Ibis Gómez-Vega

Ibis Gomez-Vega

Associate Professor
Twentieth-Century American literature, Ethnic literature, American Drama, Gay and Lesbian literature

Office: RH 332
Email: ibis@niu.edu 

Educational Background

  • Ph.D. University of Houston, 1995
  • M.A. University of Houston, 1979
  • B.A. University of Houston, 1976



"Ancestral Voices and Family History in Frances Khirallah Noble's The New Belly Dancer of the Galaxy." Athens Journal of Philology 6.2 (2019): 65-82.

"The Laundromat as a Marker for Class in Tim Morris's 'Suds' and Lucia Perillo's 'For My Washer and Dryer.'" Humanities Bulletin 2.1 (2019): 185-196.

"Censoring the Essentialist Call of the Wild in Amy Newman's 'Darwin's Unfinished Notes to Emma.'" Journal of American Studies in Turkey 48 (Spring 2018): 45-63.

"Marriage, Myths, and Fairy Tales in Diana Abu-Jaber's Arabian Jazz." Mosaic: An Interdisciplinary Critical Journal 49.2 (June 2016): 133-147.

"Flying to Save Her Life:  Bad Luck, Bad Choices, Bad Mothers in Gina B. Nahai’s Moonlight on the Avenue of Faith." Moments of Magical Realism in the Multi-ethnic Literature of the Americas. Ed. Lyn Di Iorio Sandín and Richard Pérez. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012. 65-88.

"Deconstructing the Latino Family in Novels by Lionel García, José Yglesias, Oscar Hijuelos, and Benjamin Alire Sáenz." Crítica Hispánica 33.1-2 (2011): 101-133.

"Naomi Shihab Nye’s Essays and Poems: Extreme Realities." Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics 30 (Spring 2010): 109-133.   

"Inscriptions of Race, Class, and Gender in Mariana Romo-Carmona’s Living at Night." Confluencia: Revista Hispánica de Cultura y Literatura  24.2 (Spring 2009): 40-52. 

"Losing Everything in David Wong Louie’s ‘In a World Small Enough.’" Short Story 16.2 (Fall 2008): 63-77.  Came out in June 2009.

"The Memory of Loss in Diana Abu-Jaber’s Arabian Jazz." South Atlantic Review 72.3 (Summer 2007): 17-37.  Came out Summer 2008.

"Rationalizing the ‘Decentered’ White Male in Neil Simon’s The Prisoner of Second Avenue." American Drama 16.2 (Summer 2007): 56-79.

"Urban Violence and Failed Myths in Raymond Carver’s ‘What We Talk about When We Talk about Love.’" Short Story 12.2 (Fall 2004): 71-83.  Came out in March 2006.

"Radicalizing Good Catholic Girls: Shattering the ‘Old World’ Order in Julia Alvarez’s In the Time of the Butterflies." Confluencia: Revista Hispánica de Cultura y Literatura 19.2 (Spring 2004): 94-108.

"Intersecting Oppressions and the Emotional Paralysis of the Working Poor in Anne Tyler’s ‘Average Waves in Unprotected Waters.’" The Southern Quarterly 41.3 (Spring 2003): 109-20.

"The Homoerotic Tease in Ana Castillo’s Work."  Crítica Hispánica 24.1 (2002): 1-22. 

"Hard Choices: Losing Everything in Helen Benedict's Bad Angel."  VOCES: A Journal of Chicana/Latina Studies 3.1&2 (2001): 94-114.  Came out in March 2002.

"Subverting the 'Mainstream' Paradigm through Magical Realism in Thomas King's Green Grass, Running Water."  MMLA: The Journal of the Midwest Modern Language Association 33.1 (Winter 2000): 1-19. 

"Hating the Self in the 'Other' or How Yolanda Learns to Hate Her Own Kind in Julia Alvarez's How the García Girls Lost Their Accents."  Intertexts 3.1 (1999): 85-96. 

"Metaphors of Entrapment: Caribbean Women Writers Face the Wreckage of History." Journal of Political and Military Sociology 25.2 (1997): 231-247. 

"The Journey Home: Defining Identity in Cristina García's Dreaming in Cuban." Voces: A Journal of Chicana/Latina Studies 1.2 (1997): 71-100. 

"Debunking Myths: The Hero's Role in Ana Castillo's Sapogonia." The Americas Review 22.1:2 (1994): 7-21. 

"La mujer como artista en Intaglio."  The Bilingual Review/La Revista Bilingüe 18.1 (1993): 14-22.

"Reading Ana Castillo: Gendered Readings from Texas to Illinois."  Encuentros (Summer 1996): 1-2. 



Send My Roots Rain.  San Francisco: Aunt Lute Press, 1991.

Short Stories

"La Tortillera." The Bilingual Review 25.3 (2000): 306-314.  Came out in May 2002.

"Other People's Memories."  VOCES: A Journal of Chicana/Latina Studies 3.1&2 (2001): 254-271.   Came out in March 2002.

"Telling Ribbons."  VOCES: A Journal of Chicana/Latina Studies 3.1&2 (2001): 272-292.  Came out in March 2002.

"Telling Ribbons." The Harrington Lesbian Fiction Quarterly 1.1 (1999): 41-61.

"Unnatural Acts." VOCES: A Journal of Chicana/Latina Studies 2.1 (1998): 23-41.

Entries in books

"En mi familia."  Conversaciones: Relatos de padres y madres de hijas lesbianas e hijos gay.  Ed. Mariana Romo-Carmona.  San Francisco: Cleis Press, 2001.  85-91.  Awarded the Lambda Award for 2002.

"Ana Castillo." Dictionary of Literary Biography: American Novelists since World War II.  Volume 227. Sixth Series. Ed. Jim Giles and Wanda Giles. Detroit, Michigan: The Gale Group, 2000.  83-89.


"The Telling of Cuentos: A Conversation about Art and Politics with Mariana Romo-Carmona."  Discourse: Journal for Theoretical Studies in Media and Culture  21.3 (1999): 229-250. 


Review for the companion DVD of And They Came to Chicago:The Italian American Legacy for the Illinois Humanities Council. November 2007.

Review of ¡Yo! by Julia Álvarez.  The Americas Review 25 (2000): 242-245.

Review of The Tree and the Vine by Dola de Jung.  MELUS 24.2 (Summer 1999): 207-210.

Review of Building with Our Hands: New Directions in Chicana Literature. Ed. Adela de la Torre and Beatríz M. Pesquera.  The Americas Review 21.3:4 (1993): 174-77.

Review of So Far from God by Ana Castillo.  The Americas Review 21.3:4 (1993): 177-80.

Review of Infinite Divisions: An Anthology of Chicana Literature. Ed. Tey Diana Rebolledo and Eliana S. Rivero.  The Americas Review 21.3:4 (1993): 181-84.

Review Essays

"The Art of Telling Stories in the Poetry of Naomi Shihab Nye."  MELUS 26.4 (2001): 245-252.  Came out in May 2002.


Her Understudy, given a staged reading at NIU on April 7, 2009. 

Raise a Crow, given a staged reading by Theater Rhinoceros in San Francisco in 1985 and by At the Foot of the Mountain in Minneapolis in 1984.

Contact us

Northern Illinois University
Department of English
Reavis Hall, Room 215
DeKalb, IL 60115

815-753-0606 (Fax)