Title: Spanish & Portuguese Studies news
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00090924/00001
 Material Information
Title: Spanish & Portuguese Studies news
Alternate Title: Spanish and Portuguese Studies news
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: Department of Spanish & Portuguese, University of Florida
Publisher: Department of Spanish & Portuguese, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: Fall 2008
Copyright Date: 2008
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Bibliographic ID: UF00090924
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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sIDPAniH &

University of Florida, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Fall 2008

Focus on Faculty:

Dr. Gillian Lord
The first thing a native speaker of any language hears in conversation is
how the words sound. In Spanish, a slight nuance of the letter 'll' can
identify the speaker's country of origin; the speed and rhythm of a sentence
can convey social class or ethnicity. When second-language and native
speakers come together, pronunciation can open doors or close them. Was
that 'carro' or 'caro'? Did he say 'pagar' or 'pegar'?
Dr. Gillian Lord's interest in second-language stress patterns, the topic of her
dissertation, began when she attended a wedding in Mexico and heard the groom (an
American) vow to love his wife through "tiempos prosp&os," rather than "tiempos
pr6speros." A small thing, and yet a moment of discomfort for the bride, and
perhaps for his new in-laws. Years earlier Dr. Lord had experienced one of those peak
moments in language learning when a cab driver in Madrid asked her what part of
Spain she was from. Another small thing, and yet speaking in a way that does not
instantly identify you as 'the other' allows access to cultural experiences beyond those
available to tourists or observers of the target culture. While the debate rages on in
the United States about assimilation vs. multiculturalism, many second language
learners would like nothing more than to move easily and effectively between
cultures, confident that they won't be betrayed by a mispronounced vowel or a stray
Dr. Gillian Lord is working hard to help UF students achieve a near-native
pronunciation that will open doors for them. As director of intermediate Spanish
and specialist in second-language acquisition, Lord has developed a series of on-line
pronunciation modules where students can learn exactly how the sounds of Spanish
are produced, hear those sounds, learn to distinguish between similar sounds, practice
producing those sounds, and get feedback. Often students fear being embarrassed
or laughed at when they speak Spanish, so they remain silent. There is also a
pervasive myth that a strong Southern accent in English is an impediment to good
pronunciation in Spanish. With the new modules, featuring animated diagrams
that illustrate how the sounds of Spanish are articulated, students can work on their


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own with a toolbox of instruction, input, explanation,
practice, and assessment. This helps not only with
pronunciation but also with listening comprehension,
and it builds confidence, making students more willing
to speak in class and beyond.
Dr. Lord points out that pronunciation is a field
that needs development. The American Council on
the Teaching of Foreign Languages Oral Proficiency
Guidelines mention in passing that pronunciation is a
potential problem area, but there are few pedagogical
materials on the topic and very little research being
done. She suggests that several decades of classroom
methodologies that focus on communicating meaning
may have had the effect of sidelining pronunciation.
Those methodologies were themselves a response to
previous methods that perhaps excessively emphasized
grammatical precision and ignored people's real desire
to simply communicate in another language. She is
hopeful that the pendulum is swinging back toward the
center where conveying meaning accurately, effectively,
and gracefully shapes the tools we offer our students.
Why aren't there more materials to teach
pronunciation? Unlike grammar, which is perceived to
be a body of knowledge, pronunciation is seen as a kind
of talent or aptitude that one either has or doesn't have.
So while students easily process corrections of grammar,
somehow having their pronunciation corrected feels
continued page 3

R OR[&

Undergraduate Highlight: Study Abroad in Santander

In 2006, Julianne Crapps, a self-admitted shy person with only one
semester of beginning Spanish under her belt, surprised everyone by
boarding a plane for 6 weeks of study abroad in Santander, Spain.

"I remember lying in bed with my eyes
closed, feigning sleep, listening to the
whispers coming from the threshold of
my bedroom door. "iEsti durmiendo!
iEsti durmiendo!" they whispered. It was
the only thing I'd understood all day.
I heard the door snap shut and I was
left alone, finally. I was tired-tired of
not understanding, of not being able to
communicate, of being frustrated. Why
had I assumed that my limited Spanish
would suffice to communicate? Why
wasn't it like Spanish class, where I could
take an English time-out to get oriented?
I felt alone and isolated. I wanted to go
Weeks passed and the pangs
of culture shock and homesickness
gradually subsided. I spent my
afternoons with Carlos and Pedro, my

Spanish host brothers, watching Spanish
Disney movies or building sand castles
at Sardinero beach. Pedro, then 3,
had immediately taken a liking to his
new American friend, who usually just
smiled confusedly at him whenever he
spoke. Carlos, 2 years older than his
brother, was old enough to be skeptical.
Despite the language barrier, every day
I grew more comfortable in my strange
new environment, learning to use my
broken Spanish and hand gestures to
It was a month into my stay in
Spain when Carlos joined me on the
couch one evening. No doubt I appeared
frustrated, as I was working on some
particularly difficult homework. I smiled
at him; non-verbal communication was
so much easier. He handed me a piece of

paper, on which he had drawn a shark. "Tibur6n," he
said, pointing to the picture. "Ti-bu-r6n," he repeated,
emphasizing the pronunciation. I was astonished; the
child who always gave me suspicious glares was now
attempting to help me learn Spanish vocabulary. Our
study session was soon interrupted by my host mother,
who beckoned me toward her. "Pedro," she said simply,
pointing into his bedroom where she had just returned
from tucking him in for the evening. Was something
wrong, I wondered? Perplexed and concerned I walked
into his small room, where he was looking at me
expectantly. "Julianne," he said, outstretching his small
arms, "quiero un beso y un abrazo." From that night
forward Pedro refused to sleep without a hug and a kiss
from his new "sister". I was no longer an outsider, but a
member of the family. I had done what I first thought
impossible: I had integrated into their culture."
As a result of her experience in Spain, Julianne
has become active in promoting study abroad. She
was recently featured on UF's website: "As president of
UF's Study Abroad Peer Advisors, or SAPA, she now
dedicates herself to providing information to students
considering studying in other countries."

Graduate Students on the Move

El Coloquio
In October of 2005, the first
annual Graduate Interdisciplinary
Colloquium on Hispanic Literatures,
Languages and Cultures took place in
the Reitz Union, organized by more
than sixty RLL graduate students
with different backgrounds and
interests. Every aspect of this two-
day conference, called "Language, Nation, and Globalization," was
initiated and carried out by grad students, creating a strong sense
of professionalism and solidarity, as students worked together on
everything from funding to publicity, from snacks to scheduling.
Important researchers, professors, and writers working in the United
States and abroad participated as keynote speakers in a dialogue
that focused on the connections between academic institutions,
community and society. Graduate students from across the country
attended, sharing their ideas, projects and expectations. In October
of 2006 the second Colloquium, "Back to the Past? Discourse and
Violence in Memory, Displacement and Identity," took place at
Emerson Alumni Hall, incorporating even more graduate students.
The third colloquium "El arte de (con)vivir/The Art of (co)
existence," was held in October of 2007 and took place at the
Reitz Union. This event was carried out again by grad students and
its brilliant result was a clear mirror of their professionalism and
commitment with which they worked. "El arte de (con)vivir/The Art
of (co)existence" had its roots in a concept expressed by Gina Valdes,
thereee are many borders which divide people, but for each border

there is also a bridge". This colloquium featured three outstanding
keynote speakers: Dr. John M. Lipski (Linguistics, Pennsylvania
State University) gave a talk entitled "Cruzando fronteras/cruzando
lenguas"; Dr. Tace Hedrick (English, University of Florida) talked
about "Gloria Anzaldda and Gabriela Mistral, Queering the
Cosmic Race: Crossing the Bridge between U.S. Latina/o and
Latin American"; and Luis Alvarez Castro (Spanish Literature and
Culture, University of Florida) gave a talk on "Miguel de Unamuno,
los 'papeles de Salamanca' y los limits de la interpretaci6n". The
prevalent topics among the numerous presentations included:
frontiers; picturing women's voices and silences; language contact; life
on the hyphen; language and gender; migration, exile, and diasporas.

Sin Frontera
Having an online magazine designed by graduate students was a goal
that finally materialized in November 2006 when the first issue of
"Sin Frontera" appeared, followed by the second in December 2007.
Combining academic articles, essays, opinions and interviews
with poetry, narrative, painting and photography, "Sin Frontera" looks
to share the space of critical thinking with the voices that constitute
the "object of study," and to rescue the creative impulses both inside
and out of academia. Thanks to the efforts of a group of graduate
students, "Sin Frontera" is becoming a place to collectively work
through learning, thinking and creating.
To visit the Journal, go to: http://plaza.ufl.edu/daniae/sinfrontera/

Spanish & Portuguese Studies News, Fall 2008

page 2

In Search of the Balance
The demands of graduate studies, research, and teaching often leave little
time for other pursuits such as family, community involvement, arts and
sports, which balance the life of the mind with that of the soul, the heart
and the body But here in SPS we have a vibrant commitment to live our
passions fully both on and off campus. Here's how we do it:

* We are committed to having fun. At
least once a year we have a departmental
canoe excursion. It's a chance for
the folks who come to Spanish and
Portuguese Studies from all over the
world to spend a day in paradise with
their loved ones and colleagues paddling
together and sharing lunch. In the last
five years only one canoe has capsized
and we haven't lost anyone, although
we did have to haul back one pair of
paddlers being blown toward Cancdn.
We've paddled the Santa Fe, Alexander
Springs, Rainbow Springs, Silver Springs
and the Gulf of Mexico. We've exclaimed
in every Romance language over every

form of bird, bug, reptile, mammal, fish
and flora found in north central Florida.
* We are committed to creativity. At
Wild Iris Books, a local independent
bookstore, graduate students and
faculty from SPS read their work in the
recital series called "Arroz con Poesia,"
and revel in the pleasure of the word
shared in community. The first "Arroz
Con Poesia," in November of 2005,
was standing-room only, and after the
most recent one in April of 2008, we're
beginning to think it's a movement, not
just an event!

* We are committed to service. Since the Fall of 2005
over sixty of our faculty, grad students and friends have
prepared meals each semester for the homeless at the St.
Francis House in downtown Gainesville. Every night of
the year some group from the community makes dinner
for up to 35 residents at the shelter, and then they sit
down and break bread with them. It's a chance for us to
combine the cuisines of our varied cultures, to share our
bounty with those less fortunate than we and to hear
their stories and better understand their struggles, their
needs and their humanity.

Visiting Professors to the Rescue

In the wake of faculty losses and ongoing
budget restrictions, SPS continues to fulfill its
commitment to high-quality course offerings
with the help of visiting professors from three
In the fall of 2007, Dr. Sylvia Truxa,
from the University of Padua in Italy, taught
two undergraduate courses on twentieth
century writing in Spain. In the spring, Dr.
Alicia Genovese offered an undergraduate
course on Spanish American Women Writers
and a graduate class on Contemporary
Spanish-American Poetry. Dr. Alvaro Leiva,
from the University of Michigan, taught five
undergraduate courses on Latin American

literature and culture. Both Genovese and
Leiva have roots at UE Genovese (M.A.
1988, Ph.D. 1996) has since become an
important voice in Argentine poetry. Leiva
(M.A. at UF, 2001; Ph.D. at FIU, 2005), a
widely-published poet in his native Chile, has
taught at five different universities in the U.S.
We deeply appreciate the willingness of all
three to put their other commitments aside
and join us in the classroom, giving students
an opportunity to engage new perspectives,
and offering us an infusion of energy and
collegiality. Not only did they teach and do
committee work with us, they also canoed
the Silver River and served a meal at the St.

Pronunciation, continued from page I
very personal. Students who learned and can be changed? That's
have not had much exposure to where Dr. Lord steps in, bringing
Spanish struggle with the new her expertise with technology. Here
sounds, and when corrected, they at UF, she trains graduate students
too often retreat into silence and in technologies that offer the shy
a sense of defeat. Instructors, student a forum for expression
intent on creating a positive and the fearful student help
learning environment, back away with pronunciation. She teaches
from correcting pronunciation new instructors to effectively
unless the mistakes are model pronunciation and to
generalized or extreme. allay fear of correction, even and
How can we convince especially at the beginning levels
both teachers and students that of Spanish. She incorporates new
pronunciation can indeed be technologies such as podcasting

and audio blogging in her classes,
allowing her students to focus on
their pronunciation and to work
together with their peers to become
more aware of the problematic
aspects of Spanish phonology.
The graduate students who take
her classes become proficient in
all the most recent technologies,
and many of her intermediate
and upper-level undergraduate
students have said they wished they
had seen her modules before their
mispronunciations had become

Francis House with us!
This fall we welcome for two semesters
Dr. Ignacio Rodefio, who will teach Latin
American literatures and a graduate seminar
on the theory and practice of Autobiography
in Latin America, Spain and the U.S.
Born in Bilbao, Spain, he holds a Ph.D. in
Hispanic Linguistics and Literatures, as well
as a Certificate in Latin American Studies.
His main area of expertise is Autobiography
and Narratives of the Self in Latin America,
Spain and the U.S., with a special emphasis
in theory as well as transnational and
transatlantic perspectives.
Bravo to the visiting professors!

According to Dr. Lord and
others also doing interesting
new research, it is never too
late to refine and improve one's
pronunciation. If you pronounce
"carro" and "caro" alike, help is
now available with the on-line
modules! Before you go out into
the world and say something that
embarasses you, explore http://
grove.ufl.edu/lglord, and when
someone takes you for a native
speaker, send us your story!

Spanish & Portuguese Studies News, Fall 2008

page 3

The Latest Lizard: The Anole
The anole is a slender, climbing lizard with adhesive toes, an inhabitant of tropical and
subtropical America. Anoles are diurnal becoming active as soon as the sun warms
their body. In the wild they live only one to two years.
-adapted from www.hilozoo.comlanimals/AR_anole.htm
The mysterious local affinity between journalism and lizards has manifested
once again in a new publication called "The Anole," which, like its namesake,
appears to be diurnal: copies fly off the shelf as soon as they see sunlight, and
while the five adhesive toes of the anole help it climb trees, the five languages
that come together in "The Anole"-Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese, and
English-promise it an ascendant place here in subtropical America, alongside
"The Alligator" and "The Iguana."

Editors Lindsay Smith and Ver6nica Jordan
are members of the Hispanic Communicators
Association (HCA), which puts out a
newsletter they wanted to improve. Some
HCA members wanted to write for "The
Alligator," the local independent student
newspaper, but were told that in the interests
of objective reporting, they did not have
Hispanics writing about Hispanics (a policy
they have since changed). Lindsay and
Ver6nica felt that one's culture should not
be a professional barrier, so they decided to
start a new multilingual publication with a
multicultural focus. They wanted to cover
local events and larger issues, and to broaden
the horizons of UF students by encouraging
immersion experiences abroad and providing
a space in which to publish articles in
Romance languages as well as in English.
Superior quality of writing was and continues
to be the principal criterion for selection.
The first "Anole" to see the sun was in

September of 2007, and since then there
have been three more. While the first issue
had articles only in Spanish and English,
subsequent issues have added French,
Italian and Portuguese. There are 9 people
consistently involved, but each issue is the
result of 15-20 people's work, thus widening
the circle of collaborators. "The Anole" covers
a lot of ground, from an expos of exploited
immigrant workers in Florida, to reviews
of local restaurants, travel articles, updates
on the use of slang, movie reviews, poetry
and short fiction, interviews with professors
and writers and opinion. While people
increasingly turn to the internet for news and
more, print is still dominant in Gainesville,
according to Lindsay and Ver6nica. They
distribute "The Anole" at targeted sites
on campus, as well as in local Hispanic
One of the editors' goals is to give
students an opportunity to use the languages

they study
to engage
those cultures
and then to
publish their work,
to take seriously what they are learning in
class and then to take the next step--out into
the world. To that end they have sought the
support of professors, who are always happy
to provide more incentives for their students.
A published piece in a multilingual magazine
is sure to catch the eye of someone sifting
through undergraduate rdsum5s, says Lindsay.
And these journalism students are serious! In
2007-2008 several new publications started
up and then fizzled, but the editors of "The
Anole" have lots of ideas for the future.
A new goal for 2008 is to switch from
the current twice-a-semester newsletter format
to one glossy color edition per semester, with
even more articles. To augment their funding
through the Hispanic Student Association,
they are now seeking advertisers. This is where
you can help! While in the wild anoles live
only one to two years, "The Anole" is growing
stronger and flexing its throat. This "Anole"
has lots more to say, and with your help,
it will exceed the lifespan of its namesake.
Contact the editors at smithL87@ufl.edu or

Welcome to New Faculty

Jessi Elana Aaron received her Ph.D. in
Spanish and Portuguese, with a specialty in
Hispanic Linguistics, from the University
of New Mexico in 2006. She holds an
MA. in Latin American Studies from
Stanford University, and a second M.A. in
Ani rl-.. p. .1. ., from the University of New
Mexico. She did her undergraduate work
in Spanish and Political Science, also at
Stanford University. Her research interests
include sociolinguistics, language variation
and change, grammaticization and language
contact. Her current research focuses on
historical morphosyntax in a usage-based
perspective. Other interests include the
social construction of gender, disability, class
and race. She has done ethnographic and
sociolinguistic fieldwork in Puebla, Mexico.

Luis Alvarez-Castro earned a Ph.D. in
Hispanic Ili. -.1..1., from the Universidad
de Valladolid (Spain) in 2002 and a second
Ph.D. in Spanish Literature and Culture from
Ohio State University in 2005. His major
field of study is 19th and early 20th-century
Spanish literature, with a special interest in
literary representations of national identity,
metafiction, and reader-response approaches
to literature.

Su Ar Lee is our new lecturer in Spanish
and Portuguese. As a Ph.D. graduate of
Ohio State University, she developed her
research and teaching expertise in Spanish
Linguistics. Her specific research areas include
Spanish intonation, stress, prosody, laboratory
phonology, phonetics, phonology, Spanish

dialectology and language acquisition.
Currently, Prof Lee teaches both elementary
and advanced Spanish classes (Beginning
Spanish, Intensive Communicative Skills,
Spanish Grammar and Composition and
Introduction to Hispanic Linguistics).
She also assists Professor Jimenez with the
various tasks of the graduate coordinator.
Before joining the University of Florida,
Prof Lee taught various Spanish language
courses and assisted in coordinating the basic
Spanish language program at Washington
State University for 5 years. She grew up in
Korea and lived in Argentina for more than
twelve years, which enhances multicultural
education in her classes.

Spanish & Portuguese Studies News, Fall 2008

page 4

From the Chair
Dear Alumni and Supporters:
First of all, greetings from the newly
established Department of Spanish and
Portuguese Studies or, as we like to call it,
SPS! Our Department was formed as part of
a reorganization within the College of Liberal
Arts and Sciences that took place during
Summer 2008, an action that we feel reflects
the administration's recognition of the special
importance of Spanish and Portuguese in our
state and nation. We are optimistic that our
newly independent status will lead to further
investment in our enterprise over the next few
Fortunately, SPS has a strong foundation
to build on. As the Spanish and Portuguese
sections of the former Department of
Romance Languages and Literatures, we built
a tradition of excellence in our three areas of
activity, i.e., teaching, research and service.
We take our teaching duties very
seriously, and there are many indications of
our success in training and motivating our
students. Numbers tell part of the story, since
growing enrollments are an indication that
students value the material we teach. Last
year Spanish and Portuguese enrolled 4794
students, as compared to only 3834 in 2000,
a 25% increase in eight years. The increase in
majors is even more striking: last year's total
of 153 is 80% more than the 85 combined
majors registered in 2000. Our productivity
at the graduate level has also been impressive,
in that over that same period we graduated 55
M.A. students and 24 Ph.D. students, many
of whom have gone on to accept positions
at universities across the country, including
the University of Nebraska (Omaha), Xavier
University, Northern Colorado University,

Lee University, and Louisiana Tech University.
Our Spanish and Portuguese faculty and
graduate students continue to receive student
evaluations significantly higher than the
College median, and a Spanish teaching
assistant has been a winner in our University-
wide teaching award seven of the last eight
years! All three of our study-abroad programs
- Rio de Janeiro, Santander and Seville were
a success last year, and we are proud to report
that this year SPS completes its eleventh year
as a charter participant in the FLAC (Foreign
Languages Across the Curriculum) project,
which is heavily supported by the Center for
Latin American Studies and the Center for
International Business and Research.
Our ranked faculty carry out research
in Spanish and Portuguese literature, culture,
and linguistics, with sometimes spectacular
results. Considering only 2007-08, the most
recent year for which we have records, the
SPS faculty published 3 books and 33 articles,
while reading 35 papers at scholarly venues
throughout the United States, as well as in
Valladolid, San Josd, Paris, Antwerp, Sao
Paulo, Queensland and Montreal. Our faculty
also carried out innumerable service tasks that
are important for the health of our profession,
including acting as abstract referees for five
different conferences, serving on the editorial
boards of 14 different journals, helping
decide tenure and promotion cases for other
American universities, evaluating candidates
for Fulbright fellowships and helping design
the National Spanish AP exam for public
school students. Another honor for UF is
our status as a testing site for the Celpe-Bras
Portuguese proficiency exam for non-native
speakers established by the Brazilian Ministry

of Education, a test whose only other
American venue is Harvard University.
If you have been following the news
about UF and the state economy, you know
that departmental reorganization is not the
only change that we have experienced over
the last couple of years. The budget squeeze
that has hit the state of Florida has certainly
had an impact at UF, and SPS has also been
affected, especially in terms of dwindling
numbers of faculty. In particular, we were
hurt by the tragic losses of two of our senior
faculty members, Dr. Fdlix Bolafios, who died
suddenly in May 2007, and Dr. Montserrat
Alas-Brun, who contracted an illness that
made her unable to continue working. If you
are wondering whether you can help SPS
through this rough patch, the answer is "of
course!" Any gift of any size can be invested
toward enriching the educational experience
of our students. If you give millions, we can
hire a world-class scholar for a named chair
in your honor; gifts in the thousands will
provide money for study-abroad scholarships
or graduate fellowships; gifts in the hundreds
and less will enable us to provide monetary
awards for our most talented student scholars
and teachers, support student initiatives,
underwrite student travel to academic
conferences and support study-abroad
recruitment. We appreciate your gifts, but
we are equally interested in your continued
interest in our department. Please send us
news about yourself for inclusion in our next
newsletter, and do not hesitate to drop by
when you pass through Gainesville. We would
love to see you!
It's great having you as our alumni!
-David Pharies, Professor of Spanish and Chair

Faculty News
In 2007 Luis Alvarez-Castro directed the 'UF
in Seville' summer program, gave a keynote
lecture entitled "Unamuno, the Salamanca
files, and the limits of interpretation" at the
SPS graduate student Colloquium, taught
a seminar on language pedagogy at the
Universidad de Valladolid, presented a paper
at the International Association of Hispanists
Conference in Paris, and was named "Spanish
Literature Professor of the Year Award" by
the Spanish Graduate Student Association. In
2006 he published a monograph "La palabra
y elser en la teoria literaria de Unamuno,"
and co-edited a volume, Angel Ganivet, teatro
ypoesia, while still finding time to present
papers in Gainesville, San Antonio, Lima,
Valladolid and Salamanca.
Mary Elizabeth Ginway was acting
undergraduate coordinator and study-abroad
director for the Rio de Janeiro summer B
program. In 2006 she welcomed the director

Spanish & Portuguese Studies News, Fall 2008

and academic leader of the official Certificate
of Proficiency in Portuguese Language of the
Ministry of Culture and Education of Brazil.
UF will be one of two sites in the U.S. where
candidates can be certified "battle-ready" in
Brazilian Portuguese.
Gregory E. Moreland helped organize the
2008 CIBER conference hosted by UF in St.
Petersburg, where he also gave a presentation
entitled "Using 'Languages Across the
Curriculum' to Expand the Business
Language Curriculum." He served as a faculty
consultant for the "ISA in Buenos Aires"
2006 summer study abroad program. At the
2006 CIBER Annual Conference he gave a
presentation on "Spanish for Business as the
Cornerstone of Study Abroad: University of
Florida in Mexico and Spain" and he was
the Invited Guest Speaker at the University
of Texas-Austin "Languages Across the
Curriculum Workshop" in 2006.

Charles Perrone did research in Salvador
da Bahia in 2007 for his Spring 2008 course
"Jorge Amado and Bahian Imaginaries." He
was an invited speaker at a roundtable at
the Instituto Tomie Ohtake in Sao Paulo
in conjunction with an exhibit on concrete
poetry. He was also invited to represent the
U.S. at the conference "Mar Aberto", a joint
effort of the state of Sao Paulo and Instituto
Cervantes about transatlantic initiatives in
poetry. In 2006 he gave presentations at
Princeton, Berkeley and Sao Paulo. His latest
book was an edited and co-translated volume,
First World Third Class and Other Tales of the
Global Mix by Regina Rheda (University
of Texas Press, 2005). Among his notable
publications since 2005, was "ABC ofAdeC:
Reading Augusto de Campos" in Review:
Latin American Literature and Arts 73 (Nov.

page 5

The Muses' Corner

Victor Jordan (graduate student in Spanish)

El Duque, en aspas, con sus bin6culos observa
al cimarr6n que abajo amenaza desafiante;
5ste, rabioso el fierro agita e interroga errante
Por qud ahora si asomas con toda tu caterva?

El Bayou, melanc6lico azul, lora su queja
convertido en un extenso campo de Agramante,
reposa sobre lluvias sin feretro el amante
mientras el alma muda, llora y mira perpleja.

No hay quien las laguna con el baculo aparte,
ni quien el retorno de la nueva arca decrete,
s6lo la canci6n promesa sirve de esperanza.

"Midate con tus murallas y odios a otro Marte,"
exige el arroyo y reclama lo suyo: "iVete!
y dejame retornar a mi cauce y a mi danza."

Al Amor Oscuro

Raciel 7Alonso (graduate student in Spanish)

Cuando mis ojos rastrean los tuyos
en vano, algo de mi se desprende: quizis
la hoja de un otofio interno, la escarcha
que deja atras el tempano antartico.

Alguna vez me miraste con el sol de junior
y yo, hijo del polvo, s6lo supe contemplar
el cielo. Quise hacerte volcan; quise hacerte
contener erupciones intimas. Nada

se logra en la tiniebla inerte de la fe
sin guia-perdi el hambre por la caza eterna.
S61o despu5s de mi regreso del delirio aquel
supe que mi alma poco a poco, como la faz
helada de la luna llena, mengua y muere.

Alumni News
Nicole Bronson is currently living in
Tegucigalpa, Honduras working as a high
school teacher. She is employed with the
International School ofTegucigalpa (IST),
a Christian bilingual school servicing
pre-K through 11th grades. Nicole teaches
9th grade Algebra II and Physical Science.
Her goal while in Honduras is to become
fluent in Spanish. When asked how her
time as a Spanish major at UF helped
prepare her for this experience, Nicole had
two things to say: (1) "Can you believe
that they really use all those vocabulary
words and weird grammatical structures
that I learned in Spanish class?!!"; and (2)
"La Mesa de Espanol was a great way to
get students practicing their conversation
skills." In fact, Nicole has borrowed the
idea and started it with some of the
Honduran teachers that work at her
school in order to practice Spanish! After
two years in Honduras, Nicole hopes to
return to the U.S. and utilize her Spanish
and International Business training as a
consultant specializing in Latin America.
Clary Loisel (Ph.D. 1996) is Associate
Professor of Spanish at the University
of Montana. He recently published a

translation of Luis Zapata's La mdsfuerte
passion, and has published articles in
Repiblica de ias Letras: Revista Literaria
de la Asociacidn Colegial de Escritores, and
Sieteculebras: Revista Andina de Cultura.
Lauren Schmidt received her BA. in
Spanish and Anthropology in May 2004
and her MA. in Spanish last spring
from the University of Florida. She is
now beginning her Ph.D. studies in
Spanish Linguistics at Indiana University,
Bloomington, with main research
interests in Second Language Acquisition.
Lauren recently had the opportunity to
present her paper, "The effects of sharing
attentional resources on the production
of the copula by beginning learners of
Spanish," at the Hispanic Linguistics
Symposium in Western Ontario in
Greg Clemons, professor of Spanish at
Mars Hill College, received a grant to
fund a sabbatical leave of absence for the
academic year 2007-2008 to prepare a
translation of Crdnicas reales by Manuel
Mujica Lainez. He also gave a paper at this
year's MLA meeting.

Highlight on Portuguese
The section has been enjoying continued continue a 40-year tradition. As director
success in scholarship, teaching, and of the UF Study Abroad summer program
service. Enrollments are up at all in Rio de Janeiro in summer 2008, he
levels; another section of the intensive initiated a consortium with Georgetown
introduction, for example, has been added University. Three UF majors/minors took
in consecutive terms. The department advantage of the Alfred Hower Travel Prize
is pleased to welcome back from a well- to go on the summer program. There
deserved sabbatical associate professor were a total of 37 students, most at the
Elizabeth Ginway, who will take up her graduate level.
duties as lower-division supervisor as On the cultural front, the Portuguese
well as teach both established and new faculty participated in film screenings and
courses in Brazilian literature. She will musical performances in collaboration
continue to guide the local chapter of Phi with the Center for World Arts. Students
Lambda Beta, the National Portuguese from the program participate in and/
Honor Society. Both she and Prof or organize a local group of Capoeira, a
Charles A. Perrone received curriculum Brazilian martial art with West African
development awards from the Center roots. Capoeira is an excellent way to
for Latin American Studies, Dr. Ginway get in shape, meet new people and learn
for a course on science fiction in the about Brazilian popular culture. The
region (Spring 2009) and Dr. Perrone Brazilian Cultural Arts Exchange, Inc.
for a course on Jorge Amado and Bahian (BCAE) offers weekly classes with a
Imaginaries (Spring 2008), which was student discount. Further information is
taught in conjunction with an exhibition available at www.bcaeonline.org or 352-
of related materials in Grinter Galleries. 256-1833 or 352-871-5376. Information
Dr. Perrone will soon have completed on the summer program in Rio is posted
his term on the executive committee of on Dr. Ginway's website at www.clas.ufl.
APSA (American Portuguese Studies edu/users/eginway, and Dr. Perrone has
Association). He is once again faculty links to the academic programs on his
advisor to the UF Brazilian Portuguese website at www.clas.ufl.edu/users/perrone.
Club, whose weekly meetings off campus

Spanish & Portuguese Studies News, Fall 2008

page 6

In Memory

Dr. Alvaro Felix Bolahos: 1955-2007

On May 14, 2007 Alvaro Felix
Bolafios died as the result of
a heart attack while jogging.
Feix touched many lives within
the university and in the wider
community and more than 200
people attended a memorial service
in his honor a week later. Several
students who spoke evoked the
breadth of his intellectual range,
his extraordinary commitment to
his profession and, especially, his
profound humanity and integrity
as mentor and advisor to several
generations of students. They
remembered him as an exemplary
figure whose scholarly activity
and activism in the university
and the profession were of a
piece with his commitment to
the Hispanic community, local
and international. It was this
sentiment that inspired him to
organize several conferences at
UF to which he invited a diverse
group of speakers and performers
from Latin America, ranging
from politicians to artists to labor
representatives of indigenous
communities in Colombia and
Latin America, as well as local
musicians and U.S. academics.

Felix came to the United
States in 1982, earned a Ph.D.
in Spanish Literature at the
University of Kentucky, and had
a productive career at Tulane
University before coming to the
University of Florida in 1998. He
learned a few days before his death
that he had been promoted to full
professor here.
Between 1988 and 2007,
Flix published two books-
Barbariey canibalismo en la
retdrica colonial: Los indios Pijaos
defray Pedro Simon (1994); Elites
y desplazados en el Valle del Cauca
(2005); a co-edited volume with
Gustavo Verdesio, Colonialism Past
and Present: Reading and Writing
about Colonial Latin America
Today (2001); more than thirty
scholarly articles, eighteen book
reviews, and several bibliographical
notes. The book he left unfinished
when he died, tentatively titled
Reading like Conquistadors:
Hispanism and The New Kingdom
of Granada's Foundational
Narratives, reflects in a more
profound and nuanced way on
issues that he had been elaborating
since his first monograph.

At the University of
Florida, Felix developed Latin
American colonial studies in
the undergraduate and graduate
programs. Since he was himself
on the cutting edge of the field,
he was able to create courses that
reflected the new directions being
taken in postcolonial studies. He
attracted new graduate students
and worked tirelessly to increase
the UF library's holdings in the
field. He set a very high standard
and his commitment helped
to raise the level of literary and
cultural studies in Spanish at the
University of Florida.
Felix asked in many different
ways over the years the question
that is formulated in the title of
his last book: why scholars still
read like conquistadores, imposing
their own grid and interpretations
on the reality that lies before
them. He drew attention to
the differences separating elite
sectors of the population (and
their chronicles) from displaced
groups and their stories; he noted
the divergent approaches to
knowledge taken by intellectuals
and by indigenous communities;

he looked at the treatment of
all of these groups by the North
American academy. In his
unfinished book, he questions
with great acuity the very nature
of "literary" criticism, asserting
that scholars need to place their
work-the study of colonial
texts, colonial material culture,
and history-in a larger context,
in order to broaden the public's
understanding of current-day
Latin America and Latin American
He is survived by his wife
Lisa, his three children, his family
in the U.S. and Colombia,
countless students whose thinking
he shaped, and many colleagues
who miss him still.

Retired Faculty

Dr. Andrts Avellaneda
participated in several international
academic events during the
summer of 2006. He was the
keynote speaker at the Sixth Orbis
Tertius International Conference
on Theory and Literary Criticism
(May 10-12), sponsored by the
National University of La Plata,
the Argentine Ministry of Science
and Technology and the Spanish
government. He read a paper titled
"Deseos de la discipline: Viaje
etnol6gico al latinoamericanismo
estadounidense". He was given
the title "Distinguished Guest
of Honor" (Huesped de Honor
Extraordinario) by the President of
the University of La Plata. In late
July, Dr. Avellaneda was a special
guest participant in a round table

on literature and politics organized
by the Institute of Literary Studies
and the Chair of Introduction
to Literature (Universidad de
La Plata). In early August, he
read a paper titled "Escritores,
terratenientes, cabecitas: Discursos
de la alteridad en los cuarenta"
at the conference "El peronismo.
Politicas culturales (1946-2006)."
The conference, held at the
Institute Superior Octubre in
Buenos Aires, was co-sponsored
by the University of Southern
California, the Universidad
Nacional de San Martin and the
Palenque Rugendas Foundation.
In the fall of 2006, he was a
keynote speaker at the Second
Colloquium of Hispanic/Latin
American Literatures, Linguistics

and Cultures, University of
Florida. He read a paper titled
"Discursos critics y discursos
sociales: Los studios literarios
latinoamericanistas en el context
de los Estados Unidos".

Maria Luisa Freyre, who on
several occasions left her home
in Buenos Aires in order to
teach Spanish linguistics in our
department, passed away in
August 2007. Many remember
Maria Luisa as a lively person, a
wonderful speaker of both English
and Spanish, and above all as a
warm and kind colleague.

Murray Lasley, RLL professor in
Spanish from 1956 until 1992,
reports that he is totally blind but

still alive and living independently
at his home in Gainesville. He
works out at the Living Well gym
twice a week, and keeps his mind
alert by listening to 2-3 books on
tape every week-both fiction and
non-fiction, and by keeping up
with current events and ideas via
talk radio. He is an active member
of Holy Trinity Episcopal Church.

Adolfo Prieto, RLL professor of
Spanish from 1981 to 1996, was
named an "Illustrious Citizen"
of Rosario, Argentina, where he
has lived since his retirement. He
reports that he learned of this
honor while he was listening to
the radio and shaving.

Spanish & Portuguese Studies News, Fall 2008

page 7

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