Jessica Burke

Associate Professor of Hispanic Studies Jessica Burke recently presented a paper in San Juan, Puerto Rico, at the Annual Conference of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish & Portuguese.

The paper, “Narrative Dissent in Rosario Ferré’s Maldito Amor,” examines the narrative technique in Puerto Rican author Rosario Ferré’s 1986 novel Maldito Amor, set in early 20th century Puerto Rico. Burke discussed the contradictory versions of events narrated by multiple voices and argued that the dissenting voices question the validity of one particular version of history, whether it is family history or national history.

Burke said that Ferré’s work engages in discussion of Puerto Rican identity and history from a decidedly feminist and satirical perspective, and her writing reflects national pride, as well as the geographic and cultural limitations of life on the island.

In her study of Maldito Amor, Burke considered the relationship between Puerto Rico, Spain, and the U.S., as well as themes of identity, race, gender, and privilege.

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