Orlando Ricardo Menes, director of the University of Notre Dame’s Creative Writing Program, recently was named winner of the 2012 Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry for his manuscript “Fetish,” which will be published by the University of Nebraska Press.
Founded in 1927, Prairie Schooner is a national literary quarterly published with the support of the English Department at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Anne García-Romero, an assistant professor at the University of Notre Dame, has been accepted to the prestigious Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference this summer. One of just eight playwrights selected out of nearly 1,000 applicants, García-Romero will spend the month of July at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center in Connecticut, working with acclaimed theatre professionals to workshop her play Provenance. Also among the honorees is Notre Dame English alumna Theresa Rebeck ’80, an award-winning playwright and creator of the television show Smash.
Rev. Daniel G. Groody, C.S.C., associate professor of theology and director of the Center for Latino Spirituality and Culture at the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies, has received the 2012 Touchstone Award from the National Federation of Priests’ Councils (NFPC).
The NFPC annually gives the Touchstone Award to a Catholic priest “whose service in the Gospel of Jesus Christ exemplifies the purposes and goals of the Federation.”
José E. Limón, one of the country’s foremost scholars of Latino literature, has been tapped to lead the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies (ILS). As the new director of ILS, he will hold the Julian Samora Chair in Latino Studies. Timothy Matovina, a leading expert on Latino Catholicism, will serve as executive director of the institute, which is housed in the College of Arts and Letters. Both appointments take effect July 1, 2012. Established in 1999, the Institute for Latino Studies supports a variety of interdisciplinary initiatives to foster understanding of the U.S. Latino experience.
According to University of Notre Dame theologian and historian Timothy Matovina, “bold proclamations about Latino voters determining presidential elections have become a regular feature of political commentary.” Matovina, professor of theology and director of Notre Dame’s Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism, is the author of a recent history titled Latino Catholicism: Transformation in America’s Largest Church. “In fact,” he says, “the electoral significance of Latinos is growing steadily, but not as exponentially as such commentaries suggest.”
Even with the endorsements of three Latinos with strong name recognition in the Latino community, Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney could alienate a good portion of Latino voters in Florida with his hardline position on immigration, according to University of Notre Dame political scientist Ricardo Ramírez.
Statisticians quibble, but it is widely agreed that most Americans identify themselves as Christians, and it is inarguable that the Catholic Church is the largest of the Christian churches in the nation. More than half of the Catholics in the United States who are under the age of 25 are Latinos, and, due to birthrates and immigration, a majority of American Catholics will be Latinos by the year 2050. A new book by Notre Dame theologian Timothy Matovina closely considers the five-century-long history of Latino Catholics in America and how that history has affected them and their Church.