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Elizabeth Jones

PH. D. Graduate in Spanish
Graduated from UNC in


UNC-Chapel Hill: M.A. Romance Studies, concentration in Literatures, Languages, and Cultures of the Iberian Peninsula and the Americas

UNC-Chapel Hill: B.A. Global Studies with concentrations in Latin America and Global Health and Environment, second major in Hispanic Literature and Culture with a minor in Environmental Studies and Sciences

About Elizabeth

Elizabeth Jones is a PhD student in the Spanish department at UNC-Chapel Hill. Though she has spent most of her life living and working in North Carolina, Elizabeth has traveled extensively in Latin America. These trips include studying abroad and working in Costa Rica as well as trip leading in both Costa Rica and Peru. Elizabeth’s experiences traveling deepened her interest in Latin America, and she continues to research the region in her PhD projects.

At the end of her bachelor’s degree, Elizabeth had a severe accident that was the catalyst for a passionate interest in disability studies. As a master’s student, she focused on autobiographical and personal texts created by people who developed disabilities as adults. Elizabeth wrote her final master’s project on disability identity in Frida Kahlo’s diary, which has since been published in the journal Disability in the Global South. She stepped away from academia for two years to teach in the North Carolina public-school system, but returned to UNC in 2017 after receiving the North Carolina Excellence Fellowship. Her academic work has appeared in the Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability StudiesDisability Studies QuarterlyDisability Experiences, and forthcoming volume Diabetes on Display. Elizabeth’s dissertation project examines the intersections of disability, desire, and women’s bodies in novels and photographs from contemporary Spanish America.

In addition to her love for teaching and her academic pursuits, Elizabeth is also active in the disability community. She serves on the Patient and Family Advisory Board for UNC Hospital’s physical rehabilitation center and as the Graduate Representative for UNC’s Disability Advisory Committee. Elizabeth has also been a guest speaker for the UNC’s medical school and rehabilitation counseling programs and has served as coordinator for a UNC-Duke Consortium in Latin American and Caribbean Studies working group on disability, illness, and health in Latin America.


  • “Desiring Decay: The Power of Unwellness and the Dynamics of Cure in Lina Meruane’s Fruta podrida (2007).” (Un)doing Diabetes: Representation, Disability, and Culture, edited by Bianca Frazer and Heather R. Walker, Palgrave MacMillan, December 2021.
  • “A Body, Undone: Living on After Great Pain.” Disability Experiences: Memoirs, Autobiographies, and Other Personal Narratives, edited by G. Thomas Couser and Susannah B. Mintz, Macmillan Reference USA, 2019, pp. 79-82.
  • “The Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self-Portrait.” Disability Experiences: Memoirs, Autobiographies, and Other Personal Narratives, edited by G. Thomas Couser and Susannah B. Mintz, Macmillan Reference USA, 2019, pp.187-190.
  • “Medicine, Subjectivity, and the Representation of Disability in Una posibilidad entre mil.” Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies, vol. 13, no. 4, 2019, pp. 411-27.
  • “Frida Kahlo and Pendular Disability Theory: An Examination of El diario de Frida Kahlo.” Disability in the Global South, vol. 5, no. 1, spring 2018, pp. 1234-51.
  • “For Us All.” Disability Studies Quarterly, vol. 37, no. 3, 2017.“

  • Review of Disability in Spanish-speaking and U.S. Chicano Contexts: Critical and Artistic Perspectives edited by Dawn Slack and Karen L. Rauch. Chasqui: Revista de Literatura Latinoamericana, vol. 49, no. 1, 2020, pp. R47-R49.
  • Review of Cognitive Disability Aesthetics: Visual Culture, Disability, Representations, and the (In)Visibility of Cognitive Difference by Benjamin Fraser. Rocky Mountain Review of Language and Literature, vol. 72, no. 2, 2018, pp. 322-24.
  • Review of Changing Women, Changing Nation by Yajaira M. Padilla, A Contracorriente, vol. 11, no. 3, Spring 2014, pp. 368 – 72.
  • Conferences

  • Panelist, “Embracing the Patriarchy?: Blurring the Lines between Performance and Misogyny in Adriana Macías’s Abrazar el éxito [Embrace Success!] (2007).” Modern Language Association. January 8, 2022.
  • Invited moderator, “Diseases and Medicine: Treatment of the Body from Medieval Times until Today.” Carolina Conference on Romance Studies. March 26, 2021.
  • Invited speaker, “The Livability of Pain and Becoming Disabled.” ENGL 269: Introduction to Disability Studies at UNC-Chapel Hill. February 8, 2021. 
  • Invited speaker, “La discapacidad en la narrativa hispana.” S408: Iberian Modernities at Indiana University. December 10, 2020.
  • Panelist, “Graphic Medicine’s Textual Transactions.” Modern Language Association Conference. January 6, 2019.
  • Workshop participant, Multiple Perspectives on Access, Inclusion & Disability: Society for Disability Studies Strand. April 17, 2018.
  • Guest speaker, “Giving and Addressing Bad News.” UNC-Chapel Hill School of Medicine. August 23, 2017.
  • Panelist, “Graduate School and Public Service.” Carolina Center for Public Service. January 28, 2015.
  • Co-presenter, “Beyond the Textbook: How to Engage Students Without Going Nuts!” Foreign Language Association of North Carolina Conference. October 4, 2014 and February 21, 2015.
  • Panelist, “Crossing Borders, Conquering Boundaries: Studying Abroad with Disability.” UNC Study Abroad Services and Accessibility Services. March 31, 2014
  • Typical Courses Taught

  • ENGL 269: Introduction to Disability Studies (teaching assistant)
  • HBEH 610: Approaches to Service-Learning (teaching assistant)
  • IDST 184: Research Beyond Academia (co-instructor)
  • IDST 194: Modes of Inquiry (teaching assistant)
  • IDST 290: Disease, Mental Health, and Happiness
  • IDST 296: Course Correspondent Project
  • PUBH 610: Introductory Spanish for Healthcare Professionals
  • SPAN 101: Elementary Spanish I
  • SPAN 102: Elementary Spanish II
  • SPAN 105: Spanish for High Beginners
  • SPAN 203: Intermediate Spanish I