Global culture and history are fundamental to our work. We research how Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries shaped the world across Europe, America, Africa, and Asia. We ask how they fit into the wider globe, and explore new ways to express those relationships.
Global culture and history are fundamental to our work. We research how Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries have shaped the world across Europe, America, Africa, and Asia. We ask how they fit into the wider globe, and we explore new ways to express those relationships.
Our work involves numerous different subjects, and matters to multiple academic fields. From memory to sport, visual arts to history, linguistics to literature, we ask what it means to research in a composite discipline.
Spanish is the second most widely spoken European language in the world, the second most studied language, the second language in international communication and by a wide margin the second language today in the United States. It is estimated that the combined total number of Spanish speakers is close to 500 million.
Portuguese is the ninth most spoken language in the world, with over 250 million speakers. It is the official language of nine countries in Europe, America, Africa and Asia: Portugal, Brazil, Angola, Mozambique, Guinea-Bissau, Cape Verde, São Tomé & Príncipe, East Timor and Macau.
Our research specialisms also include Catalan studies, with a particular focus on Catalan sociolinguistics. Catalan is spoken by around ten million people across Spain, France, Andorra and Italy, and is the vehicle of a fascinating and vibrant culture.
HiPLA is a wide-ranging and research-driven department with a vast array of expertise covering four continents, and we benefit from our location: Bristol is one of the great Atlantic ports, linked historically to the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking worlds and a crucial place to study Slavery and Atlantic studies.
Global and international culture/history
Latin American History: From colonization to present days
Modern and contemporary literature
Spain as a laboratory of social conflict and political violence in Europe’s Age of Extremes
The making of Modern Spain; Origins, course and legacy of the Spanish Civil War
- Matthew Brown, ‘Truth on the Margins: Bringing Memories to Support Transnational Justice in Colombia’, AHRC, February 2021-August 2022
- Jo Crow, ‘Mapping Intercultural Connections and Conversations of the Past’, UoB ESRC-funded Impact Project, 2019-2021
- Ed King, ‘Using Critical Data Comics to Explore Digital Literacies and Social Inclusion in Brazil’ UoB ESRC-funded Impact Project, 2020-2022
- José Lingna Nafafe, ‘Modern Marronage? The Pursuit and Practice of Freedom in the Contemporary World’, ERC Advance Grant, 2018-2023
- Paul Merchant, ‘Reimagining the Pacific: Images of the Ocean in Chile and Peru, c. 1960 to the Present’, AHRC Fellowship, February 2021 - July 2022
Research in the Faculty
Our research forms part of the overall research activities and strategies of the Faculty of Arts.
Looking to join us
We run a regular research seminar series and are frequently involved with one-off research events.