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Elena Lahr-Vivaz is an associate professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese Studies at Rutgers University–Newark, where she specializes in Latin American literature and film. She holds a PhD in Hispanic Studies from the University of Pennsylvania, and taught at this institution, as well as Swarthmore College, before taking up her post at Rutgers. She is the author of Mexican Melodrama: Film and Nation from the Golden Age to the New Wave (University of Arizona Press, 2016), and is now finishing her second book project, tentatively titled Writing Islands: Space and Identity in the Transnational Cuban Archipelago. Mexican Melodrama was written with the support of a Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship and received Honorable Mention for the 2015 Northeast Modern Language Association Book Award; the title is now available in Spanish as El melodrama mexicano: Cine y nación desde la Época de Oro hasta la Nueva Ola (Rialta Ediciones, 2019). Dr. Lahr-Vivaz researches, writes, and teaches on Latin American literature and film, border cinema, and representations of race in the Americas. She is affiliated with the Rutgers Advanced Institute for Critical Caribbean Studies, and serves as faculty advisor for the Rutgers-Newark chapter of Sigma Delta Pi, the National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society.
Critical Approaches to Films from Spain
Contemporary Latin American Novel
Hispanic Film and Literature
Introduction to Latin American Literature
Latin American Literature in Translation
Mexican Literature and Film
Race in Latin American Literature
Race in Latin American Film and Fiction
Ph.D., Hispanic Studies, University of Pennsylvania
B.A., Spanish, College of William and Mary
Mexican Melodrama: Film and Nation from the Golden Age to the New Wave. University of Arizona Press, 2016.
El melodrama mexicano. Cine y nación desde la Época de Oro hasta la Nueva Ola. Rialta Ediciones, 2019. (Spanish translation of Mexican Melodrama.)
Articles and Book Chapters
"After the Azotea." Latin American Literature Today, May 2021.
"Alfonso Cuarón y las fábulas de la identidad nacional: un análisis de 'Y tu mamá también.'" (Excerpt of El melodrama mexicano.) Rialta Magazine, May 28, 2019.
"Birds of a Feather: Reina María Rodríguez and the World Republic of Letters." La futuridad del naufragio: Orígenes, estelas y derives, edited by César Salgado and Ben Heller, Almenara Press, 2019, pp. 273-98.
"Remapping the Borderlands in Quién diablos es Juliette?" Border Cinema, edited by Rebecca Sheehan and Monica Hanna, Rutgers University Press, 2019, pp. 112-28.
“‘¿Qué cosa eres?’: Reading Refractive Melodrama in Humberto Solás’s Cecilia.” Chasqui, vol. 46, no. 1, 2017, pp. 153-66.
“Performing the Nation: Adaptations of México and Madre Patria in La mala educación.” South Atlantic Review, vol. 80, no. 3-4, 2016, pp. 161-75.
“Passing for Solitude: Incest and Ideology in Lone Star.” Journal of American Studies, vol. 46, no. 1, 2012, pp. 1-15.
“Timeless Rhetoric, Special Circumstances: Sex and Symbol in La nada cotidiana.” Revista Canadiense de Estudios Hispánicos, vol. 34, no. 2, 2010, pp. 303-21.
“Unconsummated Fictions and Virile Voiceovers: Desire and the Nation in Y tu mamá también.” Revista de Estudios Hispánicos, vol. 40, no. 1, 2006, pp. 79-101.