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Guadalupe Carrillo
Graduate Dissertation Fellow 2012-2013, English

Guadalupe Carrillo is a PhD candidate in English at Stanford University who specializes in US Ethnic literature and women of color feminism. Her research examines how the cultural and literary analysis of feelings can provide a social critique of race, class and gender in the 21st century. She is currently writing her dissertation, entitled "Immigrant Heartbreak in the Contemporary US Novel,” where she brings together feminist theory and comparative race and ethnic studies to analyze the aesthetic characterization and political meanings of immigrant sorrow as depicted by a new wave of immigrant writers of color in the US. Carrillo demonstrates how writers such as Junot Díaz, Karen Tei Yamashita, Salvador Plascencia, Teju Cole and Gary Shteyngart depart from a sentimental portrayal of immigrants by depicting their sorrow as a "heartbreak," which signifies a rupture in feeling that leads to cultural change rather than despair. Carrillo argues that the failed heterosexual love stories and heartbreaks represented in these US immigrant narratives points to an ideological shift in how we currently imagine American identity and gender equality in multicultural communities in the US. Overall, her dissertation illuminates a process of social transformation that takes place at the everyday, emotional level and the role that narrative form plays in re-mediating old feelings into new ones.