Judith Hilgartner

Judith is in her final year of her PhD specializing in Sephardic Studies and Latin American Jewish Studies. She is particularly interested in the issues of exile and trauma in post-Holocaust literature written in Spanish, Portuguese, and Ladino. In summer 2015, Judith has been awarded three grants to research and study in Israel. In the academic year 2015-16, she taught UVa's first classes of Ladino language and culture. These courses have made UVa one of about four other universities nation-wide that have offered the language! 

Before coming to UVa, in spring 2012, she defended her M.A. thesis, “La salvación del otro: la representación de raza y religión en los autos sacramentales de Pedro Calderón de la Barca” as part of the completion of her degree at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. During her Masters, Judith specialized in Early Modern Peninsular and Transatlantic studies.The thesis project epitomized many of her research interests including the study of theatre, religious studies, and issues of race and identity. 

Additionally, Judith is interested in promoting educational opportunities for students that come from disadvantaged households, as evidenced in her project entitled, “Outreach to Inspire”, associated with the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship that she received to study and research in Quito, Ecuador in 2009. In 2014, Judith was awarded a grant to return to South America and research synagogues and Jewish life in Lima, Perú. In her free time, Judith loves to cook, jam on the piano, and spend time with her family.