Dr. Laura Barbas-Rhoden

Professor of Spanish


My area of work is the environmental humanities, with a focus on the contemporary Ibero-American world and on public research that furthers intersectional approaches to environment, place, and health. It’s been an honor for me to serve as co-Diversity Officer (2017-19) and co-President (2020-21) for the Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment, an international professional organization that supports and furthers work in environmental humanities.

I joined the faculty at Wofford in 2000 and shortly after, with community partners, co-created the College’s longest running community-engaged learning course (SPAN 303, Advanced Spanish with Community-Based Learning). I’ve written two monographs, Writing Women in Central America (Ohio University Press) and Ecological Imaginations in Latin American Fiction (University Press of Florida) and publish widely. My public research has been generously funded by Wofford collaborative undergraduate research grants, and student fellows on those research teams have presented at national and international conferences.

I hold a Ph.D. is in Latin American literature from Tulane; M.A., Latin American studies, with a focus on Central American studies; and B.A., Spanish, from the University of Georgia.

I am Cypriot-American, daughter of a Cypriot father and US mother. The history of Cyprus has been shaped by colonialism and geopolitical conflict, and members of my family have been immigrants, internally displaced people, refugees, and advocates for those who are displaced. I grew up in the US South, and Spartanburg is a community I’ve enjoyed calling home. It’s a pleasure to share it with a growing network of people committed to making it an ever more equitable, thriving, and resilient community.