I read Classics and Spanish at Merton College, Oxford, during which I spent a year as a volunteer with Fundación Manos Abiertas in Entre Ríos, Argentina, before moving to Linacre College for my Masters and Trinity Hall, Cambridge, for the PhD. After one year as a Teaching Associate in Cambridge I began at Exeter in Michaelmas 2017. In my spare time I enjoy learning new languages (most recently Korean), getting out of doors, and choral singing.
My research to date has been concerned with the question of how poetry can be used to think through notions of the body politic, violent conflict and the resistance to it, faith and identity. The monograph based on my doctoral thesis connects the ‘new wars’ of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries to political thought and the literary culture of early modern globalisation in the connected communities of Hispanic Europe and the Americas. It uses the epic poetry of Peru as a gateway into this web of questions. The communities represented in these epics — Amerindian polities, Spanish colonists, conglomerate armies, African maroon settlements, the Ottoman Empire and English pirates among others — are extremely heterogeneous, and the emergent conflicts between them demonstrate the need for both a new ethics of warfare and a new language for political community. I have also been engaged in co-editing a volume dedicated to the study of early American poetry more generally.
My next project, ‘Epic Testaments: Textual Communities and Judaeo-Christian Identities in the Hispanic World, 1580-1680’, sets out a new approach to sacred epic poetry written in Spanish. This diverse body of poems created a space in which minority groups, such as the Sephardic diaspora, might formulate a distinctive identity and sense of community.
I am keen to hear from potential graduate students interested in exploring early modern Hispanic literature and culture, especially those who may wish to focus on poetry, religious culture and/or colonial Latin America.
I teach all areas of sixteenth and seventeenth-century Spanish literature, as well as translation from Spanish to undergraduates. This year I lectured on the Spanish mystics, the Inquisition and censorship, and the New World in early Spanish literature.
‘”De gente que a ningún rey obedecen”: Republicanism and Empire in Alonso de Ercilla’s La Araucana’, BHS 91.4 (2014), 417-35
‘¿”Adonde falta el rey, sobran agravios” (IV.5)? The Siege of Saint-Quentin and Two Worlds of War in Alonso de Ercilla’s La Araucana’, in Stephen Boyd and Terence O’Reilly (eds) Artifice and Invention in the Spanish Golden Age (Oxford: Legenda, 2014), pp. 173-84
‘The Spectacle of Conquest: Epic Conflicts on the Seventeenth-Century Spanish Stage’, in Fiona Macintosh, Justine McConnell, Stephen Harrison, and Claire Kenward, eds, Epic Performances from the Middle Ages into the Twenty-First Century (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018)
Rodrigo Cacho and Imogen Choi, eds, The Rise of Spanish American Poetry, 1500-1700: Literary and Cultural Transmission in the New World (Oxford: Legenda, 2019)
‘La presencia oculta de Torquato Tasso en la Tercera parte de La Araucana de Alonso de Ercilla (1589-90)’, Bulletin Hispanique, 2019