Professor María del Pilar Blanco
Professor of Spanish American and Comparative Literature
Fellow and Tutor in Spanish, Trinity College; Associate Lecturer in Spanish, Worcester College
At the moment, I’m completing a second book project Modernist Laboratories: Science and the Poetics of Progress in Fin-de-Siècle Spanish America. It explores intersections between literary and scientific innovation in periodicals published by Spanish Americans between 1870 and 1930, particularly in Mexico, Argentina, Cuba, Europe and the United States. This project has led me to explore early examples of popular science publishing in Spanish America, which reveal the correlations between scientific modernization and nation-building projects. I was the recipient, in 2017-18, of a British Academy Mid-Career Fellowship, which allowed me to advance the research and writing for the project. Between 2015 and 2017 I was co-investigator, with Joanna Page (Cambridge) of the AHRC-funded Science in Text and Culture international network. An edited volume inspired by the network, entitled Geopolitics, Culture, and the Scientific Imaginary in Latin America, will be published by University of Florida Press in 2020.
I have written articles and chapters on Mexican fin-de-siècle Spanish American popular science, Spanish American modernismo, global modernisms, spectrality, and Latinx studies. My previous work, which explores narratives of haunting as responses to different processes of modernization in the Americas and beyond, includes a monograph (Ghost-Watching American Modernity, 2012) and two volumes co-edited with Esther Peeren (The Spectralities Reader from 2013 and Popular Ghosts, 2010).
In the past decade or so, I have supervised doctoral students working on a range on topics related to Latin American and, more widely, hemispheric American literature and culture, and haunting/the ghostly. I welcome students who are interested in studying topics related to literature and science; spectrality; landscape; intellectual history in Latin America and beyond. I’m very interested in supervising comparative projects that explore transnational literary and intellectual exchanges in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
Blanco, María del Pilar and Joanna Page, eds. Geopolitics, Culture, and the Scientific Imaginary in Latin America. Gainesville: University of Florida Press, forthcoming 2020.
Blanco, María del Pilar, “Magical Realism and the Descriptive Turn,” in Richard Perez and Victoria Chevalier, eds., Handbook of Magical Realism in the Twenty-First Century. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, forthcoming 2020.
Blanco, María del Pilar, “Planetarity’s Edges: Modernist Studies and the Bounds of Modernism,” in Douglas Mao, ed., The New Modernist Studies. New York: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2020.
Blanco, María del Pilar, “Spanish American Literature and the Transatlantic Dimensions of Decadence,” in Alex Murray, ed., Decadentism: A Literary History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2020.
Blanco, María del Pilar, “Spectral Mexico City,” in Karl Bell, ed., Supernatural Cities: Enchantment, Anxiety and Spectrality. Martlesham: Boydell & Brewer, forthcoming 2019.
Blanco, María del Pilar, “Whither Latinidad?: The Trajectories of Latin American, Caribbean, and Latina/o Literature,” in Laura Lomas and John Moran González, eds., The Cambridge History of Latina/o Literature. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2018.
Blanco, María del Pilar, “Mexican Modernity, Science Magazines, and the Scientific Personality: Santiago Sierra’s El Mundo Científico (1877-78)”, Modernism/modernity 23.2 (April 2016): 403-21.
Blanco, María del Pilar and Esther Peeren, eds. The Spectralities Reader: Ghosts and Haunting in Contemporary Cultural Theory. New York: Bloomsbury/Continuum, 2013.
“Mexico’s La Ilustración Espírita: Toward a Transatlantic Understanding of a Spiritualist Archive,” in The Ashgate Research Companion to Paranormal Cultures, edited by Sally Munt and Olu Jenzen. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2013.
“Reading the Novum World: The Literary Geography of Science Fiction in Junot Díaz’s The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao,” Peter Hulme, Cristina Fumagalli, Owen Robinson, Lesley Wylie (eds.), Surveying the American Tropics (Liverpool University Press, 2003).
“ ‘Palabras de la ciencia’: Pedro Castera and Scientific Writing in Mexico’s Fin de Siècle,” Science and Education (September 2012) [DOI 10.1007/s11191-012-9514-0]
Blanco, María del Pilar and Esther Peeren, eds. The Spectralities Reader: Ghosts and Haunting in Contemporary Cultural Theory. New York: Bloomsbury, 2013.
Ghost-Watching American Modernity: Haunting, Landscape, and the Hemispheric Imagination. New York: Fordham University Press, 2012.
Blanco, María del Pilar and Esther Peeren, eds. Popular Ghosts: The Haunted Spaces of Everyday Culture. New York: Continuum, 2010. (Winner of the Ray and Pat Browne Award for Best Edited Collection, PCA/ACA, 2010)