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Dr Ana Martins

Senior Lecturer in Portuguese

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01392 724246

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Overview

Ana specialises in Lusophone women's writing. The majority of her research interests lie in postcolonial, transnational and memory studies in Lusophone contexts, with a particular emphasis on Portugal’s relationship with Lusophone Africa and Brazil, as well as dominant French and Anglo-American  theory centres of postcolonial and feminist thought. She was awarded a Visiting Scholarship in Portuguese Studies in 2012 by the Charles Boxer and the Camões Centre at King's College London. In 2014, she held the AHRC Care for the Future Early Career Developmental Award for the project "Consuming Authenticities: Time, Place and the Past in Construction of 'Authentic' Foods and Drinks." In 2017 she was awarded the AHRC Early Career Leadership Fellows grant for research on mobility and memory in the Brown (i.e. Lusophone) Atlantic with the project "Women of the Brown Atlantic: Real and Imaginary Passages in Portuguese 1711-2011". She is the author of Magic Stones and Flying Snakes: Gender and the Postcolonial Exotic in the Work of Paulina Chiziane and Lídia Jorge (Peter Lang, 2012), co-editor of The Luso-Tropical Tempest: Postcolonial Debates in Portuguese (Bristol University Press, 2012), and co-author of Authentic Recipes from Around the World (Ceredigion, 2015).  

Modern Languages at Exeter

Ana is co-founder of the Portuguese Studies degree at Exeter. She is co-founder / co-director of the Exeter Centre for Latin American StudiesEXCELAS. The Centre aims to consolidate and enhance the visibility of Latin American studies (broadly conceived) as a growing field of study at the University of Exeter, and to provide a platform to draw together the existing expertise in Latin America in various departments across the University.

Services to the discipline

Ana is a member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council Peer Review College. She is External Examiner for undergraduate degrees in the Spanish and Portuguese and Latin American Studies, University of Manchester. She is also the Web Liaison for the Lusophone pages (Brazilian, Portuguese and Portuguese-speaking Africa) of the Centre for the Study of Contemporary Women’s Writing (CCWW) - Please get in touch if you would like to contribute to the Lusophone page with content.

Research

Ana's research has been supported through major funding awards from both Portuguese and UK institutions. She was  recently awarded an Early Career Leadership Fellows grant (February 2018 - January 2020). The project, titled "Women of the Brown Atlantic: Real and Imaginary Passages in Portuguese 1711 - 2011," is about mobility and memory in the Brown (i.e., Lusophone) Atlantic.This is a continuation of the AHRC-funded project, "Consuming Authenticities: Time, Place and the Past in Construction of 'Authentic' Foods and Drinks," which won a Care for the Future Early Career Developmental Award in November 2014.

She is a UK partner in the Leverhulme Trust International Network, "Translating Feminism: Transfer, Transgression, Transformation (1945-1990)."

Ana is co-investigator for the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia-funded project "Intersexualidades-Intersexualities," PI Ana Luísa Amaral (University of Porto)

Teaching

Ana teaches across a range of topics in the field of Lusophone studies broadly conceived: empire, colonialism, decolonisation, fascism, dictatorship, and democracy; sexual politics and identity. Her modules cover a variety texts (novels, short-stories, poetry, photography and film) from Angola, Brazil, Mozambique and Portugal. She teaches Portuguese language at all levels.

Research interests

Portuguese feminism

Postcolonial studies

Transnational studies

Diaspora studies

Queer studies

Race and gender studies

Women's writing from the Portuguese-speaking world

Ideas of Africa in Brazil

Monster studies

The "postcolonial exotic"

 

Women of the Brown Atlantic: Real and Imaginary Passages in Portuguese 1711-2011

AHRC Early Career Leadership Fellows Award

This project explores the communities of black women who have participated in the history of mobility and memory-making in the Brown Atlantic in the fields of literature, theory and transnational cinema. Zooming in on a three-century relationship between Brazil, Lusophone Africa and Portugal as its object of inquiry, it will deliver new perspectives on memory making and black female movement that are attentive to gender difference and queer identities, as well as regional, national and transnational affiliations. 

Within this broad aim, the project has five objectives:

  1. To produce the first comprehensive analysis of gender difference and queer identities as the key drivers for thinking about mobility and memory making in the Brown Atlantic
  2. to develop a pioneering theoretical model that draws on the metaphor of the rainbow, derived from a Brazilian popular saying that is traceable to West and Central African mythology, and present in the work of three key Afro-Brazilian women writers (Carolina Maria de Jesus, Conceição Evaristo and Ana Maria Gonçalves)
  3. to develop an intrinsically interdisciplinary and community-oriented approarch that will innovate by means of a methodological shift, from the national location of specific female and male artists to their transnational way of remembering and imagining black women's movement
  4. to provide leadership and development opportunities to other Early Career Researchers
  5. to engage non-Higher Education industry stakeholders in the research process as a means of maximising the project's analysis of diverse voices and experiences.

 

 

 

 

Research collaborations

AHRC Leadership Fellows grant "Women of the Brown Atlantic: Real and Imaginary Passages in Portuguese 1711-2011"

Project blog

This project involves impact-related partnerships with several institutions:

  • Museu Afro-Brasileiro (MAFRO), Salvador da Bahia
  • Núcleo Museológico de Lagos, Lagos (Algarve)
  • Buala (an open access website that provides a digital home for multiple voices from Africa, Brazil, Europe and beyond)
  • Papo Preta (a therapeutic project focused on the health and well-being of black women, based in Portugal and Brazil)

 

AHRC Care for the Future Exploratory Award (Exeter, Leicester, Surrey and Wales)

Project blog

Ana was co-investigator in a project titled, "Consuming Authenticities: Time, Place and the Past in the Construction of 'Authentic' Foods and Drinks." The project was funded by the AHRC Care for the Future Exploratory Award (November 2014 - November 2015). The aim of the project was to critically dissect authenticity as a discursive construct by looking into ideas of timelessness, origins and tradition that contribute to the construction of narratives of authenticity in relation to foods and drinks in different historical and geographical contexts:

  • Pulque in 19th and 20th century Mexico
  • Acarajé in 20th and 21st century Brazil
  • Cider in contemporary Wales
  • Flaounes in contemporary Cyprus

Main outputs of the research included a recipe-style book aimed at a popular audience. The team is currently working on editing a special edition of an interdisciplinary journal.

Research supervision

I welcome students wishing to do MA or PhD work on any subject relating to Lusophone literatures and cultures. 

 

Research students

2015/16 - Clarice Fortunato Araújo (PhD Research Abroad Scheme, from UFSC - Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil): "Gabriela Cravo e Canela? The representation of the mixed race woman in Brazilian literature and imaginary"

External impact and engagement

AHRC Leadership Fellows grant "Women of the Brown Atlantic: Real and Imaginary Passages in Portuguese 1711-2011"

Project blog

This project involves impact-related partnerships with several institutions:

  • Museu Afro-Brasileiro (MAFRO), Salvador da Bahia
  • Núcleo Museológico de Lagos, Lagos (Algarve)
  • Buala (an open access website that provides a digital home for multiple voices from Africa, Brazil, Europe and beyond)
  • Papo Preta (a therapeutic project focused on the health and well-being of black women, based in Portugal and Brazil)

 

AHRC Care for the Future Exploratory Award (Exeter, Leicester, Surrey and Wales)

Project blog

Ana was co-investigator in a project titled, "Consuming Authenticities: Time, Place and the Past in the Construction of 'Authentic' Foods and Drinks." The project was funded by the AHRC Care for the Future Exploratory Award (November 2014 - November 2015). The aim of the project was to critically dissect authenticity as a discursive construct by looking into ideas of timelessness, origins and tradition that contribute to the construction of narratives of authenticity in relation to foods and drinks in different historical and geographical contexts:

  • Pulque in 19th and 20th century Mexico
  • Acarajé in 20th and 21st century Brazil
  • Cider in contemporary Wales
  • Flaounes in contemporary Cyprus

Main outputs of the research included a recipe-style book aimed at a popular audience. The team is currently working on editing a special edition of an interdisciplinary journal.

 

Remembering the translation of New Portuguese Letters to the stage: a collaborative project with Unfinished Histories: Recording the History of Alternative Theatre

Ana is building a formal relationship with a non-university organisation, Unfinished Histories: Recording the History of Alternative Theatre (Unfinished Histories). This relationship aims to identify, locate and make available to the public documents and oral testimonies from the initial UK theatre adaptations of Novas Cartas Portuguesas (New Portuguese Letters, henceforth NCP) a book published in Portugal in 1972 by Maria Isabel Barreno, Maria Teresa Horta and Maria Velho da Costa (henceforth the Three Marias). The banning of the book by the censors of the Portuguese right-wing regime and the ensuing trial of the Three Marias led to the organisation of a massive international solidarity campaign between 1973 and 1974. During this wave of international solidarity, only fragments of the book circulated in translation (mostly French and English), and parts of it were adapted to the stage and presented in London, New York and Paris.

The partnership with Unfinished Histories, a company set up in 2006 by Susan Croft, which aims to record the history of alternative theatre 1968-88 through interviews and the collecting of archive material, will provide a unique context for tackling and recording artistic “bottom-up” techniques that were used by actresses to support the Three Marias in the UK in the 1970s. The initial outcome of this collaboration – sealing the formal partnership – will be the production of a DVD, which will be made available to the public, featuring oral testimonies, a discussion with specialists in Portuguese and British feminisms, and a historical re-staging of parts of NCP based on the original 1970s’ script. The partnership with Unfinished Histories will thus engage the general public by providing contemporary society with access to material that will foster a better understanding of how non-traditional reading habits (partial readings, or non-readings of books) influence how we listen to political transgressions and theoretical innovations.

A one day workshop took place at Exeter on 10 March, where academics, actors and a film director met to discuss instances of fragmentary readings, translations and theatrical performances of parts of New Portuguese Letters. For more information, visit the workshop's website here.

Biography

Ana is a Portuguese native speaker with a BA from the University of Coimbra, and an MA and PhD from the University of Manchester. After submitting her PhD thesis in November 2009 she took up a teaching appointment at  the University of Cambridge in January 2010, and a Bye-fellowship (senior academic member) at Queens’ College, Cambridge. Ana was invited to teach at King's College London (KCL) in 2012-13. She was awarded a Visiting Scholarship in Portuguese Studies in October 2012 by the Charles Boxer Chair and the Camões Centre at KCL, which coincided with the publication of her monograph, Magic Stones and Flying Snakes: Gender and the Postcolonial Exotic in the work of Paulina Chiziane and Lídia Jorge (Oxford: Peter Lang 2012). She took up a Lectureship in Portuguese at the University of Exeter in 2013.