WEBSITE(S)| Spanish and Portuguese Studies | Latin American Studies

Beatriz Gonzalez-Stéphan is one of the foremost scholars of Latin American literary history and cultural studies. From her early research on avant-garde poetry in Venezuela to her more recent work on photography and coloniality in nineteenth-century Latin America, González-Stephan's perspective on what is Latin America is always deeply embedded in a reflection on the possibilities as well as on the complexity of the cultural historiography of the Americas. Currently, she is working on two larger book projects that translate this theoretical as much historical perspective into the realm of the political. A first project is concerned with historiographical narratives of legitimation, while her second book, on memory and the difficulties of the aesthetocs of violence, focuses specifically on the way in which contemporary artists have responded to the more than 450 young women who have been murdered, or who have disappeared, since the early 1990s in Juárez, just across the border from El Paso, TX. In the context of the maquiladoras—factories in which young Mexican women produce cheap goods for U.S. consumers—the mass murder of 450 women is an emblem of the violent effects of neoliberal globalization as it plays out at the Mexican-U.S. border, involving multinational corporations, media, government agencies, NGOs, and grassroots political movements.

González-Stephan is on the editorial boards of Iberoamericana, Revista Iberoamericana, and the Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies, among others.


Selected Publications

1. Books and Edited Volumes

  • Ed. with Carlos Sandoval, Eduardo Blanco y el imaginario épico de una nación (Caracas: bid & co. ediciones, 2012).
  • Ed. with Juan Pobrete, Andrés Bello y los estudios latinoamericanos (Pittsburgh, PA: Instituto Internacional de Literatura Iberoamericana, 2009).
  • Ed. with Jens Andermann, Galerías del Progreso: Museos, Exposiciones y Cultura Visual en América Latina(Buenos Aires: Viterbo, 2006).
  • Fundaciones: Canon, Historia y Cultura Nacional. La historiografía literaria del liberalismo hispanoamericano del siglo XIX (Madrid: Iberoamericana Vervuert, 2002). Second edition 2012.
  • Escribir la Historia Literaria: Capital Simbólico y Monumento Cultural (Barquisimeto: UNEXPO, Ediciones del Rectorado, 2001).
  • Ed. Cultura y Tercer Mundo. Volume 1: Cambios en el saber académico; Volume 2: Nuevas identidades y ciudadanías (Caracas: Editorial Nueva Sociedad, 1996).
  • La Duda del Escorpión: La tradición heterodoxa en la narrativa latinoamericana (Caracas: Academia Nacional de la Historia, 1995).
  • Estructura y significación de “Pedro Páramo” (Caracas: Universidad Simón Bolívar, 1990).

2. Journal Articles and Book Chapters

  • “Archipiélago y arqueología: Más allá de las fronteras nacionales. Reflexiones para unahistoriografía cultural de las Américas (siglo xix),” in Liliana Weinberg and Rodrigo García de la Sienra (eds.), Siglo XIX: Tiempo de letras. Historia Comparada de las Américas (Mexico City: UNAM, 2018), 39-56.
  • “The Dark Side of Photography: Techno-aesthetics, Bodies, and the Residues of Coloniality in 19th-Century Latin America,” Discourse 38/1 (2016), 22-45.
  • With Carolyn Fornhoff, “Market and Non-Literary Consumer Narratives: From the ‘Levity of Being’ to Abjection,” in Ileana Rodríguez and Mónica Szurmuk (eds.), The Cambridge History of Latin American Women’s Literature(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), 486-503.
  • “El lado oscuro de la fotografía: Tecnoestéticas, cuerpos y residuos de la colonialidad enel siglo XIX,” in Mabel Moraña and Ignacio Sánchez Prado (eds.), Heridas abiertas: Biopolítica y representación en América Latina(Madrid: Iberoamericana Vervuert, 2014), 79-105.
  • “Forms of Historic Imagination: Visual Culture, Historiography, and the Tropes of War in Nineteenth-Century Venezuela," in William Acree and Juan Carlos González-Espita (eds.), Building Nineteenth-Century Latin America: Re-Rooted Cultures, Identities, and Nations (Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University Press, 2009), 101-32.
  • “El arte panorámico de las guerras independentistas: El tropo militar y la masificaciónde la cultura (Venezuela siglo XIX),” A Contracorriente 6/1 (Fall 2008), 159-78.
  • “A Gothic Glass Case in the Tropical Forest: The First Venezuelan National Exhibition of 1883,” in James Buzard, Joseph Childers, and Eileen Gillooly (eds.), Victorian Prism: Refractions of the Crystal Palace (Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia Press, 2007), 216-30.
  • “Subversive Needlework: Gender, Class and History at Venezuela’s National Exhibition, 1883,” in Jens Andermann and William Rowe (eds.), Images of Power: Iconography, Culture, and the State in Latin America(New York: Berghahn, 2005), 51-77.
  • “Narratives of Legitimation: The Invention of History. Monument and the Nation State," in Mario Valdés y Djelal Kadir (eds.), Literary Cultures of Latin America: A Comparative History, vol. 3 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), 67-99.
  • “On Citizenship: The Grammatology of the Body Politic,” in Eduardo Mendieta (ed.), Latin American Philosophy: Issues, Currents, Debates (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2003), 188-206.       

Research Areas

Nineteenth-century Latin American Culture; Women’s Literature and Culture in Latin America; Nation Building and Body Politics; Visual Culture


PhD, University of Pittsburgh

Teaching Areas

Latin American Studies

Spanish and Portuguese Studies


Changes or additions to profiles.rice.edu will not take effect on the Rice sub-sites until after its next refresh which occurs at 5:15am, 10:15am, 1:15pm, 4:15pm and 7:15pm daily. (This does not affect profiles.rice.edu)