Daddy Yankee for grammar; Vargas Llosa for culture

Asst. Prof. Asima Saad Maura, Foreign Languages and Literatures

Asima Saad Maura, Foreign Languages and Literatures, talks with us about how she brings Spanish language popular music into her UD classes to reinforce grammatical principles, to help students listen with a "grammar ear" and to learn about the singer’s culture. She also discusses Nobel Laureate Mario Vargas Llosa’s upcoming visit to UD (November 13 and 14) and his importance as a literary figure. We also talk about some of her research and academic work with literature and artifacts from the late 17th Century, illustrating the relationship between Spain and "the New World." That conversation led into a general discussion of current examples of the hybrid culture that exists in South America, Central America, and Mexico, including Carpentier’s lo real maravilloso americano (the “marvelous real”).

Listen to the interview

Listen to Asima Saad Maura (11/1/12)
26.7 MB

About our guest

Assistant Professor Asima Saad Maura joined the faculty of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literature in 2008 after completing an MA at the Universidad de Puerto Rico, Río Piedras; a Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania; and ten years of teaching at Temple, Villanova, Bryn Mawr, Haverford, and Swarthmore. She is an enthusiastic and innovative teacher, teaching both Spanish language and literature classes at UD. She was awarded an IT Transformational Grant for the 2012-2013 school year to continue development of clasecitas, mini-lectures that aim to increase her students’ engagement with course material.

As a scholar, she has research interests in

  • the Spanish Renaissance and Golden Age,
  • Early Modern Spanish Literature and Culture,
  • Colonial Latin American and Hispanic-Caribbean Cultures and Literatures from 16th century to the present, and
  • Transatlantic Studies.

She has also edited and published critical editions of three works and is currently working on an anthology of materials from the Latin American colonial period and on an anthology of literary representations of Nueva York (New York) by Spanish, Latin American and Caribbean Writers. She is collaborating on both of these projects with graduate students and undergraduate students through UD’s Office of Undergraduate Research and Experiential Learning.

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Photo credit: Sarah E. Meadows