For department news, contact the SHS Administrative Secretary, Ms. Barbara Turner, at  257-7366.






Professor’s Fulbright research on Mayan literature opens dialogue between TCU and Mayan students





In early 2013, Dr. Donald H. Frischmann, professor of Spanish & Hispanic Studies, accepted a 6-month Fulbright Research Award in which he collaborated with professor and award-winning Mayan poet Wildernain Villegas at the Universidad Intercultural Maya de Quintana Roo (UIMQROO) in Jose Maria Morelos, Quintana Roo, Mexico. The Fulbright Scholar Program offers opportunities for American scholars, artists, and professionals to conduct research, lecture, and/or consult with other scholars and institutions abroad. During this period, he and In collaboration with Villegas, a poet and professor at the Universidad Intercultural Maya de Quintana Roo (UIMQROO) in Mexico, Frischmann set out to document, translate and publish the work of the state's talented Mayan-language writers, which in recent years has been eclipsed by the tourist industry and their geographic isolation. Together, they completed a series of videotaped interviews of thirteen writers residing throughout Quintana Roo, collected original literary materials, offered stylistic analysis in both Yucatec Mayan and Spanish, and translated each of the 80 texts into English.  The publication of their findings, titled “Contemporary Mayan Writers in Quintana Roo,” is forthcoming.

As a result of his important research, Dr. Frischmann has presented at the Fulbright-Garcia Robles Mid-Term meeting, held in Mexico City and at the recently inaugurated Gran Museo del Mundo Maya (Great Museum of the Mayan World) in Mérida, Yucatán. He also offered a six-part workshop on the topic of Contemporary Mexican Indigenous-Language Writers based on his research and his previous work on the University of Texas book series, "Words of the True Peoples" at UIMQROO.

Dr. Frischmann also invited TCU students from his class “Contemporary Mexican Indigenous Literatures” to join him over fall break to experience Mayan Culture and engage in dialogue with Mayan students at UIMQROO. Caleigh Prewitt, a junior Spanish major, said she was surprised to see how different the Mayan culture was compared to the overall Mexican culture. “It was incredible to be able to personally experience Mayan ceremonies and learn about a sizable part of the Mexican population that is usually not distinguished or set apart,” Prewitt said in a TCU 360 article.

Donald Frischmann (Ph.D., University of Arizona; M.A., Ohio State University; B.A., University of Missouri) has been an AddRan faculty member since 1985. He teaches courses in Spanish language and Latin American literature, culture and civilization. His areas of additional specialization include Mexican theatre, cultures, and literatures, including those of the nation's 68 ethnic and linguistic groups. His thirty years of field research throughout Mexico have resulted in numerous books and articles published at home and abroad. In 1994, he established the TCU Summer Study in Mexico Program in Puebla and is piloting a new program in Mérida, Yucatán. Dr. Frischmann's books have been formally presented by leading experts and writers at The Americas Society, the National Museum of the American Indian (NYC), the National Palace of Fine Arts, the National Museum of Art (Mexico City) and the Latino Cultural Center (Dallas). He has held the Fulbright Research Award for Mexico on two occasions, and has also been a National Endowment for the Humanities Research Scholar.



Dr. Frischmann leads student group to Yucatán to meet Mayan authors



Yucatán visit news story




TCU Language and Culture Fest


The TCU Language and Culture Fest took place on 24-26 September 2013. It was a resounding success, with hundreds of attendees participating in the multiple events. Offerings included information tables, exhibits, panels, performance of the Dance of the Continents, and a jazz concert, among others, and the keynote address by Rob Schmitz, the chief of the China Bureau of "Marketplace" on American Public Media. The video of the Opening Ceremony with the Parade of Flags is below.




Keynote Address



Link to the Language and Culture Fest Program


TCU Language and Culture Fest


Links to News Coverage


TCU 360
TCU 360

TCU 360

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

More news from TCU Magazine


Awards Day

The Department of Spanish and Hispanic Studies held its inaugural Awards Day to celebrate the scholastic achievement of Spanish majors and minors.


Three sets of awards were given:

The Antonio Rivarés Award for Outstanding Scholastic Achievement in Spanish was presented to a graduating major in Spanish judged by the faculty members as having distinguished himself or herself academically.


The Faculty Choice Award for Excellence in Spanish was presented to Spanish majors and minors who achieved overall best performance in the courses taught during this year by the faculty member who made the choice. 


The Special Recognition for Service to Mesa Hispánica was presented to students who distinguished themselves through service to the Spanish club.


Date:  Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Time:  4:00pm  (Reception at 5:00 pm)

Place:  BLUU Student Center, Eastside Ballroom (3301C & D)

Recent Accomplishments

Winner, Department with most participants in TCU LEAPS Fall 2009

Comprehensive curricular reform

Lower enrollment limits on language courses

Construction of new website

Sponsorship of major theater event (Fall 2009)

Publication of nine books since 2004

Winner of the 2007 Cor Award

Addition of four full-time faculty since Fall 2008


New Faculty Spotlight

The Department of Spanish and Hispanic Studies was greeted with following recent faculty additions:


F. Komla Aggor joined the Department as its Chair in Fall 2008 from John Carroll University, a Jesuit university in Cleveland, Ohio. He is a graduate of the University of Ghana, University of Western Ontario, and UCLA. Professor Aggor directs TCU’s Summer Study Abroad in Ghana, which is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2010. He is also co-director of the bi-annual International Conference on Afro-Hispanic, Luso-Brazilian, and Latin American Studies (ICALLAS).


Sohyun Lee joined the Department in Fall 2009 as a Trans-Atlantic scholar from the University of Arizona, where she completed her doctorate earlier in the year. Her work deals with documentary film, gender studies, and border studies. She also has interest in studying the dynamics of urban processes and their repercussions on socio-cultural phenomena. She has previously served as a reporter, producer, and translator for Korea Broadcasting System, after living for years in Paraguay. As a graduate student, Dr. Lee served in multiple academic capacities, as Coordinator of Services, editor and assistant editor, Undergraduate Student Representative, Graduate Student Representative.


Ryan Schmitz became a member of the departmental family in Fall 2009 as a scholar of Golden Age Spanish literature. He completed his doctorate earlier in the year at the University of Texas, Austin, where he distinguished himself as an outstanding teacher. His research focuses on Cervantes’s works, with strong interests in Trans-Atlantic, particularly as they relate to colonial narratives of Spanish America. Dr. Schmitz lived for three years in Mexico, where he also taught English to business executives.


New Courses Spotlight

Beginning Fall 2009, these new courses will become part of the regular Spanish curriculum. Consider enrolling in them.


SPAN 20403 - The Hispanic City
SPAN 31303 - Introduction to Spanish Linguistics
SPAN 31803 - Service-Learning in the Latino Community
SPAN 32203 - Popular Cultures of Spanish-speaking Countries
SPAN 32303 - The Cinema and Media of Spain
SPAN 32403 - The Cinema and Media of Latin America
SPAN 32503 - Panorama of Spanish Literature 1 (Pre-1800)
SPAN 32603 - Panorama of Spanish Literature 2 (Post-1800)
SPAN 32703 - Panorama of Latin American Literature 1 (Pre-1820)
SPAN 32803 - Panorama of Latin American Literature 2 (Post-1820)
SPAN 41003 - The Art of Spanish Translation
SPAN 41103 - Golden Age Spanish Poetry and Drama
SPAN 41203 - Cervantes and the Renaissance
SPAN 41303 - Modern Spanish Literature
SPAN 41403 - Latin American Poetry and Theater
SPAN 41503 - Latin American Short Story
SPAN 41603 - Latin American Novel
SPAN 41703 - Contemporary Mexican Indigenous Literatures
SPAN 41803 - Afro-Hispanic and Caribbean Literature
SPAN 41903 - Hispanic Women Writers
SPAN 42003 - Hispanic Literature in USA
SPAN 42103 - Luso-Brazilian and Hispanic Literatures and Cultures
SPAN 43303 - Hispanic Topics in English Translation
SPAN 49003 - Special Topics in Hispanic Literature and Culture

International Conference

The Department will once again be co-sponsor of the International Conference on Afro-Hispanic, Luso-Brazilian, and Latin American Studies (ICALLAS), which will be held at the University of Ghana, August 2-5, 2011. For details, go to


Study Abroad

Two new study-abroad programs were started in 2010.


Buenos Aires (Argentina)

TCU in Buenos Aires had a succesful beginning in 2010. It will be repeated in 2011. Interested students should contact the program director, Dr. Steven Sloan,


Ghana Summer Study Abroad

This interdisciplinary cultural program was inaugurated in summer 2010.  The next program will take place in summer 2012.  For details, go to or contact the program director, Dr. Komla Aggor (


Student Activities

The Mesa Hispánica (Spanish Club) is in business! Anyone interested please contact Karla O'Donald


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