Transgressions: Ideologies of Dissent in Contemporary Literature, Film and Popular Culture

Course Number: ENGL 265ID
Prerequisites: Check on GOLD
General Education Areas Fulfilled: Check on GOLD
Catalog Course Entry: ENGL 265AA-ZZ
Quarter: Winter 2018
Instructor: Olguín, Ben
Day(s): T
Time: 11:00am - 1:30pm
Location: SH 2714

Ethnic, Critical Race, Postcolonial, and Critical Gender and Sexuality Studies, in addition to
various allied and intersecting fields and practices are in large part undergirded by a
counterhegemonic impulse that involves lucid critiques of power and compelling explications of
counter-power in diverse contexts. This graduate seminar seeks to continue, and complicate,
these mappings through rigorous attention to the oftentimes vexed ideologies at play in various
discourses and practices of dissent. Taking select contemporary Latinx literature, film, and
popular culture as our case studies, the seminar will explore the complexity of the
acknowledged and unacknowledged relationships to power underlying various literary,
cinematic, and performative genres that ostensibly are understood to be “transgressive.”
Accordingly, we will draw upon various theories of transgression (resistance, banditry,
disidentification, differential consciousness, mimesis, signifying, carnivalesque spectacle,
biopower, etc.) in addition to related scholarship. Primary texts include Chicana/o farmworker
narrative and verse by Helena Maria Viramontes, Tomás Rivera, and Gary Soto (with possible
proletarian narrative and verse by Luis Rodriguez and select poets as an alternative); Puerto
Rican independentista cinema and testimonio by Ana Maria Garcia and Oscar Lopez Rivera;
Cuban American feminist performance art and testimonio by Coco Fusco; Chicana performance,
spoken word, and slam poetry by Amalia Ortiz; theater by Chicano-Riqueño Manuel Lin Miranda
and mixed-heritage Puerto Rican Quiara Alegría Hudes; as well as pan-Latinx punk and Son
Jarocho music by Alice Bag, Las Cafeteras, and select other musicians.