Fall 15 Snapshots

Course Snapshots: Mistranslating Latinos, Women & Resistance in Contemporary Eastern Europe, French New Wave Cinema


MAS 374, 35163, Mistranslating Latinos

Many of us know all too well how mistranslation can affect a situation. While some cases are quite obvious, like using a word of the wrong meaning entirely, others can be subtle, such as using a word that just isn’t quite the right word for the situation. We often think of translations in terms of different languages, but translations don’t just occur from one language to another, they can also occur from one medium to another, such as a written work to a stage or screen.

In order to translate anything correctly, there are literary, cultural, political, and sociolinguistic factors that must be taken into account in every situation. Therefore, when translating, issues of linguistic and cultural relativism, along with complications of literary translation, arise. The difficulties surrounding translation can also have a direct effect on cultural production and language use in certain communities. For example, specifically within the context of Latina/o communities, these effects have presented themselves.

This fall, Asst. Professor Juan Colonina-Almiñana will delve into the issues surrounding the effects of mistranslation on Latino culture and language. This course is sure to create an interesting discussion about the complexities and cautions that must be considered when understanding and translating Latino works today!

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REE 325, 43765, Women and Resistance in Contemporary Eastern Europe

In a position of disadvantage, words can be a source of power. Historically, the oppressed have often turned to the written word as a non-violent way to express their dissatisfaction for their situation. Women in particular have often faced oppression throughout history around the world, and much of the progress toward lifting this oppression and bringing voice to women has come from great struggle.

In the past few decades, several female authors in Eastern Europe have proven that women undoubtedly have something important to say about the issues faced in the area, along with providing a valuable perspective from which to look at these issues. This fall, Visiting Professor Oksana Lutsyshyna will teach a course in which students examine the works of a number of Eastern European women writers in order to trace their role in resisting not only political regimes but also gender-based oppression. It will cover the many forms and repercussions of women’s resistance to recent issues and events within this strategic region. So if you’re looking to learn more about Eastern Europe, this course may be the perfect opportunity to do so through a unique viewpoint!


F C 349, 35975, The French New Wave

New Wave films have become extremely iconic, representing a revolution in filmmaking. The New Wave brought with it new ways to organize images, tell stories, and engage with the world. Perhaps most importantly, the New Wave blurs the line separating commercial and artistic film, opening the possibility for new exchanges.

This fall, Asst. Professor Hervé Picherit will teach a course exploring the French New Wave, in which students will acquire intellectual and interpretative tools specific to film comprehension, analysis, and creation. He will also discuss the subsequent influence on artistic and commercial film. Professor Picherit encourages students to establish links between the films shown in class, along with other media. Overall, the course is designed to cultivate film literacy, allowing students both to engage critically and create with this medium.

So whether you’re interested in French language and culture, interested in film, or just looking to learn about something new and different, this course (which also has a global cultures flag) could be a great choice this fall!

Foreign Languages

A blog post dedicated to our foreign languages and some of the promotional materials we’ve created for them recently.

List of the foreign language sequences available with special Fall 15 info (click for larger view):

Foreign Lang Sequences

Some of the flyers created by us and our departments:

Useful links:


Blog postings:

Why Sanskrit?

We have our first course trailer!!

We’re very excited and have also posted it to our Facebook and Twitter accounts. We hope you enjoy it. Please keep in mind we did this in-house so no professional IT resources were used (and we even did captioning). We’re so happy that as of 6/24/2015 it has over 200 views! Special thanks go out to Dr. Donald R. Davis, Aaron Sherraden, and Emma Garcia for agreeing to be in our very first production.

We also created a blooper/outtakes video. Thanks iMovie! (It was training and not just because they had a Bollywood template that tempted us greatly.)

I can’t wait until our next Course Trailer on German, Scandinavian, and Dutch Studies! Any suggestions for future Course Trailer courses/majors/languages? Please let us know.

Jaci’s Advice

6 Things Jaci (IRG & Linguistics Senior) wishes she’d known as a first-year student:

  1. Start your foreign language early. You may end up deciding it’s something you want to use after you graduate, and it might be too late to get the background you need if you start it later- it’s better to be safe than sorry. And, keep your options open about which one you choose. UT offers over 35 foreign languages!
  1. Get your core requirements out of the way (but try to make them interesting for you!). For example, get your math and sciences out of the way early. You want to be able to focus on your upper-division major-specific courses when you’re an upperclassman (especially if you have to write a research paper or honors thesis).
  2. Develop good study techniques! Establish a good foundation for your college education from the beginning- it’s much harder to do this the longer you wait. The habits you form your first year will likely carry on through the rest of your time in college.

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  1. Take classes that you think might be interesting if they aren’t used for your major. This really opens your mind to what else is out there. Sometimes we can get too engulfed in our major-specific courses and need a chance to learn about other subjects. Maybe you’ve always enjoyed Philosophy even though you’re an Economics major, so take some Philosophy courses! Or try something new to spark your interest.


  1. Also take a course in something that might push you to learn about something different/beyond the realm of yourself. For example, maybe if you’re a guy take a course dealing with women’s studies, if you’re straight take a course related to the subject of gay and lesbian sexuality, or if you’re part of one culture, take a course on a culture that is not your own.


  1. Get to know your professors and build a solid relationship with several of them along the way. This is so important, I can’t emphasize it enough! You are going to need letters of recommendation throughout college and after you graduate if you apply for medical or graduate school. You can also learn a lot of important and valuable things beyond the classroom through these relationships. They usually have lots of experience and many of them are more than willing to help you figure out paths you might take to reach your goals after college.