Dr. Christiane Fontinha de Alcantara

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Christiane Alcantara
Honors Faculty Fellow

Office Location: 
Sage South 171
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Christiane Fontinha de Alcantara received her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Purdue University. While at Purdue, she was awarded the merit-based Lorraine K. Lawton Award in 2013, and has received honorable mention in the highly competitive Dean’s Award for Best Instructor Project and the School of Languages and Cultures Literary Award for Best Cultural Paper. Her scholarly interests center on minority and human rights issues and their representation in literature from Renaissance to contemporary times. She is currently working on a book manuscript that explores the role of physical description and beauty of female literary characters. This work looks into scientific, philosophical, historical and literary scholarship to understand the relevance of describing characters’ physical characteristics in literary texts from 1700 until today. She has written on representations of rape and trauma in novels by Loida Maritza Pérez and Edwidge Danticat. Her work exposes the consequences of abuse as experienced by many Caribbean women in historical moments of dictatorships and in their diaspora to developed countries. She has also investigated film and TV adaptations of Shakespeare to Brazilian audiences, which resulted in the publication of “Representations of Shakespearean Women in Contemporary Brazilian Media” in the Forum for World Literature Studies. Her most recent publication, “Silences, Sexual Trauma and Healing in Corregidora and Breath, Eyes, Memory” draws several parallels between the abuse women experienced during dictatorial regimes in Haiti and the intersectionality of gender and racial abuse suffered by African-American women today.