Modern Languages 546
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Acosta, Abraham I
Associate Professor

Dr. Abraham Acosta is Associate Professor of Latin American Cultural Studies in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese. He came to the University of Arizona from the University of Michigan where he received a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature (2007). Prof. Acosta's areas of interest include contemporary Latin American narrative, critical hybridity, political narratology, subaltern studies, postcolonial theory, and critical theory. His book, Thresholds of Illiteracy: Theory, Latin America, and the Crisis of Resistance, is published by Fordham University Press.

Publications since 2001


2014. Thresholds of Illiteracy: Theory, Latin America, and the Crisis of Resistance. Just ideas (Transformative Ideals of Justice in Ethical and Political Thought), edited by Drucilla Cornell and Roger Berkowitz. New York: Fordham University Press.


Chapters in Scholarly Books:

2018. “Crisis and Migration in Posthegemonic Times: Primitive Accumulation and Labor in La Bestia.” Dialectical Imaginaries: Materialist Approaches to U.S. Latino/a Literature in the Age of Neoliberalism.Marcial Gonzalez and Carlos Gallego editors. University of Michigan Press. Pages 241-262.

2018. “The Posthegemonic Turn.” New Approaches to Latin American Studies: Culture and Power. Juan Poblete, editor. New York; London: Routledge. Pages 255-271.

2016. "Illiteracy in Latin America." The Encyclopedia of Postcolonial Studies. Ray, Sangeeta, Henry Schwarz, José Luis Villacañas Berlanga, Alberto Moreiras and April Shemak (eds). Blackwell Publishing.

2013. “Sign-Cutting: Thresholds, Borders, and Others in the Devil’s Highway”. The Shade of the Saguaro/La sombra del saguaro. Gaetano Prampolini and Annamaria Pinazzi (eds). Firenze: Firenze University Press.


2018. Introduction to Special Issue, "Unsettling Coloniality: Readings and Interrogations".  Edited by Abraham Acosta.  Journal of Commonwealth and Postscolonial Studies. 6.1: 3-16.

2016. "Of Failed Retreats: Postcolonial Theory and Post-Testimonial Narrative in Central American Writing." Política Común 9.

2014. "The Wager of Critical Multilingualism Studies." Critical Multilingualism Studies 2.1: 20-37.

2013. "Orality and Politics in Latin America: Thresholds of Illiteracy." CR: The New Centennial Review 13 (2): 203-222.

2012. "Hinging on Exclusion and Exception: Bare Life, the US/Mexico Border, and 'Los que nunca llegarán'". Social Text 30 (4 113): 103-23.

2010. "Contingencies of Silence: Subalternity, the EZLN, and the Accounting of Speech in Latin America". Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies 19:2: 203-223.

2005. "At the Margins of History, the Nation-State and Literature: the Discourse of Comparative Literature and Latin American Subaltern Studies". Dispositio/n: American Journal of Cultural Histories and Theories 25.52: 249-264.

Book Reviews:

2013. “Lund, Joshua. The Mestizo State: Reading Race in Modern Mexico”.  The Americas: A Quarterly Review of Latin American History 70 (1): 117-118.

2013. “Beverley, John. Latinamericanism After 9/11.”  Arizona Journal of Hispanic Cultural Studies 16: 343-344.…

2011. “Legras, Horacio.  Literature and Subjection: The Economy of Writing and Marginality in Latin America”.  Studies in 20th and 21st Century Literature 35 (1): 166-168.


2010-11 Woodrow Wilson/Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship

Currently Teaching

SPAN 352 – Reading Politics and Culture in the Hispanic World

Introduction to major theories, readings and analyses of culture in Latin America, the Iberian Peninsula,and Latinos in the U.S.

SPAN 431 – Issues in Spanish American Culture

Topics to include Spanish-American milieu; geographical, political, and cultural aspects.