pablo. Escritos sobre cine español: tradición y géneros populares.

Zaragoza: Institución Fernando el Católico, 2011.

Resina, Joan Ramon, ed. Burning Darkness: A Half Century of Spanish Cinema.

Albany, NY: SUNY Press, 2008.

Triana-Toribio, Núria. Spanish National Cinema. London: Routledge, 2003.

Zunzunegui, Santos. El extraño viaje: el celuloide atrapado por la cola o la crítica

norteamericana ante el cine español. Valencia: Ediciones Episteme, 1999.



Projections of Francoist ideology: Raza (José Luis Sáenz de Heredia, 1942), Los derechos de la mujer (Sáenz de Heredia, 1961), Las cuatro bodas de Marisol (Luis Lucia, 1967)

The ruling class under Franco: Plácido (Luis García Berlanga, 1961), El ángel exterminador (Luis Buñuel, 1962), Ana y los lobos (Carlos Saura, 1973)

Peripheral visions of national identity: La escopeta nacional (Luis García Berlanga, 1978), La teta i la luna (Bigas Luna, 1994), Tierra (Julio Medem, 1997)

Immigration, migration, and emigration: Surcos (José Antonio Nieves Conde, 1951), Las cartas de Alou (Montxo Armendáriz, 1990), En tierra extraña (Icíar Bollaín, 2014)

Documenting the Transition to democracy: Informe general sobre algunas cuestiones de interés para una proyección pública (Pere Portabella, 1976), Arrebato (Iván Zulueta, 1979), Pepi, Luci, Bom y otras chicas del montón (Pedro Almodóvar, 1980)

The Spanish Crisis and beyond: La plaga (Neus Ballús, 2013), Magical Girl (Carlos Vermut, 2014), Informe general II (Pere Portabella, 2015)


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