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"Department of Spanish and Portuguese"

Hortensia R. Morell
448 Anderson Hall
hortensia.morell@temple.edu

Hortensia MorellPhD University of Wisconsin, Madison
Professor of Spanish


Research Interests

My scholarship on 20th and 21st century contemporary Spanish American writers of the Caribbean and the Southern Cone is guided by an interest in transtextual and transmedial studies. This is most obvious in my two monographs on José Donoso-- Composición expresionista en El lugar sin límites de José Donoso (1986) and José Donoso y el surrealismo: Tres novelitas burguesas (1990)--, and in my article "Fin de etapa: Los peligros liminares del arte." My interest in music motivated articles on the narrative of Alejo Carpentier, José Donoso, Mayra Montero, Mayra Santos Febres, and Griselda Gambaro. I have also explored the psychoanalytic dimensions of the narrative of Julio Cortázar and José Donoso, the gender/genre bending exercises of both Donoso and Mayra Santos Febres, and the rewriting of history by Olga Nolla.

My most recent research engages the transpositions of popular and high culture in the representations of violence in Puerto Rican Literature. I am focused on hard boiled crime fiction and war narrative and theatre.

     
Most Recent Publications

Books:

Palabras en las tablas. San Juan: Editorial Universidad de Puerto Rico, 2008.  

Articles:

1. “De Manuel Zeno Gandía a Wilfredo Mattos Cintrón: Exploraciones en torno al género negro en Puerto Rico.” Romance Quarterly 60.4 (September 2013): 236-43.

2. “Expolios de la mujer y el entorno en Gení y el Zepelín de José Luis Ramos Escobar.” Latin American Theatre Review 46.2 (Spring 2013): 61-76.

3. "El rompecabezas del magnicidio de Cánovas en Los silencios de la historia de José Luis Ramos Escobar." Hecho Teatral 13 (2013): 143-57.    

4. “Dramaturgia del puertorriqueño en los conflictos bélicos de los Estados Unidos: ¡Puertorriqueños? y Elliot, a Soldier’s Fugue.” Romance Notes 52.1 (2012): 27-34.

5. “Presencia del policial en la creación literaria de Luis Rafael Sánchez.” Nuestros detectives: La novela policial iberoamericana. Special issue of La Torre (U de Puerto Rico) 15.55-6 (Enero-Junio 2010): 37-53.

6. “Los Beatles en Nada que ver con otra historia: Sobre un Frankenstein amante del rock durante la Revolución Argentina.” Revista de Estudios Hispánicos 44.1 (Spring 2010): 193-211.

7. “Tuning in to Boleros in Sirena Selena vestida de pena: A Character’s Flawed Defense Mechanism.”  Into the Mainstream: Essays on Caribbean and Latin American Literature and Culture. Ed. Jorge Febles. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholar’s Press, 2006. 15-25.

8. “Ficción gastronómica y gastronomía de la ficción en ‘Cinco boleros aún por melodiarse’ de La importancia de llamarse Daniel Santos.” Revista Iberoamericana  72.215-16 (Abril-Septiembre 2006): 619-31.

9. “Las paradojas de la masculinidad en Sirena Selena vestida de pena.” Caribe 8.2 (2005-06): 7-18.

10.  “Presencia de Cortázar en La última noche que pasé contigo: Mayra Montero y su isla caribeña a mediodía.”  Caribe 4.2/5.1 (invierno 2001-02/verano 2002): 8-21.

11.  “Crossed Words between the Lines: The Confusion of Voices in the Love Soliloquy of Elena Poniatowska’s Querido Diego, te abraza Quiela.” Journal of Modern Literature  25.1 (Fall 2001): 35-51.

12. “Entre la historia y la novela: El castillo de la memoria y la nueva novela histórica.”  La Torre 6.22 (octubre-diciembre 2001): 475-90.

13. “Relaciones musicales en El obsceno pájaro de la noche: Beethoven, Aldous Huxley y José Donoso.”  Revista de Estudios Hispánicos 34.1 (enero 2000): 71-86.

 

Previous Research Venues, Books:

1.  Composición expresionista en El lugar sin límites de José Donoso.  Río Piedras: U de Puerto Rico, 1986.

2.  José Donoso y el surrealismo: Tres novelitas burguesas. Madrid:  Pliegos, 1990.

 

Previous Research Venues, Articles:

Previous to 2000, I have published articles in: La Torre, Sin Nombre, Revista Iberoamericana, Revista del Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña, Journal of Interdisciplinary Literary Studies, Revista de Estudios Hispánicos, Revista Canadiense de Estudios Hispánicos, Romance Notes, Latin American Theatre Review, Revista Monográfica/Monographic Review, Discurso Literario, Hispanic Journal, Explicación de Textos Literarios, Río de la Plata, and Caribe.


Teaching Interests

My teaching interests in Spanish American literature parallel my research interests.  I believe in making students aware of how understanding certain poetics will help them contextualize literary creation.  This has been important in such courses as: Metafiction, where I link self-reflexive writing to a long tradition but insist on its special connection to the poetics of postmodernism; the New Historical Novel (Historiographical Metafiction), where I make the links to new historicism; Cortázar, where I have them observe his early attachment to Greek models through his identification with Romantics such as Keats, his later searches via the surrealists of an enhanced reality, and a final recuperation of Spanish America via the Cuban Revolution; and Theatre, where I focus  on the changes in stage poetics from illusionism to anti-illusionism through contacts with existentialist, Brechtian, absurdist, and Artaudian models.  I always try to make students aware of genre provisos and their shifting demands on writers at different points in time, as evident in my focus on Theatre or Narrative when I teach Puerto Rican Literature.  Finally, I like to emphasize the gender/color complexities inherent to most Spanish American literature, evident not only in my Gender Issues, but also in my classes on Puerto Rican Narrative and Theatre. My other major thrust in teaching is in the training of incoming graduate students in research paper writing. I try to make them aware of the importance of organization in the elaboration of a thinking process that culminates in writing and rewriting.  I also engage in the same process with my dissertation advisees, when I am frequently rewarded by smooth development after a difficult first chapter.

 

Selected Honors and Distinctions  

Ford Foundation Fellow, U Wisconsin, Madison, 1973-78     

University of Wisconsin Dean's Scholarship, 1977 (declined)

Research and Study Leaves granted for research in Spring of 1986, 1992, 1999, and 2005

Elected Member of the Executive Committee of ADFL (MLA), 1997-99

 

Department of Spanish and Portuguese
Anderson Hall 4th Floor 1114 West Berks Street Philadelphia, PA 19122-6090
Phone: (215) 204-8285 Fax: (215) 204-3731
http://www.temple.edu/spanpor/