Rachel Neyra

Rachel Ellis Neyra

Rachel earned her Ph.D. in English at Stony Brook University in May 2011.  Her research focuses on Poetics of the Americas, especially Latina/o, Caribbean, Black Diasporic, and Latin American literature and cinema, Literary Theory, and Translation Studies.  In her work on poetics, which branches from Édouard Glissant's oeuvre, she is invested in re-formulating a persistent yet basic question posed by philosophy, What do poets do?, through variations on the statement: the world cannot do without them, for we inhabit a poetic and multilingual world.  

Her dissertation, New World Poetics: Conjoining Migratory, Minor and Fragmented Desires for Place in Latina/o and Caribbean Literature, theorizes Latina/o Poetics in a comparative context.  Building from this work, her current book project (tentatively titled, The Latina/o Line and The New World Cry: Composing a Migratory Poetics of Place) develops three figures: first, the Latina/o line as verse and as trajectory of physical, migratory movement; second, processes of fragmentation not as absolute loss, but radical and vital alternatives to insular definitions of the self; and, third, the figure of The Cry that burst with the collapse of the Plantation throughout the New World.  The Cry is a poetic figure of memory that opens specific ways of reading both the past's and the present's modes of oppression, and its spatial effects on Latina/o, Caribbean, and Black Diasporic imaginations.  

An essay on the Caribbean poets José Lezama Lima and Derek Walcott ("The Orphic Condition of José Lezama Lima, Derek Walcott, and New World Poetics") was published in the recent edition of Sargasso: A Caribbean Journal of Literature, Language, and Culture ("Placing the Archipelago: Interconnections & Extension," 2010-2011, I &II) An essay on Cuban cinema and the island's current national and economic turns has also recently appeared in the online journal, La habana elegante ("From '¡Patria o muerte!' to 'El rincón de la paciencia': Reading the Cuban Nation in Time in Memorias del subdesarrollo, Fresa y chocolate, and Suite Habana").  A review essay on Nathalie Stephens' (Nathanaël's) translation of Édouard Glissant's L'Intention poétiquePoetic Intention, is forthcoming in Obsidian: Literature in the African Diaspora.  Her poetry has been published in Latin America and the US, and she continues to ply the trade.    

In the spring of 2012, she will teach three seminars on literature, cinema, and music.  This past fall, she taught a course on Mexican and Chicana/o Literature and Cinema.  In the spring of 2011, she taught courses on Caribbean Poetry and Cinema, and Cinema of the Cuban Revolution.  She was the curator of the Cuban Revolutionary Cinema mini-series at Film@International House: 


Cinema Studies Program
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