Fidel Fajardo-Acosta, ‘82, Professor and Writer

 fajardo-350"Morning, sunlight, solitude, coffee, writing, pacing, writing, pacing, and yet more pacing and writing," Fidel Fajardo-Acosta says of his writing process. Evidently this is a productive practice, giving rise to books such as Courtly Seductions, Modern Subjections: Troubadour Literature and the Medieval Construction of the Modern World (2010), and The Serpent in the Mirror: A Collection of Poems (1992).

Fajardo-Acosta describes his work as "non-fiction, critical and imaginative explorations of the significance of literature," inspired by "the sense that there is truth and meaning underlying human experience and that such meaning can be retrieved through critical and imaginative writing and analysis of texts."            

 Fajardo-Acosta says writing "forges the bridge that allows us to escape from isolation and find meaning in our existence," and its greatest remuneration is "the self-discovery that we arrive at by following the paths of language that take us from the enigma of the other to the source of our own identities." However, the results of writing are "not fame or money but more often being misunderstood and criticized and sometimes even harassed and persecuted." "Writing itself is very laborious and time-consuming," Fajardo-Acosta admits. "Inspiration is fickle… Writing requires luck, time, effort, and removal from the world."            

Besides writing, Fajardo-Acosta also teaches at Creighton University. His time as a professor has influenced his writing, providing "a source of continuous inspiration, encouragement, and enlightenment" as he strives "to make [his] classes a better experience each time." He was motivated to teach by "great teachers like Charlie Bassett, Ira Sadoff, Peter Harris, Hank Gemery, Tom Tietenberg, Robert Christiansen, Homer Hayslett, Gail Walker, Henry Holland, Steve Bauer, Robert Reuman, Ken Hamilton, John Goulet, Francisco Cauz, Priscilla Doel, and many others" at Colby. "Most notable about Colby was the presence of faculty who cared about the students as persons and who were more interested in advising and guiding students than in their own personal advancement. That kind of self-sacrifice is now rare in academia," Fajardo-Acosta says. "My Colby experience was terrific and taught me the value of paying attention to the world and listening to its messages," a lesson that has allowed him to become "attuned to the pulse and humming of the living world around us." - Katerina Faust, '14, William D. Adams Presidential Scholar