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Spanish and Latino Studies

Book Presentation: “The pleasure of killing a mother”

Posted in: Faculty News

Book Cover for Marta Lopez Luaces

MARCH 15 FROM 4:30 TO 6:00PM, Dickson Hall 178

El placer de matar a una madre by Marta López Luaces, Published by Ediciones B, Penguin Radom House

Marta López Luaces, a professor in the department of Spanish and Latino Studies, will be presenting her book along with professor Nuria Morgado from State Island College.

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The book will be sold at the event!

About the Book
El placer the matar a una madre (The pleasure of killing a mother) explores the oppression of women under the Spanish dictatorship that lasted from 1939 to 1975. The novel takes places between 1972 and 1975, the year the dictator, Franco, died. In 1972, Miriam is accused of killing her mother and is confined to a sinister psychiatric hospital. There, Miriam will learn that many women accused of being crazy were women who broke the social norms of the regime. In the mental hospital, Miriam will meet other women, some locked up by their own families for no other reason than not fitting into the roles allowed to women, that of wife and mother. Under Franco´s dictatorship women who broke from social norms (single mothers, lesbians, women with mental disabilities, even women raped by a family member) were sent to mental hospitals. These women were deemed sick. The official discourse was that they were helping them; yet by sending women to mental hospitals, the regime was masking the oppression of these women. The international community understood political dissent exclusively in terms of political ideology, and not as social dissent: women and members of the LGBT were left to their own devises. Even in such a horrible place as a mental hospital in Franco’s dictatorship, Miriam is able to create real friendships with other women. It is through these friendships that she begins to see a different future for herself beyond that allowed by the regime.

About the Author, Marta López-Luaces
Marta López-Luaces (A Coruña, Spain, 1964) is a poet, novelist and translator. She holds a Ph. D. in Spanish and Latin American Literatures from NYU (2000). As a novelist she published El placer de matar a una madre (Madrid: Penguin Random House, Ediciones B, 2019) and Los traductores del viento (Madrid: Vaso Roto, 2013). Los traductores del viento was awarded the International Latino Book Award 2014. She published four books of poetry and a plaquette: Distancias y destierros (1998), Las lenguas del viajero (2005) and Los arquitectos de lo imaginario (Valencia, Pre-Textos 2011), the plaquette is entitled Memorias de un vacío (2000) and Después de la oscuridad (Valencia: Pre-Textos, 2015. Los arquitectos de lo imaginario was finalist for the prestigious Ausiás March Award (2011). In 217 Tigres de Papel published Y soñábamos con pájaros volando an anthology of her poetry. Her work has been published in numerous anthologies in Latin America, Spain and the United States. A selection of her poetry work was translated into Rumanian and published under the titled Pravalirea focului (Orient-Occident, 2010). Her poetry has also been translated into Italian under the title of Accento Magico (San Marco, 2002). Translated into French a selection of her work was published in the journal étoiles déncre. Revue de femmes ern Méditerranée, 2007. The translator Gary Recz just finished translating Los arquitectos de lo imaginario into English. Selections of her poetry work have also appeared in English in the following anthologies: New Poetry from Spain (Talisman, 2012), Poetic Voices without Borders 2 (Gival Press, 2009), and Revel Road’s chapbook series (2004). Her poetry has also been published in English in Mandorla, Tamame and Literary Review. She has translated into English Robert Duncan’s Selected Works, under the title, Tensar el arco y otros poemas (Madrid: Bartleby, 2011), A Table of content by Dorothea Tanning (Madrid: Vaso Roto, 2018) and And For Example by Ann Lauterbach. She along, along with Johnny Lorenz and Edwin Lamboy have translated and published, and showcased the work of new generation poets in New Poetry from Spain: An Anthology (New Jersey: Talisman House, 2012). Marta López Luaces is also an active New York City poet, novelist, and translator engaged in promoting the encounter between English and Spanish-language writing in the United States through a bilingual poetry series she curates at the New York Public Library, Tompkins Square.

About Nuria Morgado
Nuria Morgado is Professor of Hispanic Studies at The College of Staten Island and The Graduate Center of The City University of New York (CUNY). Her research includes modern and contemporary Hispanic literature, cultural studies, comparative literature, and the relationship between literature, culture, and philosophy. She has edited and co-edited several books and published numerous essays, book chapters, interviews, and book reviews both nationally and internationally. Professor Morgado is part of the Academic Committee of the Miguel Delibes Chair, founded by The Graduate Center (CUNY) and Universidad de Valladolid (Spain). Additionally, she is Full Member of the North American Academy of the Spanish Language (ANLE) and Correspondent of the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE). Professor Morgado is also the co-founder of Letras Hispanas: Revista de Literatura y Cultura, the book review editor of the Arizona Journal of Hispanic Cultural Studies, and the editor-in-chief of Boletín de la Academia Norteamericana de la Lengua Española (BANLE), the ANLE’s academic journal. Moreover, she serves on several editorial boards.