Celebrating an early unpublished Latin American novel on Nov. 18

José María Vargas Vila
José María Vargas Vila

A roundtable discussion on Nov. 18 at UNC will celebrate the publication of Latin American writer José María Vargas Vila’s manuscript of his novel, En los jardines de Lesbos.

The event will be held at 5:30 p.m. in the Pleasants Family Assembly Room in Wilson Library.

Speakers include Daniel Balderston, Mellon Professor, University of Pittsburgh; Maria DeGuzman, Director of Latina/o Studies, UNC-Chapel Hill; David William Foster, Regents Professor at Arizona State University; and Ariana Vigil, Women’s and Gender Studies Professor, UNC-Chapel Hill.

The book is the first novel in Latin America dealing clearly and specifically with the topic of lesbianism. UNC-Chapel Hill was able to purchase the unpublished manuscript, which is now part of the University’s Rare Book Collection.

Associate professor Juan Carlos González Espitia, in the Department of Romance Studies in the College of Arts and Sciences led the effort to acquire the book. He is the foremost expert and editor of the work of José María Vargas Vila and also created a UNC Libraries comprehensive digital library of all the author’s works.

The event is sponsored by the Department of Romance Studies, the Institute for the Study of the Americas, the Program in Latina/o Studies, the Center for Global Initiatives, the Rare Book Collection and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies.

The Department of Romance Studies also has related events on Nov. 19 and Nov.20.