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Department of Modern Languages



The surprise Ignacio Ruiz-Pérez felt when he learned he’d won a coveted international poetry award was understandable. After all, his Notas manuscritas llenas de incógnitas (Manuscript Notes Full of Questions) contained what he calls “B-sides” of his work: writings he chose not to include in other books. Nevertheless, the collection received the Ninth Annual Luis Cardoza y Aragón Poetry Prize, which is open to poets from Mexico and Central America. “This prize celebrates one of the most important writers in Spanish-language literature,” notes Dr. Ruiz-Pérez, an associate professor of Spanish. The award is sponsored by the Mexican Embassy in Guatemala, the Guatemalan Ministry of Culture, and Fondo de Cultura Económica, a major Mexican publishing house. Ruiz-Pérez is no stranger to international recognition. The Mexico native has received the José Gorostiza Poetry Prize and the Salvador Gallardo Dávalos National Prize for Young Poets. Such awards have helped him publish three books of poetry in Mexico, with two more due this year. But this prize was special. “It was a very unexpected honor,” he says. “It reinforces my commitment to literature.”