Héctor Hoyos

Héctor Hoyos

Professor of Iberian and Latin American Cultures
Professor, by courtesy, of Comparative Literature
Director, Iberian and Latin American Cultures
Director, Graduate Affairs Committee
2008: Ph.D and M.A., Cornell University, Romance Studies
2002: B.A. with honors, Universidad de los Andes, Philosophy
2001: B.A., magna cum laude, Universidad de los Andes, Literature

Héctor Hoyos is Professor of Iberian and Latin American Cultures and, by courtesy, of Comparative Literature at Stanford University. He holds a Ph.D. in Romance Studies from Cornell University, and degrees in Philosophy and Literature from Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá. Hoyos’s research areas include visual culture and critical theory, as well as comparative and philosophical approaches to literature. His teaching covers various periods and subregions, with an emphasis on contemporary fiction and literary theory. His book, Beyond Bolaño: The Global Latin American Novel (Columbia UP, 2015), is the first monographic, theoretical study of Latin American novelistic representations of globalization of its kind (In Spanish, Los Aleph: Bolaño y la novela global latinoamericana, Crítica, 2020). For Stanford Report coverage, see here. Hoyos edited the special journal issues "Theories of the Contemporary in South America" for Revista de Estudios Hispánicos (with Marília Librandi-Rocha, 2014); “La cultura material en las literaturas y cultura iberoamericanas de hoy” for Cuadernos de literatura (2016); and "Sujetos del latinoamericanismo" for Revista Iberoamericana (with Florencia Garramuño and Romina Wainberg, forthcoming 2022).

His latest book, Things with a History: Transcultural Materialism and the Literatures of Extraction in Contemporary Latin America develops the concept of transculturation as a way of integrating new and historical strands of materialism in the study of narrative. The study focuses on post-1989 authors who rethink materiality, such as the Cuban José Antonio Ponte, the Chilean Alejandro Zambra, and the Bolivian Blanca Wiethüchter. Hoyos received an Alexander von Humboldt Foundation fellowship in connection with this project. Articles by Hoyos have appeared in Comparative Literature Studies, Third Text, Chasqui, Novel: A Forum on Fiction, and Revista Iberoamericana, among others.

Hoyos is an Executive Committee member of the 20th-21st Century Latin American Literature Forum at the MLA and a past board member and Secretary for the Colombianists Association. In 2012-2013, he was a faculty fellow at the Stanford Humanities Center. From 2009-2012, he chaired Cultural Synchronization and Disjuncture, a multidisciplinary forum for contemporary cultural theory at the crossroads of Latin Americanism and comparatism. He currently co-chairs materia, on Latin Americanist and comparative post-anthropocentrisms.

His radio interview on Roberto Bolaño, hosted by Robert Harrison on Entitled Opinions, can be listened here. A 2014 invited lecture can be viewed here; a 2018 lecture here. For a recent essay, visit Public Books.

Professor Hoyos welcomes graduate applicants in all fields of modern Latin American literature and culture, from the 19th century to the present. Dialogues across national traditions are preferred. Primary subfields are the Southern Cone and Colombia; secondary include Cuba and Brazil. Current topics of interest include: contemporaneity; post-anthropocentrisms; globalization and World Literature; fictionalizations of human rights and juridical reasoning. For multidisciplinary projects, see Modern Thought and Literature.



(650) 723-3291
Pigott Hall, Bldg 260, Rm 220

Office Hours

Spring quarter: Tue 2-4pm and by appointment

Research Interests

  • Comparative Studies


  • Latin Languages, Literatures, and Cultures


  • Literary and Cultural Theory


  • Modernism


  • Philosophy and Literature


  • Visual Arts and Visual Culture