2024 RS Graduate Student Conference

Above, from left to right: Panelists: Isaque de Moura, Fernanda Alves dos Santos, José Luis Díaz Báez. Below, from left to right: Moderators: Fred Lafortune, Tijana Cupic, Íñigo Huércanos Esparza; and Organizers: Gonzalo Carretero Martínez, Wiktoria Bryzys, and María del Mar Terol Cabrerizo (behind the camera)

The Romance Studies Graduate Students Conference, held on April 13th, was an enriching event that brought together emerging scholars representing a wide range of backgrounds and research interests from Boston University, Boston College, Harvard, Princeton, the University of Virginia, and the University of Alcalá in Spain. Organized by Ph.D. students Gonzalo Carretero Martínez, Wiktoria Bryzys, and María del Mar Terol Cabrerizo, the conference delved into the theme of “Remembered & Forgotten,” a theme that sparked meaningful discussions on the importance of remembering and interpreting literary works. By challenging traditional narratives and elevating overlooked works, the event highlighted the ongoing relevance of historical inquiry in shaping our understanding of literature and culture today.

The conference featured four panels, each skillfully moderated by RS Ph.D. students and covering a range of compelling topics. The opening panel on Contemporary Latin American Literature, moderated by Tijana Cupic, included José Luis Díaz Báez‘s examination of José Donoso’s influence on contemporary Argentinian writer Agustina Bazterrica. The second panel, centered on Autobiographical Fiction and moderated by Íñigo Huércanos Esparza, showcased Isaque de Moura‘s exploration of Josefa Acevedo de Gómez’s autobiography. Fred Lafortune led the third panel on Memory, Language, and Trauma in Francophone Literature, while Gonzalo Carretero guided the final panel featuring Fernanda Alves dos Santos‘ analysis of insurgent feminist poetry by Vilma Flores, one of Roque Dalton’s heteronyms. The conference concluded with a thought-provoking keynote presentation by Daniel Aguirre-Oteiza on “The Voice of the Land: The Spanish Civil War, Literary History, and Poetic Memory.” After each panel, attendees actively participated in Q&A sessions that allowed for engaging and stimulating discussions, which carried on through lunch and coffee breaks, presenting all participants with an unforgettable experience.