Mehl Penrose holds a doctorate in Hispanic Languages and Literatures from UCLA. His primary research specialization is the culture and literature of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Spain. He is also interested in studying non-normative discursive representations of male gender and sexuality, journalistic literature, the intersections of medico-forensic and cultural discourses, costumbrismo, and German philosophical influences on nineteenth-century Spanish thought. His book, Masculinity and Queer Desire in Spanish Enlightenment Literature, was published by Ashgate in 2014 and examines the non-normative male figure in late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century cultural discourse. He has published articles in such refereed journals as Dieciocho, Revista Hispánica Moderna, Romance Quarterly, Mester, and Journal of Hispanic Higher Education. 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 prose characters. It is supported by a UMD Research and Scholarship Award for Fall 2014 and a UMD sabbatical in Spring 2015. Before arriving at UMD, Dr. Penrose taught in the Texas A&M University System and at Miami University of Ohio.
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, and nationality in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Spanish literature; and the Realist and Naturalist novel.
He is currently a member of the Modern Language Association and the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies as well as an at-large Board Member of the Ibero-American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies.
'Masculinity and Queer Desire in Spanish Enlightenment Literature'