• Telling the story of Iberian Cultural Studies: Spaces of convergence and the defense of the Humanities

    William Nichols (see profile)
    ADE and ADFL: Connected Departments, Advocating for the Humanities, Iberian Studies, Interdisciplinary Approaches to Culture and Society, LLC 20th- and 21st-Century Spanish and Iberian
    Iberia (Kingdom), Educaton, Interdisciplinary approach in education, Humanities--Study and teaching, Education, Higher, Culture--Study and teaching
    Item Type:
    Book chapter
    Iberian studies, Interdisciplinary humanities studies, Higher education, Cultural studies
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    While many in academia around the U.S. may anchor themselves in cynical opposition to the proliferation of neoliberal discourse and the policies that accompany, I propose that language departments are in a uniquely privileged position within the humanities to assert the value of our programs within the neoliberal paradigm. Specifically, the current field of Iberian Studies offers a model for departments in the Humanities to transition away from traditional curriculum, develop multidisciplinary connections, and rethink their mission within the political, economic, cultural, and academic landscape of the university. If we understand the broader field of cultural studies as a space of convergence of various theoretical and methodological approaches including mobility studies, sustainability studies, gender studies, tourism studies and much more, then Iberian Studies is uniquely able tell the “story” of the Humanities and re-assert its value (perceived and real) to upper administration, colleagues, students, and the community. This purpose of this paper is to offer the multidisciplinary approaches that characterize the field of contemporary Iberian Studies as potential strategies of resistance in and of themselves that defend the broader discipline of the Humanities. I assert that the “story” of Iberian Studies underscores the Humanities as a space of convergence that is able to “go beyond” research for research’s sake to empower students, impact the public good, and even convince higher education leadership of the discipline’s value. However, it is up to us to defend the Humanities by telling that story.
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    2 years ago
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