Research / Workshops

TALLER DE REDACCIÓN | Writing Workshop

Abstract

The Writing Workshop | Taller de Redacción at Casa Hispánica offers a space where M.A. and Ph.D. candidates may avail themselves of extensive editorial resources to hone their rhetorical skills.

 GALLERY

The Writing Workshop | Taller de Redacción hosts peer-review sessions of academic prose in Spanish and in English, both on campus and on teleconferencing platforms.  The Taller also offers colloquia and editorial workshops for graduate students, such as:

  • Academic Journal Workshop with the editors of ARTMargins
  • Prospectus Session with Graciela Montaldo and Seth Kimmel
  • Prospectus Peer-review Workshop
  • Master’s Thesis Colloquium
  • Essay Abstract Workshop
  • Academic Journal Session with Carlos J. Alonso
  • Academic Conference Session with Alberto Medina
  • Writing Retreats at Casa Hispánica
  • Taller Virtual de Tesis | Online Dissertation Workshop
  • Taller Virtual de Egresados | Online Alumni Workshop
  • Yearly Panel Presentations of Participants’ Revisions

 TESTIMONIALS

  • Along with teaching, the two main currencies of our trade, the academic profession in the humanities, are research and writing. Unfortunately, a formal framework for the development of the latter is seldom given the resources and attention it deserves during graduate studies in many programs. Not so at LAIC, largely thanks to the energy and expertise of Eunice Rodríguez Ferguson. It is no exaggeration to say that I didn’t know what rewriting was before I had the rare privilege of revising one of my articles in progress with Eunice in 2012. At this time, she offered an exhaustive, sentence-by-sentence commentary that made me rethink everything I knew, or rather, didn’t know, about word choice, sentence rhythm, and tone. (This essay eventually became my first published paper in a peer-reviewed journal.)  Since she launched the LAIC Writing Workshop/Taller de Redacción in 2012, Eunice brought to its sessions—and exhorted us to practice—the same painstaking dedication to the text that characterizes her editorial eye. More significantly, she also maintained an effective structure for horizontal collaboration and peer review. This was particularly instructive, for both reading exchanges and constructively critical close readings are essential and life-long components of our profession as well. At the workshops I revised one major conference paper—now becoming an article—and a shorter text that was part of the dissertation and related to job and fellowship applications. And even though I could only take advantage of the workshops for a short time (they began in my last years as a grad student), they had an enormous impact on my approach to academic writing and on my path to professionalization.

Paloma Duong, Assistant Professor of Latin American Studies, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

  • Desde el principio de mi etapa como estudiante graduado en LAIC, el Taller de Redacción ha sido uno de los elementos más activos y provechosos de la vida académica del departamento. El Taller se ha convertido en un punto de encuentro provechoso en el que hemos disfrutado de opiniones francas y feedback útil sobre las diferentes formas de escritura que hemos ido desarrollando a lo largo de nuestra trayectoria graduada. Gracias a la capacidad de Eunice para crear un ambiente de respeto mutuo, a su experiencia única como editora y a su capacidad de convocatoria entre quienes formamos LAIC, muchos estudiantes hemos podido disfrutar de las múltiples facetas que el Taller ha ido desarrollando desde su inicio. Entre ellas se han contado sesiones de crítica constructiva sobre trabajos de libre extensión; sesiones específicas sobre los abstracts de conferencias; reuniones informales con profesores en las que se discute qué se espera de textos como un prospectus, una presentación de conferencia, o una propuesta de panel; sesiones específicas sobre capítulos de tesis; retiros de escritura; etc.  A título personal puedo decir que el Taller ha sido siempre un lugar para compartir propuestas e intercambiar opiniones en un clima cordial, lo que ha hecho que procurase no saltarme la asistencia ni siquiera cuando había que escribir los papers de invierno o en medio del frenesí del semestre de primavera. El Taller de Redacción me ayudó a convertir un mal paper de fin de curso en una pregunta de examen que formulaba caminos y más tarde en una propuesta de conferencia y más tarde en un prospectus en el que se formulaba un proyecto intelectual. Espero que llegue a ver pronto un capítulo de tesis. Gracias al Taller aprendí que todo texto es un borrador en espera de diálogo, que las primeras versiones de un texto suelen necesitar adelgazar, que no se tarda nada en escribir y todo el tiempo del mundo en reescribir. Y, sobre todo, que la escritura puede ser una tarea colectiva. Si como estudiantes graduados estamos aprendiendo continuamente a escribir, yo nunca olvidaré que fue en el Taller, gracias a mis compañeros y a Eunice, donde aprendí que nunca se aprende del todo.

Noel Blanco MourelleAssistant Professor of Hispanic Studies, The College of William and Mary

  • The Taller de Redacción has become an integral part of the graduate student program at the Latin American and Iberian Cultures Department and, needless to say, it is one of those vital academic and collaborative components that make this program standout from the rest. The taller provides graduate students with the ability, opportunity, and support to continue working on class papers, conference abstracts and presentations, dissertation proposals and chapters, or really just about any project related to their academic work. It has opened up an affective, genuine, and stimulating setting for the discussion of ideas, effective writing methods, and professional development. The Taller de Redacción has shown us how to best engage in constructive criticism with peers at the Casa Hispánica while also welcoming students from other departments and universities, which has proven to be an enriching experience all around. I like to see the taller as a personalized training ground, with Eunice as our coach. At this stage in our careers, the feedback we can obtain from our peers and, above all, from someone as experienced, passionate, talented, dedicated, and meticulous as Eunice is truly invaluable. At the taller, I have been able to discover, maximize, and improve my writing style—I can hear Eunice say: “let your voice be heard!”  In my personal trajectory as a graduate student the taller has been there every step of the way. Challenging and fun, it has taught me—and I dare say my colleagues as well—to believe in my own writing and ideas and to keep the game in perspective.

Wendy V. MuñizAssistant Professor and Faculty Fellow at the NYU Center for the Humanities

  • The Taller de Redacción has been a crucial space to approach fundamental skills for the academic environment. One of the most significant aspects of the Taller is that students are an active component within the learning process, thus leaving aside the conventional hierarchies. Structured upon a peer-review strategy, the Taller is a space where objective and constructive criticism, as well as respect, are cultivated. Materials and advice shared by Eunice Rodríguez Ferguson regarding the writing of abstracts, articles, conference papers, thesis proposals, thesis chapters, and other genres of academic writing have proven to be very valuable. Besides refining and improving writing skills, students have been encouraged to engage in professional discussions within and beyond the academic field with editors, professors, and future colleagues. The LAIC Taller de Redacción has turned out to be a fulfilling experience, both professionally and personally.

Mariana Cecilia Velázquez, Ph.D. Candidate, LAIC

  • Tuve el privilegio de que Eunice Rodríguez leyera y editara varios de mis textos académicos en el Taller de Redacción. En mi experiencia como estudiante de doctorado, nadie anotó y corrigió mis textos como lo hizo Eunice. Como editora, no deja escapar nada: es implacable, mordaz. Con el Taller de Redacción, además, Eunice creó un espacio para que los estudiantes de LAIC se leyeran entre sí, lo que aportó a que empezáramos a concebirnos como una comunidad intelectual.

 Valeria Luiselli, Assistant Professor, Hofstra University

  • The Writing Workshop has offered me invaluable support at all levels of the Ph.D. program. Eunice Rodríguez Ferguson tailors its sessions to address the variety of challenges that arise, from writing seminar papers to structuring a dissertation. In my first years in the program, Eunice emphasized the need for students at the graduate level to enter scholarly debates in their papers and offered constructive advice for writing them, such as the “reverse outline.” She provided detailed guidelines and models for writing abstracts, which helped me and my peers present ourselves to selection committees for conferences and scholarships. Initiatives such as day-long writing retreats and mock conferences helped us meet deadlines and feel confident speaking in public, from seminar presentations to job talks. These events were scheduled so that we could tackle the practical and intellectual dimensions of the doctoral program in real time. In my third and fourth years in the program, the Writing Workshop became a sounding board for early drafts of my dissertation proposal and drafts of articles I want to publish in academic journals. I found it especially helpful to exchange ideas both with colleagues in the same phase as me and with advanced candidates who were already writing or were near completing the dissertation. Eunice has fostered countless productive exchanges between students at different stages in LAIC’s graduate programs, and the meetings she leads at the Writing Center have helped (and continue to help) me develop as a thinker and a writer.

Nicole T. Hughes, Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Iberian and Latin American Cultures, Stanford University

  • The workshops of the Taller de Redacción are a unique instance of communitarian intellectual exchange. From the moment Eunice proposed the idea of dedicating a portion of our time and hers to creating a space in which graduate students could share their writing without pressure, I was thrilled. The workshops opened the possibility of a constructive modus operandi among students and indeed they were. I remember clearly the valuable comments I received on a paper that I wished to turn into a publishable article. I also profited from the mutual reading and critique of our dissertation prospecti. The workshops are certainly a successful initiative in the department, one in which students participate knowing that their work will improve thanks to effective peer review and to Eunice’s insightful advice about content, style, and editing.

Agnese Codebò, Assistant Professor of Spanish, Villanova University

  • The Writing Workshop/ Taller de Redacción has been a formative part of my doctoral training. From the editing of term papers and the redaction of articles to the structuring of my dissertation prospectus, the workshop has provided an effective and productive space to polish my writing skills. With Eunice Rodríguez Ferguson’s skillful and enthusiastic guidance, students gain practical tools for approaching the process of editing and revision. In particular, the workshop has helped me engage with my writing as a process, involving clear and manageable steps, from outlining to organizing and composing. Moreover, while writing can be a solitary activity, the workshop has created a very collegial writing community.  The workshop sessions, presentations, and retreats have created an intellectually stimulating and supportive environment, which has helped me feel more comfortable sharing my works-in-progress, as well as more adept at improving them.

Cristina Pérez Jiménez, Assistant Professor of English, Manhattan College

  • Me ha sido muy provechoso asistir a los talleres de redacción organizados por Eunice Rodríguez Ferguson. Su extensa experiencia como editora se hace evidente en lo perspicaz de sus preguntas y en lo minucioso de sus recomendaciones. En el constante proceso de escritura que es una tesis, muchos de sus comentarios acuden a mi memoria con frecuencia. El taller tiene también otro elemento fundamental: asignar a los presentes la tarea de comentar  un texto ajeno, estimulando de dicha manera  la actividad de la lectura crítica, constructiva y colaborativa. Esto genera un espacio para percibir los presupuestos del campo de estudio propio y el tipo de lector que uno es. Aprendí mucho de todos los comentarios hechos a otros textos leídos en el taller y, por supuesto, de los hechos al mío, fragmentos del cual ya han sido incorporados a mi tesis. La relectura y re-escritura se conciben en este taller como parte del proceso de escritura.

Laura Sández, Assistant Professor of Spanish, Villanova University

  • Eunice Rodríguez Ferguson has taught me much of what I know about academic writing. In her workshop, Eunice broke down the writing process into a series of concrete steps that I continue to follow to this day. She also showed me how to make writing into a social activity–how to ask for help from my colleagues, and how to give help in return. What is more, Eunice gave me great advice on how to go about publishing my research. As a former editor of one of the top journals in our field, she knows the world of academic publishing inside and out.

Benjamin Johnson, Instituto Caro y Cuervo, Colombia

  • El Taller de Redacción Virtual ha sido una estupenda oportunidad no solo de poder contar con el espacio productivo de trabajo que nos ofrecía el Taller de Redacción cuando éramos estudiantes graduados, sino también de mantener estrechos lazos de camaradería con otros colegas ya egresados del doctorado. La escritura académica es un arduo proceso en el que suele desconocerse la importancia del trabajo en equipo. Es en ese sentido que el esfuerzo de Eunice de promover oportunidades para que esta labor colaborativa logre consolidarse termina siendo de vital importancia en nuestro desempeño profesional. La lectura crítica, informada y calificada de nuestros colegas, así como la detallada, acertada y pertinente intervención de Eunice, me han permitido llevar a buen puerto múltiples proyectos, desde la escritura de un abstract para una conferencia a la edición y reescritura de un artículo para una revista académica. El Taller de Redacción, tanto en su formato original como en su versión virtual, constituye uno de los atributos distintivos de nuestro programa doctoral y es, a mi ver, una de las iniciativas más estimulantes y enriquecedoras del Departamento de Culturas Latinoamericanas e Ibéricas.

Óscar Iván Useche, Assistant Professor of Modern Languages, Ursinus College

  • El Taller de Redacción es uno de los espacios más útiles y formativos de la vida académica  del departamento. En los diferentes talleres en los que he podido participar, he tenido la oportunidad de compartir mis trabajos con otros estudiantes graduados, recibir críticas constructivas, y discutir cuestiones relacionadas con la escritura académica. Además de ofrecer la oportunidad de compartir una experiencia de escritura colectiva que repercute de manera muy positiva en nuestros trabajos, uno de los elementos más importantes de los talleres es que permite generar un ambiente de participación, intercambio de ideas, y trabajo en grupo entre los estudiantes graduados del departamento. Entre las diferentes actividades, me gustaría destacar los talleres específicos sobre la escritura del prospectus, y sobre los capítulos de tesis. Estos dos talleres ofrecen a los estudiantes un apoyo indispensable en dos momentos del programa que son clave. A su vez, en el taller dedicado a la escritura de los capítulos de la tesis, he podido participar por primera vez en un taller en su modalidad virtual. El taller virtual ofrece la posibilidad de seguir trabajando con otros compañeros que no pasan el año académico en el campus. En mi opinión, creo que uno de los elementos más positivos del taller virtual es que nos permite desarrollar dinámicas de grupo creadas durante los primeros años en fases del programa en las que la escritura de la tesis y la preparación de candidaturas para becas y trabajos hace que los estudiantes vayan tomando distancia de la vida del departamento. En ese sentido, sólo puedo expresar mi agradecimiento a Eunice por promover y guiar este lugar de discusión y trabajo, así como por sus constructivos consejos sobre edición y escritura académica. En mi opinión, estos talleres representan una actividad formativa fundamental dentro de la vida académica del departamento.

Miguel Ibáñez Aristondo, Ph.D. Candidate, LAIC

  • The Taller de Redacción Virtual  has been an invaluable resource. From a writing standpoint, the workshop offers the same type of support and feedback as the traditional Taller de Redacción. Like the workshop in New York, the exchange of ideas strengthens the work of both readers and presenters and helps keep us in touch with developing currents in our field. So far, we have explored a variety of projects, such as peer-reviewed articles and book proposals, and we have all benefitted from each other’s experience and insights. The use of collaborative technology such as Google Hangouts and Google Docs allows former classmates to provide feedback from anywhere; this year’s group has included scholars from New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and North Carolina. It is this second aspect of the Taller de Redacción Virtual, in fact, which has been most enriching to me. Once we move on from Columbia, we often feel the absence of our graduate school cohort, with which we shared interests and courses, but also adversity and celebration. Our new colleagues at our current institutions may be generous and enthusiastic about our work, but they cannot know the common experiences that brought us to where we are in our careers. It is a joy to be able to sit down to a Google Hangout and see the familiar faces of people who know where I come from. These people have taken precious time out of their schedules to read and evaluate my work among all the other duties of their full-time positions. The Taller de Redacción Virtual  helps combat the isolation of a new job by reminding us that our network is still out there, ready to offer encouragement and guidance that will make us into stronger professionals.

Adam L. Winkel, Assistant Professor of Spanish, High Point University

for details, please contact:

Eunice Rodríguez Ferguson, Director

Luis Carlos Fernández, Coordinator

Last Updated 3 years ago


Citation

Eunice Rodríguez Ferguson, « TALLER DE REDACCIÓN | Writing Workshop », Workshops, Columbia University | LAIC, Department of Latin American and Iberian Cultures (online), published on November 14, 2014. Full URL for this article

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