Marguerite Itamar Harrison
Associate Professor of Spanish and Portuguese
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At Smith I teach Portuguese language as well as interdisciplinary courses in Brazilian studies, for which I have been the recipient of the Sherrerd award for distinguished teaching. Having grown up in both the United States and Brazil, I am bilingual in Portuguese and English, and my translations of contemporary Brazilian fiction often appear in Brasil/Brazil, Metamorphoses and Review: Literature and Arts of the Americas. Before receiving a doctorate in Portuguese and Brazilian studies at Brown University, I earned a master's degree from the University of Texas at Austin in Brazilian art, and my subsequent research has continued to draw from, and often unite, literature and the arts.
My research in contemporary Brazilian fiction, film, and visual art addresses ways in which literature and visual culture can contribute to raising social consciousness, particularly in terms of gender, class and race marginality. In 2007 I edited Uma Cidade em Camadas, a transnational volume of essays on contemporary Brazilian writer Luiz Ruffato. My published work has appeared in Chasqui: Journal of Latin American Literature, Latin American Literary Review, Luso-Brazilian Review, Studies in Latin American Popular Culture, Women's Review of Books, and other publications. My current work is focused on Brazilian women filmmakers, whose works challenge the status quo and resist dominant codes by redirecting the cinematic gaze and confronting social inequities: domestic violence, prison conditions, mental institution neglect, and the abuses of the justice system.
My SWG cross-listed courses include POR221: The Brazilian Body and the seminar POR381: Multiple Lenses of Marginality: New Brazilian Filmmaking by Women. I have served on the Program Committee since 2001.