Dr. Stéphanie Panichelli-Batalla

Head of Spanish

Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
Member of the Centre for Critical Inquiry into Society and Culture (CCISC)

Stephanie Panichelli-Batalla
I obtained my B.A. and M.A. in Romance Philology (French and Spanish) from the Katholieke Universiteit van Leuven (KUL, Belgium) in 2000. That same year I was also awarded my Teacher’s Certificate in Romance Philology and subsequently a Complementary Degree in Spanish Language and Culture including a stay of six months at the Instituto de Literatura y Lingüística de La Habana (Cuba). I obtained my PhD in 2006 at the Universidad de Granada (Spain).
In 2004 I published an extended version of my Master’s Degree Dissertation in collaboration with a colleague from the Universidad de Granada: Gabo y Fidel. El paisaje de una amistad (Espasa Calpe). The book was translated into six languages. My most recent monograph analyses the testimony in Reinaldo Arenas’ Pentagony (Tamesis Books, 2016).
My current research focuses on the impact of Humanitarian Aid on collective identity construction and alteration, and more specifically on the case of the Cuban Internationalist Solidarity Programme. In the summer of 2014, I was awarded the British Council Researcher Links grant, which allowed me to start a collaboration with the Cuban Heritage Collection (University of Miami) and create an archive entitled “Life Stories of Cuban Internationalist Healthcare Professionals”.
I teach Spanish language modules and thematic modules related to Latin America. My research focuses on Caribbean Studies from an interdisciplinary point of view, bridging the areas of Cultural Studies, Sociology and Oral History.

  • Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy 
  • PhD in Hispanic Philology – Universidad de Granada (Spain) 
  • Complementary Studies in Spanish Language and Culture - Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium) 
  • Teacher’s Certificate in Language and Literature: Romance Languages - Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium) 
  • MA in Romance Languages – Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium) 
  • BA in Romance Languages – Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium) 

Undergraduate modules:

  • Introduction to Latin America
  • Contemporary Latin America
  • Final Year Dissertation
  • Human Rights in Latin America
  • Representation of Minorities
  • Intermediate Spanish

Postgraduate Modules:

  • Research Methods


I have worked as a freelance author and reviewer of Spanish textbooks for the US educational system.


  • Hoy día. Spanish for Real Life. Workbook – Student Activities Manual (4th edition), New Jersey, Pearson Education/Prentice Hall, 2010 (with online version on www.myspanishlab.com). 

Journal Articles

  • “Cuban Doctors in the Sandinista Nicaragua. Sharing Memories“ (Journal of the Oral History Society, publication in progress)
  • With Severine Hubscher-Davidson. “Educating for Sustainability in Language Degrees: A Tale of Two Case Studies”. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol 17 Issue 3 (2016), pp. 404-16
  • “Autofiction as a fictional metaphorical self-translation: The case of Reinaldo Arenas’ El color del verano.” Journal of Romance Studies, Vol. 15 (Spring 2015), Issue I: 29-53.

  • "Celestino antes y después del alba". Revista Internacional d’Humanitats, 23 (Aug.-Dec. 2011): 27-38.

  • “La nostalgia y el exilio: comparación entre  “Final de un cuento” de Reinaldo Arenas y Paso a nivel de Manuel Díaz Martínez”, in Piney, Grace and Pancrazio, James. Cuba: Arte y Literatura en exilio, Legua editorial, Valencia, 2011, pp. 45-54.

  • “Una novela inédita de Reinaldo Arenas”. Revista Caribe 11: 2 (Winter 2008-2009): 51-60.

  • “Otra vez el mar… Los cantos de Reinaldo Arenas”. Revista Hispanocubana 30 (Jan.-Apr. 2008): 125-142.

  • “Mariel, veinticinco años después”. Revista Sinalefa 10 (Jan.-Apr. 2005): 18-21.

  • “García Márquez y Cuba desde la perspectiva de César Leante”. Creación y Exilio. Memorias del I Encuentro Internacional Con Cuba en la distancia. Cádiz: ed. Hispano cubana, 2003. 182-188.

  • “Entrevista a Silvio Rodríguez”. Somos Jóvenes (Havana) 204 (Feb.-Mar. 2002): 5-9.

Special Issue

“Oral History and Cuba.” (ed.) Special Issue of the Journal of the Oral History Society (publication planned for September 2017)

Book Reviews

  • “El regreso del padre pródigo”. Review of the novel Salidas de emergencias by Alexis Romay (Baile del Sol, 2007) Encuentro de la Cultura Cubana (Madrid) 44 (Spring 2007): 268-269.

Other Publications


  • Cuban International Solidarity Programmes
  • Oral History
  • Testimony in contemporary Latin American literature
  • Cuban history and literature

Papers Delivered

  • “The Role of Humour in Oral History Interviews. A case study of two Cuban Internationalist Healthcare Professionals”, Cuba Research Forum Annual Conference, University of Nottingham, 6 September 2016.
  • “Cuban Doctors in the Sandinista Nicaragua. Sharing Memories”, “Oral History and Cuba: A Changing Society?”, One-day workshop with invited speakers, Aston University, Birmingham, 23 April 2015.
  • “Roundtable on Archival Research”, LSS Research Seminars Series, Aston University, Birmingham, 22 April 2015.
  • “From pride to humiliation: an Oral History project in Hialeah”, Hispanic Seminars Series, University of Birmingham, 11 February 2015.
  • “Life stories of Cuban health workers in international solidarity missions”, Poder y Democracia: Las multiples voces de la Historia Oral, XVIII Congreso de la IOHA (International Oral History Association), July 10, 2014. 
  • “Life stories of Cuban internationalist health professionals”, Cuban Heritage Collection, University of Miami, June 17, 2014. 
  • “Blogging: a new way of life writing in Cuba: the case of Dr. Eloy A. González”, AHGBI Conference, Oxford University, Oxford, United Kingdom, March 25, 2013. 
  • “Autobiographic Novel vs. Autofiction: Reinaldo Arenas’ Pentagony”, Writing Lives Symposium, Institute of Advanced Studies, University of Warwick, May 25, 2012. 
  • “Autofiction as a literary revenge: Reinaldo Arenas’ The Color of Summer”, AHGBI Conference, Stirling University, Stirling, United Kingdom, April 2, 2012. 
  • “Cultures of Latin America”, Languages and Translation Studies Conference, Aston University, Birmingham, United Kingdom, June 14, 2011. 
  • “Paula Pérez Alonso’s No sé si casarme o comprarme un perro: from crisis to recovery”, SECO- LAS (Southeastern Council of Latin American Studies) Annual Meeting: “Crisis and Recovery in the Americas", New Orleans, USA, April 16-18, 2009.
  • “El color del verano de Reinaldo Arenas: ¿ficción o testimonio?”. 61st Annual Kentucky Foreign Language Conference, Lexington, Kentucky, April 18, 2008.
  • “Otra vez el mar... Los cantos de Reinaldo Arenas”. 2007 SECOLAS (Southeastern Council of Latin American Studies) Annual Meeting: “Contesting Images of Latin America”, San José, Costa Rica, April 20, 2007.
  • “Qué dura fue la vida de Reinaldo Arenas”, Race, Revolution and Representation: New Perspectives on Latin America, UNC Charlotte, Charlotte, USA, February 24, 2007.
  • “Celestino antes del alba: ¿una novela testimonial?”, Con Cuba en la distancia, Universidad de Cádiz, Cádiz, Spain, November 9, 2004.
  • “La pentagonía de Reinaldo Arenas: el testimonio de un autor perseguido”, XII Conferencia de Literatura de Estudiantes Graduados, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA, October 23, 2004.
  • “Cirilo Villaverde versus Reinaldo Arenas: el amor y el erotismo”, Erotismo y representación de la mujer en la cultura latinoamericana y caribeña, Casa de las Américas, Havana, Cuba, February 21, 2002.
  • “García Márquez y Cuba desde la perspectiva de César Leante”, Con Cuba en la distancia, Universidad de Cádiz, Cádiz, Spain, November 8, 2001. 

Workshop organised


  • British Council Researcher Links Grant, Spring 2014.

If you are interested in doing a PhD in Latin American culture or politics, please contact me for an informal discussion of topics and funding opportunities. Currently I am interested in the following topics:

  • Oral History in Latin America
  • Autofiction in Latin American Literature
  • Documentary novel in Latin American Literature
  • Human Rights in Latin America


Room: NX15
Phone: 0121 204 3796 
Email: s.panichelli@aston.ac.uk