Giovanna Montenegro

Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Romance Languages
Binghamton University- SUNY


PhD Comparative Literature Dec. 2013         University of California, Davis, CA

(Designated Emphasis in Critical Theory)

Fulbright Fellow 2011-2012                                           Freie Universität Berlin

MA Comparative Literature Jan. 2007  San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA

BFA Photography Jan. 2002                          San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, CA


Manuscript IN Progress

Title:  “Heretical Stains: German Bankers and the Conquest of Venezuela”

A comparative study of German and Spanish travel narratives, chronicles, and maps that analyze the German conquest and governance of Venezuela by the Welser bankers and its cultural memory on both sides of the Atlantic.


“The Welser Phantom”: Apparitions of the Welser Venezuela Colony in Nineteenth and Twentieth-century German Cultural Memory.” Transit: A Journal of Travel, Migration, and Multiculturalism in the German-speaking World.11.2 (2018): 21-53.

“Conquistadors and Indians ‘Fail’ at Gift Exchange: An Analysis of Nikolaus Federmann’s Indianische Historia (Haguenau, 1557).” MLN, 132 (2017): 272-290.

“Indigenismo and Futurism in Latin America: José Carlos Mariátegui and the Peruvian Avant-Garde.” International Yearbook of Futurism Studies: Special Issue: Futurism in Latin America. Vol. 7 (2017).  International Yearbook of Futurism Studies Volume 12

“Futurism in Venezuela: Arturo Uslar Pietri and the Reviews Indice and válvula.” In Günter Berghaus, Ed. International Yearbook of Futurism Studies. Berlin: De Gruyter, 2012.

“Encuentros cinematográficos y tecnológicos en el aula.” With Consuelo Cervantes and Valentina Velázquez-Zvierkova. Brújula. 8 (2010):103-104.

Book Chapters

“Mapping El Dorado in the 19th Century: A Retrospective of Boundary Atlases of Venezuela/British Guayana and Brazil/ French Guyana. ” In Kathleen Brosnan and Jim Akerman, eds. Mapping Nature Across the Americas. University of Chicago Press, 2018. Under Consideration.

“Teaching El Inca Garcilaso de la Vega’s Royal Commentaries along with Visual Representations of the Exploration, Conquest & Colonization of Peru.” Approaches to Teaching the Works of Inca Garcilaso. Eds. Christian Fernandez and José Antonio Mazzotti. Prospectus for Volume Pre-Approved and Forthcoming. Manuscript Accepted.

“Venezuelan Avant-Garde: María Calcaño’s Erotic Poetry.” In Renée Silverman, Ed. The Popular Avant-Garde. Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2010.

Encyclopedia Entries

“Early Native Voices from the Spanish Colonies.” Gale Researcher: American Literature. Cengage Learning. <> Published in 2016.

“Literature from the Discovery and Conquest of Florida.” Gale Researcher: American Literature. Cengage Learning. <> Published in 2016.

“Venezuela.” Handbook of International Futurism. Ed. Gunther Berghaus. Berlin: De Gruyter.  Forthcoming in 2017.

Book Reviews

Review of Autobiographical Writing by Early Modern Women, by Elizabeth Teresa Howe, Bulletin of Hispanic Studies 95.1 (2018): 113-114.

Review of The Black Doctors of Colonial Lima: Science, Race, and Writing in Colonial and Early Republican Peru, by José R. Jouve Martín, Bulletin of Hispanic Studies 94.9 (2017):1040-1041.

 Review of  Murder & Counterrevolution in Mexico: The Eyewitness Account of German Ambassador Paul Von Hintze, 1912–1914. Ed. by Friedrich E. Schuler. German Studies Review, 40 (2017): pp. 206-208.

 Review of Phronesis-Prudentia-Klugheit: Das Wissen des Klugen in Mittelalter, Renaissance und Neuzeit; Il sapere del saggio nel Medioevo, nel Rinascimento e nell’età moderna, eds. A. Fidora, A. Niederberger, and M. Scattola. Comitatus 45 (2014):306-308.

Review of Aguirre o La posteridad arbitraria: La rebelión del conquistador vasco Lope de Aguirre en historiografía y ficción histórica (1561-1992), by Ingrid Galster. Nuevo Mundo: Mundos Nuevos . Jan. 2012.

Review of Eyes, Lies and Illusions: The Art of Deception by Laurent Mannoni, Werner Nekes, and Marina Werner. German Studies Review 12 (2006): 623-25.


German to English:

Metzig, Gregor M. “The Cloister as a Crossroads of Diplomacy Between Emperor Maximilian I. (1486-1519) and Portugal.” Casa Perfeitísima 500 anos da fundaçao do mosteiro da Madre de Deus (1509-2009). Lisbon: Instituto dos Museus e da Conservação, 2009.

Teaching Experience

Cuzco, Peru Study Abroad Program- Faculty Director- Binghamton University:

Sustainability in an Era of Globalization:History, Culture and Literature of the Andes Summer 2016; Summer 2017.

Assistant Professor Comparative Literature & Romance Languages, Binghamton University  2015- Current

Travel & Exploration Graduate Seminar

Enlightenment and Empire Graduate Seminar

Intro to World Literature

Perspectivas de la naturaleza en la época colonial (España, América Latina)

Cultura Hispana    

 España Contemporanea


Lecturer German and Russian Department, University of California, Davis Spring 2014-2015

First Year German 

Lecturer Women and Gender Studies Department, UC Davis                         Spring 2015 Intro to Women and Gender Studies 

Instructor UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine:Continuing Education Spring 2015 Spanish for Veterinary Professionals

Instructor Davis Adult Education    2014-2015 Italian Conversation for Travelers

 Associate Instructor (Sole Instructor), University of California, Davis 2010-2013

Comparative Literature 1 Great Books of Western Civilization “The Ancient World” Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013.

Comparative Literature 2 Great Books of Western Civilization “From the Middle Ages to Enlightenment.” Winter 2012, Spring 2012.

Comparative Literature 3 Great Books of Western Civilization: “Modern Crisis.” Fall 2009, Winter 2010.

Spanish 1 (Spring 2010)

Italian 2  (Substitute; Winter 2010)  

Reader, Spanish Department, Introduction to Latin American Culture and Poesía y artes visuales (Prof. Ana Peluffo)                                      Winter & Spring  2011

English as a Second Language (ESL) Instructor, Communication & Culture Program, UC Davis Extension               2010-Current

Intercultural Research Project

US Culture & Society

Everyday Expressions and Idioms

Composition Intermediate


Reading and Vocabulary- Intermediate and Advanced


Teaching Assistant, University Of California, Davis,                                             2008-2009

Comparative Literature 6 “Myth and Legend”

Teaching Assistant: Comparative Literature 5 “Literature of Fantasy and the Supernatural”     

Other Teaching Activities

Chaperone for High School Teens, Salamanca, Spain, Edu-Culture Int.            Summer 2010

Bilingual Educational Administrator, Embassy of Spain, Ministry of Education    2006-2007

Other Relevant Work Experience 

 Marketing and PR Rep, Passione Pizza, Berkeley, CA             10/2013-10/2014

Circulation Assistant, San Francisco Bay Guardian, San Francisco,CA     2002

Photo Assistant, Dance Magazine, Oakland, CA                               2000 – 2001

Digital Coordinator, US News & World Report, Washington, D.C.      1999-2000

Distinctions & Awards


Huntington Library Short-Term Grant                                                                     2017

Newberry Library Short-Term Grant                                                                        2017

Herzog-August Bibliothek Short-Term Grant                                                           2017

NEH Fellowship “Mapping Nature in the Americas”- Newberry Library          2014

Fulbright Fellowship, Freie Universität, Berlin, Germany                        2011-2012

Critical Language Scholarship Alumni Development Fund for Russian Course   2012

Davis Humanities Institute Summer Travel Grant                                  July 2011                                                                                            CAORC Critical Language Scholarship in Kazan, Russia                        Declined

CAORC Critical Language Scholarship in Astrakhan, Russia        June, July 2008


Dean’s Research Leave                                                                           Fall 2017

Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (IASH) Fellowship              Spring 2017

Mellon Research Initiative in Early Modern Studies Fellow                 2012-2013

Tinker Foundation Pre-Dissertation Travel Grant for Venezuela            June 2011

President’s Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, UC Davis                                     2007-2011

Sally Casanova Summer Research Fellowship, Freie Universität Berlin        2006

Sally Casanova CSU Pre-Doctoral Program Scholar                           2005-2006

Conference Papers

  • Presenter: “German Heretics as Governors of the Colonies? Emperor Charles V and the Welsers in Venezuela.” Presenter in “Iberian Sovereignties Panel.” Latin American Studies Association Conference, Lima. 30 April 2017.
  • Presenter: “The Trope of Ethnography in Spanish Colonial Texts through Current Ethnographic Discourse.” Presenter in “Colonial Ethnographies Panel.” Modern Language Association, Philadelphia. 6 January 2017.
  • Presenter: “La representación de los Welser en la historiografía colonial venezolana.” Presenter in “Historia I. Representaciones, celebraciones, y estatuas ” IV Jornadas de la Sección de Estudios Venezonlanos (LASA), Caracas. 17 November 2017.
  • Presenter: “The De Soto Expedition in Text and Map: Indigenous Actors in El Inca Garcilaso De La Vega’s Florida of the Inca (1605).” Presenter in “Reconsidering Narratives of Discovery and Conquest” Panel.  American Society for Ethnohistory Conference. Nashville, November 9-12, 2016.
  • Co-Organizer: “Hemispheric Approaches to Literature and Cartography in the Americas.” American Comparative Literature Association. March 17-20, 2016. Harvard University.
  • Presenter: “The Essequibo & El Dorado: A Cartographic Exercise in Mapping Fantasy in Nineteenth-Century South American Boundary Disputes.”Hemispheric Approaches to Literature and Cartography in the Americas Stream. American Comparative Literature Association. March 19, 2016. Harvard University.
  • Discussant: “Nation and Race in the Visual Culture of Latin America.” Latin American Studies Association Conference. May 29, 2015. San Juan, Puerto Rico.
  • Presenter: “Connecting Habsburg Spanish and Portuguese Empires During the Age of Discovery: Nuremberg and Augsburg.” Presenter in “Connecting Spanish and Portuguese Empires” Panel.  Modern Language Association Conference. January 9, 2015. Vancouver, BC.
  • Presenter: “Captivity Narratives, or The Desire to Escape from and in the New World: A Look at Hans Staden’s Wahrhafftige Historia (1557) and Werner Herzog’s Aguirre Der Zorn Gottes (1972).” Presenter in “Germans and ‘Others’ in Early Modern Literature” panel. German Studies Association Conference. Saturday, September 20, 2014. Kansas City, MO.
  • Commentator: “Agency and Transformation in German Women’s Travel Narratives.” German Studies Association Conference. Saturday, September 20, 2014. Kansas City, MO.
  • Presenter: “Praying Against the Sights and Sounds of New World Paganism: Jean de Léry and Hans Staden amongst the Tupis in Sixteenth-Century Brazil.” Presenter in “Panel 2: Ancient, Medieval, and Pre-Modern Iterations of Religion and Literature.” Faultlines of Modernity Conference: New Contexts for Religion, Ethics, and Literature. June 2, 2014. San Francisco State University.
  • Presenter: “Mandeville and Marco Polo in German Fifteenth and Sixteenth-Century Cosmography and Cartography.” California Medieval History Seminar. May 3, 2014. Huntington Library.
  • Presenter: “Do Mediterranean Studies Speak to Latin American Colonial Studies?: A Suspected German Lutheran Conquers A Suspected ‘Morisco’ in the Canaries Before Taking On the New World.” The Mediterranean Seminar/ University of California Multi-Campus Research Project. “Minorities in the Pre-Modern Mediterranean.” Winter Workshop March 8, 2014. San Francisco State University.
  • Participant & Presenter: “Ethnography in Sixteenth-Century German Travel Narratives.” In “The Challenge of Ethnography in German Studies” Seminar. German Studies Association Conference. October, 2013. Denver, CO.
  • Presenter: “The Identity Crisis of Comparative Literature in North America and Europe.” XXe Congrès de l’Association Internationale de Littérature Comparée (AILC). 18-24 July 2013. Paris, France.
  • Presenter: “The Sublime in Sixteenth-Century Travel Narratives and Images. Textual and Visual Representations of Encounters in South America.” Junges Forum, Gesellschaft für Überseegeschichte. 8-10 June 2012. University of Vienna, Austria.
  • Presenter: “Hübsch oder hässlich? Légendes dans l’Indianische Historia (1557) de Niklaus Federmann.” Journée d’Etudes “Aufklärung, visions et spectres, entre traditions et nouveaux défis.” University of Toulouse Le Mirail. December 16, 2011.
  • Presenter: “The Cartographer’s and the Adventurer’s Narrative: Depiction of the New World and Reading Practices in the Early Modern Period.” Alexander Von Humboldt & Ibn Batouta Conference. Rabat and Kenitra, Morocco.  November 21-24, 2011.
  • Presenter: “German Conquistador and the Native Other: Niklaus Federmann and the German Colonization of Venezuela.” Fifth International Alexander von Humboldt Conference: Travels Between Europe and the Americas. Freie Universität, Berlin. July, 2009.
  • Presenter: “Interpretations of Natural Beauty in Kant’s Critique of Judgment, Adorno’s Aesthetic Theory, and Derrida’s Truth in Painting.” Modes of Transgression: Graduate Student Colloquium in Early Modern and Eighteenth-Century Studies. UC Davis. April 18, 2009.

Conference Papers on Professional Topics

  • Organizer Special Session: “Strategies for Advocacy, Lobbying, and Activism in the Humanities: A Roundtable.” With Sasha Colby; Bruce Krajewski (Univ. of Texas, Arlington); Teresa Mangum (Univ. of Iowa); Juan Miranda (UC Davis); Fei Shi (Quest Univ.); Julie Ziegler (Humanities Washington). Modern Language Association Conference. January 10, 2015.
  • Presenter: “Students of Color and Graduate School- ‘Just Don’t Go’ and Recent Debates in Perspective.” Women of Color Conference, UC Davis. May 10, 2014.
  • Presenter: “Class, Women of Color, and the Graduate Student Experience.” Women of Color Conference, UC Davis. May 11, 2013.
  • Co-Organizer: “Terminal: Examining Master’s Degrees.” Roundtable at the Modern Language Association Conference, Boston, MA. January 2013.
  • Co-Organizer: “Colonial Latin America” Forum. University of California, Davis, May 2011.
  • Co-Organizer: “Graduate Student Colloquium.” Department of Comparative Literature. Davis, CA. May 2011.
  • Moderator: “International Graduate Students and Junior Faculty Members: Shaping Our Professional Landscape.” Roundtable. Modern Language Association Conference. Los Angeles. January 2011.
  • Workshop Speaker: “Graduate Students of Color: Strategies for Success.” Modern Language Association Conference. Los Angeles. January 2011.
  • Roundtable Leader for the 2008 ACLA meeting in Long Beach, CA: “The Terminal MA in Comparative Literature – Gateway to the PhD? or a Career in the High-School or Community College?” April 2008.

Service to the Profession

  • Speaker, Workshop for Graduate Students: “Finding Funding.” UC Davis               Nov. 2013
  • Delegate Assembly Member,  Regional Delegate, Western United States and Canada, Modern Language Association                                                                                             2011-2013
  • Graduate Student Representative, Committee on the Status of Graduate Students in the Profession, Modern Language Association                                                               2009-2011
  • Managing Editor, Peer Review Editor, Copyeditor:

Brújula: revista interdisciplinaria sobre estudios latinoamericanos       2007-2011

  • Student Representative, Graduate Student Association, UC Davis                                    2008
  • Grad. Student Rep. American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA)       2007-2009

Professional Affiliations

American Comparative Literature Association

Latin American Studies Association  + Venezuelan Studies Section

Modern Language Association

German Studies Association


Spanish: Native Proficiency.

English: Native Proficiency.

German: Near-native Proficiency.

French: Near-native Proficiency.

Italian: Near-native Proficiency.

Latin: Advanced Proficiency.

Russian: Intermediate Proficiency.

Portuguese: Beginning Proficiency.

Quechua: Beginning Proficiency.