work is broadly based in the cultural and political relations between
the U.S. and the rest of the Americas, particularly Mesoamerica and the Caribbean/Gulf coast. The nineteenth century is my usual period
focus, and at the moment much of my attention revolves around the relatively new organization, C19: The Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists, for which I serve as Program Committee Chair.
However, I also write about contemporary works by U.S. Latinas and
Latinos, whose experiences are deeply rooted in the history of the Americas. I direct the Latino Literary Cultures Project/Proyecto culturas literarias latinas, an initiative of the Chicano/Latino Research Center and the Institute for Humanities Research at UCSC. I am interested in the changing conditions of literary production and
reception, as well as in the general question of how and why we make
history. My current book project, Bad Lengua,engages sociolinguistics and linguistic anthropology to explore the changing ideologies surrounding Spanish-language usage in what is now the U.S., from the seventeenth century to the present.
of Culture: The Transamerican Origins of Latino Writing was published in 2002 by Princeton
University Press. It argues that Latinos are not newcomers in the
United States by documenting a vast network of Spanish-language cultural
activity in the nineteenth century. Drawing on previously unpublished
archival materials and building on an innovative interpretation of poetry's
cultural role, Ambassadors of Culture brings together poems,
essays, and other writings from the borderlands of California and the
Southwest as well as the cosmopolitan exile centers of New York, New
Orleans, and San Francisco. It reads these productions in light of broader
patterns of cultural and political relations between the U.S. and Latin
America, showing how ''ambassadors of culture'' such as Whitman, Longfellow,
and Bryant propagated ideas about Latin America and Latinos through
their translations, travel writings, and poems. The
book was selected for an Honorable Mention for the John Hope Franklin
Prize for Best Book in American Studies in 2002 from the American Studies
in Books and Journals
- "What Was Latino Literature?" Forthcoming in PMLA, March 2012.
- "Tracking the First Latino Novel: Un matrimonio como hay muchos (1849) and Transnational Serial Fiction," in Transnational Serial Fiction, ed. Patricia Okker (Blackwell, 2011).
- “Mexican/American: The Making of Borderlands Print Culture,” in US Popular Print Culture, 1860-1920, ed. Christine Bold (Oxford UP, History of Popular Print Culture series, 2011).
- "Worlding America: The Hemispheric Text-Network” (co-authored with Susan Gillman), in A Companion to American Literary Studies, eds. Robert Levine and Caroline Levander (Blackwell), 2011.
- "1521: Mexico in America" and "1836: Richard Henry Dana's Two Years Before the Mast" in A New Literary History of America., eds. Werner Sollors and Greil Marcus (Harvard University Press, 2009).
Gowen Brooks, In and Out of the Poe Circle," ESQ:
A Journal of the American Renaissance, 54 (fall 2008), 75-109.
- "Lexical Snacks at the Citizen Restaurant: A Response to Vicki Ruiz," ASA Presidential Address forum in American Quarterly 60:2, March 2008.
"Travel Writing," "José Quintero": essay-length
entries in The Encyclopedia of Latino Literature, ed. Nicolás
Kanellos (Greenwood, 2008).
Whitman, Latino Poet," in Walt Whitman, Where the Future Becomes
Present, eds. Michael Robertson
and David Haven Blake (U
Iowa Press, Iowa Whitman Series, 2008).
- "The Cafetal of María del Occidente and the Anglo-American
Race for Cuba," in The
Traffic in Poems: Nineteenth-Century Poetry and Transatlantic Exchange,
ed. Meredith McGill (Rutgers University Press, 2008).
Mercurial Space of 'Central' America: New Orleans, Honduras, and the
Writing of the Banana Republic," in Hemispheric
American Studies, eds. Caroline Levander and Robert S. Levine
(Rutgers University Press, 2007).
Once and Future Latino: Notes Toward a Literary History todavía
para llegar," in Contemporary
US Latino/a Literary Criticism, eds. Lyn Diloria Sandín
and Richard Pérez (Palgrave Macmillan, 2007).
entry in Keywords
for American Cultural Studies, eds. Bruce Burgett and Glenn
Hendler (NYU Press, 2007). See and participate in the
Gulf of Mexico System and the 'Latinness' of New Orleans," American
18:4 (Fall 2006).
to the Border: The Strange Case of José Agustín Quintero,"
the US Hispanic Literary Heritage V, ed.Kenya Dworkin-Mendez
and Agnes Lugo-Ortiz. Houston: Arte Público Press, 2006.
un mundo nuevo latino: los periódicos hispanos en los Estados
Unidos a fines del siglo XIX," Revista Iberoamericana
LXXII (enero-marzo 2006), no. 214. pp. 185-198.
A Key(word) into the Language of America(nists),” American
16:1 (Spring 2004).
Desterrados: New Orleans, Mexico, and the Confederacy,” in Look
Away! The U.S. South in New World Studies, eds. Jonathan Smith
and Deborah Cohn, Duke
University Press 2004.
Languages, Other Americas,” in The
Blackwell Companion to American Fiction, 1780-1865,
ed. Shirley Samuels, Blackwell Press 2004.
American Studies” (co-authored with Rob Wilson and Susan Gillman), Comparative American Studies
2:3 (2004), 259-270.
Latina: The Ordinary Seaman in Extraordinary Times.”
49:1 (Spring 2003), 54-83.
Occluded History of Transamerican Literature,” pp. 121-137 in Critical
Latin American and Latino Studies,
ed. Juan Poblete. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2003.
No More: Toward a Transnational Theory of Nineteenth-Century Poetic
Practice,” pp. 80-95 in Recovering
the US Hispanic Literary Heritage IV, ed. José Aranda and Silvio Torres-Saillant. Houston: Arte Público
for the Fireside: Longfellow, Lynch, and the Topography of Poetic Power,”
pp. 43-63 in Sentimental
Men: Masculinity and the Politics of Affect in American Culture,
eds. Glenn Hendler and Mary Chapman. University of California Press,
gran poeta Longfellow and a Psalm of Exile,” American
10.3 (Winter 1998), 395-427.
the Nation: The Organic Life of La Cautiva," Revista
de Estudios Hispánicos 30:1 (Winter 1996), 3-22.
Research & Editing Projects
- Review of Rachel Adams, Continental Divides, Hispanic Review (Summer 2011).
- Review of María de Guzmán, Spain’s Long Shadow, in MLN: Hispanic Issue (Spring 2007).
- Review of Héctor Calderón, Narratives of Greater Mexico, in Latino Studies 5:1 (Spring 2007).
- Review of Rodrigo Lazo, Writing to Cuba and Robert Aguirre, Informal Empire, in American Literature 78:4 (December 2006), 889-91.
- Review of Anna Brickhouse, Transamerican Literary Relations and the Nineteenth-Century Public Sphere, in Studies in American Fiction 33:1 (Spring 2005), 120-22.
- Review of Nicolás Kanellos and Helvetia Martell, Hispanic Periodicals in the United States, Origins to 1960, in American Periodicals 6 (2003).
am currently at work on two books, in this order: Bad Lengua: A
Cultural History of Spanish in the United States and Bordering
the Gulf: Routes of Latinidad from the Yucatán to La Florida.
I also continue to work on smaller editing projects relating to Spanish-language
periodical culture in New Orleans, especially the newspaper La Patria (1846-51), where I have found what is arguably the first Latino novel,
and the monthly illustrated magazine Mercurio (1911-1927).
Honors and Awards
the Frederick Burkhardt Fellowship
for Recently Tenured Scholars from the American
Council of Learned Societies in 2005-06, spent at the Huntington
Upcoming talks and travels
Feb. 22-25, 2012: Lozano Long Conference: Central American Studies and the Latino/a Landscape, UT-Austin
March 29-30. 2012: University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
April 12-15, 2012: C19: The Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists, Berkeley
did my undergraduate work at Swarthmore
College and earned my PhD in Comparative
Literature at Yale. Prior to coming to UCSC in 1996, I taught at
the College of William & Mary.
I have also taught in the past at the Bread
Loaf School of English.