Ruth Brown

  • Lecturer
  • Academic Coordinator
  • Hispanic Studies
1141 Patterson Office Tower
Research Interests:
Spring 2017 office hours: MWF from 8:30-9:30 and 12-2, Tuesday from 9-2, also by appointment at other times.

PhD, Hispanic Studies University of Kentucky

MA, Spanish University of Kentucky

BA, Spanish Berea College


Currently my teaching emphasis includes instructional design and service-learning curricular development. I am particularly interested in finding practical and professional ways for students to engage with our local Latino community. Beyond the classroom, my research interests also include creative narratives (films, short stories, novels, and chronicles) about migration in the Spanish-speaking world, in particular Mexico and Central America.

I have many years of experience working and traveling in Mexico and the US-Mexico Border region.  I worked with Lexington's Hispanic community for over seven years as a social services provider, health educator, interpreter/translator, and community organizer. During that time I made many trips to Mexico, visiting the states from which Kentucky's migrants hail and getting to know the Mexican health care system and reasons why people choose to migrate. In 2013-14 I served as Director for Georgetown College's Inmersión en Español Spanish Immersion Program. I have also participated in activities with the Foundation for Latin American and Latin@ Culture and Arts, the Latino Leadership and College Experience Camp, and the Lexington Latino Festival Health Fair planning committee.

Selected Publications: 

“Migration Chronicles: Reporting on the Paradoxes of Migrant Visibility.” Textos Híbridos: Revista de estudios sobre la crónica latinoamericana. 2.1 (2012)

“Tensiones heterogéneas: La redefinición de lo subalterno en Sab y Aves sin nido." Retomando la palabra: las pioneras del xix en diálogo con la crítica contemporánea. Claire Martin and Nelly Goswitz, eds. (forthcoming from Iberoamicano in June 2012)

“El activismo local de Maquilapolis: Armonizando la mirada femenina con una política de lugar.” Letras femeninas 36.2 (2010): 199-213.

Review of Woman and Change at the U.S.-Mexico Border: Mobility, Labor, and Activism. Journal of Cultural Geography 26.2 (2009): 248-9.

“Chronicling the Border: Chicano Advocacy in a Mexican Genre in Across the Wire.” Enkidu Magazine 2008 Summer Conference Proceedings. (under review)

Courses in Fall 2016

SPA 480: Hispanic Kentucky

This course is designed to provide students with opportunities to engage with Lexington’s Spanish-speaking community and to think critically about the cultural, political and socio-economic impact of immigration by Spanish-speakers in Kentucky. We will draw on a variety of sources including creative writing, journalism, academic research, visual art, documentary film, and classroom visitors to inform our study of the history and current experience of los kentuquianos. In addition to classroom discussions, oral presentations, written work, and individual research, students will be required to complete 20 hours of service-learning work in the community during the semester*. Students will play an active role in the design of this course and will be able to choose both their service-learning site and the topics that we will study as a class. These choices will allow students to tailor the course to better meet their personal and professional goals.  While many of our readings will be in English, this course will be conducted entirely in Spanish.  Pre-requisite: SPA 310


SPA 203: High Intermediate Spanish

This course focuses on communication and the consolidation of language skills for students with some experience –formal or informal– in Spanish but who are still in need of reviewing and practicing specific language skills before continuing with their studies at advanced levels. This course is designed to review and expand upon the students’ existing knowledge of Spanish at the intermediate level in order to prepare them for more advanced courses.

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