Rants ‘n Raves by a Nuyorican Who Calls Herself Bennie

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Biographical statement

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Biographical Statement
Benilda Pacheco Beretta

Benilda Pacheco Beretta received an MFA from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale in Interdisciplinary Studies in May, 2009. She also completed her MA Research Degree in Cultural Analysis at the University of Amsterdam in August, 2009. Her achievement in obtaining both degrees, while she was raising her grandchildren, speaks to Benilda’s tenacity and commitment in her pursuit of achieving her academic goals.

Benilda combines artistic process with academic inquiry as evidenced by her MFA thesis entitled, “Lose the Accent Chiquita!”, which will be included in the upcoming conference to take place at the University of Amsterdam’s conference, “Practicing Theory”: The 2011 ASCA International Workshop from March 2 to March 4, 2011. Lose the Accent Chiquita!, is a multi-faceted autoethnographic expression, which confronts and addresses the past and present and shapes them into an overarching narrative about Caribbean colonial influences on cultural differences, language, racism, displacement, assimilation, gender, and identity formation.

Benilda’s other project, A Nuyorican Looks Back: Reflections in Words, Images, and Video” was the beginning of her photographic/video and academic pursuit of the Latino/American duality. It has been presented at numerous conferences including the Latin American Studies, Contemporary Puerto Rican Cultures at Yale University, School of Visual Arts, McNair National Conference, the National Conference for the Society of Photographic Educators, and the Latino Conference at Grand Valley State University.

During her undergraduate studies she was a member of the McNair Scholars Program, which groomed future Phd students by preparing them with public speaking, research, and finally presenting their research at the National McNair’s Conference held annually. At Southern Illinois University at Carbondale Benilda was awarded the PROMPT Fellowhip as well as the Dr. James Walker Scholarship as continued support for her graduate studies.

Benilda hopes to secure a Phd position in the area of performance studies with an emphasis on critically exploring questions related to ageism, migrant studies, the marginalisation of people of color and using theatre as an agent for social change.


Written by Benilda Pacheco Beretta

October 26, 2010 at 12:34 pm

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