Mehl A. Penrose
Associate Professor

Mehl Penrose holds a doctorate in Hispanic Languages and Literatures from UCLA. His research focuses primarily on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century cultural and literary studies of Spain. He is also interested in studying non-normative discursive representations of masculine gender expression and male sexualities, journalistic texts, the intersections of legal, medical, and literary discourses, German philosophical and political influences on modern Spanish thought, and queer theory as it relates to modern Spain.

His book, Masculinity and Queer Desire in Spanish Enlightenment Literature (Ashgate 2014), examines the non-normative male figure in late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Spanish cultural discourse. His latest publications include (1) “Found in Translation: Homoerotica and Unconventional Muslim Masculinities in Gaspar María de Nava Álvarez’s Poesías asiáticas.” The Routledge Companion to the Hispanic Enlightenment. Eds. Elizabeth Franklin Lewis, Mónica Bolufer Peruga, and Catherine M. Jaffe. Abingdon, UK and New York, NY: Routledge, 2020, 342-54 and (2) "Performing the Closet in Clarín's La Regenta," Decimonónica 15.1 (Winter 2018): 32-49. 

He has also published articles in such refereed journals as DieciochoRevista Hispánica ModernaRomance Quarterly, and Mester.

His current book project examines the origins of the forensic and psychiatric image of the non-normative subject in nineteenth-century Spanish hygiene and sexology manuals and the influence of the latter on the development of Realist and Naturalist narrative in Spain. He received support for the project in the form of a UMD Research and Scholarship Award for Fall 2014 and a UMD sabbatical in Spring 2015.

Dr. Penrose teaches upper-division undergraduate courses in Spanish and Latin American culture and literature of all periods. He also teaches graduate seminars on Spanish Romanticism; gender, sexuality, class, and nationality in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Spanish literature; gender and sexuality in German, French, and Spanish literature of the Enlightenment; and the Realist and Naturalist novel in Spain.

He is currently a member of the Modern Language Association, the International Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, and the Ibero-American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies.
Jimenez Hall