News & Events

Professor Ruiz wins research grant
Congratulations Professor Ruiz

María Luisa Ruiz | Dept. of World Languages and Cultures, wins Faculty Research Grant 

Gender and Melodrama in Narco Narratives

The grant will support the completion of a book manuscript, Gender and Melodrama in Narco Narratives, which is under contract with Lexington Press. In this manuscript, I analyze the representation of Mexican women in the world of the drug trade in news stories, films, telenovelas, crónicas (short stories that mix fact and fiction) and novels published since 2001. I argue that the trend of women as protagonists in these modes of cultural production about the drug trade, both the fictional and the real, are strikingly similar and rely on conventions of melodrama. I redefine the concept of melodrama and instead reconfigure it as a socio-political narrative that becomes deployed across popular culture and social media, impacting how society interprets their lived reality besieged by constant cartel warfare. This project is a crucial line of inquiry for future Latin American Cultural Studies and Borderlands scholarship that is highly innovative and will undoubtedly provide deeper insights into Mexican society and culture.

On Friday, March 18, from 5 to 7 p.m. in the Soda Center there will be a Scholars Reception to celebrate the grant winners, sabbatical recipients, Annual Faculty Award winners, and all of the work our colleagues engage in across our campus.