Michael Handelsman


Senior Faculty Director




PhD, Romance Languages & Certificate in Latin American Studies, University of Florida

MA, Romance Languages, University of Florida

BA, Spanish, Gettysburg College


Michael Handelsman has been on the UT faculty since 1976. In 2014, he was a recipient of the Chancellor's 'Ready for the World' Award, an award that  recognizes his commitment and excellence in expanding global studies at UT and beyond.  His principal teaching and research interests are Latin American narrative, Ecuadorian literature and culture, concepts of national identity, women writers, literary journals, Afro Hispanic literature, and globalization. In addition to having received an Organization of American States research grant and six Fulbright fellowships, he has been a Distinguished Professor in the Humanities since 1987. Professor Handelsman has been named a Lindsay Young Scholar, and was awarded the 2004 Alexander Prize for teaching and scholarship and the 2005 Chancellor’s Excellence in Teaching Award. In 2008, he received the Jefferson Prize in recognition of exceptional contributions to research, teaching, and service. Professor Handelsman has been a visiting graduate professor at the University of Kentucky, the Universidad Católica Santiago de Guayaquil, and the Universidad Andina Simón Bolívar in Quito. He is the co-founder and past President of the Asociación de Ecuatorianistas (Estudios de Literatura, Lengua y Cultura), a member of the Executive Committee of LASA’s Ecuadorian Section, and past President of the South Eastern Council on Latin American Studies. Currently, he chairs the Latin American Studies interdisciplinary program, is an active participant in the Global Studies program, and directs a service-learning project in which students with advanced proficiency in Spanish work with local Hispanic children and their families. Among his other published books are Amazonas y artistas: un estudio de la prosa de la mujer ecuatoriana (1978), El modernismo en las revistas literarias del Ecuador: 1895-1930 (1981), Incursiones en el mundo literario del Ecuador (1987), En torno al verdadero Benjamín Carrión (1989), El ideario de Benjamín Carrión (1992), Lo afro y la plurinacionalidad: el caso ecuatoriano visto desde su literatura (1999; 2001), Culture and Customs of Ecuador (2000). His complete CV is available at: http://web.utk.edu/~mfll/spanish/people/bios/handelsman.html