Archived Department Highlights

Nov 2015     2nd Ever "Poesía y Burritos" Tri-lingual poetry reading with burrito bar

The McKeown Center at SJU was the site of the second ever CSB/SJU poesía y burritos on November 1, 2015.

CSB/SJU students, faculty, and friends came together for Baja California inspired fusion burritos prepared by Danielle Taylor with local ingredients from Dancing Bears Farm, the Common Ground Gardens, Baker's Acres and the Minnesota Street Market. The squash was a big hit, "I never thought of squash on a burrito," said one of the participants, "but that was awesome." It is all about the sauces. 

Our special invited guest, Emilio del Valle Escalante, who is on campus as a part of the Fall Latino Latin American Lecture Series led us in a collaborative poetry reading. We took turns reading in Spanish and English from a collection of Maya poetry. We also had the wonderful opportunity to hear Emilio read two poems by Pablo García in K'iche' Maya.

During the first half we heard poems by Calixta Gabriel, Francisco Morales Santos, Luis de Lión, Gaspar Pedro González, and Victor Montejo. We heard connection to the earth, to corn, to the Nawal. We learned about Hunapú and Ixbalanqué, the twin heroes, who came long before Superman and all his brothers. We heard a dialogue where the ancestors encouraged their descendants to reclaim their own ancient wisdom. Memory, identity, place and justice are just a few of the themes running through all of the poetry and our conversation.

After a coffee break, Emilio read two poems in K'iche' Maya from Pablo García's collection, Song from the Underworld.  We heard Maya Cu Choc's poetic voice refusing to be seen as a mythical character or a face on a postcard. Daniel Caño, in the last poem we heard, asks why or when a child stops talking to the plants and the butterflies. Indeed, what makes us think that our connection to the natural world is ridiculous and where does our curiosity go?

Students who studied in Guatemala during 2015 described connections between this poetry and their experience abroad. Students getting ready to leave for Guatemala in January, 2016 called the event enlightening and eye-opening. Thanks to everyone for participating.

Thanks to the Latino Latin American Studies Program and the Department of Hispanic Studies for bringing our special guest to campus.

Most of all thanks to Emilio del Valle Escalante for bringing the poetry.

  

March 2015     Human Rights through Artistic Expressions

During the week of March 9th, students in Professor Nelsy Echávez-Solano's Latin American Literature and Culture through Theater course had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work with Colombian award winning playwright, director, and poet Carlos Satizábal.  Professor Echávez-Solano and Professor Satizábal ran an intensive, four day workshop for the class, which involved creating a bilingual play in Spanish and English centered on issues of gender.  This theatrical piece was written by the students themselves and was directed by Professor Satizábal.  In addition to workshopping with Professor Echávez-Solano's class, Professor Satizábal also spent a day with Professor Roy Ketchum and the students in his Conflict Transformation and Latin America in a session dedicated to the power of poetry.

On March 12th of 2015, The Department of Hispanic Studies hosted a very powerful event which involved a debut performance of the play created by the CSB/SJU students in Professor Echávez-Solano's course; an international visit and discussion with the Colombian Mothers of Soacha; and a play involving the Mothers of Soacha and directed by Mr. Satizábal, entitled Antígonas: Tribunal de Mujeres.  All three pieces of this event were well attended by students, faculty, other members of the CSB/SJU community, and outside professionals within the field.  These events were organized by Professor Nelsy Echávez-Solano and Sarah Schaaf, and a special thank you to Professor Corey Shouse for his excellent job interpreting during the evening.

Two CSB students, Jillian Andresen and Amber Warner (2015), who were involved in the event share their moving experience with us. Read more...

 

 Hispanic Studies awards Spanish scholarship

 

Three College of Saint Benedict Hispanic Studies majors were recently awarded the Sister Renée Domeier Scholarship for Spanish for 2015-2016. The students are Anne Avestruz, '17 (above left), Kaitlin Duda, '17 (center), and Nicole Phillips, '17 (right). Congratulations, Anne, Kaitlin and Nicole!

The Sister Renée Domeier Scholarship for Spanish is available on an annual basis for Hispanic Studies majors enrolled at the College of Saint Benedict. Applications are accepted in the spring and are open to CSB majors who will be juniors or seniors the following fall. Recipients are chosen on the basis of scholarship, strength of academic purpose, and financial need. More information on the scholarship can be found here.

Photo by Julia Eckart '17
Julia Eckart Photography

 

Phi Beta Kappa

Congratulations to the following Hispanic Studies majors, class of 2015, who were inducted into Phi Beta Kappa on April 22, 2015.

Students are inducted into the honor society on the basis of
their achievements in the liberal arts and sciences.

Read more here...

 
L-R: Nicholas Maher, Craig Gemmill, Joseph Dingman,
Austin Barkley, Amanda Munsterteiger and 
Hispanic Studies instructor, Marietta Franulic (far right).

Photos by Julia Eckart '17