Ana Rueda

rueda's picture
  • Professor of Spanish Literature
  • John E. Keller Endowed Professor
  • Arts & Sciences Distinguished Professor
  • Hispanic Studies
1153 Patterson Office Tower, 1165 Patterson Office Tower
(859)-257-1565, (859)-257-7095
Research Interests:

Ph.D., Spanish Literature, Vanderbilt University, 1985

M.A., Linguistics, University of Florida, 1980


Dr. Ana Rueda, born in Bilbao, Spain, earned her M.A. in Linguistics from the University of Florida and her Ph.D in Spanish Literature from Vanderbilt University. Her specialization is Modern and Contemporary Spanish Literature. She came to the University of Kentucky in 2002 and served as Chair of the Department of Hispanic Studies from 2005 to 2014. Since 2015 she is John E. Keller Endowed Professor in the Literature, Culture, and Linguistics of Spain and also 2014-15 College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor for excellency in the three areas of Research, Teaching, and Administration/Service. She has received major research awards, including a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Fellowship, a Summer NEH Stipend Award, and an Hispanex Award from the Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte in Spain. She is also the recipient of several teaching awards: the Kemper Award for Excellence in Teaching, the Great Teacher Award from UK's Alumni Association, and a Teacher Who Made a Difference Honoree.




Fields: Modern and Contemporary (18th-21st Century) Spanish Literature.

Narrative (short story, novel, epistolarity, war literature, travel writing). Colonial Studies (Spain-Morocco), Interdisciplinary studies. Women´s writing. Literary and intellectual history.

UK Affiliations: War and Gender, an interdisciplinary research work group.

Interests: Fiction writing (short story).

Current Work (Teaching and Research):

Recent seminars: Realism and Naturalism, The Short Story & Micro-Fiction, Costumbrismo,  The Age of Enlightenment, The Rise of Realism, The Aesthetics of Drama in Contemporary Spain, Travel Writing in Hispanic Literature, 19th-Century Drama and the Romantic Subject,  Epistolarity, War Literature, Introduction to Hispanic Studies.

Recent undergraduate courses and seminars: Carmen in Franco-Hispanic Literature & Music (IS), Introduction to Hispanic Literature, The Myth of Don Juan in Western Literature, From the Age of Enlightenment to Romanticism, Short Fiction in Hispanic Literature.

Her work in progress includes (1) Fictions of Conflict, a book-length study on the problem of writing war that draws on fictional and non-fictional accounts of the War of Africa (1859-60), and (2) a book-length study on travel writing and the absurd.

Honors, Awards and Grants

RECENT HONORS: 2015-present, John E. Keller Endowed Chair in the Literature, Culture and Linguistics of Spain; 2014-15 Distinguished Professor in the College of Arts & Sciences for her research, teaching, and service/administration.

TEACHING AWARDS: She was honored by UK's College of Education as a Teacher Who Made a Difference in 2013 and received a Great Teacher Award from the Alumni Association in 2012. She has also been honored with the prestigious Kemper Award for Excellence in Teaching.

RESEARCH AWARDS & GRANTS: She received an award from Hispanex (Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte, Spain) that subsidized her publication Minificción y nanofilología: Latitudes de la hiperbrevedad (forthcoming, 2016). Her book El retorno/El reencuentro: La inmigración en la literatura hispano-marroquí (2010), was chosen Book of the Week by Radio Exterior de España, September 16, 2010. In 2007 she received a Major Research Award from the University of Kentucky, and a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Summer Award for a component of her book project Fictions of Conflict in 2006.She is also the recipient of a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) for her book Cartas sin lacrar (2001), among other honors and grants.

Selected Publications: 



Cartas sin lacrar: La novela epistolar y la España Ilustrada, 1789-1840 (Iberoamericana/Vervuert, 2001) offers the first comprehensive study of a previously forgotten literary genre. It documents and analyzes more than forty novels of both the Enlightenment and the Romantic periods written in the form of letters that, despite their considerable popularity at the time, remain unknown even to specialists in the field. The book has become a standard reference in the field. (ISBN: 84 848 9018 X)

Pigmalión y Galatea: Refracciones modernas de un mito (Fundamentos, 1998) provides an interdisciplinary and comparative study of how writers in both the nineteenth and twentieth centuries have refashioned this self-reflexive myth of the artist. The book begins with a preliminary discussion of Ovid's Metamorphoses, not only to establish historical and critical context, but also to stage an alternately complementary and conflicted dialogue between Ovid´s text and the aesthetic theories that the Pygmalion-Galathea myth has generated since the Romantic period. In keeping with the book´s comparative interest, Rueda analyzes such authors as Bécquer, Galdós, Gómez de la Serna, Alarcón, Torrado, Grau, Quiles, Resino, Arrabal, Vázquez Montalbán, and Isabel-Clara Simó in relation to those by such other European and American authors as Poe, Merimée, Hoffman, Hawthorne, Balzac, Pushkin, Shaw, Capec, Landolfi, Oates and Petry. (ISBN: 84 245 0784 3)

Relatos desde el vacío. Un nuevo espacio crítico para el cuento actual (Orígenes, 1992) explores the short story in Spain from 1970 to 1985, particularly as influenced by Latin American masters of the genre. This book constructs a new theoretical model for the genre as it discusses short story collections by such Spanish authors as Javier del Amo, Rafael Dieste, Ricardo Doménech, José Ferrer-Bermejo, José Ángel Valente, Carmen Martín Gaite, and Enrique Vila-Matas, among others. (ISBN: 84 7825 061 1).


Minificción y nanofilología: Latitudes de la hiperbrevedad (Iberoamericana-Vervuert, 2017) is a critical edition that gathers select proceedings from the VIII International Conference on Microfiction held at the University of Kentucky in October 2014. Beyond the proceedings, the books offers a Brief Atlas of Microfiction written by specialists in the following countries/regions: Portugal and Brasil, Haiti and Other French Antilles, Italy, Rumania, Hungary, Greece, and Island. The book is prefaced by Rueda's introduction, "Perspectivas actuales para la minificción: Un balance."

El retorno/El reencuentro: La inmigración en la literatura hispano-marroquí (Cátedra Miguel Delibes; Iberoamericana-Vervuert, 2010) is a critical edition that gathers recent literary expressions (2000-2010) on the topic of migration by Spanish and Moroccan writers. It includes a theoretical introduction, an analysis of the texts selected, suggestions for teaching, and a bibliography on the topic of migration in literature, criticism, film, and music. It is written with the collaboration of Sandra Martín. (ISBN: 978 84 8489 504 6)

Irene y Clara o la madre imperiosa (Universidad de Salamanca, 2003) is the first modern edition and study of an epistolary novel by Vicente Salvá. This critical edition locates the lost 1830 edition of the novel, compares it to subsequent editions available in Spain, and establishes the dual authorship of the text (Salvá collaborated with Gómez Hermosilla in the adaptation of a lost original). As the first in-depth study of this novel, it helps put into perspective Spain´s forgotten contribution to a genre --the epistolary novel-- that reached its peak in 18th-century England, France, and Germany. This novel also establishes an important link between the Age of Enlightenment and the Romantic and Realist novelistic practices of the Modern Period. (ISBN: 84 891 0937 0)


La agenda negra (Endymion, 2001), a collection of short stories, is Ana Rueda's personal contribution to the genre. (ISBN: 84 7731 382 2)


Book Chapters & Articles 

Ana Rueda has published 17 book chapters on gender issues that explore the work by contemporary women writers from Spain and Latin America, war and gender issues, and models of feminine sensibility at the end of the Spanish Enlightenment. She has also published several essay entries in encyclopedias.

Her articles, published in refereed venues such as Insula, Dieciocho, Bulletin of Hispanic Studies, and Revista de Estudios Hispánicos, reflect research interests that span various periods, genres and critical traditions, for instance: early 19th-century shipwreck narratives; epistolary practices in Galdós and Unamuno; links between music or the plastic arts and modern/contemporary texts; intellectual history of the Enlightenment; feminist issues and the experience of women writers; travel writing and migration studies; war studies.

Some of her most recent articles are:

“The Squire as Hero: Sancho Panza in Eighteenth-Century Continuations of Don Quixote.” Dieciocho (Jan. 2017): 2-15 & 42-51. Part of a collaborative cluster titled “Quixotes and Quixotisms in the Hispanic Enlightenment” with Catherine M. Jaffe and Mark Malin. Dieciocho 40.1 (Spring 2017): 1-51.

“Las cantineras de las guerras modernas y el caso español: Más allá del pintoresquismo.” Monográfico Armas y faldas. Crítica Hispánica 2 (Dec. 2016): 1-37.

“Más allá del frente: Turismo de Guerra y Turismo Negro en las guerras hispano-marroquíes (1909-1927).” Nueva Literatura Hispánica (2016): 151-175.


Recent conference papers include:

“Convents in Flames: Sexual Encounters and the Ruse of Letters in Spanish Romantic Novels.” Panel on Eighteenth-Century Habits: Nuns in Fact and Fiction, in the Cloister and Beyond. American Society of Eighteenth-Century Studies (ASECS): Minneapolis, 30 March-1 April 2017. 2.               

“Perú como cripta: la falsa naturaleza en la novela americanista.” VI Congreso Internacional de la Sociedad Española de Estudios del Siglo XVIII. Madrid, Spain, 24-26 October, 2016.

“Amor en guerra: Cruces de género y genéricos en la novela sobre la Guerra de la Independencia de España.” IXI Congreso de la Aosicación Internacional de Hispanistas. Münster, Germany, 11-17 July, 2016.

“Goya’s ‘Sleep of Reason’ and Other States of Somnolence.” Panel: Sleeping Through the Long Eighteenth Century. American Society of Eighteenth-Century Studies. Pittsburgh, PA, April, 2016.

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