AP Spanish Literature and Culture

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About the Course

Build your language skills and cultural knowledge by exploring works of literature written in Spanish. Using Spanish to communicate, you’ll read, analyze, discuss, and write about works by Spanish, Latin-American, and U.S. Hispanic authors of different periods.

Skills You'll Learn

  • Interpreting, analyzing, and comparing literary works

  • Relating literary works to their cultural and historical contexts

  • Comparing literary works to works of art

  • Writing a literary analysis using correct literary terms

  • Discussing works of literature

Equivalency and Prerequisites

College Course Equivalent

A college introductory survey course of literature written in Spanish

Recommended Prerequisites

There are no prerequisites, but students are typically in their fourth year of high-school-level study. In the case of native or heritage speakers, there may be a different pathway of study leading to this course.

Exam Date

Fri, May 10, 2024

12 PM Local

AP Spanish Literature and Culture Exam

This is the regularly scheduled date for the AP Spanish Literature and Culture Exam.

About the Units

The course content outlined below is organized into commonly taught units of study that provide one possible sequence for the course. Your teacher may choose to organize the course content differently based on local priorities and preferences.

Course Content

Unit 1: La época medieval

As you read works of medieval Spanish literature, you’ll learn to understand the language patterns of the period while exploring how historical events, religious values, and customary cultural practices create the settings for the texts.

Topics may include:

  • Identifying themes in texts
  • Identifying the structural, stylistic, and rhetorical devices used in texts
  • Identifying the genres of texts
  • Identifying the aspects of texts that represent their period

Unit 2: El siglo XVI

You’ll continue to build your skills in understanding and analyzing texts as you study literary works from the 16th century, which opened a period known as the Golden Age in Spanish literature.

Topics may include:

  • Connecting themes to characters in and across texts
  • Comparing texts’ themes and structural, stylistic, and rhetorical features
  • Relating texts to their historical, geopolitical, and sociocultural contexts

Unit 3: El siglo XVII

You’ll explore works from the second half of the Golden Age, a period which saw the production of several masterpieces of literature written in Spanish.

Topics may include:

  • Comparing themes of texts from different eras
  • Comparing texts to artwork
  • Understanding how literary genres evolved over time
  • Identifying cultural products, practices, and perspectives in texts

Unit 4: La literatura romántica, realista y naturalista

You’ll read and analyze works from the 19th century—two texts representing the literary movement of Romanticism and two representing the later movements of Realism and Naturalism.

Topics may include:

  • How the literary features of texts communicate the author’s message
  • Understanding implied meanings, ambiguities, and nuances
  • Connecting texts to the literary movements of the period

Unit 5: La Generación del 98 y el Modernismo

You’ll learn about the works and philosophy of La Generación del 98—a group of writers active in Spain around the time of the Spanish-American War—and explore the related literary movement of Modernism.

Topics may include:

  • Relating texts to contemporary global issues
  • How texts reflect or challenge perceptions of a culture
  • How behaviors and attitudes presented in texts reflect sociocultural, geopolitical, and historical contexts

Unit 6: Teatro y poesía del siglo XX

You’ll begin your study of 20th-century literature by reading and analyzing works of poetry and drama that embody the movements of that period, such as the Vanguard and the Theater of the Absurd.

Topics may include:

  • Perspective, attitude, and tone
  • Linguistic features such as formal and informal language
  • The relationship between a literary movement and cultural perspectives
  • Identifying themes and features of artistic representations

Unit 7: El Boom latinoamericano

You’ll continue your study of 20th-century literature as you learn about authors of the “boom” of the 1960s and 1970s, when Latin American novels and short stories won acclaim and popularity worldwide.

Topics may include:

  • The relationship between the structure of a text and its content
  • How cultural beliefs and attitudes affect the interpretation of a text
  • Comparing texts in terms of structure and style

Unit 8: Escritores contemporáneos de Estados Unidos y España

You’ll read and analyze recent works that present the realities of life in the 1970s and 1980s in the United States and Spain.

Topics may include:

  • How personal beliefs and opinions affect the interpretation of a text
  • Relating literary texts to information from other disciplines
  • Connections between primary and secondary texts

Credit and Placement

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Course Resources


AP Spanish Literature and Culture Required Reading List

The course is based on 38 required texts. See the list.

See Where AP Can Take You

AP Spanish Literature and Culture can lead to a wide range of careers and college majors

Career Areas 36
Majors 9