de Alba-Koch, Beatriz

Associate Professor


Phone number: (250) 721-7413
Department: Hispanic and Italian Studies

Research description:

The artistic style of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries known as the Baroque made its mark not only around the world, but also on the career of Dr. Beatriz de Alba-Koch. She studies its articulation and circulation in Ibero-America and Asia, coordinating an international, multidisciplinary team of researchers that includes historians, art historians, architects, musicologists and literary scholars.

Using a historical perspective, Dr. de Alba-Koch's team is increasing our understanding of how various cultures in Latin America and Asia evolved. The team follows how the Baroque adapted to the diversity of the colonies, and how it was reimagined and resisted through time. Dr. de Alba-Koch's contribution to the project focuses on Baroque narrative genres such as the literary dream.

The nature of Baroque aesthetics allowed for the incorporation of Indigenous and Asian ideas and motifs. Given the current emphasis on globalization, the aim of this project is to raise awareness that the first global culture was established by the Spanish and Portuguese monarchies. Their presence in Africa, Asia, and the Americas fostered the establishment of long-lasting patterns of cultural exchange.

Dr. de Alba-Koch admires the Baroque's combination of sculpture, use of lighting and architecture, music and spatial distribution. She considers it a rich cultural nexus and persuasive rhetoric that can still be seen in traditional processions in Latin America today.
At UVic, Dr. de Alba-Koch teaches Spanish American literature in the Department of Hispanic and Italian Studies, always stressing the historical context in which texts were written during the colonial era and nineteenth century, the periods of her expertise. "I encourage my students to take the plunge and visit the past," she says. "It's like time-travelling through a foreign country."

International research:

research focus on Mexico.

Countries lived or worked in:

Mexico, Unites States, France


Spanish, French

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