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Message from the Chair Dear Alumni and Friends of Spanish and Portuguese, Please allow me to extend to you a warm salute at the beginning of a new academic year. I have the honor of being the new chair of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, following Professor John Dagenais’ successful tenure in that capacity. My area of research is late medieval and early modern Spain, but I also have an abiding interest in the links between Spain and Latin America. Most importantly, I assume this position with an unfailing commitment to do the best I can on behalf of the Department. There are many interesting developments and programs being developed or projected for this coming academic year, and we will keep you well informed about them in future communications. But the department has suffered important losses through retirements and untimely deaths. Moreover, because of unprecedented budget cuts and a historical low number of ladder faculty, the Department faces great dangers in the coming months and years. We depend on you, loyal members of the Spanish and Portuguese departmental family, to rally around us and work shoulder to shoulder in improving and propelling the department to a place of excellence. Of course, we need money, but I do not wish to turn my welcome letter into a pitch for financial support. You can help in many other ways. These ways of supporting the Department range from attending our functions

to lobbying with the university administration and with your legislative representatives for enhanced financial support for our pedagogical and research goals. You can help by your guidance, counsel, and commitment to our Department. We would like you to think of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese as also your home, and we would like to see you come to visit us as often as you can. I am usually in my office and would welcome the opportunity to meet you and to discuss the present state and future of the Department. Just come right in! Among the items we wish to pursue in this coming year is a vigorous outreach to our alumni and friends. We would also like to honor the memories of Professors Carroll Johnson and Guillermo Hernández, who we had the misfortune of losing this past year. To that effect, the Department has begun a fund to honor their memory and to give awards to selected undergraduates for papers in Golden Age and Mexican literature. I hope you join us in this endeavor. I know that the Department will overcome all the challenges that face us this year, and that it will continue to prosper and to reach for its rightful place in this country’s academic rankings. Come and join us in making this Department an embracing community dedicated to service and learning. Cordially, Teo Ruiz

Message from John Dagenais Dear Friends: It is with mixed emotions that I come to the end of my term as Chair of the Department of Spanish & Portuguese at UCLA. On the one hand, I will take with me many fond memories of this special association I have had with all of you over the past four years. On the other, I have learned more than I ever cared to know about university administration and I look forward to returning to research and teaching. I am very proud of the many achievements of the department over the past four years, and I take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for your help and support in making this a better department. Without you, none of it would have been possible. I am thrilled to be able to welcome Professor Teófilo Ruiz as the new Chair of the department. “Teo” is a distinguished professor of History, with many teaching awards, including the "Outstanding Master's Universities and Colleges Professor of the Year" by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, 1994-95, and the 2008 UCLA Distinguished Teaching Award. But he is also a leading

scholar in the field of medieval history and holds this year the prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship for his research. You will soon learn that Teo is a very special person, and I know that I leave the department in excellent hands. The department, the university, and Teo, will be facing a budget crisis unlike any we have seen in recent years. I’ll just take this last opportunity to ask the readers of this newsletter to consider making a gift to the department. We have just received a substantial endowment from an alumnus of the department who wishes to remain anonymous. We could use many more such gifts, especially to help us provide support for our fine graduate students. So, I’ll just thank you one more time for all you have done for the department and for me over the past four years and say “Good-bye.” John Dagenais


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Professor Susan Plann Wins Fair and Open Campus Environment Award

Photo by Rich Schmitt

At a ceremony and dinner in Covel Commons on May 22, Professor Susan Plann received the Academic Senate’s Fair and Open Academic Environment Award in recognition of her “auspicious success” (leadership, innovation, initiatives, creativity) in furthering a fair, open, and diverse academic environment at UCLA. Professor Plann was recognized for her creation of courses integrating Latino themes into the curriculum including “Latinos and Literacy,” “Taking It to the Street,” “Oral History,” and “Language Exchange.” These courses also function as pipelines by placing students at area high schools in contact with role models at UCLA. She was also saluted as the driving force behind the Listos! after-school program, which teaches Spanish to African-American elementary school children with UCLA undergraduates as instructors. She was likewise praised for her promotion of the welfare of the disabled, including her research and publications on the Spanish Deaf community and her work on the Faculty Advisory Committee for the Disability Studies Minor. The awards committee also lauded her fiat lux freshman seminar on “The Muslim Student Experience at UCLA,” which promotes dialogue among Muslim and non-Muslim students. An interview with Professor Plann is featured in the May issue of UCLA Today.

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Professor Calderon returns

Professor Calderón with students, professors, and staff at the Spring 2008 Farewell Reception in front of La Casona at Casa de California.

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The Department of Spanish and Portuguese is delighted to welcome José Luiz Passos to its faculty. Professor Professor José Luiz Passos. Passos came to the department in January 2008, from the University of California, Berkeley, where he was an Associate Professor. Professor Passos’ main research and teaching interests are the sociology of intellectuals, the Luso-Brazilian Enlightenment, the novel in Portugal and Brazil, and Machado de Assis. His first book, Ruínas de linhas puras: quatro ensaios em torno de Macunaíma (1998), examines Mário de Andrade’s 1928 novel Macunaíma within the historical context of the evolution of discourses of national identity in the Brazilian novel, in relation to Andrade’s poetic theory, and in comparison with Joyce’s Ulysses and Pero Vaz de Caminha’s “Carta”. On May 14, the department celebrated the publication of Passos’ Machado de Assis, o romance com pessoas by the University of São Paulo Press. The book is a surprising piece of scholarship, first of all, because of its structure. Rather than follow a traditional academic mold and divide the work into chapters, Professor Passos opted to organize it into around 70 sections of different lengths. This structure, which is quite “Machadian” in its somewhat digressive nature, allows the author to develop his topic from multiple angles, bringing diverse theoretical and comparative perspectives into play. The second notable aspect of the study is Professor Passos’ remarkable level of erudition, drawing from major figures in sociology, philosophy, literary and cultural theory, literary criticism, and a broad range of literary texts. Passos’ current research project focuses on literary and intellectual relations between Portugal and Brazil in the period prior to the latter’s independence in 1822. By examining the pastoral mode, he seeks to understand some of the most deeply ingrained dichotomies in colonial and post-colonial aesthetics of loss and decline. We are delighted to have him with us at UCLA.

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We are thrilled to announce that an anonymous alumnus of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese has given a $100,000 gift annuity to the department for graduate student scholarships. In making the gift, the alumnus expressed "great appreciation to Chair John Dagenais for his outreach to alumni and friends of the department during his fouryear chairmanship" and "admiration for the fine group of graduate students currently working on degrees in the department."

by randal Johnson

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Professor Héctor Calderón will be returning to UCLA after four years in Mexico City where he has been Director of the EAP Mexico Study Center (2004-2008) and Acting Executive Director of La Casa de la Universidad de California en México, A.C. (2006-2008). As EAP Director, Professor Calderón was responsible for the UNAM, Comparative Perspectives, Field Research, and the Tec de Monterrey Programs. Located in colonial Chimalistac near UNAM, Casa de California is a foreign affiliate of the University of California administered by the Office of International Academic Activities in the Office of the President. Consisting of four buildings, the Casa property was purchased to provide quarters for UC Center Mexico City, UC MEXUS, UC Alumni in Mexico, and offices for UC Mexico programs. Casa has become a lively intellectual space hosting seminars, conferences, and cultural events. A telecommunications system was recently installed to link Mexican universities and research centers with the University of California. By mid-August, one building currently undergoing seismic renovation will house EAP offices and classrooms.

Welcome Professor Passos


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A lecture by Gioconda Belli. “Worlds of Words: Through the Looking Glass”

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Matthews Lecture

On May 30, Professor Rosaura Sánchez delivered the 2008 Lois B. Matthews Lecture entitled “New Enclosures in Chicano/a –Latino/a Literature.” In 1972, Professor Sánchez began a long and distinguished caBy Gloria Gálvez-Carlisle reer in the Department of Literature at UCSD. It should be noted that in 1974 Professor Sánchez was one of the first Mexican Americans in the post-Chicano Movement period to receive a doctorate. At the University of Texas, Austin, she completed a dissertation, “A Generative Study of Two Spanish Dialectics,” in Romance Linguistics. Though her early work concentrated on linguistics, producing Chicano Discourse: A Socio-Historic Perspective (1982), she is best known as one of the first scholars to write theoretically informed literary criticism. “Ethnicity, Ideology and Academia,” (1987), “Postmodernism and Chicano Literature” (1989), “Subjectivity in Chicano Literature” (1990), and “The Land Act of 1851 as the Handmaiden of Manifest Destiny,” (2005) are a few of her well-known articles. Gioconda Belli speaking at the lecture. Professor Sánchez recently returned in her On November 16, 2007, in the packed Hacienda scholarly work to colonized California of the 19th Room of the UCLA Faculty Center, students and faculty of century with her study and anthology Telling Identities: various departments came to hear Gioconda Belli. The re- The Californio Testimonios (1995). Professor Sánchez nowned and prolific poet, essayist, novelist, and defender is also a creative writer and a collection of her short of human rights from Nicaragua, spoke of how her life and SANCHEZ continued on pg. 22 literature had become closely intertwined with her country’s history from a very young age. We learned how her Rosario Sánchez. growing awareness of Nicaraguan social inequities, her involvement with the Sandinistas, her personal life, and her continuing devotion to her country and its people influenced all her literary work and how questions of tolerance, reasoning, and justice are at the heart of her writings. Among numerous awards, she was chosen as one of the most notable Nicaraguan citizens of the 20th Century, elected into the Royal Academy of the Spanish Language, awarded the Rubén Dario's Theater Medal in recognition of twenty -five years of artistic endeavors in the field of literature, and in 2006 the International Poetry Prize, Melilla, Spain. Her books have been translated into several languages. The Inhabited Woman (1988), her first novel, was an instant success winning the Best Political Novel of the Year Literary Prize. Her book of poems, Sobre la grama (1972), won Nicaragua's most prestigious Mariano Fiallos Gil literary award and her famous and powerful memoir of love and war The Country under my Skin won the Los Angeles Times book prize (2003). El taller de las mariposas (1995) is one of several children’s BELLI continued on pg. 22


2008 Distinguished Alumna Spanish and Portuguese Prof. Maria Herrera-Sobek Alumni and Friends By Rubén Benítez Activities 2007-2008 By Roberta Johnson

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Once upon a time, more than thirty years ago, there was this young girl in one of my classes on Spanish Literature or Literary Criticism. I remember her very well for her expression of beatitude while listening to my words and for the constant smile illuminating her face. She was Maria Herrera. I talked to her, outside of class, many times. She used to work on the fifth floor, in the office of Stanley Robe or in the then called “Barja Library.” I confess that “folklore” was not my preferred field. The Argentineans of my generation identified “folklore,” with the military dictatorships. Without knowing the works of Herder, the creator of the term and folkloric sciences, the generals considered the folkloric traditions as the eternal and inalterable manifestation of the “folkgeist,” the spirit of the nation. We had to learn “folklore” in school and hear, day and night, folkloric songs on the radio, with the exclusion, of course, of the songs of protest sung by Atahualpa Yupanqui and later by Mercedes Sosa. In general, we thought of a folklorist as a man or a woman, generally coming from outside, always looking for traces of that divine and permanent soul. That is the reason why, as I remember, I tried many times to dissuade Maria Herrera of her interest for folklore. Fortunately, she didn’t change her mind. Many years later, I started to read in

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Professor John Dagenais and Distinguished Alumna Professor Maria Herrera-Sobek.

Randal Johnson, Professor of Portuguese and Brazilian Cinema and Director of the Latin American Institute at UCLA launched the 2007-2008 Spanish and Portuguese Alumni and Friends season with a splendid lecture, including numerous film clips, on the long career of 100-year-old Portuguese film director Manoel de Oliveira. His lecture coincided with the appearance of his book on the renowned director, published by University of Illinois Press. This spring Professor Johnson organized a festival of Oliveira’s films at UCLA’s Hammer Museum. On January 18, Rue and Ben Pine, dear friends of the UCLA Department of Spanish and Portuguese and founders of the Ben and Rue Pine Travel Awards for department faculty and graduate students, graciously hosted a group of friends and alumni in their home. We sampled Spanish tapas and wines and enjoyed an informative talk by Steve Arroyo, pioneer in tapas restaurants in Los Angeles and owner of Cobras and Matadors at locations on Beverly Blvd. and Hollywood Blvd. We concluded our special programming this academic year with a wonderful virtual viewing of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela presented by Professor and Department Chair, John Dagenais on April 10. The digital model, which must be seen in a special room in the Math Sciences building, incorporated embedded spatialized medieval songs as Professor Dagenais’ narrative guided us through the cathedral spaces as they would have been experienced by a medieval pilgrim. Department alumna Kathy O’Donnell, who has made her career in information technology at IBM, introduced the program. A reception followed at the Faculty Center in which we celebrated Professor Dagenais’ chairmanship and his founding of the Friends and Alumni group in 2006. Alumna Joan Arias hosted the program, which included expressions of praise and gratitude for John Dagenais’ visionary work as chair from Dean Timothy Stowell, Ben and Rue Pine, UCLA Emeritus Professor Rubén Benítez, UCLA Alumnus and UCSB Professor Harvey Sharrer, UCLA Professor Randal Johnson, UCLA Alumna and CSUP Professor Susana Hernández-Araico, Department Manager Caleb Na, and Graduate Student President Joanna Davila.


Mapuche Poetry Reading

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On May 16 in the Lorrine Lydeen Reading Room, the Department hosted a poetry reading by Graciela Huinao, the first female Mapuche writer to publish her work in Chile. The Mapuche are the largest indigenous group in Chile today and despite economic and social discrimination, Huinao has become a nationally and internationally recognized poet, publishing in Chinese, English, French, Spanish, Mapudungun and Polish. She spoke to a full house about her experiences as an indigenous female writer and recited her compelling poetry. The visit was made possible by the hard work of graduate students Allison Ramay and Ana Maria Vargas.

XXXI Symposium on Portuguese Traditions The XXXI Symposium on Portuguese Traditions took place on the 19th and 20th of April. Foreign scholars customarily came from such distant places as Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and Portugal, to join UCLA and other American scholars to present twenty-four papers, many of them illustrated, during the two-day conference sponsored by the Latin American Institute, the Medieval and Renaissance Center, and the Department of Spanish and Portuguese. Among the outstanding presentations was that of Ambassador Theresa Maria Machado Quintella, who read a paper on Machado de Assis authored by the ex-President of the Brazilian Academy of Letters, Minister Marcos Vilaça. Guest of Honor, well-known Brazilian theatre crític and historian, Sábato Magaldi, unfortunately could not attend because of an unforeseen last minute health problem. As usual, the Luso-Brazilian style luncheons were the two axis around which the Symposium revolved.

New Spanish and Community and Culture Major Launched

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Above: Spanish Community Majors Lourdes Arevalo, Erin Gilbert, Madelyn Rothstein, and Elizabeth Lua. Below: University High School teacher Paula Yerman and Professor Susan Plann.

On March 13 at the UCLA Downtown Labor Center in Los Angeles, the Department hosted a reception to officially launch the Spanish and Community and Culture Major. Various students and community members spoke about the major’s impact on the community and the students who participate. The Department was also presented with a resolution by the Los Angeles City Council along with the Mayor, City Attorney, and City Controller honoring and recognizing the Department’s awareness of its civic responsibilities and its encouragement of all students to take advantage of the incredible cultural resources and educational opportunities available in Los Angeles. The resolution, which recognizes the Department of Spanish and Portuguese and the creation of its new major, Spanish and Community and Culture, has been framed and currently hangs in the Lorrine Lydeen Reading Room.


The Itinerant Word: Travel, Crossroads, Escape

Sacred Steps Exhibit

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This year’s graduate conference, “The Itinerant Word: Travel, Crossroads, Escape” took place May 2, 2008. It was organized by Carolyn Gonzalez, Gorreti Gonzalez, Erin Hogan and Sandra Ruiz. This conference explored the theme of travel in its literal and figurative manifestations including but not limited to: journey, movement, displacement, and translation. Some of the themes explored were: How can travel move beyond its physical manifestation? What are the limitations of the enlightened and modernist journeys? At what point does the cyclical journey grant broader understanding of identity formations? How do geography and movement affect discourse practices? What is the role of travel in the creation of literary icons? Friday’s keynote address, by Professor Steve Hutchinson (University of Wisconsin-Madison) was “Exilio y retorno: Las apologias de la expulsion de los moriscos y la palabra peregrine de Ricote.” It was a successful event that provided invaluable experience and opportunities for intellectual exchange. TOP: Grad Conference organizers with Professor John Dagenais, and keynote speaker Professor Steve Hutchinson. BOTTOM: Sandra Ruiz, Carolyn González, and Goretti González

9 TOP: Denise Pacheco and Maria Jose Alves Hulet BOTTOM: Attendees discussing images from the exhibition.

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This fall quarter, the Department was honored to host the photographic exhibition “Sacred Steps: Pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago.” This exhibit celebrates the experience of modern pilgrims from the United States and Canada who set out to retrace the paths to Santiago de Compostela on its Camino francés from Roncesvalles on the French border, down the slopes of the western Pyrenees, and through the fertile vineyards of La Rioja. Once in Castilla, the pilgrim treks from Burgos across the high tablelands and their endless fields of wheat where a string of ancient settlements bear the common surname “de Campos.” The images in this exhibition capture on film and canvas the visions the contributing artists gathered along their own pilgrimages in Spain. The exhibit ran from November 30, 2007 to January 31, 2008 and was made possible by the cooperation of several groups. Among them were the Spanish Embassy in Washington, the Xunta de Galicia and the Association of American Pilgrims on the Road to Santiago de Compostela.


Symposium on Cultures and Politics of Memory and Human Rights in Post-dictatorship Southern Cone: Al calor de sus luchas

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By Adriana Bergero

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Symposium speakers (from right to left): Alicia Kozameh, Hernan Vidal y Juan Martin Aiub Ronco.

In post-dictatorship Argentina Chile and Uruguay, memory became a battle field of crucial significance. On May 21 and 22, 2008, the symposium “Cultures and Politics of Memory and Human Rights in Postdictatorship Southern Cone. Al calor de sus luchas” was dedicated to examine the ways in which human rights activism has been shaping memory against impunity and oblivion. The symposium coincided with a special session at the US Congress in Washington D.C. where Héctor Timerman, Argentine Ambassador to the US and Juan Cabandié, member of HIJOS (Children of the Disappeared. For Justice. Against Oblivion) recuperated by the Grandmothers of Plaza de Mayo requested to the US government to disqualify material that could lead to the recovery of kidnapped children during the Dirty War in Argentina (1976-1983). I conceived this symposium as part of my graduate seminar “Argentine culture: From Peronism to 2006”. My goal was to expose students to the literary and cinematic production of the period within their direct interaction with the leaders, such as Juan Martín Aiub Ronco,

behind the most powerful and compelling struggles for the victims’ justice taking place in the societies of the Southern Cone. I also envisioned the symposium as an academic event of a different kind, one capable of triggering emotional intelligence; perhaps the most perfect form of intelligence. Argentine Deputy Consul Fernando Brun made possible a unique exhibit to reach our audience with its heartbreaking message. The Joan Lindgren’s exhibit brought to the symposium 208 recordatorios published in the Argentine newspaper Página/12 by family members of victims of State Terrorism and compiled by Virginia Giannoni and Joan Lindgren. They are neither announcements, not obituaries: along with the pictures of the disappeared, the written texts express a need not only to remember the victims but the need to testify to their existences. After collecting the recordatorios, Lindgren explained: “when I had faced the first one hundred recordatorios, these faces had come before me, evoking their absence… the rage of unjust


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TOP: Recordatorios of the disappeared. BOTTOM: Consul General and Ambassador of the Argentine Republic Jorge T. Lapsenson addressing the audience.

Argentine Ambassador Jorge J. Lapsenson presented the exhibit at the symposium with the following words: “This exhibit is about a story of shattered dreams and atrocities, brought to life as part of our effort to create awareness on an undeniable reality of our past. The ongoing revision of what happened during those dark years, the open debate around the undeniable reality of the disappearance in Argentina and the official commitment seem to be the only way to contribute to close that chapter by healing those wounds that have left visible scars in our society”. My deepest gratitude to Virginia Giannoni, Annie Nelson, Joan Lindgren’s niece, human rights activist and writer Nora Strejilevich and librarian Martha McPhail (University Library, San Diego State University) for their kind and timely response and coordination. To Paula Thorrington who poignantly

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translated and read selected recordatorios and to Dr.. Eun-kyung Cecilia Choi for her sensitive power point. On May 21, the screening of Cautiva (Argentina, 2005) took place co-sponsored by the generous support of USPA and followed by a round table by director Gastón Biraben and Juan Martín Aiub Ronco, member of HIJOS and founder of the Comisión de Hermanos de HIJOS, dedicated to the investigation of legal claims related to “appropriated” children. Film and round table addressed the drama of kidnapped children and babies born in captivity, taken by the military Junta as spoils of war. Hundred of them still grow up unaware of their condition of victims of abductions, which have already lasted thirty-two years. On May 22, “Movimiento chileno contra la tortura Sebastián Acevedo” (Vidal, 1988) was shown, followed by the Uruguayan-French film Por esos ojos (Arijon-Martinez, 1997) about the Uruguayan grandmother María Esther Gatti de Islas’ moving search for her granddaughter Mariana Zaffaroni. Introduced by Prof. Verónica Cortínez (Spanish and Portuguese), Prof.

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loss, the unending resonance of sorrow and impotence… Each recordatorio symbolizes not one, but many violent ruptures of families, of personal narrative, of historical identity.”

TOP: Juan Martin Aiub Ronco, member of HIJOS and Fernando Brun, Deputy Consul of the Argentine Republic. BOTTOM: Symposium attendees.

SYMPOSIUM continued on pg. 21


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2007-2008 Graduate Student Association Message

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The academic year 2007- 2008 was a valuable period of growth and experience for the members of the Graduate Student Association of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese. Together we made a commitment to represent the students of our department and provide them with diverse resources for the development of their academic and professional careers. The various concerns brought up in our meetings during the last nine months included: fellowship information, the Master’s Exam, the PhD completion program, and various events and activities aimed at enhancing our academic life. As part of our job, we supported the Fifth Annual Spanish and Portuguese Graduate Student Conference, “The Itinerant Word: Travel, Crossroads, Escape.” Also, on April 17 and 18, the GSA brought Daniel Balderston to our department. This event was enthusiastically attended by both students and faculty, and was also the first time that students were exclusively involved in the organization of a visit by such a distinguished academic. In order to put a fitting end to this year, we hosted an end-of-the-year party. It was an opportunity to celebrate our accomplishments and remember that we are all proud members of a community of exceptional individuals. The members of the GSA wish to recognize their enormous debt of gratitude to our department chair, Professor John Dagenais, to our graduate advisor, Professor Jesús Torrecilla, to the faculty and staff of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, and to all our fellow graduate students for the support that each of you showed us during our tenure. It’s been a pleasure to work with you! Your GSA: Joanna Dávila, President; Ana María Vargas, Vice-President; Victoria Garrett, Vice-President of Student Affairs; Rachel VanWierren, Vice President of Humanity Council; and Nora Zepeda, T.A. Representative.

Films and Human Rights: USPA 2007-2008 By Manuel R. Cuellar

Symposium organizers with film director Gastón Biraben and HIJOS member Juan Martín Aiub Ronco.

USPA has had another exciting year filled with social outings, Latin American dining, and our traditional Spring Film Festival. In addition, USPA came together for the first time with the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, the Latin American Institute and the Consulate General and Promotion Center of the Argentine Republic to present the Symposium on Cultures and Politics of Memory and Human Rights in Post-dictatorship Southern Cone. This year, Spring 2008 became the highlight of the academic year. The opening of our annual Spring Film Festival started with the screening of Pedro Páramo on May 7 and a discussion led by Prof. Andrea Reyes. On May 14, USPA screened a thought-provoking Chilean film, Machuca, presented by Dr. Gloria Galvez-Carlisle as a preface to the symposium. And for the series’ grand finale and as part of the symposium that started on May 21, we had the UCLA premiere of Cautiva, presented by Argentine film maker Gastón Biraben and joined by Juan Martín Aiub Ronco, member of HIJOS (Children of the Disappeared. For Justice and Against Oblivion). The screening of Cautiva was a total success with an incredible turnout of more than 300 people filling the Lenart Auditorium at the Fowler Museum. As one more academic year is about to end, I’d like to thank Dr. Gloria Galvez-Carlisle for her generosity. Indeed, her economic and moral support has helped us carry out our mission: the promotion of the language and culture of our mundo hispánico. I would also like to thank our incredible board members Alexis Ratón, Heidy Lozano and Nivardo Valenzuela, as well as the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, in particular Dacia Serrano, Adriana Ruiz and our advisor Professor Adriana Bergero.


Alberto Fuguet: “I like to explore things that are taking place as we speak” By Catalina Forttes Zalaquett

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Although writer and filmmaker Alberto Fuguet lives and writes in Santiago de Chile, he has never quite left California. Its sunny valleys, pastel bungalows, saturated freeways, airports and motels not only appear in his literature but are an integral part of his personal history. His visiting professorship at UCLA during Spring quarter of 2008 was a homecoming. It is fitting that a Chilean writer, raised in Encino, California would end up sharing his experiences with students who are in many ways similar to what Fuguet would have become had his family not returned to Chile during his early teenage years. Alberto Fuguet acquired international visibility in 1996 when he labeled his contemporaries as the McOndo generation. This name, used as the title of a pan-American short story anthology for writers born after 1962, relocates the symbolic origin of a Latin American literary imagination in the core of the South American megalopolis where McDonald’s, Macintosh computers and condos make up an important part of everyday experience, far from the luscious literary jungles where patriarchs never die. The new enfant terrible of Latin American letters, who under the title “Is Magical Realism Dead?” metaphorically killed his literary fathers, made the cover of Newsweek in 2002 as one of the fifty Latin-Americans who had set out to change the Latin American cultural landscape. More than 10 years after the coinage of McOndo, Fuguet has revisited the concept with the input of both undergraduate and graduate students at UCLA. When asked about the ideas behind the conception

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Alberto Fuguet

of his courses, he replied that, in the same way in which it is impossible for him to write about things that are not interesting to him, the challenge was to make the courses both attractive to the students and himself. “The graduate class was on McOndo,” commented Fuguet, “I’m supposed to be its founder, but since I have heard so much against this idea I decided to confront the shorthand versions of McOndo. Together with the students we were able to sketch out a map of a 21st Century Latin America where McOndo is more a sensibility than a list of writers and pop culture an inescapable reality. The undergrad class was also an eye opening experience. We decided to check on representations of Los Angeles and find out how much of Blade Runner we could find by touring the city, and if it is as “Latin” as we assumed. I like to explore things that are taking place as we speak.” As for his experience as a teacher, he admits to having discovered a side of academia that throws new light on his earlier experiences. “It has been great to see that there is no enemy or conspiracy theory,” said Fuguet, alluding to a conflictive history with academics “As an author one is both in awe and paranoid about academia. In the past I have disagreed so many times with scholarly writing that I have altogether stopped reading theses or papers on myself or on others. However, it seems to me that the guard is changing, and I was truly and positively surprised with the grad students. The students I met seem to know that there is more to life than books, and that in turn, books have so much to do with life. Also, it was my first time teaching, and now as an insider, I confess I’m less scared of it.” Sharing Fuguet´s enthusiasm for the topics worked out in the courses graduate student Sarah Older Aguilar commented, "In Fuguet's seminar we were able to explore contemporary Latin-American fiction and cinema that is somewhat 'off the beaten path.' It has been a unique opportunity to question and redefine the contours of McOndo with one of the founders of this literary territory, and Fuguet was always ready for a lively debate!” As students we thrived on his lively teaching style, his fresh and insightful grasp of the present, and his witty movement from highbrow culture to the palpitations of everyday life. Susannah Rodriguez Drissi, a graduate student, puts it boldly, “Fuguet? Yes. He’s a freak—he made UCLA a different place, like Smallville was a different place, after the meteor shower. He will be missed—the way Elvis is missed after he leaves the building, cachai?”


Grad Student Profile: Román Luján

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By Hilda Peinado

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Román was born in Monclova, a large city in the northern state of Coahila, Mexico. Soon after his birth his family moved to Querétaro, where he attended elementary school as well as la preparatoria and the University of Querétaro. In la prepa he excelled in the art of public speaking and it turned out he really excelled in making a case on paper, in written analysis and argument, and unsurprisingly, his first career was in law. In la prepa Román was exposed to world and Latin American literature. Although his teachers were priests, instead of focusing on religion, Román attained an abiding love for literature. His love of literature, however, was not limited to reading: It extended to the creation of it. He wrote poetry and short stories and by the age of 18, Román’s work had already been published. (Actually, his books Deshuesadero, Instrucciones para hacerse el valiente, and Aspa viento can be checked out at the UCLA Library.) At the University of Querétaro, while studying law, Román started a literary workshop which continued for four years. After graduating Román practiced law for several years. In 1998 Román visited UCLA for the first time through Román Luján the auspices of the Program on Mexico. At UCLA he met the renowned historian, James Wilkie. At some point during his stay he also met Guillermo Hernández, who at the time was the director of the Chicano Studies Research Center. They kept in touch until Guillermo’s sudden death in 2006. It was that first visit to UCLA, Guillermo’s encouragement, and the encouragement of a professor at the Tec in Monterrey (Nuevo León) that encouraged Román to take the plunge and apply. He was not accepted the first time he applied because his application was too late to be given serious consideration. He was admitted to Florida State, where he completed his MA degree. Throughout his stay in Florida he knew he would eventually end up in California. Poetry is Román’s passion and his interests are the

poetry of the 20th Century, the Avant-Garde movements, and poetic experimentations. As a Mexicanist he is not only interested in the national literature but in transatlantic studies, those things that bind us across oceans, and across cyberspace. He’s currently developing his dissertation prospect with Michelle Clayton. Román also wants to delve into poetry within the context of technology, the doubts, the false starts, the “errors,” the linguistic negotiations, the adjustments in meaning. This is what Román would like to contribute to the study of poetry. It was especially fortunate that Clayton Eschleman, poet, translator, critic and scholar of poetry, was at UCLA during the Winter Quarter, because Román had the opportunity work with him. Román is now thinking about his dissertation, the theme of which would be the Encantamiento y desencanto en la poesia latinoamericana con el lenguaje de la publicidad . He wants to look at the historical Avant-Garde of the 10s, 20s, and 30s, the Mexican “estridentistas,” commercial advertising, the poets’ celebratory attitude toward advertising, explore images, especially photographs, and study the dialogue between the word and the image in Latin American poetry. He would also like to analyze books as objects, mutant books and study poets who are painters, poets who are sculptors and others who combine different realms of art. Eventually, his goal is to work at a major university and teach poetry of the 20th Century on both continents, to write books about words and images from the classic age to the internet in the USA. Román will continue to write poetry and hopes to translate into Spanish some of the US poets’ greatest works. About his family: Román has two sisters; one studied gastronomy and is now a chef, the other studied philosophy and psychology and currently practices music therapy and working in jails and with abandoned children. Although they aren’t prolific readers, Román’s parents are very open to the life of the mind. His father studied electrical engineering and his mother is a nurse. At UCLA Román finds stimulating multiculturalism; he can’t think of a better place to write and study poetry, especially poetry that combines so many aspects of life on earth.


Faculty News Makela Brizuela Makela Brizuela was awarded the Academic Advancement Program’s Faculty Recognition Award in acknowledgment of her commitment to teaching and contributions to the education of Academic Advancement Program Students.

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Verónica Cortínez Professor Verónica Cortínez lectured on the history of Chilean literature for the Tufts University Exchange Program at the Universidad de Chile on July 18, 2007. Along with several filmmakers, she participated in a panel on “El manifiesto de los cineastas de la Unidad Popular y el cine latinoamericano,” in the XI Festival Internacional de Cine de Valparaíso, Chile, August 21, 2007. As part of the series “ALOUD at Central Library,” Prof. Cortínez had a conversation with Antonio Skármeta at the Los Angeles Public Library on March 5, 2008. She introduced Diamela Eltit for the “Diplomado de Literatura Latinoamericana del Siglo XXI,” Universidad de Guadalajara en Los Angeles, March 10, 2008. Prof. Cortínez was the faculty host of the trip “Treasures of South America,” organized by UCLA Alumni Travel, where she gave three lectures: “The Literary Foundation of Buenos Aires” (Buenos Aires, March 22, 2008); “Keys to a Comparative History of Argentina and Chile”

John Dagenais John Dagenais participated in a symposium on Medieval Iberia held at Stanford University on October 10, 2007, delivering a paper entitled “ ‘Frare ancelm turmeda en altra manera apellat abdalla’: Escaping Literary History.” Professor Dagenais was especially proud to have been asked to participate in this symposium as it was given in honor of an alumnus of the Department of Spanish & Portuguese, Vincent Barletta, who joined the faculty of the Department of Spanish & Portuguese at Stanford University as Associate Professor this year. As the program announcement says: “The arrival of Vincent Barletta to the department has strengthened the Stanford medieval group by adding to its ranks one of the finest medievalists working on the Iberian Peninsula.” On March 7-9, 2008, Professor Dagenais served as “Master of Ceremonies” for the 11th Annual “Gathering of Pilgrims” of the association of American Pilgrims on the Camino. The “Gathering” was held at the Old Mission in Santa Barbara and brought together pilgrims, scholars and others interested in world pilgrimages for three days of presentations, workshops and lectures. Professor Dagenais also organized and chaired a panel at the annual meeting of the Medieval Academy of America, held in Vancouver, April 3-5, 2008, entitled “Medieval Iberia After 9/11.” Participants included Catherine Brown (Michigan), Simon Doubleday (Hofstra) and Michelle Hamilton (UC-Irvine). Finally, Professor Dagenais’s 4-year term as Chair of the Department of Spanish Portuguese ended on June 30, 2008. He is looking forward to returning to “normal” life and to his research.

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Michelle Clayton Professor Michelle Clayton has just finished her first book, Body Language: César Vallejo and the Reach of Poetry, which connects the Peruvian poet’s writings to broader European and American debates over aesthetics and cultural politics in the avant-garde period. An article from the book, “Lyric Matters,” appeared in the Revista de Estudios Hispánicos XLII: 1 (January 2008); the book itself is currently under review at a major press. She presented a paper from her next book project, “Moving Media,” at the Latin American Studies Association conference in Montreal in September 2007; in November 2007 she participated in a roundtable on “Transnational Modernisms: Sites and Methodologies,” at the Modernist Studies Association conference in Long Beach. She was recently elected to a five-year position on the MLA Division Executive Committee for twentieth-century Latin American literature. In 2008-09 she will be a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute in Cambridge, working on her second book project, Moving Bodies of the Avant-Gardes.

(Bariloche, March 25, 2008); “A Literary Map of Chile” (Puerto Varas, March 27, 2008). She participated in a round table discussion with Alberto Fuguet in the IX Latin American Film Festival, University of California, Irvine, on April 18, 2008. Prof. Cortínez delivered the keynote speech “¿Se habla español?: The Challenge of the Hispanic Wor(l)d” at this year’s Lifto Amundson Phi Beta Kappa Lecture at the University of South Dakota, April 24, 2008. Prof. Cortínez served as a member of the Academic Senate Teaching Committee. She expects to finish her book on Chilean film later this year.

Juliet Falce-Robinson Dr. Juliet Falce-Robinson gave a lecture entitled "Migrating to Moodle: Unraveling the Mysteries of Language Teaching and Technology" on March 20, 2008 at the CALICO with IALLT 2008 Conference at the University of San Francisco. Travel was funded by the Noncontinued on pg. 16


continued from pg. 15

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Senate Faculty Professional Development Award that she received.

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Randal Johnson Randal Johnson’s book Manoel de Oliveira was published by the University of Illinois Press in mid-2007. It forms part of the Contemporary Film Directors series, edited by James Naramore. Additional publications include “Frei Luís de Sousa,” which appeared in O Cinema Português através dos seus Filmes, a volume edited by Carolin Overhoff Ferreira and published by Campo das Letras in Porto, and “The Brazilian Retomada and Global Hollywood,” which is included in History and Society: Argentinian and Brazilian Cinema since the 1980s, edited by Gastón Lillo and Walter Moser and published in Ottawa by Legas Publishing. He also edited the essay section of The Talking Pictures of Manoel de Oliveira, the exhibition catalog of UCLA Film and Television Archive’s recent retrospective of the films of Oliveira. The catalog includes his essay, “Manoel de Oliveira’s Cinematic Deontology.” Professor Johnson has given a number of lectures in the U.S. and abroad: "Manoel de Oliveira e a Ética da Representação," Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Brazil, 19 September 2007; “Manoel de Oliveira,” UCLA, 11 October 2007; "Satin Slippers, Vain Glories, and Talking Pictures: Manoel de Oliveira and Questions of Empire," The Ohio State University, 9 November 2007; “Cinema Novo, Politics, and Literature,” University of Texas, Austin, 1 April 2008; “In Search of Passports and other Signs of Identity,” conference on Voyages of (Self) Discovery in Brazilian Cinema, Oxford, England, 2 May 2008; and “The Global Dilemma of Brazilian Cinema,” University of Utrecht, The Netherlands, 7 May 2008. Professor Johnson and Paulo de Medeiros of the University of Utrecht have received funding from the UC Humanities Research Institute's University of CaliforniaUniversity of Utrecht Program to develop a collaborative research project on "Film and Politics during the 'Estado Novo' Regimes in Brazil and Portugal." Finally, Professor Johnson, who continues to serve as Director of the UCLA Latin American Institute, has been elected Vice President (and thus Presidentelect) of the Brazilian Studies Association, an international professional organization with more than 500 members. He also serves on the Board of Advisors of the Los Angeles Brazilian Film Festival (LABFF). Anna More Professor Anna More holds a University of

California President’s Research Fellowship and is finishing her book manuscript on the political language of Baroque aesthetics in 17th-century Mexico. An article entitled “Cosmopolitanism and Scientific Reason in New Spain: Sigüenza y Góngora and the Dispute over the 1680 Comet” is forthcoming in an anthology on science in the Iberian empires to be published by Stanford University Press in November. She has recently given two invited lectures in Brazil at the Universidade Nacional de Brasília (UnB) and at the Universidade Estadual de Campinas (Unicamp), both on the Baroque rhetoric of racism in Iberian America. During the past year she also gave papers at the following conferences: Colonial American Studies Organization (CASO) in Quito, Ecuador in June 2007; Latin American Studies Association (LASA) in Montreal in September 2007; Modern Language Association (MLA) in Chicago in December 2007. C. Brian Morris Professor C. Brian Morris’ most recent publications include “Las cartas y ‘coplas’ de Jorge Guillén,” Lectura y Signo, 2 (2007): 291-302; “Rafael Alberti y el peso del ayer,” Mester, XXXVI (2007): 146-159; “In memoriam” {Translation of two sonnets by Francisco de Quevedo: “Todo tras sí lo lleva el año breve” and “¡Cómo de entre mis manos te resbalas!”], Mester, XXXVI (2007): 233. “Olas en el alma, espinas en el cuerpo: la vía dolorosa de Pedro García Cabrera,” in Actas del Congreso Internacional Pedro García Cabrera (La Gomera, 2005), ed. Belén Castro Morales. La Laguna: Universidad de La Laguna, 2007, vol. I, pp. 21-47. The Fundación Pedro García Cabrera invited Professor C. Brian Morris to present the Actas del Congreso Internacional Pedro García Cabrera, published by the Universidad de La Laguna, the Cabildo de La Gomera, and the Fundación. On April 3, 2008 he gave a lecture entitled “La paloma mensajera de Pedro García Cabrera.” Under the title “Siempre incomoda la periferia.” “Brian Morris Profesor de la Universidad de California,” an interview with him appeared in La Opinión de Tenerife. Revista Semanal de Ciencia y Cultura, no. 383 (April 12, 2008). Denise Pacheco Denise Pacheco came from Brazil to join the UCLA Spanish and Portuguese Department. Since Fall 2006 she has been teaching Portuguese Language and Culture, Composition and Style, Brazil Issues and Challenges and Intensive Portuguese for undergraduate and graduate students. As a researcher, she created two new courses: Language and Culture of Advertising


Texts and Business Portuguese, wrote and presented papers at conferences in USA (UCLA, UCSB, University of Massachusetts, University of Cincinnati), in Uruguay (Facultad de Humanidades Y Ciencias de la Educación), and in Brazil (State University of Rio de Janeiro, Catholic Pontifícia University, Federal University of São Carlos, and Federal Fluminense University): Portuguese out of the Shadow of Spanish: Prophecy or Utopia?; Portuguese Language and Culture in USA: The Ups and Downs of a Four Years Old Journey; Português Língua Não Materna e o Multiletramento: Perspectivas em Política Lingüística, Formação de Docentes e Produção de Materiais Didáticos; Português Língua Não Materna Como Capital Lingüístico em Contexto de Multilingüismo e Multiculturalismo: Reflexões Sobre Política Lingüística; Portuguese for Foreigners: An Approach on Cultural Teaching. In 2007 she wrote Ensino de Português para Estrangeiros: Dimensão Histórica, one of the chapters of the book Lingüística: Caminhos e Descaminhos em Perspectiva, edited by Luis Carlos Travaglia and published by University of Uberlandia Press, Brazil. During her two years at UCLA she was the recipient of two awards: the UCLA Faculty and Diversity Award in 2007 and the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese Award in 2008. Professor Pacheco is member of the Brazilian Studies Association (BRASA) and presented her paper Ensino de Línguas Estrangeiras e os Materiais Didáticos Face os Five C’s at the IX BRASA Conference at Tulane University in 2008. She is also a member of the International Society of Portuguese Foreign Language and from Fall 2008 on, she will be teaching Portuguese in China, where she has just accepted a position as a Portuguese Professor of the Department of Portuguese of the University of Macau.

John Skirius Professor John Skirius was appointed to the Consejo Editorial of the Revista de Literatura Mexicana Contemporánea. He also published the article “Labyrinth of Identities: The Mexican American Saga of Un Siglo tras de mi By Elroy Urroz” Pegaso, (Fall 2007): pp. 88-98.

Susan Plann Professor Susan Plann’s book The Spanish National Deaf School: Portraits from the 19th Century was published by Gallaudet University Press in November 2007. She also published an article: "'Bad Things': Child Abuse and the Nineteenth Century Spanish National School for the Deaf and Blind", in Sign Language Studies 8:2, winter 2007, pp. 181-210.

YunSook Kim Estrategia identificadora usada por el General Vicente Riva Palacio en Monja y casada y Martín Garatuza Diss. Director: John Skirius

Degrees in 2007-08 MA

Jamie Fudacz Pedro Gonzalez Michelle Lippert Maria Jesus Lucas Perez

PhD

Jasmina Arsova* Writing Herself Out of Silence and Solitude: The Poetic Self-Portraits of Gloria Fuertes Diss. Director: Brian Morris

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graduate news

Sarah Harris* Voices Form a Wound: Recovery from Trauma in Spanish Narratives of Memory since 1966 Diss. Director: Maite Zubiaurre

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Eli Carter Sarah Bederman Edward Chauca Vanessa Fernandez

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Sylvia Sherno Dr. Sylvia Sherno attended the Mid-American Conference on Hispanic Literature at the University of Wisconsin, Madison in October and presented a paper entitled “Maria Victoria Atencia and the Art of Apostrophe.”

Graduate Student News

* Faculty Fellow Argelia Andrade Argelia Andrade was awarded the Institute of American Cultures Predoctoral Fellowship for 20082009. Her paper titled "From Puppet to Sanctuaries of the Heart: Chicana discourse practices in the novels by Margarita Cota-Cárdenas" was accepted at the VI International Conference on Chicano Literature in continued on pg. 18


continued from pg. 17 Alicante, Spain. The paper was co-authored with Carolyn Gonzalez and Valeria Valencia. She also received a Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship, honorable mention.

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Jasmina Arsova Jasmina Arsova will have her article "Gloria Fuertes: Self-Portraits of a Fertile Spinster" published in the upcoming volume: In Her Words: Critical Studies on Gloria Fuertes. Ed. Margaret H. Persin. Lewisburg: Bucknell UP, 2008. 42-80.

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Bethany Beyer Bethany Beyer presented "Motivos de son: Musicalized Poems and Mestizaje" at the International American Studies Association Third World Congress on 20-23 September 2007 at the Faculty of Letters, University of Lisbon. She also received a FLAS Fellowship for 2008-2009. Edward M. Chauca Edward M. Chauca has received the Lenart Travel Fellowship 2008-2009 to research on recent Andean film and testimony in Peru. He presented “La voz y la memoria no se subordinan: un análisis de Basura” at (Des)articulaciones in/with Latin American and Caribbean Cultural Processes at the University of Pittsburgh, October 6, 2007. Vanessa Fernandez Vanessa Fernandez presented “Viajes poéticos: La presencia de la tecnología en '5 metros de poemas' y en '20 poemas para ser leídos en un tranvía'” at the UCLA Spanish & Portuguese Graduate Student Conference on May 2, 2008. Goretti González Goretti González presented "Mateo Alemán's Guzmán de Alfarache: Pícaros, Performance, and the Sartorial Discourse” at The Renaissance Society of America, Annual Meeting, Chicago, Illinois, April, 2008. Yeon Mi Lee Yeon Mi Lee presented “La voz de la transgresión en la cuentística de Roberto Arlt” at the 11th Annual Symposium on Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian Literatures, Cultures, and Linguistics at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio on April 18-19, 2008. Ronaldo Nibbe Ronaldo Nibbe moderated a panel on Mel Gib-

son's movie "Apocalypto" in August 2007 at the Congreso de Estudios Mayas in Guatemala, hosted by the Universidad Rafael Landívar. In October 2007, he also presented a paper at the First Congress on Central American Culture, hosted by the Universidad José Simeón Cañas in San Salvador. The paper was a comparison/contrast of two short stories, one by the Guatemalan writer Luis de Lión and the other by Mexican writer Juan Rulfo. In April 2008, he presented a paper at the Central American Literature Congress in Nicoya, Costa Rica, discussing the importance of and honoring the memory of Roberto Castillo, one of Honduras's best-known novelista/cuentistas, who died in January of this year. He has also been invited to present a paper at the Feria Internacional del Libro in Guatemala City in July 2008, also in honor of Roberto Castillo's life and work. This year, Nibbe was a consulting editor on the English translation of Humberto Ak'abal's book of poems, "El Animalero/A Gathering of Animals" (Guatemala: Editorial Piedra Santa, 2008). Carolina Sitnisky Carolina Sitnisky received the Distinguished Teaching Assistant Dissertation Year Fellowship for the 2007-8 academic year. On October 19, 2007 Carolina presented "Una lectura de Mario Vargas Llosa: El proceso creativo en El hablador y El paraíso en la otra esquina" at the VII Coloquio Literario de la Feria Internacional del Libro de Monterrey: Mario Vargas Llosa. The journal Archipiélago (58:16) published her review: "¿Alfaro vive? Una lectura de Crónicas del Breve Reino, de Santiago Páez." On May 16-17, 2008 Carolina also participated in the workshop "Connecting Your Classroom to the Heritage Language Community" organized by the National Heritage Language Resource Center. Ariel Tumbaga Ariel Tumbaga presented "Re-territorializing Sonora: Indigenous Topographies en Cajeme: novela de indios" at the 14th Annual Mexican Conference, UC Irvine, on April 10-12. He presented "New Challenges for the New Milenio" on May 22, 2008 in Alicante (Spain) at the VI Congreso Internacional de Literatura Chicana Ariel has also been invited to present "De regreso al Yaqui: Representations of Yaquis in Recent Chicana/o Literature" at the Sixth International Chicano Literature Conference, in the Universidad de Alcala, Alicante, España: May 22-24. This presentation focuses on the long held debate that Chicana/o scholars have had regarding Aztlan, as a cultural nationalist mythol-


ogy, and the usages of Yaqui history and culture by Chicana/o writers, as one of the competing metaphors representing the Chicana/o experience. On May 27, 2008 Ariel passed his Oral Exams to advance to PhD candidacy. Rachel VanWieren Rachel VanWieren presented a conference paper titled “La amenaza del femicidio: Mujeres selk’nam e inmigrantes fueguinos en El guanaco blanco (1980) de Francisco Coloane y El corazón a contraluz (1996) de Patricio Manns” on Jan. 9, 2008 at the IX Jornadas de Estudiantes de Postgrado en Humanidades, Artes, Ciencias Social y Educación at the University of Chile in Santiago, Chile. She also presented a conference paper titled “El fracaso del viaje como escape de la modernidad en La Reina de Rapa Nui (1914) de Pedro Prado” at the UCLA Department of Spanish and Portuguese Graduate Student Conference on May 2, 2008.

Gonzalo Navajas Gonzalo Navajas published La utopía en las narrativas contemporáneas (Novela/Cine/Arquitetura), Prensas de la Universidad de Zaragoza. It was presented in Spain in June. He also taught seminars at the University of Lubljana, Slovenia, and Brigham Young University. Professor Navajas also gave the Inaugural Lecture at the International Congress on Alatriste at the Universidad de Murcia, Spain and invited lectures at Universität Düsseldorf, Universität of Bonn, and the University of Siegen in Germany. He was appointed Editorial Board Member of La Tabla Redonda (University of Vigo, Spain). Joe Ricapito Joe Ricapito (Ph.D., UCLA, 1966) published a book, "Consciousness and Truth in Don Quijote and Connected Essays," in December 2007 with Juan de la Cuesta Hispanic Monograph Series. He also published a novel, "Fratelli," with AuthorHouse of Bloomington, Indiana, plus several articles on various Golden Age subjects. ALUMNI continued on pg. 22

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alumni news

Gloria Gálvez-Carlisle Dr. Gloria Gálvez-Carlisle has recently been invited (May 2008) by the AP College Board to serve on the new “Advanced Placement Spanish Literature Curriculum Development and Assessment Committee (CDAC).” This new AP committee will be responsible for implementing the results of the Course and Exam Review project for AP Spanish Literature, “with the goal of launching a redesigned course in Fall 2011 and a redesigned AP exam in May 2012.” Her article "Rosario Ferré y Ana Lydia Vega: conflictos, perspectivas y estrategias narrativas en Maldito Amor y Vírgenes y Mártires" is forthcoming in Voces del Caribe and her review of Mario Santí’s monograph Ciphers of History: Latin American Readings for a Cultural Age will appear in Hispania. She also read a paper entitled “Nostalgia ecológica: una intrépida narradora-pintora viajera y su misión” at the Congreso de la Asociación Internacional de Hispanistas (La Sorbonne-Paris, July, 2007) and “Inés del alma mía de Isabel Allende: viaje y transgresión en una época de desafíos” at the Annual Conference of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portu-

Ann K. Hills Ann K. Hills (Ph.D.) just completed her 7th year with the University of La Verne, where she is an Associate Professor of Spanish and Chair of the Department of Modern Languages. This May, she was awarded tenure and granted a sabbatical for Spring 2009. Prof. Hills was also surprised and thrilled to receive the university's 2008 Excellence in Teaching Award, which was presented to her at the Faculty and Staff Recognition Ceremony on May 9th. This award is presented to faculty members who have been nominated by peers, students and administrators for their skill, knowledge, and love of teaching and who have been selected by a committee of past recipients.

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Alumni News

Librada Hernández Dr. Librada Hernández, member of the Alumni & Friends of the Spanish Dept. Committee, was on sabbatical last semester. She worked on applying technology to language teaching and spent time in Buenos Aires.

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Gabriela Venegas Gabriela Venegas received the Del Amo Fellowship for 2007-2008.

guese (San Diego, CA August 2007). In July 2008 she will give an invited lecture and chair a session at the AATSP 90th Annual Conference (San José, Costa Rica). Dr. Gálvez-Carlisle continues serving as a Book Reviewer of Hispania, as an AP Reader in Literature for the Educational Testing Services (ETS) and as invited advisor on Spanish Language and Literature curriculum in British Columbia, Canada.


Open Letter to the Chair

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Dear Prof. Dagenais;

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Thank you for your letter of December 5, 2007. As a graduate of your department (BA in 1954 and MA in 1956) I appreciate being kept in the loop. For some years I have thought about making a gift to the department to honor one professor among the many fine professors who taught there in the long ago 1950s. Although they are probably all but forgotten—except by those of us who studied with them—we had an extraordinary assembly of professors during that decade. I entered UCLA in the fall of 1950, less than a dozen years after the end of the Spanish Civil War. Universities in the Americas were opening their doors— some reluctantly—to the professors who had left Spain to live and teach in exile. These newcomers changed not just our studies but also the atmosphere, adding vibrancy to Spanish departments around the hemisphere. We, the students, did not know the extent of the human drama they had lived through, but we got a wider view of their world through the literature they selected for us to study. Of course not every hispanista was español. Our chairman during most of my years at UCLA was Prof. John A. Crow. He had befriended Garcia Lorca during his years at Columbia University, and he had lived in the Residencia de Estudiantes in Madrid, during the second republic, while he did the research for his PhD (he had some great stories about the chaotic lack of organization in the National Library). He knew Spain not just intellectually; he had “absorbed” it through living there—a bit like Gerald Brennan did. His 1963 book, Spain: the Root and the Flower: An Interpretation of Spain and the Spanish People (insightfully updated in 1985) is still the one I recommend to friends puzzled by the enigma of Spain. I owe Dr. Crow two special “thanks.” First, he nominated me for Phi Beta Kappa. Second, he offered me a Teaching Assistantship when I got my BA in June 1954. I was born in October 1934, so I was less than 20 at graduation, and nobody was about to give me—a woman who was not yet officially an adult—a job. I have always admired his courage in hiring me. He did know both my language capabilities and my work because I had not only been a student in the department for four years, but I had also worked as their substitute secretary during the summer, done re-

search for various professors and typed many an article for them. Still, it was gutsy of him to let me walk into a classroom as an instructor beginning a month before my 20th birthday! For me that job began a life-long love of teaching. Among the professors I typed articles for during my summer vacations were Manuel Pedro González— normally on José Martí, but also on the gaucho or Mexican novel—and William E. Bull—on some aspect of linguistics or Spanish grammar. During those years Dr. Bull was collecting thousands of quotations from “living” Spanish. After analyzing their structures, he was developing new grammatical rules on how Spanish actually functioned. He “road-tested” the new rules on us. We, the Spanish majors of the early 50s, were Dr. Bull’s guinea pigs. Three of my fellow graduate student TAs stand out in my memory: Ivan Schulman (later at the University of Illinois), who was working on Martí with Dr. González; Sabine Ulibarrí (later at the University of New Mexico), whose bilingual stories of his home “range” of Tierra Amarilla” later fascinated my students; and José Elgorriaga (later at Cal State Fresno), whose reminiscences of Basque sheepherders—himself included— fascinated us. The professor for whom I did the most work was Manuel Olguín—an extraordinary teacher, but an unsung hero in the department. In the classroom he had the patience of Socrates, questioning us until we somehow stumbled upon the concept he wanted us to discover in our readings. He once told me that he learned more from his students than they did from him. At the time I misunderstood his comment. I thought it arose from his modesty. Only years later, when my own students would throw unexpected questions at me did I realize what he was trying to tell me. I discovered that I knew the answers to their questions, but that I would never have put the material together in my mind if they hadn’t been questioning me. When I researched current bibliography on aesthetics for his submission to the Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, he submitted my name with the material, instead of his own (see the enclosed title page of the Jan-Dec 1956 edition). When I was a reader for several of his classes, I discovered that his students—whom I knew as just ordinary students in other classes—wrote extraordinary papers for him. I request that my very modest gift be used to help support a student who is traveling to do research. I also request that it honor the memory of Dr. Manuel Olguín, whose gifts as a dedicated teacher are with me still, more than fifty years after his untimely death.


Sincerely,

SYMPOSIUM continued from pg. 11 Máximo Langer (Latin American Institute/Law School) and Central American Human Rights Activist Rossana Pérez, Hernán Vidal (University of Minnesota) shared his “Human Rights and Memories During Governments of Redemocratization: Chile (1990-2008)”, Alicia Kozameh, writer and former political prisoner, reflected on “Escritura, militancia, experiencia y memoria”) and Juan Martín Aiub Ronco explained the unswerving commitment to justice endorsed by his organization in, “HIJOS: Nacimos en su lucha. Viven en la nuestra (No olvidamos, no perdonamos, no nos reconciliamos)”. The section was followed by a round table joined by Graciela Huinao,

My deepest gratitude to David Arriaza (Latin American Institute), to Deputy Consul of the Argentine Republic Fernando Brun, Condor Media, Consul General of the Argentine Republic Andrea Celoria, Prof. Verónica Cortínez, Prof. John Dagenais (Department of Spanish and Portuguese), Bridget Dulong (Fowler Museum), Mary Hoang (Department of Spanish and Portuguese), Prof. Randal Johnson (Latin American Institute), Consul General and Ambassador of the Argentine Republic Jorge T. Lapsenson, Koch Lorber Films, LP, Telemundo – Channel 52 –Los Angeles Anchor Rubén Luengas, Peter Marai, Prof. Jorge Ruffinelli (Stanford University), Adriana Ruiz, Dacia Serrano, Oriel María Siu (Department of Spanish and Portuguese), UCLA Campus Program Committee and to Grand Casino Café and Bakery, Culver City, for its delicious donation.

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Vivienne C. Sinclair Lt. Col., USAF, Retired

My sincere gratitude to the co-sponsoring institutions: UCLA Department of Spanish and Portuguese, USPA (Undergraduate Spanish and Portuguese Association), Latin American Institute, Consulate General of the Argentine Republic and EATIP – Argentine Team of Psychosocial Work and Research. The extraordinary collaboration among them made this symposium a unique experience. I would like to thank the priceless dedication and creativity of its organizing team members, Armando Cerpa, Manuel Cuellar, Adriana García, Heidy Lozano, Moira Nardi, Alexis Ratón and Nivardo Valenzuela. Armando, Manuel and Moira have written the following: “There is no doubt that this symposium affected each of us in an unexpected and personal way. Looking back on those two days, we can see the 320 persons filling up the Fowler Auditorium at the screening of Cautiva, and we can hear the entire crowd clapping as the symposium drew to an end. It was then that we realized the complexity of the activities involved: coordinating the logistics, requesting funding, advertising the event, designing posters and programs, framing the recordatorios, etc.. We are left with the gratifying feeling that the symposium fostered the “collectivization of pain” - in Aiub Ronco’ s words–, which triggered in everyone’s mind empathy with the thousands of victims who suffered in the Southern Cone. All in all, both the formal and the personal interaction with the participants as well as the work in itself enriched us on many levels. We have faith that the audience felt the impact of this event and will not let the sufferings, and testimonies disappear into oblivion. The symposium left a lasting mark on our lives, and we shall never forget it.”

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I appreciate your indulgence in reading this long letter.

Mapuche Human Rights Activist and filmaker Gastón Biraben.

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Although my signature, which includes abbreviations for the words “Lieutenant Colonel, US Air Force, Retired,” gives you no idea if I ever used my education, be assured that I did. During the 21 years I served on active duty in the US Air Force (1957-1978), I spent one tour (1971-1974) as an Assistant Professor of Spanish at the US Air Force Academy (I would have spent more years there, but the Academy was not ready until 1971 to accept a woman on the staff). I began visiting Spain in 1960, returning whenever I could. In 1962-1963, I served a rotation tour with an F-104 fighter aircraft squadron stationed at Moron Air Base, southeast of Sevilla. I was the only Spanish-speaking officer in our USAF squadron, and the pilots in our “sister” squadron, on the Spanish Air Force side of the base, spoke no English. I earned my keep on that tour! After retiring from the Air Force, I taught Spanish to adults for 14 years, building my own four-year program for an adult school in the Berkeley, California area. That program included more than just language studies. Literature, music, art, and travel experiences were always incorporated. Now, my husband and I have retired again. He is a FinnishCanadian professor of political science. We live 8 ½ months a year in Helsinki, Finland, and 3 ½ months a year in Málaga province, in Andalucia.


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SOBEK continued from pg. 7 magazines and university bulletins the name of this Maria Herrera-Sobek. Shirley Arora told me one day that she was our ex-student and gave me a complete evaluation of the important research and books of Maria Herrera in the area of the folklore of Southern California and Chicano/Chicana literature. I went to the library looking for Herrera-Sobek’s books. Then, perusing the pages of her studies and her anthologies, I realized that she was a different kind of folklorist. Far from being an outsider, she, full of Native-American and Mexican blood, was part of the “folk” she studied, such an essential part that in some moment she is talking about herself, her family, her personal experiences, when referring to any specific group. Far from being a reactionary in search of a divine soul, she is searching for the painful reality hidden under the folkloric expression. HerreraSobek blends in a very convincing way literature, arts, popular life, and mythology with social and political activism. A good example of her talents was the lecture she gave us: the old artistic and literary image of the barbed wire is a universal symbol of hate and discrimination but here, in California, is also a real fence. It is a daily painful reminder of the Hispanic experience, of the dramatic discovery of the Norte as a land of dreams and freedom for some people and of nightmares and prison for others. SANCHEZ continued from pg. 6 stories, He Walked In and Sat Down and Other Stories, was published in 2001. Professor Sánchez writes direct, honest, socially relevant criticism. Her Matthews Lecture offered a history of Chicano/a-Latino/a literature from colonial United States to the present, from early Californio testimonios and novels to recent Puerto Rican literature in New York. This is also the history of dispossession and enclosure, according to Sánchez, the separation of Native American peoples from their lands to urban renewal in Manhattan and freeways running through East Los Angeles. Writers have openly referred to this history of dispossession and its mark upon individual identity and cultural formation. A lively discussion followed the lecture which continued into the reception.

ALUMNI continued from pg. 19 MARTIN C. TAYLOR In April 2008, Pedro Pablo Zegers, Director of the Archivo del Escritor, of the Biblioteca Nacional de Chile invited Martin C. Taylor (Ph.D., UCLA, Hispanic Languages & Literatures) to Chile to present a talk in the Salón Ercilla as part of the Library's Homenaje a Gabriela Mistral. Dr. Taylor, author of La sensibilidad religiosa de Gabriela Mistral, wrote two articles for the occasion: "La trayectoria espiritual de Gabriela Mistral a la luz de 60 escritores," for the Revista Cultural Patrimonial, and "Una dedicatoria a Gabriela Mistral y a nosotros, los amigos de ella," for the Revista Mapocho. Beatrice Tseng Beatrice Tseng (BA 88, MA 91) continues to teach Spanish at Irvine Valley College. During her sabbatical leave in fall 2007, she created a series of Jeopardy games that match the content of the textbook Dos mundos. These games were presented at the AATSP Spring meeting in Santa Monica College and can be viewed at http://faculty.ivc.edu/btseng/jeopardy.htm. This spring she completed a graduate program on “ELearning and Online Teaching” from the University of Wisconsin at Stout. Linda M. Willem Linda M. Willem (Ph.D. 1988) is currently serving a five-year term as the Secretary-Treasurer of the Asociación Internacional de Galdosistas. Over the past year she has presented papers at the AIH conference in Paris (on Blasco Ibáñez’s Arroz y Tartana), the MLA in Chicago (on Galdós’s Fortunata y Jacinta), and the Kentucky Foreign Language Conference (on Pardo Bazán’s short stories), as well as lecturing at Pomona College (on Saura’s Deprisa, deprisa) and the University of Kansas (on Clarín’s La Regenta). In the fall she will lead her fourth group of students on the semester-long study abroad program in Alcalá de Henares, Spain that she founded for Butler University, after which she will chair a session on Galdós and Pardo Bazán at the MLA in San Francisco.

BELLI continued from pg. 6 books. Waslala: Memorial del futuro (2006) is a utopian/distopian novel that addresses the urgent issues of globalization, environmental destruction and the consequent fate of small, impoverished nations. Her recent historical novel El pergamino de la seducción [The Scroll of seduction] (2006), inspired by Spain’s Queen Juana de CastillaJuana la loca- became an instant best seller in Spain. The evening came to a close with a marvelous reception in her honor arranged by Dacia Serrano and Gioconda Belli talking to students and autographing copies of her books.



Spring 2008 Newsletter