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University of Birmingham campus

The Association is the most important body in the field and the conference is a prestigious event which regularly attracts leading scholars from around the world - the plenarists represented cutting-edge research from Galicia, Ecuador and Argentina. The conference was opened by Head of College of Arts and Law, Professor Helen Abbott, who made especial mention of the excellent health of the discipline of Hispanism at University of Birmingham and emphasised the ongoing commitment of the institution to research and education in Modern Languages generally and in Hispanic Studies specifically.

University of Birmingham colleagues showcased a thriving research environment which covers Spanish, Portuguese and Catalan language culture and history, from contemporary Iberian and Latin American literature and memory studies to Romance linguistics and from visual arts and postcolonial studies to medieval history and digital editing. The event raised the profile of Hispanic Studies at Birmingham, and that of the institution more generally, at national and international level and gave rise to fruitful conversations about future collaboration.

The conference academic leads were Professor Aengus Ward and Dr Emanuelle Santos

Delivering the Instituto Cervantes Plenary at the AHGBI conference was an excellent opportunity for me to showcase my research at the national level and develop my international profile. This was a real privilege, particularly for an early-career academic, as I got time to share some of my work on contemporary Ecuadorian literature with colleagues in a particularly stimulating scholarly environment. The slot in the programme also allowed me to network with the director of the Instituto Cervantes in Manchester, who introduced my talk. I believe that this connection could potentially help me expand the reach of my research beyond academia to the wider public.

Dr Luis Medina Cordova, Lecturer in Modern Languages (Spanish)

Our 69th AHGBI conference at the University of Birmingham was an enormous success full of stimulating papers, plenaries, workshops and social events that speak to the vibrancy of Hispanism. The Alan Walters Building was the perfect venue to house the papers, coffee breaks, receptions and publishers’ stalls while the dinner and reception at the Exchange was ideal for the presenting of our awards. I would like to express my thanks on behalf of all of us at the Association to Professor Helen Abbott for welcoming us so warmly, and to the enormous amount of work that went into planning and organising of the smooth-running of the event from the local team comprising Aengus Ward, Matt Clulee, Luis Medina Córdova, Emanuelle Rodrigues dos Santos, Lucy O’Sullivan and Lorraine Ryan, Postgraduate Ambassadors Ben and Hal as well as to our Conference Secretary Tara Plunkett. Warm thanks also to our sponsors the Cervantes Institute London and the Instituto Camões Cátedra Gil Vicente.

Incoming President of the Association, Professor Sarah Wright, Royal Holloway University of London