LLILAS Benson Latin American Studies and Collections raises awareness of past and current issues affecting Latin America and U.S. Latina/o communities through its world-class collections, globalized higher education, research, international exchange, and public programs.





Summer Reading

In "Las botas de la Lola," author Fátima Valdivia (LLILAS PhD candidate) writes a compelling crónica based on events she experienced during her research. This Spanish-language story was originally published in the 2021–22 edition of Portal magazine. (Artwork: Erika Castillo Licea)


Announcing the Official Gloria E. Anzaldúa Website

Sponsored by the Gloria E. Anzaldúa Literary Trust, this new website offers resources and community for people wanting to learn more about Anzaldúa and her work. The Benson Latin American Collection is repository of the Gloria E. Anzaldúa Papers. (Image: K. Kendall, CC 2.0 generic license) 



Professor Ricardo Ainslie on the History of the Name Uvalde, and Its Pronunciation

Ricardo Ainslie, chair of the LLILAS Benson Mexico Center and professor in the UT Austin College of Education, was interviewed for this NPR story about language in Latino or Hispanic communities. 

Professor Paola Canova receives Fulbright Scholar Award

Congratulations to Professor Paola Canova (LLILAS / Anthropology), who has won a Fulbright to carry out research this year in the Gran Chaco region of Paraguay. Her work will focus on how ranching expansion is remapping the environmental and social landscape. Read more here.

The Mexican American Experience in Texas Is Topic of New Book by Professor Martha Menchaca

Professor Martha Menchaca (Anthropology) examines Mexican Americans’ battle for equality throughout state history in her latest book, The Mexican American Experience in Texas: Citizenship, Segregation, and the Struggle for Equality (UT Press, 2022).

Study Shows How Legacy of Colonialism Influences Science in the Caribbean

Professor Melissa Kemp, (Integrative Biology) of the Kemp Lab @ UT Austin, is part of a team of international researchers who have published a study analyzing how the legacy of colonialism remains deeply entrenched within scientific practice across the Caribbean archipelago.


Janette Núñez Heads to Michigan State for Librarian Position

Núñez, a recent graduate of the LLILAS dual master's program with Information Sciences (iSchool), will be the new Latin American and Caribbean Studies Librarian at Michigan State University. Núñez was a special collections graduate research assistant at the Benson Latin American Collection and co-curator of the exhibition Martín Fierro: From Marginal Outlaw to National Symbol, on view in the Benson Rare Books Reading Room.

Diego A. Godoy Takes Bibliographer Position at Duke University

Godoy, a PhD candidate in Latin American history at UT Austin, will be the Bibliographer for Latin American, Iberian and Latino Studies at Duke University. He was the Castañeda Graduate Research Assistant at the Benson Collection. An engaging writer, he was a contributor to Portal magazine, Not Even Past, and the UT Libraries TexLibris blog. Read: "Inside the Agrasánchez Mexican Cinema Collection" and "Confessions of an Archives Convert."

Congratulations to LLILAS Alumna Rui Jie Peng

Peng (MA LLILAS 2015) will join the Department of Sociology at Lafayette College as assistant professor. She is author of a recently published article in the International Journal of Comparative Sociology titled "Transnational migrant labor, split labor markets, and workers' boundary-making practices in a Chinese state-sponsored workplace in Ecuador," based on research she conducted for her LLILAS master's thesis, for which she received LLILAS summer funding.



Faculty Research Leave 

The purpose of the Faculty Research Leave is to provide LLILAS faculty with the opportunity to engage in productive and creative intellectual projects, otherwise impossible to achieve during the course of the academic year.

Lina Del Castillo

Professor Del Castillo (LLILAS / History) will conduct research for the  project "Colombia’s Paper Empire: Cosmopolitanism, Print Culture, and Geopolitics in the Age of Revolution." This is the first LLILAS Faculty Research Leave grant of 2022.


Mellon Faculty Research Travel Grant

An endowment from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation provides funding for faculty to carry out summer research on topics focusing on Latin America. Congratulations to the 2022 awardees.

Iyaxel Cojti Ren 

Professor Cojti Ren (Anthropology) will travel to Guatemala to conduct research for her project "K'iche' expansionism and the politics of the Maya highlands during the Postclassic period."


Kenneth Greene

Professor Greene (Government) will conduct fieldwork in Mexico this summer to study political accountability, vote buying, and the quality of democracy in Mexico.

Gabriela Polit

Professor Polit (Spanish and Portuguese) will conduct research in Argentina for her latest project, "Female Fantasies: Trauma and Drive in Difficult Times."  During her visit she will interview several writers to better understand their role as public intellectuals and their influence on public affairs.


Translation Grant 

This award supports the translation of books published in English by LLILAS affiliated faculty into Spanish or Portuguese.

Robin Moore

Professor Moore (Butler School of Music) has been awarded funds for the translation of his book Music and Revolution. Cultural Change in Socialist Cuba (University of California Press, 2006).

Gabriela Polit

Professor Polit (Spanish and Portuguese) will use this award to translate her book Unwanted Witnesses. Journalist and Conflict in Contemporary Latin America (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2019) into Spanish. 



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