photo- David Lisenby

David Lisenby

Assistant Professor of Hispanic and Italian Studies

Degree/Institution: PhD University of Kansas
Office: HU 212
Phone: (518) 442-4222/4100
Fax: (518) 442-4111


Academic Focus

Research: 19th – 21st century Latin American narrative and theatre; Theories of race, ethnicity, nation, and diaspora; Cuban literature and culture.

Teaching: Representative Spanish American Literature, Indigenist Literature, Short Stories, National Romances, Cuban Literature and Film.



David Lisenby concentrates on constructions of racial and cultural identity in Latin American literature and cultural work, particularly of the Spanish Caribbean, Mexico, Brazil, and the Andes. His book project analyzes redeployments of nineteenth-century figures in Cuban literature, theatre, and film since 1990. Through parody, historiographic metafiction, and the performative repetition of cultural tropes, recent cultural production interpellates nineteenth-century figures in negotiating Cuba’s contentious relationship with lingering racial inequalities. Other projects currently in progress look at the construction of gender and sexuality in the late-nineteenth-century Brazilian novel Bom-Crioulo and at haunting elements in the theatrical oeuvre of contemporary Cuban playwright Abelardo Estorino from the time of the 1959 Revolution to the present.

Lisenby earned PhD and MA degrees from the University of Kansas and a BS from Vanderbilt University. He joined the department as an Assistant Professor in the fall of 2012.

On leave fall 2014 and spring 2015.


Selected Publications

“Decolonizing Tepan: Adaptive Resistance and Alternative Nationhood in Elena Garro’s La dama boba.” Chasqui: Revista de literatura latinoamericana 42.1 (2013): 117-27.

 “Frustrated Mulatta Aspirations: Reincarnations of Cecilia Valdés in Post-Soviet Cuba.” Afro-Hispanic Review 31.1 (2012). Afro-Hispanic Review 31.1 (2012): 87-104.