David A. Wacks, Curriculum Vitae


  • Ph.D. Hispanic Literatures (UC Berkeley, 2003)
  • MA Spanish Literature (Boston College, 1997)
  • AB English Literature (Columbia University, 1991)

Professional Employment:

  • Professor of Spanish, University of Oregon Dept. Romance Languages (2015-)
  • Associate Professor of Spanish, University of Oregon Dept. Romance Languages (2009-2015)
  • Assistant Professor of Spanish, University of Oregon Dept. Romance Languages (2003-2009)


Authored Book

Edited Volumes

Articles in Peer-Reviewed Journals

Essays in Edited Collections

Other Publications

Teaching Materials

  • Lecturas en literatura y lengua premodernas peninsulares. Open Access (OER) Course reader for SPAN 341 Hispanic Culture through Literature I and SPAN 399 Languages of Iberia (taught in Oviedo, Spain)
  • Lecturas en literatura y cultura premodernas mediante la polémica. Open Access (OER) Course reader for SPAN 341: Hispanic Culture through Literature I.

Book Reviews

  • Roza Candás, Pablo, ed. Memorial de ida i venida hasta Maka: La peregrinación de ʿOmar Paṭōn. Oviedo, 2018. ISBN 978-84-16343-67-6. 482 pp. Forthcoming in La corónica.
  • Ellen D. Haskell, Mystical Resistance: Uncovering the Zohar’s Conversations with Christianity. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016. Speculum, vol. 94, no. 4, 2019, pp. 1167–1168.
  • Ryan Szpiech, ed. Medieval Exegesis and Religious Difference: Commentary, Conflict, and Community in the Premodern Mediterranean. New York: Fordham University Press, 2015. Journal of Medieval Worlds 1.1 (2015): 125-129.
  • Llull, Ramon. Romance of Evast and Blaquerna. Intro. Albert Soler and Joan Santanach. Trans. Robert D. Hughes. Serie B: Textos, 60. Barcelona and Woodbridge UK: Barcino-Tamesis, 2016. 564p. ISBN 978-1-85566-304-6. La corónica 47.1 (2019): 122-24. or
  • Colbert Cairns, Emily. Esther in Early Modern Iberia and the Sephardic Diaspora: Queen of the Conversas. Palgrave Macmillan, 2017. Boletín de los Comediantes 70.2, 129-131. or
  • Hook, David, ed. The Arthur of the Iberians: The Arthurian Legends in the Spanish and Portuguese Worlds. Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2015. Arthuriana 26.4 (2016): 78-81.
  •  Linhard, Tabea. Jewish Spain: A Mediterranean Memory. Palo Alto: Stanford University Press, 2014. Modern Language Notes 131.2 (2016): 558-560.
  • Robinson, Cynthia. Imagining the Passion in a Multiconfessional Castile: The Virgin, Christ, Devotions, and Images in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Centuries. University Park: The Pennsylvania State University Press, 2013. Revista Hispánica Moderna 69.1 (2016): 109-112.
  • Hatem, Jad. Sobreamor: Ausiàs March, Ibn Zaydûn, Ibn `Arabî, Ramon Llull. Trans. Elena de la Cruz Vergari. Exemplaria Scholastica: Textos i estudis medievals 5. Santa Coloma de Queralt: Obrador Edèndum, 2011. La corónica. 42.2 (217-19).
  • El Corán De Toledo. Ed. Consuelo López-Morillas. Oviedo: Trea, 2011. Calíope 18.3 (2013): 129-131.
  • Szpiech, Ryan. Conversion and Narrative: Reading and Religious Authority in Medieval Polemic (Middle Ages Series). Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013. Speculum 88.3 (2013): 853-855.
  • Ingram, Kevin, ed. The Conversos and Moriscos in Late Medieval Spain and Beyond. Volume One: Departures and Change. Leiden: Brill, 2009. The Medieval Review (19 May 2010). 
  • Decter, Jonathan. Iberian Jewish Literature: Between al-Andalus and Christian Europe. Indiana UP, 2007. Calíope 14.1 (2008): 139-42.
  • Díaz-Mas, Paloma. Sephardim: The Jews from Spain. Ed. and trans. George K. Zucker. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007. Bulletin of the Society for Spanish and Portuguese Historical Studies 33.1 (2008): 33-34.
  • Young, Douglas C. Rogues and Genres: Generic Transformation in the Spanish Picaresque and Arabic Maqāma. Newark: Delaware: Juan de la Cuesta, 2004. Aljamía 19 (2007): 529-531.
  • Barletta, Vincent. Covert Gestures: Crypto-Islamic Literature as Cultural Practice in Early Modern Spain. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2005. Hispania 89.1 (2006): 50-52.
  • Mocedades de Rodrigo. Ed. Leonardo Funes, with Felipe Tenenbaum. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Tamesis. 2004. Bulletin of Spanish Studies 83.8 (2006): 982-83.
  • Ibn Sahula, Isaac. Meshal Haqadmoni: Fables from the Distant Past. Ed. and Trans. Raphael Loewe. London: The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2004. La corónica 34.1 (2005): 280-83.
  • al-Harīzī, Judah. The Book of Tahkemoni: Jewish Tales From Medieval Spain. Trans. David Simha Segal. London: The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2001. La corónica 33.1 (2004): 282-85.
  • Maravillas, peregrinaciones y utopías: literatura de viajes en el mundo románico. Ed. Rafael Beltrán. Valencia: Universitat de Valencia, 2002. Bulletin of Spanish Studies 53 (2003): 743-44.
  • Menocal, María Rosa. The Ornament of the World. New York: Little, Brown and Company, 2002. La Corónica 32.1 (2003): 377-80.

Invited Talks

  • “The Other Averroism: The Copenhagen Maimonides and the Maimonidean Controversy.” Shared Moveable Worlds. Centre for Medieval Literature. Royal Copenhagen Library. Copenhagen, May 27-29. 2019. 
  • “New Language, New Story: How Translation Changed the Bible for Sephardic Jews Across History.” Stroum Center for Jewish Studies, University of Washington. Seattle, WA, Mar 4, 2019.
  • “Literature of the Sephardic Mediterranean.” Visiting Faculty Presentation, NEH Seminar “Thresholds of Change: Modernity and Transformation in the Mediterranean, 1400-1700.” Hill Museum and Library, Collegeville, MN, June 25-26, 2018.
  •  “Iberian Fictions of Crusade ca. 1300: The clerical chivalric imaginary in The Book of the Knight Zifar and Ramon Llull’s Blaquerna.” Center for Medieval Studies, University of Minnesota, September 16, 2017.
  • “Toward a Theory of Medieval Iberian Narrative: Transcultural Perspectives.” Department of Romance Languages, University of Bonn, June 15, 2017.
  • “La doble diáspora sefardí: entre Sión y Sefarad.” Fundación Tres Culturas, Seville, Spain, October 27, 2016
  • “Jewish Exegesis, Vernacular Bible, and the Rise of Fiction: Alfonso X’s General Estoria (ca. 1280).” Theorizing Medieval Literature Conference, Centre for Medieval Literature, University of York (UK), July 2, 2016.
  • “Two Reactions to the Expulsion from Spain: Solomon ibn Verga and Joseph Karo.” Cultures of the Sephardic Diaspora. Portland State University, 9 October, 2015.
  • “Crypto-Judaism and the Question of Human Agency in Sixteenth-Century Jewish Thought.”Fourth Annual Martin Sosin Address to Advance Scholarship about the Crypto-Judaic Arts, Society for Crypto-Judaic Studies, Miami, 20 July, 2015.
  • “Crusade, Conquest, and Conversion in the Medieval Iberian Romance (1250-1550)” Medieval Studies, Yale University, 23 April 2015.
  • “La literatura Andalusí popular y la ficción castellana.” Department of Spanish and Portuguese, Yale University, 24 April 2015.
  • El Libro del Cavallero Zífar: Arabic Sources or Arabic as source of legitimacy?” Tales That Travel. NYU Abu Dhabi. 25 Feb 2014.
  • “Translation of Remains and Translation of Texts: Symbolic Capital in Caballero Zifar.” Translation and Mediterranean Culture. UC Berkeley, Department of Spanish and Portuguese. 15 November 2013.
  • “Opening Hispanic and Lusophone Studies: Digital Humanities, Social Media, and Open Access.” NYU Department of Spanish and Portuguese. New York City. 29 October 2013.
  • Cultural Exchange in the Literatures and Languages of medieval Iberia.” NYU Abu Dhabi Institute . New York City. 29 October 2013.
  • “Chivalric Romance in the Key of Diaspora: Jacob ben Elazar’s ‘Sahar and Kima’ (13th c.) and Jacob Algaba’s Hebrew Amadís de Gaula (16th c.)” Centre for Medieval Literature, Southern Denmark Unviersity. 13 June 2013.
  • “Romance, Diaspora style: Jacob ben Elazar (13th c.) between the chivalric and the courtly.” Department of Romance Languages and Literaures, Notre Dame University. 4 February 2013.
  • “Translation in Diaspora: Sephardic Spanish-Hebrew Translation in the Sixteenth Century.” Department of Spanish and Portuguese, Colorado University at Boulder. 1 November 2012. [blog post]
  • “Two Reactions to the 1492 Expulsion from Spain: Historiography and Kabbalah.” Department of  French, Hispanic, and Italian Studies, University of British Columbia. 24 October 2012. [poster]
  • “Reading Amadís in Constantinople: the Sephardic as imperial abject.” 2011 UC Mediterranean Research Project Seminar: “Mediterranean Empires.” 29 October 2011. [blog post]
  • “Ethnic Polemic in Medieval Spain: ‘Arabiyya, Shu’ubiyya, and ‘Ibraniyya.” Islamic Studies Institute, Stanford University. 13 October 2011. [blog post] [iTunes audio]
  • “Sephardic literature in the key of Diaspora.” Department of Romance Studies, Cornell University. 15 September 2011.
  • “Hebrew Bible: Intertextuality in Spanish-Hebrew Literature.” Scriptures in Medieval Iberia. Iona Pacific Inter-religious Centre, Vancouver School of Theology. 6 June, 2011. [slides + text]
  • “Double Diaspora in Sephardic Literature 1200-1600.” Work in Progress Talk, Oregon Humanities Center, University of Oregon. 8 April 2011. [mp3][slidecast = slides + audio]
  • “The Danger of Purity: Jacob ben Elazar’s Love Stories Between Hispanism and Hebraism.” Purity and Danger Workshop on Medieval Iberian Studies. Princeton University, 2010 (invited). [mp3]
  • “Biblical and Vernacular Narrativity in Vidal Benvenist’s Efer ve-Dina.” Hebrew Literature, the Bible and the Andalusi Tradition in the Fifteenth Century. Consejo Superior de Investigación Científica (CSIC). Madrid, Spain, 2009 (invited). [abstract]
  • “Sephardic Culture and Hispanic Studies.” Diaspora and Return: Sephardic Jews beyond Spain. University of California at Irvine, 2008.
  • “Is Spain’s Hebrew Literature ‘Spanish’?” Spain’s Multicultural Legacies. University of California at Davis, 2007..
  • “The Study of Medieval Hispano-Hebrew Literature in Modern Spain.” 42nd International Congress on Medieval Studies, 2007.
  • Efer ve-Dinah, a Hispano-hebrew novella.” The Persistence of Philology:  Rethinking Comparative Literary History on the Twentieth Anniversary of María Rosa Menocal’s The Arabic Role in Medieval Literary History. University of Toronto, 2007.
  • “The converso question in Jaume Roig’s Spill.” Medieval Studies symposium on conversion. University of California at Santa Barbara, 2007.
  • “The Near-total Eclipse of Hebrew in Medieval Spanish Literary Studies.” State University of New York at New Paltz, 2006.

Conference Papers

Seminars and General Interest Talks

  • “Jewish, Muslim, and Christian retellings of Adam and Eve in Medieval Iberia.” Romance Languages Seminar. University of Oregon. Jan 24.
  • “Medieval Iberian Crusade Fiction.” Oregon Humanities Center. University of Oregon. Jun 8, 2018.
  • “Spain’s Semitic Legacy: Medieval Poetry and Modern Nationalism.” Dissonant Perspectives: Old Music in a Time of Political Upheaval Symposium. University of Oregon Freedom of Expression Series. May 30, 2018.
  • “Spanish Crusade Fiction.” Texas Tech University, Seville Study Abroad Center. March 23, 2017.
  • “Cruzada y misión en Blaquerna por Ramon Llull.” Observatorio de Religiones Comparadas. Departamento de Filologías Integradas. University of Seville. March 1, 2017. 
  • “Cultura sefardita en al-Andalus.” Departamento de Historia. University of Huelva. November 2016.
  • “Crypto-Judaism and the Question of Human Agency in Sixteenth-Century Sephardic Thought.” Sephardic Culture Lecture Series. University of Oregon. Apr 28, 2016.
  • Book in Print talk, Oregon Humanities Center, Feb 5, 2016.
  • “The Confluence of Judaism, Islam, and Christianity in Medieval Spain.” University of Oregon Osher Center for Lifelong Learning, Apr 1, 2015.
  • “Mythology of Northern Spain.” UO Osher Center for Lifelong Learning. 10 Dec 2014.
  • “Christians, Muslims and Jews in Medieval Spain: The Literary Evidence.” 3rd Annual Rabbi Marcus Simmons Lecture. Temple Beth Israel. Eugene, Oregon, 4 Feb 2014.
  • “Opening Hispanic and Lusophone Studies: Digital Humanities, Social Media, and Open Access.” NYU Department of Spanish and Portuguese. New York City. 28 Oct 2013.
  • “María Rosa Menocal’s Ornament of the World, courtly poetry, and modern Nationalism.” Guest Lecture at NYU in MAP-UA 500: Cultures & Contexts: Islam and Judaism: Intertwined Histories (Prof. Zvi Ben-Dor Benite)
  • “Opening the Humanities with Social Media.” U Oregon Open Access Week 2011. Knight Library, 26 Oct 2011.
  • “El Moro Ricote and the Literature of the Morisco Diaspora.” University of Portland, 2010 (via web) [stream screencast][download screencast]
  • “Five Hundred Years of Ladino Literature.” Temple Beth Israel, Eugene Oregon, 2010. [slidecast]
  • “Ibn Verga’s Shevet Yehudah and the Sephardic Diaspora.” University of Portland, 2009.

Guest Blog entries

Fellowships, Grants, and Awards