Débora Maldonado-DeOliveira in red and black patterned shirt

Débora Maldonado-DeOliveira

Associate Professor of Spanish

105 Martin Hall

(919) 760-2870


Born and raised in Puerto Rico, I attended graduate school in the US and worked as a college teacher in upstate New York and Detroit, Michigan for almost 9 years.  After graduation, I moved to North Carolina and started working at Meredith College in 2000, where I teach  all courses in Spanish language, literature, civilization, and translation. I also enjoy the opportunity to teach courses in other departments, such as the Introduction to Latin American History (HIS 200) for the History department.  I have co-taught courses with colleagues from across other disciplines, such as Literature and Biology (with Dr. John Mecham), and History of Latin America and Liberation Theology (with Dr. Margarita Suárez).  Additionally, I have supervised a wide range of senior theses in Spanish and co-directed research projects in other disciplines such as History and Political Sciences.  Many of my students have presented their research on Student Achievement Day.

As a teacher, I find great satisfaction when my students learn to explore the multiple cultural perspectives that arise in the study of a foreign language.  Indeed, these explorations provoke debates and generate tensions in heated discussions in class, especially among students who hold opposite ideas and react differently to a particular issue.  However, these debates – held in an environment of mutual respect – teach the students to develop strong critical thinking skills. They engage in contemporary issues and learn to dismantle the representations that essentialize the cultural, social, economic, and political ideologies that appear to privilege one group over the others.  These diverse perspectives and numerous critical interpretations make the classroom experience one of enrichment for both the student and the teacher.  These are the experiences that enhance the learning process of teaching.

Academic Credentials

Ph.D. in Comparative Literature – University of Rochester, NY
M.A. in Comparative Literature – University of Rochester, NY
B.A. in Comparative Literature – University of Puerto Rico – Río Piedras


20th-21st century Caribbean and Latin American novel, short story, US Latino/a literature and culture (particularly Puerto Rican), translation methods and practice, Latin American and Caribbean women writers, visual narrative, visual arts, graphic novels


Sabbatical, Meredith College      Fall 2008
Course Release, Meredith College     Fall 2006
University of Rochester Fellowship     1990 – 1996
Ford Foundation Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, Honorable Mention 1990, 1991


“Cultural Translations of Puerto Rican Womanhood in Judith Ortíz-Cofer’s Silent Dancing” in Rituals of Movement in the Writing of Judith Ortíz-Cofer.  Margaret Crumpton and Lorraine López, eds.  Pompano Beach, FL: Caribbean Studies Press, 2012.  185-209.

“Problematic Ideas of Puerto Rico in Puerto Rican Cinema: Luis Molina Casanova’s La guagua aérea”. CENTRO: Journal of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies. Vol. XXIII, No. 1 (Spring 2011: 162-175).

Book Review: The Chicana M(other)work Anthology: porque sin madres no hay revolución (because without mothers there is no revolution).  Cecilia Caballero et al, eds. Tucson, AZ: The U of Arizona P, 2019.  Feministas Unidas Newsletter, 40.1 (Spring 2020): 12-14.

Book Review: The Fantasy Film by Katherine Fowkes.  Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010.  Imagophagia: Revista de la Asociación Argentina de Estudios y Cine y Audiovisual (No. 5, April 2012) (review written in Spanish)

Book Review.  Narnia and the Fields of Arbol: The Environmental Vision of C.S. Lewis by Matthew Dickerson and Davis O’Hara. Lexington, KY: UP of Kentucky, 2009. The Rocky Mountain Review of Language and Literature 65.1 (Spring 2011)

Book Review.  Our Caribbean: A Gathering of Lesbian and Gay Writing from the Antilles.  Thomas Glave, editor.  Durham, NC & London: Duke UP, 2008. The Rocky Mountain Review of Language and Literature. 63.2 (Fall 2009)

I have peer-reviewed articles for the journals The Rocky Mountain Review, A Contracorriente, and Hispania.

Need help locating someone?
Human Resources
1st Floor Park Center
(919) 760-8898
(919) 760-8164