Hispanic Studies Review, Vol. 5, No. 2, 2021.

Reconciliation in the Dust: Cynicism and Exclusion in Héctor Gálvez’s Paraíso (2009)

By Pablo G. Celis-Castillo, Elon University.

Hispanic Studies Review – Vol. 5, No. 2 (2021): 1-16


A select corpus of cultural works about the Peruvian armed conflict wholeheartedly adopt the “reconciliation” project advanced by the Comisión de la Verdad y Reconciliación (CVR): to seek the “truth” about the period of violence in an effort to overcome the racism and contempt that characterize the country’s social dynamics to foster a more inclusive society and to prevent future instances of violent turmoil. The film Paraíso (2009) does not endorse reconciliation as uncritically as other cultural materials. Through the bleak portrayal of the lives and the continuous failures of its protagonists, inhabitants of a slum in Lima, the film suggests that the reconciliatory efforts inspired by the CVR thus far have fallen short in creating a more equitable society. Joaquín, Antuanet, Lalo, Sara, and Mario dream of a bright future but know that their race and socioeconomic status are impassable social barriers. They respond to this exclusion with cynicism, an understandable emotional and political response that illustrates the deep sense of disappointment that large segments of the Peruvian population feel towards their country’s sociopolitical institutions.

JWhere Do We Draw the (Eye)Line(r)?: Makeup and the Consumption of Latina Bodies

By Amanda L. Matousek, Wofford College.

Hispanic Studies Review – Vol. 5, No. 2 (2021): 17-38


This article examines the social media responses to the marketing of two MAC Cosmetics makeup campaigns inspired by deceased Latinas. The conception and creation of the MAC-Rodarte Juárez collection and the MAC Selena collection represent an awareness of increasing Latinx visibility and buying power in the U.S. However, each exoticizes Latinas and contributes to their social and political invisibility in particular ways. While superficially it seems obvious why consumers would reject the Juárez collection and not Selena’s, a more profound analysis within the contexts of body studies and Deborah Paredez’s notion of Selenidad, or the acts of remembering Selena, reveals a deeper distinction. That is, the contrast of these MAC makeup campaigns reveals the line between the agency of claiming Latinx memory and identity and a politics of the corpse that banalizes violence and furthers impunity, invisibility, ignorance, and indifference toward real suffering bodies.

Assessing the Effect of English Contact on Spanish Futurity in 19-century Texas

By Russell Simonsen, Miami University.

Hispanic Studies Review – Vol. 5, No. 2 (2021): 39-54


Since the 13th century, the Spanish periphrastic future (PF; voy a cantar) has been steadily replacing the morphological future (MF; cantaré) (Aaron, 2006). Attempting to account for the especially fast rate of change from the MF to PF in US Spanish, researchers have suggested that contact with English is one of the causes (e.g., Balestra, 2002). Nevertheless, this hypothesis has not been assessed in a balanced way with data from both Spanish and English. The present study documents the use of the Spanish PF and the analogous English construction going to + infinitive in Northern Mexico/Texas during the years 1822–1836, the first period of intense contact between these languages in the region. A crosslinguistic comparison of these future constructions was completed in order to determine their degree of susceptibility to contact-induced change through linguistic convergence. Serving as a case study, the future expression of the advanced bilingual Stephen F. Austin was also examined. The results do not suggest that the Spanish PF accelerated specifically due to contact with English during this period. I discuss this conclusion in the context of recent work on Spanish futurity in the US and outline important considerations for future research on this topic.