Language, culture, philosophy and the art of the narrative came together at UNC for Ph.D. student Francisco Laguna-Correa. A Global Heel student enrolled in the Department of Romance Languages in the UNC College of Arts and Sciences, Correa is studying Hispanic studies and 19th-century cultural studies, with a focus on Mexico.
Since arriving at UNC, he has won awards for his fiction writing, including the National Literary Prize of the North American Academy of the Spanish Language (ANLE) in 2012 for a book of flash-fiction Finales felices, and the International Poetry Prize “Desiderio Macías Silva” for a “broken novel” Ría Brava/Ría Grande, awarded by the Mexican publishing house Azafran y Cinabrio.
Correa grew up in Mexico City, which he describes as “a metropolis where you can find anything that you can imagine, from surreal bookstores and recondite restaurants to social demonstrations and significant social inequalities.” The multilingual author’s first language is Spanish, and he has studied Latin, Greek, French, Italian, German, English and Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs.
In addition to his wide-ranging language interests, Correa has studied at institutions around the world. He earned two master’s degrees in philosophy and social anthropology at the Autonomous University of Madrid in Spain.
Correa recalled finding out about UNC’s Romance languages program while studying in Madrid. “The faculty carries out research that aligns with my intellectual interests,” he said. In particular, he wanted to work with Juan Carlos González-Espitia, associate professor of Spanish at UNC.
Correa says that his diverse experience growing up in Mexico City and traveling the world as a student gives him a broad foundation from which to interpret class material. He says he has most enjoyed the seminars “Poïesis in Latin American” taught by González-Espitia and “Indigenous Literatures in Latin America” taught by Emilio del Valle-Escalante, associate professor of Spanish.
Published November 25, 2013.