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Monica VanBladel


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20th-century Latin American literature
Technology and media studies
Religious studies
New materialisms

Monica VanBladel

Ph.D. Candidate in Iberian and Latin American Cultures
Humanities Education Focal Group, Graduate Coordinator

Monica VanBladel is a Ph.D. Candidate in Iberian and Latin American Cultures at Stanford University, where she works on 20th- and 21st-century Latin American literature. She is currently writing a dissertation on the narratological power of Catholic theological concepts in late 20th-century novels from Mexico and Chile. These novels, which narrate violences enacted by the secular state, use particularly Catholic concepts like apocalypse and sacramental confession to shape their representation of this systemic violence. This project sees the repurposing of the Catholic imaginary against modern political violence as the first step in a decolonial process that can lead to new ways of understanding community, beyond Early Modern and Enlightenment paradigms of religion and statehood. 
Before coming to Stanford, Monica earned her B.A. in Philosophy and Spanish Language and Literature from the University of Notre Dame, and then worked in legal services in Washington State. 
Teaching experience
Spanish first-year sequence: Spanish 1, Spanish 2, Spanish 3 (Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015)
Portuguese 1A (Fall 2015)
ILAC 131: Introduction to Latin America (Winter 2016; co-taught with Professor Héctor Hoyos)
Spanish 5B (summer equivalent of Spanish 2; Summer 2016)
Previously served as graduate coordinator of materia, a research group investigating various strands of post-anthropocentric thought: