Guillermo Arango, PhL, MFA
Department of Modern Languages and Culture Professor
The great twentieth-century Spanish philosopher, Américo Castro, has written that "language, aside from its character as a grammatical skeleton bequeathed by tradition, is at the same time a living body expressive of a people's form of life." Language is living, language is communication and language is expression of many types.
My purpose as an educator has been to teach sufficient skills so that the student is brought into contact with the life and thought behind the words, instilling in that individual an appreciation and an understanding of the culture and civilization which the language and its literature represent.
I have been teaching Spanish language at Otterbein University since 2005, but my teaching experience expands for over forty years, having been previously associated with other academic institutions in central Ohio and Illinois. A native speaker born in Cuba, I spent most or my young life growing up in northern Spain (Celtic Spain), my parents place of birth and where my relatives still reside. My education background shows a Language and Literature degree from Santo Tomás de Villanueva University, and an MFA from Loyola University, Chicago.
My main teaching emphasis has been Spanish Composition within a cultural perspective. I feel that language in and for itself alone is not sufficient. It does represent a discipline and a specific type of learning, but in addition, it is a key to opening wider horizons. I also have great interest in Spanish poetry and film. I am very passionate about the creative aspect of the language and had the good fortune to be mentored and inspired by three great poets: W.H. Auden, Heberto Padilla, and Blas de Otero.
Thus, I have authored three volumes of poetry: Memoria de un pasado inmediato/Remembrance of a time just past (a bilingual edition), Cancionero de Jagua, and Sorpresa de la noche. Some of my poems have found their way into anthologies and literary publications as well as in the electronic media. I have also written short stories and have published essays on literary topics and language usage. My current projects include a book of sonnets and a collection of short fiction.
Through my academic career, I have been honored by receiving three coveted research grants from the National Endowment of the Humanities, as well as other literary and academic commendations.
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