Carnegie Mellon University

Candace Skibba

Candace Skibba

Associate Teaching Professor of Hispanic Studies
Associate Director, MA in Applied Second Language Acquisition

Department of Modern Languages
Carnegie Mellon University
Baker Hall
Pittsburgh, PA 15213


Candace received her PhD in Contemporary Spanish Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2010. Her principal area of expertise as well as current research is in the field of twentieth-century Peninsular studies, particularly Post-Franco literature and culture. Her dissertation entitled "Dualism Aside: A Corporeal Analysis of Selected Works by Juan José Millás," concentrates on the portrayal of the body as a metaphor in a selection of novels written by this author in which she argues that this metaphor depicts an overwhelming connection, established by Millás, between the mind and the body. This connection, as a result, leads to a presentation of the body as the subject of the narrative rather than as its object and therefore breaks down notions of otherness - normality vs. abnormality - and in so doing, exposes a re-evaluation of sociopolitical notions. Candace has applied this research interest to efforts beyond her dissertation, such as preparation for a Humanities Scholars course this past Spring semester, and plans to continue contemplating further implications in the academic arena and beyond.

Her body of research has elicited interest in literary and medical humanities scholars at conferences both stateside and internationally and she is currently in the process on turning this project into a book. Concurrently, her research has broadened to focus on film and, in particular, representations of illness and disability in the films of Pedro Almodóvar.

Candace has taught Spanish at all undergraduate levels, a seminar in the Humanities Scholars Program, as well as English as a foreign language. Her professional preparation also includes an administrative position as an advisor in the International Academic Programs office at the University of Wisconsin as well as an Assistant Director position in the CIC study abroad program in Guanajuato, Mexico.


Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2006

Works in Progress

  • Bodies as Symbols: A Corporeal Analysis of Selected Works by Juan José Millás. Book Project.
  • The Portrayal of Illness in the Oeuvre of Pedro Almodóvar. Book project.

Conferences and Presentations

  • "Equally Authentic: Illness and Disability in the Films of Pedro Almodóvar". NEMLA. New Brunswick, NJ, April 2010.
  • "Disability and Capitalism in Selected Novels by Juan José Millás", Northeast Popular Culture Association. NYC. 2010.
  • "Is Normal Abnormal? The Desire to Be Different as seen in Juan José Millás's Dos mujeres en Praga", Pennsylvania Medical Humanities Consortium. Hershey, PA. 2009.
  • "Voices Reclaimed: Object Turned Subject in Juan José Millás's La soledad era esto", Making Sense of Health Illness and Disease Conference. Oxford University-UK. 2008. Forthcoming.
  • "The Desire to Be Different: Juan José Millás's Dos mujeres en Praga ", Pennsylvania Foreign Language Conference. Duquesne University. Pittsburgh, PA, October. Forthcoming. 2008.
  • Indiana University-Purdue University Indiana. Attended: Cancer Stories Symposium. 2008.
  • "The 'Tonto' Finds His Way: Juan José Millás' Tonto, muerto, bastardo e invisible", Kaleidoscope Graduate Student Conference. University of Wisconsin-Madison, March. 2007.
  • Invited lecture: Volver. Carnegie Mellon University. 2007.
  • Invited lecture: Cuban Film Festival. University of Wisconsin-Madison. 2004.
  • Invited lecture: Cuban Film Festival. Edgewood College, Madison, WI. 2003.

Additional Academic Professional Experience

  • Educational Testing Service - Advanced Placement Grading
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison - Advisor in International Academic Programs
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison - Research Assistant
  • CIC Study Abroad Program, Guanajuato, Mexico - Assistant Director

Courses Taught

  • Humanities Scholars Program – Freshman Seminar: "Gleefully Different: Studies in Representations of Abnormality"
  • Studies in Peninsular Literature and Culture: "Panoramic Bodies: A dissection of twentieth century peninsular texts"
  • Spain: Language and Culture
  • Intermediate Spanish I & II
  • Elementary Spanish I & II

Department Member Since