The Department of Spanish and Portuguese is proud to have the following students enrolled in its graduate program:
I am a native of Toronto and also did my undergraduate degree at U of T - a major in Spanish and a double minor in English Literature and French as a Second Language. I studied both Spanish and Portuguese at the department, so I'm very pleased to be back not just because of my current endeavour with the Master of Hispanic Literatures and Cultures program, but also because being in and around Victoria College gives me a special nostalgia of studying languages here as an undergraduate student.
Adam Richard Cowan
Filipe Hisao de Salles Kobayashi
Petre Marian Ene
Yadira Álvarez López
My work in Hispanic Linguistics focuses on language acquisition, variation and change in the areas of syntax and semantics. I am fascinated by the mechanisms and outcomes involved in the evolution and learning of language, and what they can tell us about the nature of the mind. In my dissertation, “Changing state, stating change: Dialectal variation and semantic innovation in the Spanish copula system”, I look at the verbs ‘ser’ and ‘estar’ in Buenos Aires Spanish, and I propose an analysis of the semantic extension of ‘estar’ as an expression of evidential meaning.
Agnieszka (Agnes) Bijos
Testimonial literature, subversive narratives, literature of exile. Cultural theory; memory studies; (theory of) translation.
My scholarly interests have always stemmed from a personal desire to reconcile the influence of everyday politics with issues of culture, identity and beyond. Throughout my studies, I have come to believe that literature has the power to offer a truer and more complete version of reality than traditional political texts. As such, the aim of my PhD is to explore this theory by examining Latin American fiction as a tangible political tool, while demonstrating the ways in which it can simultaneously serve to reflect or subvert political attitudes and events. Ultimately, I hope to offer insight to the extent of the inseparability that exists between literature and politics and to discern between different representations of truth through writing.
After I studied economics and worked as a journalist for nine years in Mexico City, I decided to follow my true passion: literature. My current interests include the Latin American neobaroque, ethics, theory of emotions, and what the Spanish philosopher José Antonio Marina has labelled “creative intelligence.” Mainly grounded in Severo Sarduy’s neobaroque theory —which rests on the ever-changing image of the ellipse and identifies subversion and a critical attitude as essential elements of every neobaroque expression—, I am investigating the presence of what I am calling neobaroque ethics in contemporary Latin American texts.
José Eduardo Villalobos Graillet
Jose Eduardo is a Teaching Assistant at the Department of Spanish & Portuguese at the University of Toronto where he's also a PhD student in Spanish Medieval Literature & Culture. Jose Eduardo holds a MA in Latin American and Caribbean Studies from University of Guelph, a profesional Masters Degree in Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language from Universidad de Jaen, and a BA in Communication Studies from UPAEP, Mexico. His research interests are diverse: Applied Linguistics in Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language, and both Latin American and Spanish literature and cinema. For his dissertation, Jose Eduardo plans to analyze the cinematographic and TV adaptations of Celestina.
Estefania E. Gordo G.
Elsie Gordo is a PhD student in the Spanish Department. Her primary research interests include Latin American Literature, Creative Writing, Feminist Theory, Gender Studies, Contemporary Art, Spanish Films and Philosophy. She plans to incorporate her interest on the vision of gender into a dissertation about Latin American Theater. Her love for literature and languages has led her to learn Catalan and Italian. She has lived in Spain, England and the United States. When she is not reading she enjoys hiking, frequenting museums and travelling.
Latin American and Caribbean literature.
Sophie Elizabeth Harrington
I have a BA in languages, which sparked my interest in language structure and acquisition. My interests include syntax, morphology, and first and second language acquisition of Spanish.
I received an Honours B.A. from York University in Spanish and it is there that I discovered my passion for Linguistics. I am currently working on a PhD in Hispanic Linguistics. Specifically I am interested in the phonetics and phonology of both first and second language. I am currently working on my dissertation which focuses on the acquisition of second language intonation.
Joanne Markle LaMontagne
As a monolingual child I quickly developed a love for French, Spanish, and bilingualism at school and abroad. I have explored these areas further at the University of Ottawa and now at the University of Toronto in the Hispanic Linguistics doctoral program. My research interests include the acquisition of Spanish syntax-semantics, such as tense and aspect, in bilingual first language acquisition in heritage populations in Canada, as well as heritage language teaching and literacy. My dissertation project investigates the possibly of language transfer effects from French in Spanish heritage children in Gatineau, Quebec across a wide range of syntactic, semantic, and lexical phenomenon (i.e., Present Perfect/Preterit and Preterit/Imperfect contrasts, subjunctive, ser and estar, clitic climbing, prepositions, and Passé Composé avoir/être form similarity transfer).
Ruth Maria Martinez
I received an Honours BA in Linguistics from McGill University, where I conducted two sociolinguistic projects on phonological and lexical variations occurring in Rioplatense Spanish, my native variety. I also completed an MA in Linguistics at Université de Montréal, where I wrote a thesis on the naïve perception of Brazilian Portuguese nasal vowels by Spanish, French, and English speakers. I am currently completing a PhD in Hispanic Linguistics at the University of Toronto under the supervision of Prof. Laura Colantoni. Specifically, I plan to work on the perception-production link in the second language acquisition of Portuguese nasal vowels as well as on nasalization processes in Caribbean and non-Caribbean Spanish varieties.
Latin American literature.
Latin American literature.
Carlos Antonio Pajuelo
Matthew J. Patience
I am currently completing my Ph.D in Hispanic Linguistics. My primary interest lies in the theoretical aspects of language acquisition, specifically second and third language acquisition of Spanish and other Romance languages. I am also interested in language variation; in particular, the factors that lead to sound change, and the changes that are currently in progress in Latin American dialects. I first became interested in Spanish from University courses I took while completing my undergrad degree at the University of Victoria. In order to become completely fluent, I spent time living in Granada, Spain and Buenos Aires, Argentina. During my last year in Buenos Aires, I studied Linguistics at the University of Buenos Aires. I then moved to Toronto to complete my M.A. in Hispanic Linguistics, and the following year I began my Ph.D.
Erin Suzanne Marie Pettibone
My interest in languages began as a child, after moving to Canada and learning English as a second language. I was formally introduced to Linguistics during my undergraduate degree at the University of Toronto, where I majored in French Language & Linguistics and minored in Spanish. My passion for languages led me to the MA program in Hispanic Linguistics, where I developed an interest in phonology in the context of second language acquisition. Currently, I am completing my PhD. My thesis focuses on the second language acquisition of Spanish sounds by native speakers of Romanian and French. My secondary areas of interest are third language acquisition and socio-phonetic variation.
Medieval and Golden Age Spanish Peninsular literature.
I received my BA in Communication Studies and Spanish from York University. Then, I completed my Masters in Latin American Studies from the University Guelph. Upon receiving my MA diploma, I came to the conclusion that Linguistics is the only path I would like to discover further and that is why I continued with Spanish and applied for PhD. My primary interests include sociolinguistics and SLA. In the next years, I would like to combine these two fields and examine the impact of the society on the acquisition of the minority language, that of Italo-Mexican community, Veneto. Specifically, I am interested to see how its variety has been modified in the past generations on the basis on its phonology and phonetics, and secondly, to define the implications for such a long sustainability of the Veneto language.
Maria Soledad Zabalza
M. Soledad Zabalza holds a Master degree in Latin American and Caribbean Studies from the University of Guelph and a BA Honors in Spanish from Wilfrid Laurier University. She is currently a third-year Ph.D. student in the department of Spanish & Portuguese at the University of Toronto. Her doctoral dissertation focuses on the political construct of travel literature in the Argentine South during the nineteenth century. Her research on the political discourses of these expeditions of the Argentine Patagonia and La Pampa regions, seeks to analyze how these hegemonic discourses were constructed by white men explorers, why were they successful in excluding the indigenous peoples, and the way these same negative views of the other are still reaffirmed in our society by means of the media. Soledad was invited by LASA southern-cone to present her doctoral research in its Symposium, which will be held in July 2017 in Uruguay.