The Department of Spanish and Portuguese Studies at the University of Minnesota has a strong tradition of fostering socio-historical perspectives in the study of culture. We emphasize global Hispanic and Lusophone studies while being attentive to the legacy of colonialisms that continue to inform regional and national histories as well as the multidimensional relationships between language and culture.
Our faculty are committed to comparative and interdisciplinary studies and they engage a variety of contemporary theoretical approaches with strengths in postcolonial theory, feminisms, critical race theory, queer theory, human rights, and theories of globalization.
The Hispanic Linguistics program emphasizes the study of language in its contexts with a focus on interdisciplinary approaches to language contact, phonology, pragmatics, second language acquisition, sociolinguistics, and syntax.
Our program offers graduate students the chance to develop research projects by working closely with faculty and by participating in departmental workshops with both faculty and fellow graduate students. Our students typically go on to be leaders in the field in tenure track positions at research institutions and at distinguished liberal arts colleges around the country. Please visit our Ph.D. Graduates web page for a list of former PhDs in Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Minnesota.
Please visit our Applying page for more information.
APPLICATION DEADLINE: DECEMEBER 15
We offer Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees with concentration in three areas:
The close integration of these three areas of literature and culture—Spanish Peninsular, Latin American, and Lusophone literature and cultures—makes this department unique in the United States.
Graduate students may also take courses in related departments and programs, among them:
Our department sponsors several renowned publications such as Hispanic Issues and Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics. Faculty organize major international conferences and symposia, some on a regular basis such as the State of Ibero-American Studies Theater.
The library collection at the University of Minnesota, one of the largest in the nation, provides strong research support. Of particular interest is the prestigious James Ford Bell Library's collection of rare books, maps, and manuscripts documenting the overseas expansion of early modern Europe. The Tretter GLBT collection is one of the nation's largest, and is international in scope, including substantial holdings in Spanish and Portuguese.
Our department has strong institutional ties with important research communities across campus such as:
All graduate students accepted into the program are eligible for support in the form of a nine-month graduate instructorship which includes:
Incoming and continuing students may be nominated by the department for University-wide fellowships available at the University of Minnesota.
Our Department has institutional ties with important departments, programs and centers across campus, among them:
Professor Ana Paula Ferreira was named the Samuel Russell Chair in the Humanities in the College of Liberal Arts for a three-year period, beginning on July 1, 2014. The Samuel Russell Chair is intended to promote outstanding teaching and scholarship in the humanities. Professor Ferreira is currently working on two book projects. The first, entitled Women Writing the African Empire in Twentieth Century Portugal, "traces the emergence, development and subsequent naturalization of the cultural phenomenon called 'woman writer' in connection to the onset, the late consolidation of and the aftermath of Portuguese colonialism in Africa." The second book, Heretically Speaking: 'Race' and the Postcolonial in Portuguese, focuses on "the thematics of 'race' and the languages of colonial racisms at different points in time, from the late nineteenth century, through the mid-twentieth century, to the late twentieth and early twentieth-first centuries. It calls into question the accepted simplistic interpretation of the ideas of Brazilian sociologist Gilberto Freyre used by Salazar's regime to continue holding on to colonies in Africa during the period of decolonization and after Unesco's Declaration on Race." See Professor Ferreira's research narrative for a more complete description of her research trajectory. Ferreira Research Narrative-abridged.pdf
Molly Tun was awarded the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellowship (IDF) from the Graduate School for the 2014-2015 academic year. Under the direction of Dr. Luis Ramos-Garcia, Molly's dissertation entitled "Articulations of Colonial Counting: the Discursive Conquest of Numbers in Early Modern Peru" is interdisciplinary both in scope and methodology. The way this project brings together mathematics and literature facilitates collaboration across the disciplines; the Center for Early Modern History (CEMH) recommended the project to the Graduate School and has offered Molly a residency in which she can actively participate in the intellectual life of this center. Her research advocates for the inclusion of minority discourses in the field of Hispanic colonial literature in a number of ways: by considering the relation between math and culture (ethnomathematics), by analyzing the virtually unexplored colonial accounting manuals, and by exposing indigenous accounts and forms of knowledge. An analysis of the origins of transatlantic cultural encounter and enumeration written from an interdisciplinary, minority, Andean, Latin-American perspective has the potential to re-locate indigenous thought within the unilateral colonial power structures, thus changing the way in which indigenous agency is recognized and historicized(Continue Reading)
Friday, March 7th
113 Folwell Hall
3:30 to 5:00pm
Two graduate students in Hispanic Literatures and Cultures, Catalina Ahumada and Xiaoxi Zhang, will give presentations on their research this Friday. Please join us!(Continue Reading)
Two Ph.D. graduate students in Hispanic Literatures and Cultures, Carla Manzoni and Ross Sandell, will give presentations on their research this Friday. Please join us!(Continue Reading)