Department of Modern Languages and Cultures


Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies

Image of Rui Miranda

Rui Miranda

Associate Professor in Lusophone Studies, Faculty of Arts



In 2010, I was awarded a PhD in Lusophone Studies by the University of Nottingham. My doctoral thesis is titled "A Casa por Fabricar: Aspects and Spectres of a 'portuguesmente eu'- Reading Fernando Pessoa through Jacques Derrida".

In 2011, I started a post-Doctoral project financed by the Fundação Ciência e Tecnologia (Lisbon; reference SFRH/BPD/7145/2010), titled "O mundo que criou o português: transladações e disseminações".

I have worked as a Graduate Teaching Assistant in the University of Nottingham and as the Instituto Camões Portuguese Instructor in Queen Mary College, University of London.

I have taught modules on comparative literature, cinema, history and culture of the Portuguese-speaking world as well as Portuguese language since 2005.

Expertise Summary

I am an expert in Modernism and Critical Theory, namely in the work of Fernando Pessoa and in the thought of Jacques Derrida and Jacques Rancière. I am interested in poetry and fiction in Portuguese and Spanish language, having worked also on Haroldo de Campos and preparing a comparative study of detective novels under the dictatorships in the Iberian Peninsula and in South America.

I have worked extensively on post-conflict studies as part of the International Consortium for the Study of Post-Conflict Societies. I have addressed cultural productions (mainly film and novel) that emerge from or play a strong role in post-conflict situations as they contribute for political awareness and discussion. I have have visited and studied such works in Brazil (Rubem Fonseca, Joaquim de Andrade and Cinema Novo), Angola (José Eduardo Agualusa), Mozambique (Borges Coelho) and Portugal (Jorge de Sena, Manoel de Oliveira, Margarida Cardoso, César Monteiro).

I have a strong interest in the transition to democracy after dictatorial regimes and I am participating in Marie Curie IRSES project 'Memosur - A Lesson for Europe: Memory, Trauma and Reconciliation in Chile and Argentina' with universities From Italy (Bologna), Argentina (Córdoba) and Chile (Católica de Santiago de Chile).

I have been researching on transnational spaces and have written on the South Atlantic (post-colonialism, cultural memory, etc) and I have been part of the organization of colloquia and conferences on Cultural Changes and Exchanges in the area of the Indian Ocean. This ties in with my interest with Brazil-Africa and Asia political and sociocultural connections.

I am currently working on an analysis of the writings of Brazilian author Gilberto Freyre on Africa and Asia, which are a confluence of sociology, history and fiction. Apart from looking at responses to his work from Africa (Amílcar Cabral, Pinto de Andrade), I am also interested in the influence his writings have had on Brazilian and Portuguese foreign diplomacy when confronted with the decolonization of Africa and the incorporation of Goa into the Republic of India 1961.

Teaching Summary

I am interested in several subjects, which is reflected in my teaching. I am interested in literature, film and other cultural productions across Europe and Latin America, with a particular focus on… read more

Research Summary

Arising from my interest in cultural products, critical theory and politics, I am currently researching on post-conflict and transoceanic discourses in philosophies, political and cultural… read more

Recent Publications

I am a participant in the project 'MEMOSUR - A Lesson for Europe: Memory, Trauma and Reconciliation in Chile and Argentina' as a co-investigator. I have spent a period in Argentina and I hope to spend another period in Chile until 2017.

'MEMOSUR' is a joint programme that allows for the exchange of researchers between Italy, United Kingdom, Argentina and Chile. It aims to create a dialogue between complementary expertise within the field of memory, post-conflict and post-traumatic studies. This is achieved through workshops, conferences, research and training activities, in order both to strengthen and to plan post-graduate degree programmes (Master, PhD) dedicated to memory and post-conflict situations, and to generate a basis for a longterm cooperation, such as the setting up of common international research projects.

MEMOSUR aims to have a political and social impact and to contribute to consulting activities for private and public institutions and NGOs dedicated to human rights issues. Both in Europe and Latin America - with a contested and often traumatic pasts, and a present exposed to continuous negotiations - communities find themselves often divided by memories and traditions not so easily shared and recognized.

Some of the problematic issues that Europe is facing, such as the contested memories regarding fascist regimes and the complex relation with a colonial legacy, have already been tackled and lived in other areas of the world, such as South America. Its recent political past has hastened the creation of forms and practices of collective re-elaboration of historical memory, along with processes of post-conflict reconstruction.

The Latin America re-elaboration of its post-memory, a memory that is not only that of the victims' offspring and families, but also one belonging to a wider collectivity, is thus a precious model from which to learn to inform and influence the EU transnational political urgencies of remembrance and cultural cohesion.

The network is comprised of several elements from the University of Nottingham, Universitá di Bologna, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, and the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

The project is funded by the Marie Curie Action "International Research Staff Exchange Scheme" (Project Reference: 612352)

Information on the aims of the project, related events, outputs, and participants can be found by clicking on this link.

I am interested in several subjects, which is reflected in my teaching. I am interested in literature, film and other cultural productions across Europe and Latin America, with a particular focus on the Spanish and Portuguese-Speaking worlds. I have researched extensively on the discourses and images shaping the relations between and within Portuguese-speaking countries, the interface between cultural productions and politics, etc. In all of my work, language is essential: and that is why I have been involved in Portuguese language teaching at undergraduate and MA level.

One of my interests is comparative studies. I teach a module called Comparative Modern Literature and Film in the Romance Languages, which employs a comparative textual and film analysis across a spectrum of authors and languages. It addresses poems by authors such as Vallejo, Apollinaire, Neruda or Pessoa by focusing on representation and performance, technology and conflict, gender and sexuality, among other themes, in the works of both canonical and non-canonical authors of the 20th Century. In the second part of the module, we address the ways in which films frame and reconfigure social, political and historical perceptions. The feature and documentary films (European and Latin-American co-productions) allow us to explore themes by major directors (Buñuel, Glauber Rocha) in European and Latin American co-productions - it explores themes related to arts and politics, resistance to authoritarianism, denunciation of atrocities, conflict reconstruction, the politics of memory, and the emergence of democracy.

I am committed to researching the interface between cultural production (literature, film, popular music and sports) and politics and society. In an introductory module to Lusophone studies, I focus on the space of the South Atlantic and on the rich and complex interactions that have come to shape phenomena such as samba, fado, morna or tropicália. The module compares and contrasts the wide cultural diversity and socio-political experiences of the different Portuguese-Speaking Countries. I address, among other subjects, the social and political history, culture and representations in and between the Portuguese-speaking countries (Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Portugal). I have also taught a final year module that discusses the diverse identity discourse and representations in the different countries.

I also research in the area of the history and representations of colonialism as well as in post-colonial developments, working on responses to Gilberto Freyre's work. I teach a module on the historical and cultural aspects of the Portuguese maritime expansion, focusing particularly on Africa and Brazil from 1500 to 1800. I believe that by looking at source texts and documents of the time and relating them to contemporary discussions and/or appropriations we acquire great insight into several aspects of historical discourse, cultural creations, and political systems of Brazil and Lusophone Africa. We also learn how this frames the diplomatic, cultural and geopolitical guidelines that orient these nations.

I have worked for many years on language teaching (English and Portuguese). My interest in translation means that I contribute with translation classes into Portuguese at undergraduate and MA level (Translation studies MA). I have supervised students' targeted translations project.


PhD - Supervision of "Queer Identities in Post-Franco Spain and Post-Salazar Portugal: José Pérez Ocaña and António Variações" (candidate Paulo Pepe; FCT, Lisbon). Submission December 2015.

PhD - Supervision of "Representing Al-Andalus: The Contribution of Travel Writing, Regionalist Writing and Oral Traditions to Iberian Cultural Memory" (candidate Juliet Gryspeerdt; Midlands 3 Cities Doctoral Training Partnership). Begun September 2015.

MA - Supervision of Targeted Translation Project. Translating Fernando Pessoa 'himself': Four short stories (candidate Rosanna Radford, 2014-2015).

MA - Supervision of Targeted Translation Project. "Translating Gonçalo M. Tavares 'Os

Velhos Também Querem Viver'" (candidate Andrew Chalmer, 2014-2015).

Current Research

Arising from my interest in cultural products, critical theory and politics, I am currently researching on post-conflict and transoceanic discourses in philosophies, political and cultural expressions, literatures, film and music within and beyond the so-called Portuguese-speaking countries.

I am currently on study leave and I am devoting it to the study of the work of Gilberto Freyre. My research aims to contribute to the discussion on Brazil's rise and projection in the international scene by analysing Gilberto Freyre's construction of Brazil as an emerging global power. Thus, it seeks to complement existing scholarship and on-going public discussions on Brazilian identity and society in the works of Gilberto Freyre via an analysis of often overlooked texts that deal with the projection of Brazil's role in and beyond the "mundo português" [Portuguese world], a cultural, political and geostrategic block through which Brazil can project its cultural and political influence.

This study, therefore, addresses the style and the imagery which articulate the Freyrean imaginary of Brazil as a global power. In doing so, it will revisit a section of the Freyrean corpus which is neglected and understudied, particularly in English language. The research will thus aim to assess of the impact and influence of Freyre's thinking in Brazil's foreign policies and geostrategy aims; to contest the legitimacy of Freyre's discourse and reveal its contradictions and paradoxes at a time when Freyrean ideas continue to inspire leaders in Brazil's expansion in the South Atlantic sphere and beyond.

I have been researching extensively on transoceanic relationships and the work of Gilberto Freyre has been addressed or in the very least has constituted an object of reflection as an ideological and political subtext during my post-doctoral project: 'O mundo que criou o português: transladações e disseminações'/'The world that created the Portuguese: translations and disseminations" - Post-Doctoral Fellowhip, Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (Portugal) (Project Reference: SFRH/BPD/71245/2010) - October 2011-July 2013.

Past Research

My doctoral project focused on modernist poetry, with a special focus on the work of Fernando Pessoa. I developed a post-structuralist analysis of the articulation of subjectivity and nationhood in his writings via the theoretical contributions of Jacques Derrida. Some of the findings of my doctoral studies on Fernando Pessoa will be made available more widely in the book Personal Infinitive, to be published by CCCP Press (London) in 2016.

My list of publications should offer some insight into the range of interests that define my work as a comparatist, a critical theorist and a specialist in literature, film and post-conflict studies.

I have published widely on poetry and literature of Angola (José Eduardo Agualusa), Brazil (Haroldo de Campos) and Portugal (Fernando Pessoa, Jorge de Sena). I have addressed such authors via the lens of varied critical theories which would allow me to explore the tensions, contradictions and potentialities of the imageries and imaginaries constructed by the play between these texts and their - as well as the reader's - respective contexts.

My interests often take me to films (often adapted from or in close dialogue with literary works) that challenge and subverts ideological discourses, the political establishment or censorship. In this vein, I have analysed the formal aspects and the sociopolitical dimension of several films. I have looked at the role of women directors such as Margarida Cardoso and Maria de Medeiros in reframing perspectives on Portuguese and Mozambican histories of conflict in the 1960s and 70s. Their perspectives - contrasting, to a point - establish an alternative to phallocentric historical constructions. I have addressed the ways in which the film Non ou a Vã Glória de Mandar (1990) unsettles and challenges the historical teleologies and semantic referentiality which the filmmaker uses to address and frame the film's meaning. By approaching Recollections of the Yellow House (1989), I was able to address the ways in which art, when intricately articulating aesthetics and politics (Rancière), can resist and subvert political discourses, social impositions and established political, economical or artistic practices.

I co-edited a collection of essays titled Post-Conflict Reco.I co-edited a collection of essays titled Post-Conflict Reconstructions. My article addresses the discourse of crises and that ways in which Europe must look beyond itself and its self if it is to find meaningful and inclusive ways to resolve the existing tensions.

Future Research

I am interested in comparative perspectives with a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary approach which look into the "transoceanic" as a research platform which allow for a better understanding of artistic, cultural and political transnational and intercontinental expressions and inter-relations. These are expressed in a series of ongoing research that will be brought to fruition in the future.

I have chosen to approach the film adaptation of the novel Uma Abelha na Chuva in order to address the interartistic dialogue between literature and film. The film, produced under an authoritarian dictatorship, manages to - through exquisite articulation between sound and image, poetic filmmaking, and veiled references (to King Solomon's Mines, for example) - lay bare the pusillanimous aspects of the Estado Novo society and denounces the imperialistic exploitation at the heart of the message and image of said authoritarian regime, which was then contested by liberation armies in the African continent. In the novel and the film, letters from Angola regarding the return of a brother who had left for Africa in search of fame and fortune and was long supposed to be dead triggers a series of devastating even if - to some extent - predictable events.

Following my visit to UFRJ in Brazil in 2014, I shall be focusing on the later work of Joaquim Pedro de Andrade under the military dictatorship and after the transition to democracy. I am interested in Andrade's adaptation of literary texts, use of image and sound techniques in order to undermine the historical past that the film (which escaped censorship) is meant to be celebrating - the early movement of independence in 1750, to celebrate the 150 years of independence in 1972 - and question the role of the intellectual when faced with authoritarian and oppressive regimes such as the Brazilian military dictatorship which was the background to Os Inconfidentes.

In the wake of the work developed in the project funded by Fundación Santander (Spain) in 2014 - 'Trans-oceanic Cultural Exchange: Reconfiguring Empire, Reconceiving Community' - I will be developing my work on João Pedro Borges Coelho's Índico Indícios. These texts allow us to rethink the relation between Africa's East Coast and the Indian Ocean in which trade, routes, and migration routes it has been integrated for ages. The short stories offer an indictment of post-conflict society and, through intertextuality and a strong historical awareness, use symbolism and allegory to comment on the use of force and law to further oppress rather than liberate citizens. Two events were organized as part of this project: a conference in Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) and a symposium in São Paulo (Brazil). Another conference took place in March 2015 in Nottingham, funded by the Dean's Fund, Instituto Camões and the International COnsortium for the Study of Post-Conflict Societies.

The work of modernist author Fernando Pessoa is a strong research interest and I am in the process of organizing a second monograph on the interplay between Pessoa's poetry and his theoretical and political texts concerning the nation. The nation in Fernando Pessoa does not escape the structuration of language which permeates the construction of the heteronyms - Pessoa's most famous 'creation' - and it underwrites as well as undermines a politics of the interregnum and of the to-come which structure his book published in his lifetime in Portuguese: Mensagem (1934). Unsurprisingly, the book echoes and exploits oceanic and transoceanic imagery.

  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA and FRANCESCA PASCIOLLA, eds., 2021. Fernando Pessoa: Abordagens Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies in the Humanities.
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2021. Mensagem: Uma espécie de solução... não demasiado definitiva. In: RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA and FRANCESCA PASCIOLLA, eds., Fernando Pessoa: Abordagens Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies in the Humanities. 194-217
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2020. History, literature and the indices of the Ocean. Force of signification in Borges Coelho’s ”A força do mar de Agosto”. In: ELENA BRUGIONI, PAULO DE MEDEIROS and ORLANDO GROSSEGESSE, eds., A Companion to João Paulo Borges Coelho Peter Lang.
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2020. Looking back for ways ahead: Revisioning post-Dictatorship memories in Repare bem (Maria de Medeiros) and Luz Obscura (Susana de Sousa Dias) Diacrítica: WOMANART - Mulheres, Artes e Ditadura: Os casos de Portugal, Brasil e Países Africanos de Língua Portuguesa. 34(2), 29-47
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2019. “quase devagar” – desvios e choques na estrada aberta de Sintra. Álvaro de Campos ao luar e ao volante na companhia de Marinetti, Apollinaire e Alberti. In: CAIO CAGLIARDI, ed., Fernando Pessoa e cia. não heterônima Mundaréu.
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2019. ‘Aprendiz de Proust’: Gilberto Freyre in Search of a Lost Past and a Renewed Future in Aventura e rotina Bulletin of Spanish Studies. 96(8), 1317-42
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2018. Autoridades, forças e violências em “Casas de ferro”, de João Paulo Borges Coelho: Entre a abertura ao desconhecido e a imaginação do futuro Remate de Males: Revista do Departamento de Teoria Literária. 38(1), 75-99
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2018. Fintar o destino: Between the colonial bond and a postcolonial double-bind Portuguese Studies. 34(2), 148-166
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2018. Cenas de escrita. João César Monteiro: escritor de cinema, o cineasta de escritas. In: PEDRO EIRAS, ROSA MARTELO and JOANA MATOS FRIAS, eds., Ofício Múltiplo: poetas em outras artes Afrontamento. 169-188
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2017. Personal Infinitive: Inflecting Fernando Pessoa Critical, Cultural and Communications Press.
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2017. Our Beloved Month of August: Between the filming of the real and the reality of filming. In: MARIANA LIZ, ed., Portugal's Global Cinema: Industry, History and Culture IB Tauris. 33-46
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2017. "Why did they take down the pictures?" Conspicuous absences and "la historia de algo más" in Roberto Bolaño's Estrella Distante. In: ADAM SHARMAN, MILENA GRASS KLEINER, ANNA MARIA LORUSSO and SANDRA SAVOINI, eds., MemoSur/MemoSouth: Memory, commemoration and trauma in post-dictatorship Argentina and Chile. Critical, Cultural and Communications Press.
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2016. As Narrativas e o Poder. Do “Prêmio Portugal Telecom de Literatura Brasileira” ao “Oceanos: Prêmio de Literatura em Língua Portuguesa”. In: ANA GABRIELA MACEDO, ELENA BRUGIONI and JOANA PASSOS, eds., Prémios Literários: O Poder das Narrativas / As Narrativas do Poder Afrontamento. 197-212
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2015. Mal de Mar: A Reading of Jorge de Sena’s “A Grã-Canária” in (trans-) Atlantic Transit Portuguese Literary and Cultural Studies: The South Atlantic, Past and Present. 27, 235-253
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2014. 'Liberdade, Igualdade, Fraternidade ou a Morte?': Extravios do post/al colonial em Nação Crioula Via Atlântica: Triangulações Atlânticas - transnacionalidades em língua portuguesa. 147-165
  • RUI GONÇALVES, M., 2013. Murmuring another('s) story: histories under the sign of the feminine, pre- and post- the Portuguese Revolution of 1974. In: NAIR, P. and GUTIÉRREZ-ALBILLA, J.D., eds., Hispanic and Lusophone women filmmakers: theory, practice and difference Manchester University Press.
  • GONÇALVES MIRANDA, R., 2013. Mostrengos. In: GRAY DE CASTRO, M., ed., Fernando Pessoa's modernity without frontiers: influences, dialogues, responses Tamesis.
  • GONÇALVES MIRANDA, R., 2013. Restor(y)ing meaning: reading Manoel de Oliveira's Non ou a Vã Glória de Mandar Hispanic Research Journal. 14(1), 49-66
  • FEDERICA ZULLO and RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, eds., 2013. Post-conflict reconstructions : re-mappings and reconciliations Critical, Cultural and Communication Press.
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2013. Europe's Wake? Topographies under reconstruction in the South Atlantic. In: FEDERICA ZULLO and RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, eds., Post-conflict reconstructions : re-mappings and reconciliations Critical, Cultural and Communication Press.
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2013. Re(in)sistindo: Textos e contextos da casa amarela elyra. 185-208
  • GONÇALVES MIRANDA, R., 2012. Masters and spectres: Pessoa's haunts. In: FRIER, D.G., ed., Pessoa in an intertextual web: influence and innovation Legenda.
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2012. El tiempo una y otra vez: la "Hora" de Pessoa Despalabro: Ensayos de Humanidades. 6, 147-164
  • GONÇALVES MIRANDA, R., 2012. Os pas(sos) em Pessoa Diacrítica. 26(3), 263-282
  • RUI GONÇALVES MIRANDA, 2007. Constructed Happiness: On the Seductions of Messianism – Portugal with or without Sebastian. In: BERNARD MCGUIRK and CONSTANCE GOH, eds., Happiness and Post-Conflict Critical, Cultural and Communication Press. 131-143

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