Dr. Silvia Rolle-Rissetto
Dr. Silvia Rolle-Rissetto
Prof. of Hispanic Studies

Office: Markstein Hall 225
Phone: 760.750.4115
Hours: Tuesdays, 12:00-1:00 & 4:00-6:00 (Spring 2017)

Profile ...

Dr. Silvia Rolle-Rissetto joined CSUSM and the Modern Language Studies Department in 1996.  She is both a scholar and a creative writer. Her research agenda comprises: Contemporary Peninsular and Insular Literatures of Spain (from the Eighteenth to the Twenty-First centuries), particularly Women Writers, Theory, Pedagogy, Creative Writing, and Literary Translation.  She has published extensively in all those areas, and she has delivered numerous papers, as well as given many poetry recitals both at national and international symposia.

Having served the MLS department in different capacities, she is currently the Spanish Graduate Program Coordinator & Advisor, as well as the Graduate Foreign Language Assessor. Dr. Rolle-Rissetto administers the Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Italian exams to graduate students who need to fulfill this requirement.  

Her degrees ...


1992-1996: University of California Riverside - Doctor of Philosophy in Spanish (Summa cum laude)

  • Emphases: Hispanic Poetry of all periods, Women's Writing; Modern, Contemporary, Present-day Peninsular & Insular Literatures of Spain, and 19th-20th Centuries Latin American Literature. Minor field of concentration: Theoretical and Applied Linguistics.
  • Dissertation: Una poética femenino-feminista.  A study of French and Italian Feminisms of Sexual Difference.

1988-1990: California State University Long Beach - Master of Arts in Spanish (Summa cum laude & Departmental Honors)

  • Emphases: 20th Century Peninsular Literature, Applied Linguistics.
  • Dissertation: Sexilio/Sexile, by Maha Vial.  Introduction and translation of the Chilean's poetry collection.

1987: Università degli Studi di Siena, Italia - Certificato di lingua e cultura italiana (Italian Language and Culture Certification)

1982-1987 California State University Long Beach

  •  Bachelor of Arts in Spanish (Cum laude),
  •  Bachelor of Arts in French   (Cum laude),
  •  Minor in Italian

Her Scholarship and Creative Work ...

ReadingWriting   For further information, please visit: Academia.edu

Aligned with Boyer's expanded, holistic model,  based on discovery, integration, application, and learning, Dr. Rolle-Rissetto's work falls under: (1) Contemporary Hispanic Literature, particularly Women's Writing, (2) Applied Linguistics, namely Second Language Acquisition, (3) Literary Translation, and (4) Creative Writing.

Discovery: as a scholar of Hispanic Literature, her research focuses on Women's Writing, and her genre of expertise is poetry. Informed by poststructuralist theories, and based on Feminist Theories of Sexual Difference, Gender and Cultural Studies, Gay/Lesbian/Queer Theory, it examines the discourse of the female body in the writer's work, suggesting that difference, gender, and sexual identity extend into the realm of language.

Integration: writing pedagogical materials involves the interpretation and integration of one's own research, or that of others, in ways that yield a more comprehensive, general understanding and the dissemination of a larger and different body of knowledge.

Application: her work and service as a translator of literature are tied directly to her special field of knowledge and relate to, and flow directly out of, this professional activity. The art and service of Literary Translation dates as far back as written literature itself. In essence, translators are bearers or messengers of meaning, as well as those who allow us to live in the supranational space of world literature.

Learning: in her own experience as a creative writer, more specifically, as a poet, Dr. Rolle-Rissetto states, "I have not only discovered through it, integrated and applied it, but above all, learned from it. Regarded as something central to human existence, and something that one is better off with and spiritually impoverished without, poetry has played an important role in my life and in my career, as it has informed my teaching, my scholarship, and my service."

In sum, all these projects have given her the opportunity to model the goal of lifelong learning to her students at CSUSM.

Spring 2017


SPAN 330 (3) Techniques for Professional Translation and Interpretation in Spanish (Tuesdays 1:00-3:50 - Markstein Hall 213) - CRN 22455

SPAN 450B (3) Seminar in Literature: Erotic Discourse in Contemporary Hispanic Literature (Thursdays 1:00-3:50 - Markstein Hall 213 ) - CRN 22563

SPAN 602 (3) Seminar in Language. TOPIC: Reading, Appreciating, and Writing Literature. An Introduction to Creative Writing (Thursdays 4:00-6:50- Markstein Hall 213) - CRN 22425

For her unabridged CV ...


About her ...


Dr. Rolle-Rissetto was born in Rosario, Argentina, and she is of French-Italian-Jewish ancestry. Her studies took place in her native country, as well as in the United States and in Italy. However, being that the core of her research is in Spanish literatures, she has conducted a good portion of her work in Spain, a country, as well as its people, very close to her heart.

A native of Spanish, she grew up listening to three Italian languages (Piedmontese, Friulian, and Sicilian). She learned English at almost six years of age, and formally studied Italian and French at the university.

She has been an educator since the beginning of her graduate career in 1988.  During that time, she taught a wide range of levels (elementary, secondary, college, and university), as well as a wide array of subjects (Math, E.S.L., Italian, French, and Spanish).  Since then she continues her work as a professional translator, interpreter, and creative writer.

Teaching Philosophy ... Teaching

As a professor, my main objective is to impart enthusiasm and techniques for learning, to stimulate analytical and comparative reasoning and encourage independent, creative, innovative, and critical thinking. I thrive to give my students the desire to learn more, and to keep them in a perpetual state of curiosity and interest. In doing so, I elicit associations and provoke connections which stimulate discovery in them.

I believe that the greater part of learning is self-teaching and that a teacher's primary role is to help students to teach themselves. Anyone who has struggled to grasp a difficult subject knows that the most brilliant lecture or well-written textbook cannot teach anything that one is not prepared to learn. Consequently, my teaching philosophy is deeply rooted in the Socratic Method, not just because it has been proven by teachers from Confucius and the eponymous Socrates down to the present day, but primarily because my own experience as a student tells me that one understands and remembers best what one discovers for him or herself.

Someone once said that Graduate School allows you to continue reading things that you never would encounter or have the opportunity to discuss otherwise. In a way, this also holds true for teaching; it is simply an extension of a conversation that I have been involved in since a much younger age. For me, it is the ideal means by which to hone my scholarly, critical, creative, and communications skills while indulging in the singular pleasure of reading and discussing language, culture, and literature with interesting and enthusiastic readers.