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Monica Rios

Visiting Assistant Professor


Mónica Ramón Rí­os is a writer, scholar, and editor, working in the intersection of film, literature, archives, feminism, utopias, and spectral bodies.

Rí­os will publish her book of short stories, Cars on Fire, by Open Letter Books in 2020. Additionally, she is the author of the novels Alias el Rucio (2015), Alias el Roci­o (2014), and Segundos (2010). She is also the author of the essays Literaturas y Feminismo (2018), Cine de Mujeres en Postdictadura (2010), and La Escritura del Presente: El Guion Cinematográfico como Género Literario (2010), which was a awarded with a recognition of the Best Essay in the Humanities in her home country in 2008.

Her current book manuscript The Spectral Archive is an inquiry into the forms of history making and the possibilities of fiction and visual technologies to contest reality by making visible utopic landscapes traced in films directed by Chilean women in the 1910s,1920s,1990s, and 2000s––films that were destroyed, are unfindable or inaccessible. By incorporating epistemologies from feminist theory and literary fiction, decolonial methodologies, and various forms of film technology brewed under the aesthetic misnomer of “experimental”, the book uncovers a web of counterhistories embodied in the fiction produced by women. The spectral archive is a metaphor constructed in dialogue with Gabriela Mistral’s Poem of Chile, which becomes a methodology of inquiry into a long, albeit forgotten, history of resistance and solidarity between minoritarian subjects. By centering on the metaphor of the spectral––understood as those presences that are merely sensed through traces and errors of archival and visual technologies––, the book considers the films of Gabriela Bussenius, Rosario Rodrí­guez, and Valeria Sarmiento. These film directors experimented with different formats to visualize counterhistories, such as pseudonyms, crossdressing, femme fatales, prostitutes, and melodrama. In other words, they experimented with aesthetic strategies not yet colonized by male-nationalist-white filmmakers to give a body to an-other ethics of artistic creation and collective organization.

She has held fellowships from the Andrew Mellon Foundation, Women and Gender Studies at Rutgers University, and the Comisión Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologí­a for her Master and Doctoral Studies.

She is also one of the creators and editors of Sangrí­a Editora, which you can check out here:

PhD in Spanish (Latin American Literature and Film), Rutgers University
MA in Literary Theory, Universidad de Chile
BA in Literature and Linguistics, Universidad Católica de Chile