The Program of Spanish and Portuguese is the receipient of the first Fulbright Chair in Brazilian Studies at UMass, a position sponsored by the Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies. Prof. Marcus V. Freitas is Professor of Literary Theory at Federal University of Minas Gerais, in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. He holds a Ph.D in Portuguese and Brazilian Studies from Brown University (2000). By the time of his graduation, he was appointed Member of Phi Beta Kappa Society. He is author of eight books, fifteen book chapters, and three dozen articles published in journals over Brazil, Portugal and the USA. Among his academic books, the most important are _Hartt: expeditions in Brazil, 1865-1878_ (2001 - bilingual English/Portuguese. Jabuti Prize 2002); _Charles Frederick Hartt: um naturalista no Império de Pedro II_ (2002); and _Contradições da Modernidade: o jornal Aurora Brasileira_ (2012).
Marcus Freitas is also a poet and an awarded novelist. His crime novel _Peixe morto_ (2008) won the PETROBRAS Cultural Prize 2007, and was finalist for the Sao Paulo Literary Award 2009.
Prof. Freitas will teach BRAZILIAN TRAVELERS IN THE USA, AMERICAN TRAVELERS IN BRAZIL. In his class he will reconstruct aspects of the mutual visions between Brazil and the United States through the reading and analysis of outstanding travel accounts, memoirs, scientific reports, journalistic reports, fictional narratives, as well as painting and photography, produced by American travelers in Brazil, and by Brazilian travelers in the USA. The period covered is approximately from 1860 to 1940. This period is crucial, both in Brazil and the US, to understand how each country entered Modernity. Especially from the Brazilian point of view, America plays a key and controversial role as the modern nation’s model that Brazil simultaneously aims at and refuses to be. Cultural, political, economic, scientific and artistic issues, from both sides, will be taken into consideration throughout the course.