José Del Valle


Research Interests

  • The politics of language representation in Spain, Latin America, and the USA. The interface between linguistic and intellectual history. Transatlantic language studies.

José del Valle joined The Graduate Center in 2002 and has served as executive officer of the Ph.D. Program in Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian Literatures and Languages since January 2011. He received his Licenciatura in 1988 from the Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, Spain; his M.A. in 1990 from the University at Buffalo (SUNY); and his Ph.D. in 1994 from Georgetown University. As a result of his doctoral work, which dealt with issues of Spanish socio-historical linguistics and language change theory, he published El trueque s/x en español antiguo: Aproximaciones teóricas (1996). His research then turned to linguistic ideologies and the politics of language.

Del Valle coedited, with Luis Gabriel-Stheeman, The Battle Over Spanish Between 1800 and 2000: Language Ideologies and Hispanic Intellectuals (2002), which examines the postcolonial linguistic construction of national and pan-Hispanic identities in Spain and Latin America. An expanded Spanish edition of this book, La batalla del idioma: La intelectualidad hispánica ante la lengua, was published in 2004. In 2007, he published La lengua ¿patria común? Ideas e ideologías del español, which deals with Spain’s contemporary language policies and geopolitical interests in Latin America. More recently he coedited A Political History of Spanish: The Making of a Language, forthcoming in 2013 with Cambridge University Press.

Del Valle has published widely in scholarly journals and provided contributions to several edited volumes. He guest-edited a 2011 special issue of Sociolinguistic Studies on the representation of transnational languages in the context of globalization, high modernity, and new imperialism and, with Elvira Narvaja de Arnoux, a 2010 special issue of Spanish in Context on language, politics and ideology. In 2010 he received the Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.