Dr. Palacios' portrait

I hold a doctorate in Spanish with a specialization in Latin American Literature from the University of Toronto. I am a professor of languages in the School of Liberal Studies at Conestoga College in Kitchener, Ontario. My research examines contemporary Maya literature from a cultural and gender studies perspective. I recently co-authored a book Unwriting Maya Literature: Ts’íib as Recorded Knowledge (March 2019) with Paul M. Worley, in which we privilege the Maya category ts’íib over constructions of the literary in order to reveal how Maya peoples themselves conceive of cultural production.



Unwriting Maya Literature: Ts’íib as Recorded Knowledge
Co-authored with Paul M. Worley. University of Arizona Press, 2019.

Unwriting Maya Literature provides a decolonial framework for reading Maya texts, building on the work of Maya authors and intellectuals Gaspar Pedro González (Q’anjob’al) and Irma Otzoy (Kaqchikel). We privilege the Maya category ts’íib  to reveal how Maya peoples themselves conceive of artistic creation, thereby offering a decolonial departure from theoretical approaches that remain situated within alphabetic Maya linguistic and literary creation.

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April 2021 – Département de littératures et de langues du monde, Université de Montréal,. Montreal, Canada.
◆ “Poesía maya contemporánea: Una mirada desde el ts’íib” Contemporary Maya Poetry: A Look from the Perspective of Ts’íib.
◆ Event write-up: “Nouveaux regards sur les littératures mayas” par Daphné Morin.

March 2021Indigenous Realities in Latin America seminar, Latin American Studies, University of Toronto. Toronto, Ontario.
◆ “From Text to Textile: Rethinking Maya Writing.” Co-presented with Paul M. Worley.
◆ Recorded lecture: “From Text to Textile: Rethinking Maya Writing.”

February 2021International Day of the Mother Tongue at the Universidad Intercultural del Estado de Hidalgo. Hidalgo, Mexico.
◆ “Las lenguas Indígenas en la literatura contemporánea” Indigenous languages in contemporary literature. Keynote address.
◆ Event write-up: “UICEH conmemora el Día Internacional de la Lengua Materna.”

January 2021 – Seminario de literaturas indígenas at the Universidad Nacional Experimental de las Artes. Caracas, Venezuela.
◆ “Desescribir la literatura maya” Unwriting Maya Literature. Co-presented with Paul M. Worley.

February 24-25, 2020Indigenous Writers and Their Critics, University of California, San Diego.
◆ “Más allá del texto: La cartografía visual/vivencial de Chi Xot” Beyond Text: The Visual/Lived Cartography of Chi Xot.

February 26, 2020College of Liberal Arts Scholarly Intersections, California State University, Long Beach.
◆”Beyond the Written Word: Contemporary Maya Cultural Production.”

February 10, 2020. Unwriting Literary History: Palestinian & Indigenous Literary Imaginaries: PalREAD Discussion Workshop. Freie Universität Berlin.

September 28, 2019 (2:45 – 3:45 PM EDT) – “Working at a Canadian Institution.” Faculty Job Market Conference. Beyond the Professoriate.

July 16-19, 2019III CILCAC Conferencia Internacional sobre Literatura Centroamericana Contemporánea: Literaturas Indígenas y Afrodescendientes. Feria Internacional del Libro en Guatemala (FILGUA), Guatemala. Advisory committee member and presenter.
◆ Worley, Paul M. and Rita M. Palacios. “La escritura pensada de otra manera: Ts’íib y el reto a la palabra escrita.” Writing Another Way: Ts’íib and a Challenge to the Written Word.  

May 24-27, 2019LASA Annual Congress, Boston.
Session organizer and presenter. Session: New studies and perspectives on contemporary Indigenous literatures from Mexico and Guatemala.
◆ Worley, Paul M. and Rita M. Palacios, “Other Ways of Writing through Ts’íib.”

May 10 -12, 2019CALACS-ACELAC Annual Conference, York University, Toronto.
◆ “The Art of Performance: Maya Artists Take the Stage in Contemporary Guatemala.”

Other Activity

  • “Lukas Avendaño: Reflections from Muxeidad.” Introduction to LGBTQ+ Studies: A Cross-Disciplinary Approach. Edited by Deborah P. Amory; Sean G. Massey; Jennifer Miller; and Allison P. Brown. New York: SUNY Press, 2022. (Invited reprint). https://milnepublishing.geneseo.edu/introlgbtqstudies/
  • “Prólogo.” (Prologue). K’anel Bail (Amarnos entre nosotros): Poesía LGBT+ tsotsil/español. (To Love Each Other: LGBT+ Poetry in Tsotsil and Spanish). San Cristóbal de las Casas: Sna Jk’optik Ediciones, 2021.
  • Necesito OER.Faculty Learning Hub. Teaching and Learning at Conestoga College. Feb. 14, 2020.


Beyond the Text: Chi Xot’s Visual/Lived Cartography (paper)

Español I will be presenting on the work of Ángel Poyón and Fernado Poyón at the Indigenous Writers and their Critics Symposium (February 24-25, 2020) at the University of California, San Diego. I wrote the paper in Spanish but I prepared a summary in English for those who won’t be able to follow along. The …