Ruth Brown

  • Lecturer
  • Academic Coordinator
  • Hispanic Studies
1141 Patterson Office Tower
Research Interests:
Fall 2017 office hours: Mon, Tues, Friday 9-12, Wednesdays by appointment from 10-12 and 2-4:30. Other times available by appointment, just ask! 

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 2017

SPA 203: High Intermediate Spanish

12-12:50 MWF

This course is designed to advance students' knowledge of Spanish at the intermediate level by fine-tuning the skills of reading, speaking, listening, and writing. The goal of the course will be to focus on useful vocabulary, to practice functional grammar, to further explore cross- cultural analysis, and to develop students' communicative competence in Spanish. This course is designed for students' transition directly from high school Spanish to second-year college Spanish. Enrollment is based on departmental placement test. Not open to students from SPA 102 or 103.


SPA 480: Hispanic Kentucky

1-1:50 MWF

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 student’s experiences in the community, non-fiction writing, visual art, and cinema to inform our study of the history and current experience of los kentuquianos. As a service-learning course, student will be required to complete a minimum of 20 hours of service-learning and excursions in the community during the semester in addition to regular class discussions, readings, and assignments. While some of our readings and supplementary materials will be in English, the majority of course assignments and class discussions will be conducted in Spanish.  Pre-requisite: SPA 310.

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