Aragón to Receive National Latino Literary Award

Author: Shannon Roddel

Francisco Aragón

Francisco Aragón, director of Letras Latinas, the literary program of the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies (ILS), has been selected to receive the Outstanding Latino/a Cultural Award in Literary Arts or Publications given by the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education (AAHHE). Aragón will receive the award in March during the association’s national conference in Costa Mesa, Calif.

The award recognizes Latinos who have contributed significantly to increasing understanding of the Hispanic community and/or culture through literary arts, scholarship and publications.

A member of the ILS since 2003, Aragón is the author of the poetry collection Puerta del Sol and editor of the anthology The Wind Shifts: New Latino Poetry, which earned first place in the Poetry in English category at last year’s International Latino Book Awards. He also is the author of a forthcoming collection of poetry, translations and prose titled Glow of Our Sweat.

In 2008, Aragón organized The Wind Shifts: New Latino Poetry ON TOUR, which concluded in October with the help of a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The tour, which featured 25 poets, traveled to seven cities in two years with stops in Palm Beach, Fla.; Minneapolis; Seattle; Chicago; Berkeley, Calif.; Kansas City, Mo.; and New York.

The NEA grant also is helping fund Palabra Pura, a bilingual poetry reading series in Chicago. The series and tour both are joint ventures between Letras Latinas and the Guild Literary Complex in Chicago, for which Aragón formerly served on the board of directors.

Aragón’s poems and commentary on poetry have appeared in a number of anthologies and literary publications, including Crab Orchard Review, Chelsea, Jacket, Poetry Daily, and the Web site of the Poetry Foundation. He also serves on the board of directors of the Association of Writers and Writing Programs.

Letras Latinas seeks to enhance the visibility, appreciation and study of Latino literature, both on and off the Notre Dame campus, with a focus on projects that identify and support emerging Latino writers.

Contact: Francisco Aragón,

Originally published at on January 05, 2010.