Bradley Nelson

Professor, Classics, Modern Languages and Linguistics

Bradley Nelson
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext. 2307

My current research focuses on the aesthetic representation and exploration of the cultural and political upheaval that accompanied developments in the sciences in early modern Spain and Europe. Titled ‘Estranged Epistemologies: Science and Culture in the Baroque and neoBaroque,’ and funded by a 3-year Insight grant from SSHRC, this project seeks to stage a number of theoretical and discursive encounters between contemporary and Baroque manifestations of Science Fiction. The primary goal is to understand the ways in which science and technology structure our cognitive and artistic relationship with the worlds around us. Primary sources include baroque authors such as Cervantes, Calderón de la Barca, and Zayas as well as contemporary figures such as Neal Stephenson, William Gibson, and Philip K. Dick.

View my current CV here.


  • 2000  Ph.D. in Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian Literatures and Linguistics, Minnesota
  • 1995  MA in Hispanic Literatures, Minnesota
  • 1987  BS in Secondary Education and Spanish, St. Cloud State University
  • 1985  BA in English (Spanish minor), St. Johns University, Collegeville, MN

Research activities

Research Areas

My current research interests include: visual cultures of the Baroque and Neo-Baroque; aesthetic engagements and mediations of scientific innovations and discoveries in both theory and technology in early and late modernity; sexual violence and sex crimes in Baroque Spain; social pedagogy as it relates to the production and mediation of hate speech in early and late modern musical and theatrical performances; and cognitive approaches to cultural expressions of empathy and or compassion in early and late modernity.

Selected publications

Recent Publications



The Persistence ofPresence: Emblem and Ritual in Baroque Spain.Toronto: U of Toronto P, 2010. Print.


Edited volumes


Science Fiction inCervantes. Cervantes:Bulletin of the Cervantes Society of America. 40.2 (2021).


Co-edited with David Castillo. Writingin the End Times: Apocalyptic Imagination in the Hispanic World. Co-editedwith David Castillo. Hispanic IssuesOnline 43 (2019).


Co-edited with Julio Baena. APolemical Companion to Medialogies: Reading Reality in the Age ofInflationary Media, by David Castillo andWilliam Egginton. Hispanic Issues Debates8, 2017.


Co-edited with David Castillo. Spectatorshipand Topophilia in Early Modern and Postmodern Hispanic Cultures. HispanicIssues. Nashville: Vanderbilt UP, 2011. Print.




When a Robot Decides to Dieand other stories. By Francisco García-González.Translation and Introduction by Bradley J. Nelson. Nashville: VanderbiltUniversity Press, 2021.


RefereedBook Chapters and Journal Articles


(in press) “The Persistence of Melancholy in Don Quixote and (post)Modernity: What Love Has to Do with It.” Essays in Honor of John J. Allen. Ed.Moisés Castillo. Newark, DE: Juan de la Cuesta, 2021.


“Introduction: Amy Williamsen and ScienceFiction: A Call to (Empathic) Action.” Special Cluster on Science Fiction inCervantes. Ed. B. Nelson. Cervantes:Bulletin of the Cervantes Society of America 40.2 (2021): 15-33.


 “Algorithmic Bias and thePastoral: Sexual Misrecognition in Light of Natural Knowledge.” Cluster on Science Fiction in Cervantes. Ed. B. Nelson. Cervantes: Bulletin of the Cervantes Societyof America 40.2 (2021): 73-93.


Engaging Students on the #MeToo Movement: Framing Contemporary CrimeShows with Tirso and Zayas.” Tunes, TV, and Tweets: Teaching Early Modern Spanish LiteratureThrough Popular Culture, eds. Mindy Badía and Bonnie Gasior.Juan de la Cuesta, 2021: 87-105.


Nelson, B. J., & Venkatesh,V. “Manifestepour une pédagogie sociale par l’inclusivité réflexive. In D. Morin, S. Aounand S. Al-Baba Douaihy (eds.), Le nouvel âge des extrêmes? Lesdémocraties occidentales, la radicalisation et l’extrémisme violent.Montréal, Canada: Presses de l’Université de Montréal, 2021. 483-504.


Co-authored with Vivek Venkatesh and Jason Wallin. “Necrophilic Empathy:An Urgent Reading of Miguel de Cervantes’s LaNumancia.” Writing in the End ofTimes: Apocalyptic Imagination in the Hispanic World. Ed. David Castilloand Brad Nelson. Hispanic Issues Online 23 (2019): 97-124.


Co-authored with David Castillo. “The Poetics and Politics ofApocalyptic and Dystopian Discourses.” Writingin the End of Times: Apocalyptic Imagination in the Hispanic World. Ed.David Castillo and Brad Nelson. HispanicIssues Online 23 (2019): 97-124.1-15.


Religion and Sex Crimesin Baroque Spain: The Avemaria asAlibi in His Wife’s Executioner, byMaría de Zayas.Théologiques,Special Number on Praising and Cursing God ThroughMusic, ed. Éric Bellavance and Vivek Venkatesh. 26.1 (2018): 61-82.


“Free Will and Indeterminacy in Cervantes: From Molina toHeisenberg…and Beyond!” Cervantes37.2 (2017): 115-42.


Co-authored with JulioBaena. “Introduction: Reading Medialogies Reading Reality: Just Deserts.” A Polemical Companion to Medialogies: Reading Reality in the Age ofInflationary Media, by David Castillo and William Egginton. Hispanic Issues Debates 8 (2017): 1-21. 



Master of Arts in History, Concordia University
Thesis: "An Extensive and Unknown Portion of the Empire: The Montreal Natural History Society's Survey of Rupert's Land, 1827-1830"

Master of Information Studies, University of Toronto

Honours Bachelor of Arts with Distinction, University of Toronto

Research interests

History of books and printing 
History of libraries
History of the North American West
Scholarly publishing

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