The course explores the textual production that emerged in the context of Iberian expansion to the Americas, emphasizing the tension between hegemonic imperial discourse (razón imperial) and actual personal experiences and the myriad counter-discourses they elicited. If the conquistador was the agent of empire, the reality of the land often turned him into a castaway, lost in land or sea. The course maps colonial literary discourse onto the vast, often hallucinatory, geography of the Americas.