Dean Allbritton

Associate Professor of Spanish

Office: Lovejoy 323 [ campus map ]
Box 4673

Phone: 207-859-4673
Fax: 207-859-4405
Mailing Address:
4673 Mayflower Hill
Waterville, Maine 04901-8846
Allbritton, Bobby Dean


PhD, Stony Brook University (2011)
MA, Syracuse University (2004)
BA, Valdosta State University (2002)

Areas of Expertise

  • Contemporary Spanish Film
  • Illness & Disability Studies
  • Queer Studies
  • Cultural Studies

Other Courses Taught

CourseCourse Title
SP266The Language of Spanish Cinema
SP269Spanish Cultural Studies
SP362All About Almod&15;var
SP364Gender Sex and the Spanish Body

Professional Information

Dean Allbritton is an Associate Professor of Spanish at Colby College, where he teaches courses on Spanish cinema and culture. His work analyzes representations of illness and health in contemporary Spanish culture and media as focalizing points for larger discourses of national and societal health. More broadly, he has interests in the fields of illness and disability studies, film theory, contemporary Spanish film, and cultural studies. He is currently working on a manuscript that explores the cultural history and legacy of HIV/AIDS in Spain. He has published articles in The Bulletin of Hispanic Studies, the Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies, Hispanic Research Journal, and in The Companion to the Films of Pedro Almodóvar.

Current Research

My current book project, Feeling Sick: The Early Years of AIDS in Spain, examines the cultural history of the early years of AIDS in Spain (1981-1987) as it has been told through television and print media, ephemeral products of visual culture, fiction film, and the so-called risk groups that lived through the epidemic. The earliest traceable accounts of the AIDS outbreak in Spain began to emerge during its political transition to democracy, which began with the end of the dictatorship of Francisco Franco in 1975 and lasted through the early 1980s. The return to this time period allows us to consider HIV/AIDS in Spain as an epidemic of modernity, one that shifted the promise of capitalism and globalization into a threat and challenged the hope that deeper cross-cultural connections would inherently bring freedom, health, and wealth. By critically evaluating the historicity of AIDS, I claim that the earliest years of the epidemic open up common fears about global connectivity, the proliferation of vulnerable ties to others, and the potential of cultural and physical contaminations. Ultimately, this book challenges the dominant narratives in which recent Spanish history and AIDS are seen as separate and unequal, and in which illness is only destructive and devastating; I advocate instead for the twinning of illness and history, along with a more capacious understanding of what sickness can do and mean for the present.


Review of Spain on Screen: Developments in Contemporary Spanish Cinema, ed. Ann Davies. Studies in Spanish and Latin American Cinemas 12.2 (2015): 221-3. [DOI: 10.1386/slac.12.2.123_1]

“Timing Out: The Politics of Death and Gender in Almodóvar’s Volver.” Hispanic Research Journal 16.1 (2015): 49-64.

“Recovering Childhood: Virulence, Ghosts, and Black Bread.” Bulletin of Hispanic Studies 91.6 (2014): 619-36.

“Prime Risks: The Politics of Pain and Suffering in Spanish Crisis Cinema.” Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies (2014). [DOI: 10.1080/14636204.2014.931663]

“Paternity & Pathogens: Mourning Men and the Crises of Masculinity in Almodóvar.” A Companion to Pedro Almodóvar. Marvin D’Lugo and Kathleen Vernon, eds. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013.

“Desiring Almodóvar.” Artlines: Journal of the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art 2 (June-August 2012).

“On Infirm Ground: Masculinity and Memory in El mar.” Post Script 31.3 (2012).


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