Hispanic Studies


Jeremy Medina, Ph.D., Burgess Professor of Romance Languages Emeritus and Lecturer in Hispanic Studies

Areas of Expertise: Spanish language; Peninsular Spanish history, culture, art and geography; Peninsular literature; Cervantes' Don Quijote; poetry through the mid 20th century; the 19th century realistic novel; and the Generation of 1898.
Jeremy Medina, who earned his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, has been a Hamilton faculty member since 1968 and has served twice as chair of the department of Romance Languages and Literature. More >>

Medina founded the Hamilton College Academic Year in Spain (HCAYS) program and is co-founder of the Summer Institute of Hispanic Studies. Besides serving as general director of the HCAYS since 1974 (except when not on campus), he has held the position of director-in-residence in Madrid eight times, having completed his final tour of duty in 2005-2006, prior to his official retirement on June 30, 2007.

In addition to courses on Spanish language, literature and civilization, Medina is also responsible for Hamilton's offerings on Spanish art.

Medina is the author of The "Psychological" Novels of Vicente Blasco Ibanez (1990); Introduction to Spanish Literature: an Analytical Approach (1982); Spanish Realism: The Theory and Practice of a Concept in the Nineteenth Century (1979); The Valencian Novels of Vicente Blasco Ibanez (1984); and From Sermon to Art: the Thesis Novels of Vicente Blasco Ibanez (1998). He has also published studies on Fernando de Herrera, Jose Antonio de Alarcon, Emilia Pardo Bazan. Benito Perez Galdos, Vicente Aleixandre and Miguel de Cervantes, as well as other articles on individual works of Blasco Ibanez.


Jessica Burke, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Hispanic Studies

Areas of Expertise: Latin American literature, Mexican literature and culture and gender studies.
Jessica Burke received her Ph.D. in Spanish and Portuguese languages and cultures from Princeton University in 2005. More >>

Burke's research and teaching interests include Latin American literature and culture with a special emphasis on Mexico. She has taught at Princeton and Rutgers University and has lived and studied in Spain, Argentina and Mexico.

Christine Fernández, Ph.D., Visiting Assistant Professor of Hispanic Studies

Christine Fernández received her B.A.s in English and Spanish Literature from the University of California, Irvine and her Ph.D. in Hispanic Languages and Literatures from the University of California, Santa Barbara. More >>

 The title of her dissertation is “North by South: Transnational Dialogues of Chilean and Argentine Culture.” Fernández's teaching and research focuses on the intersections of  contemporary  Latin American and U.S. Latino Literature (exile and migration movements), film studies, theater, women writers and  language learning with the use of instructional technology.

Cecilia Hwangpo, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Hispanic Studies

Areas of Expertise: Latin American literature and culture, especially early 20th century Argentinean and Cuban theatre and essay.
Cecilia Hwangpo joined the Hamilton faculty in 1998, after earning a Ph.D. from Yale University. More >>

Her main area of specialization is the discourses of national identity in Argentina and Cuba in early 20th century. Her research interests are Latin American literature and culture, 20th century theatre, el sainete criollo, and essay. Her published articles include "Indagación del choteo: un llamado para el cambio en el modo de ser cubano," "José Antonio Ramos y la identidad nacional cubana: sentido, lenguaje y espacio," and "Los inmigrantes: el otro en el teatro argentino de principios del siglo XX."

Paul Norberg, Ph.D., Visiting Assistant Professor of Hispanic Studies

Areas of Expertise: 20th and 21st century Spanish Peninsular literature and history; popular culture and technology and literature.
Paul Norberg received his B.A. in English literature and Spanish literature at the University of San Francisco (2002) and both his M.A. and his Ph.D. (2012) in Hispanic languages and literatures from the University of California, Berkeley. More >>

Norberg's research focuses on contemporary Spanish literature and its intersection with popular culture, Spanish history and modes of representing reality.

He has taught language and literature courses at UC Berkeley as well as a summer program in Madrid, Spain.

Edna Rodriguez-Plate, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Hispanic Studies

Areas of Expertise: Hispanic cinema, contemporary Hispanic Caribbean literature, and culture and Cuban studies.
Edna M. Rodríguez-Plate completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of Puerto Rico, did master’s work at Purdue University and her Ph.D. at Emory University. More >>

Her research and teaching begins with basic questions about identity, from individual identities to a collective social-national identity: How are identities constructed, represented and contested culturally, in films, literature and the mass media? How is ideology produced and how does it affect our sense of the world, our world? Rodríguez-Plate is the author of Lydia Cabrera and the Construction of an Afro-Cuban Cultural Identity, and several articles on Cuban film, and Caribbean literature.

Joana Sabadell-Nieto, Professor of Hispanic Studies

Areas of Expertise: feminist and gender studies; cultural criticism; and Spanish poetry, narrative, cities and literature.
Joana Sabadell-Nieto specializes in the recent literatures of Spain with an emphasis on feminist and gender theory and on women's writing. More >>

Sabadell-Nieto is a researcher at the UNESCO-funded Women and Literature Center of the University of Barcelona where she is studying community representations in postmodern women writers and filmmakers.

She has published several collections of essays;  the most recent, Mujeres y naciones (Women and Nations), focuses on the uneasy relations between feminisms and nationhood, presents transnational approaches to politics and communities, and links political, anthropological, and philosophical theories with literary productions by Spanish women writers.  She has also authored two books. Fragmentos de sentido. La identidad transgresora de Jaime Gil de Biedma examines the successful homographesis during the dictatorship of one of Spain's most famous poets; Desbordamientos/ Overflowings, is an in-depth analysis of feminist interventions today's culture. 

Sabadell-Nieto has a master's and  Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania and a bachelor's in journalism from the Universidad de Navarra.


Xavier Tubau Moreu, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Hispanic Studies

Areas of Expertise: Golden Age Spanish literature and Renaissance intellectual history.
Xavier Tubau received his Ph.D. in Spanish literature from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in 2008, and was a postdoctoral fellow at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona before coming to Hamilton in 2013. More >>

Tubau specializes in Renaissance intellectual history and Golden Age Spanish literature. Currently, he is writing a book about political propaganda during the empire of Charles V. Tubau has published two books: Una polémica literaria: Lope de Vega y Diego de Colmenares (2007), and Erasmo mediador: Política y religión en los primeros años de la Reforma (2012) and has published articles in journals such as Anuario de Estudios Medievales, Bibliothèque d'Humanisme et Renaissance, Criticón, Humanistica Lovaniensia, Revista de Filología Española, and Traditio.

Maria Willstedt, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Hispanic Studies

Areas of Expertise: Medieval Spanish literature and culture.
Maria Willstedt earned her Ph.D. in Spanish literature from Yale University (B.A. and M.A. in Latin and romance languages from Abo Akademi, Finland). More >>

Willstedt's specialization is medieval Spanish literature and culture. Her main areas of interest are medieval and Golden Age short narrative genres, especially the framed-tale tradition, and eighteenth-century Spanish medievalism (first editions). Before coming to Hamilton Willstedt taught at Florida State University and the University of Pennsylvania.

Maria Portal, Teaching Fellow

Areas of Expertise: foreign language teaching methods and English as a second language.
Maria Gabriela Portal earned her bachelor degree in English teaching from the Teaching Training College Nº5 "Jose Eugenio Tello" in Jujuy, a small province in northwest Argentina. More >>

She previously worked in high schools, English language schools and technical colleges in her hometown teaching English as a foreign language. Portal also taught socio-literary studies at an English Training College in Humahuaca, an aboriginal town in the north of her province. She participated in the Fulbright Language Teaching Assistant Program 2010-2011.  Portal was a member of the Teachers of English Association committee in Jujuy which organized seminars, conferences and cultural events.  She is interested in continuing education courses about teaching methodologies, learning foreign languages, and Quechua Runasimi studies.