Helena Talaya-Manso, Ph.D / Assistant Professor of Spanish / Oxford College of Emory University
My research projects and my teaching are closely related. In both I connect the language I work with my diverse interests in literature, art history, visual culture and film studies. I consider myself an interdisciplinary scholar and a teacher at heart.
The focus of my research combines the study of visual arts (photographs, comics, images of fashion and design) with an enhanced examination of written texts. In my doctoral dissertation I analyzed all new forms of cultural representations that played a key role in the construction of a new identity in Post-Franco Spain. My work explores the legacy of the cultural movement the Madrid Movida through the analysis of the different literary and visual texts that appeared in the magazine La Luna de Madrid, a product of popular culture that represented a radical alternative to journalistic and media expressions. The magazine is considered a key contributor in the construction of a new kind of contemporary Spanish identity in the 80s. Previous to coming to Oxford I designed and taught a course based on this topic, an example of how my scholarship can be transformed into course material.
While some of these themes continue to constitute part of my scholarly work, I have added new insights into my work and directed my focus towards film studies. I wrote an article Utopías y Distopías en Elefante Blanco (2012) de Pablo Trapero, that is part of the book Agentes del cambio: Perspectivas cinematográficas de España y Latinoamérica. I am co-editor of this volume published by Editorial Pliegos December 2014. All the articles that complete the volume deal with social conflicts in the last decade in Latin America analyzed through fiction. I have incorporated this scholarly work in my classes screening the movie in question and having a class- discussion post-viewing. This is another form in in which I have enriched my teaching with my research.
Other samples of my scholarly work include two book reviews for the magazine España Contemporánea. My first co-authored article La Mirada y el Vacío, published in the Mexican magazine Gaceta de los museos, in 2002. My 2006 article on Crónica y Violencia, published at the University of Pittsburg Graduated Students magazine Osa Mayor. My article Rosa Montero, ¿Cronista ‘aleatoria’ de la posmodernidad?, which is part of the book La Incógnita Desvelada. Ensayos en la obra de Rosa Montero, published in 2012 by Peter Lang. My article Una aproximación didáctica a la Guerra civil española (1936-1939) a través de imágenes: fotografía y cartel propagandístico, is published in Cómo ver como. Textos sobre cultura visual latinoamericana. Coordinadores Antonio E. de Pedro and Elena Rosauro, by FOC Ed. 2015. Narrativas visuales de la Guerra Civil Española, publicado en las Actas del Congreso Postguerras. 75 aniversario de la Guerra Civil Española. Gutmaro Gómez Bravo and Rubén Pallol. Editorial Pablo Iglesias. Marzo 2015.