Chad Leahy

Chad Leahy

Associate Professor with Tenure; Chair, SLLCS

  • Faculty

What I do

I am currently Chair of the Department of Spanish Language, Literary & Cultural Studies and Director of the CAHSS First-Generation Student Program. I teach and research the literature and cultures of early modern Spain & medieval Iberia.

Professional Biography

My work focuses on the intersection of religion, politics, gender, and race in the cultures of early modern Spain and medieval Iberia. In my classes, we explore these issues in courses including “Sex, Bodies, and Power in Imperial Spain,” “Muslims, Christians, and Jews in Medieval and Early Modern Iberia,” “Life Writing in Imperial Spain,” “The Quixote Archive,” “Spectacle and Performance in Early Modern Spain,” “Poetry Smackdown in Old Spain,” and “Cervantes and the Canon.” My research centers especially around the place of Jerusalem in the historical invention of Spain, and I am currently completing a monograph on this topic entitled Jerusalem and the Early Modern Invention of Spain. I am also co-author (with Ken Tully) of Jerusalem Afflicted: Quaresmius, Spain, and the Idea of a 17th-Century Crusade (Routledge 2021) and co-editor (with Nick Jones) of Pornographic Sensibilities: Imagining Sex and the Visceral in Premodern and Early Modern Spanish Cultural Production (Routledge, 2021). Another key area of interest in my teaching and research relates to thinking through the political and cultural uses of the medieval and early modern past in post-medieval and post-early modern times. I am currently editing a three-volume collection of essays (under contract with the University of Amsterdam Press) entitled On the Uses and Abuses of Early Modern Spanish Culture, which interrogates how historical memories of early modern Spain have been leveraged in various contexts since the 17th Century. My research has appeared in venues including Anuario Lope de Vega, Bulletin of Spanish Studies, Cervantes, Criticón, Ctxt (Contexto y acción), Hispanic Review, Lemir, Quidditas, Revista de Literatura Medieval, RILCE, Romance Notes, and Symposium.


  • Ph.D., Hispanic Studies, Brown University, 2013
  • MA, Hispanic Studies, Brown University, 2004
  • B.Mus. (Bachelor of Music), Music Education, Boston University, 2002
  • BA, Hispanic Languages and Literature, Boston University, 2002

Professional Affiliations

  • Modern Language Association
  • Renaissance Society of America

Media Sources

Featured Publications

Leahy, C., & Jones, N. R. (2020). Pornographic Sensibilities: On the Culture of Sex and the Visceral in Premodern and Early Modern Spain. Routledge .
Leahy, C. (1969). La retórica del deseo en los relatos de viaje a Tierra Santa. Criticón, 128, 85-101.
Leahy, C. (2017). Re-Placing the Holy Land in Lope de Vega's Isidro: Poema castellano (1599). Bulletin of Spanish Studies.
Leahy, C. (2016). The Rhetoric of enkomion poleos and the Sanctification of Madrid in a pliego suelto Attributed to Lope de Vega. Symposium: A Quarterly Journal in Modern Languages, 70(4), 165-76.
Leahy, C. (2016). 'Dineros en cruzados': The morisco expulsion, Numismatic Propaganda, and the Materiality of Ricote's Coins. Hispanic Review, 84(3), 273-98.


Leahy, C. (2021). "Visualizing the Spanish Possession of Jerusalem: Franco, NO-DO, Historical Invention, and the 'Exposición de Tierra Santa' (1954).". Reel Iberia: Media Representations of the Iberian Past. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: Department of Spanish & Portuguese.
Leahy, C. (2023). "Times Matters; Time Doesn't Matter." . MLA conference. MLA.
Leahy, C. (2022). "Re-Orientations: Spain and Jerusalem in the longue durée." . The Early Modern Spanish Empire & the Mediterranean: New Directions. UC Boulder: University of Colorado at Boulder, Mediterranean Studies Group.
Leahy, C. (2021). "Jerusalem, Philip IV, and Spain's moriscos in Franciscus Quaresmius' Crusade Sermon Ierosolymae Afflictae (1631)." . Renaissance Society of America Conference . Virtual: RSA.
Leahy, C. (2020). "We're All Radical Presentists: Reclaiming a Dirty Word for Early Modern Iberian Studies." . Iberian Connections: Medieval and Early Modern Studies and Contemporary Thought. Department of Spanish and Portuguese, Yale University.
Leahy, C. (2020). "Don Quijote, Here and Now". Invited lecture. Amherst College.
Leahy, C. (2021). "Towards the Now: New Temporalities in Early Modern Spanish Studies." . Critical Junctures, Racial Intersections . RSA Online Symposium, Renaissance Society of America.
Leahy, C. (2019). "Iberian Medievalisms, and Why They Matter.". College of William & Mary.
Leahy, C. (2019). "Jerusalemite Kingship: The Politics of Palestine in Early Modern Spain.". Rocky Mountain Medieval and Renaissance Association, Annual Conference.
Leahy, C. (2022). "Spain's Holy City: Jerusalem and the National Imagination". Villanova University, Department of Spanish. Villanova University, Department of Spanish.


  • Faculty Advisor of the Year, University of Denver
  • Junior Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching, Villanova University