Title

Economies of prestige: The place of Iberian studies in the American University

Abstract

This essay analyses the rise of Iberian cultural studies as the latest phase in the long struggle for status and prestige that has marked the institutional history of Hispanism in the American academy. I argue that Iberian cultural studies can in part be seen as an attempt to reinvent and reinvigorate a field that had long found itself marginalized, and to overcome the disciplinary ideologies and practices that contributed to that marginalization. The focus on prestige allows me to highlight the dynamics that help determine the institutional status of different fields: their cultural capital, their power and presence in terms of funding and personnel, as well as the level of their autonomy or dependence vis-a-vis other disciplines. Hispanists in the United States have been quite aware of the precarious institutional status of their field, and concerns about the status of the discipline, as well as efforts to boost it, have long been the explicit focus of discussions and debates in Hispanist journals, books, and conferences. My analysis takes the history of these discussions as one of its main points of departure. I especially focus on the years during which Hispanism was established as an academic discipline, roughly between 1915 and 1925, and on the impact of the Spanish Civil War and its immediate aftermath.

Publisher

Maney Publishing

Publication Date

2-1-2008

Publication Title

Hispanic Research Journal

Department

Hispanic Studies

Document Type

Article

DOI

10.1179/174582008X269990

Keywords

Culture--Study and teaching, Interdisciplinary approach in education, Universities and colleges--Curricula, History--Study and teaching, Iberians

Language

English

Format

text

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