Programa EDICE

Nombres y Apellidos

Domnita Dumitrescu

Institución / Universidad

California State University, Los Angeles


Los Angeles, CA 90032

Nivel académico


Nota biográfica

Before coming to the United States in 1984, Domnita Dumitrescu taught Spanish language, linguistics and literature at the University of Bucharest ( Romania ), as an Assistant, then Associate, Professor in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, founded by the great Romanian linguist Iorgu Iordan, of whom she was a close disciple. She also taught Spanish on public Romanian television, and she earned a reputation as one of the best translators and interpreters from Spanish into Romanian in her native country.

She came to California State University, Los Angeles, in the Fall of 1987, while still working on her doctoral dissertation at USC, which she completed in December 1989 with the help of a CSU Forgivable Loan/Doctoral Incentive Program for Minorities and Women. She was awarded early tenure and promotion in 1990, and became full professor in 1995.

In addition to her teaching assignments and her numerous professional activities, between 1989 and 1999, she assumed leadership of the local chapter of the Hispanic Honor Society Sigma Delta Pi, and resumed this activity between fall 2003 and spring 2005.She coordinated the supervision and training of the Spanish Teaching Associates until 1994, and served, between 2000 and 2002, and then in 2004-2005, as coordinator of the Spanish section . Her committee service includes the most important personnel committees in the department and at the college level, and a number of university subcommittees of the academic senate, as well as service on the academic senate itself on several occasions, and on the OPA selection committee. She also served, for two years, as Director of Teatro Universitario en Español. In 2004-2005, she served as Head of the Task Force for developing a new Subject Matter Preparation Program for prospective teachers of LOTE (Languages Other Than English), which was approved in 2008.

She is the recipient of a Fulbright Senior Scholar Lecturing Award in Argentina (1993), of the José Martel Prize for her activity as a Sigma Delta Pi adviser (1995), and of the Orden de los Descubridores, and Orden de Don Quijote, awarded by Sigma Delta Pi to outstanding Hispanists (in 1997 and 2003, respectively); she is listed in several Who’s Who volumes, including Who’s Who in the World, Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in American Education, Who’s Who of Romanian-Americans, and the International Who’s Who of Professional and Business Women. Inducted into the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi in 1997, she won the Teacher of the Year Award from the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese in 2000, and was included in 2000 Outstanding Scholars of the 20th Century, published by the International Biographic Center, Cambridge, U.K. In 2002, she earned the California State University Los Angeles Distinguished Woman Award, and in 2007 she was the CSULA nominee for the Wang Family Excellence Award (in the category of Visual and Performing Arts and Letters). In 2004, CSULA bestowed upon her its Outstanding Professor Award for 2003-2004, and in 2008 she was the recipient of the CSULA President’s Distinguished Professor Award (to watch her interview posted on the College website on this occasion, click here)

Between 1996 and 2001, she served as associate editor of Hispania, the official journal of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese (AATSP), preparing -four times a year-the section entitled “The Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian World.” Between 2002 and 2005, she served as associate editor of the Southwest Journal of Linguistics, the journal of the Linguistic Association of the Southwest (LASSO), and she is a frequent manuscript evaluator for several peer reviewed journals (including Hispania and Journal of Pragmatics, as well as the interdisciplinary program EDICE). She has also served, on several occasions, as faculty consultant at the Spanish Advanced Placement Reading, in San Antonio, TX, and on the California Teacher Credentialing Advisory Panel.

She is currently serving on the Executive Council of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese as College/University Representative (term 2009-2011).She has been appointed Honorary President of the Hispanic Honor Society Sigma Delta Pi in July 2010, and she serves as liaison between the AATSP and Sigma Delta Pi. Also in July 2010, she was appointed “colaboradora” of the North American Academy of the Spanish Language (ANLE), affiliated with the Royal Academy of Spain, and she is on the Editorial Board of Monografías de ALDEEU (Asociación de Licenciados y Doctores Españoles en Estados Unidos).

In March 2011, she became a Corresponding Member of ANLE and was appointed president of the Commission on the Study of Spanish in the United States.She is also a member of the ANLE commissions on the study of grammar, ortography, phonetics, phonology, and lexicography.

Since January 2011, she has served as Book/Media Review Editor for Hispania, the scholarlyjournal of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese.

Título del proyecto / investigación

Research Interests (Summary)

Resumen del proyecto / investigación

Domnita Dumitrescu’s research interests include the areas of syntax, semantics and in particular pragmatics of the Romance languages–with special emphasis on Spanish and Romanian. She is also interested in researching linguistic aspects of literary texts, and language contact in either second language learning environments or situations of societal bilingualism. In the past, she has also extensively researched topics in translation theory and practice, foreign language pedagogy and contrastive grammar, comparative literature (especially the reception of Spanish authors in Romania , or the influence of Spanish authors on Romanian writers), and Peninsular literary history.

Recently, she has been studying the academic community’s attitudes toward the Spanish spoken in the US , in particular the mixture of Spanish and English known as Spanglish. In parallel, she has also been studying the linguistic variation in the expression of verbal politeness in the Hispanic world, and the acquisition of verbal politeness in Spanish by speakers of English. She is an active member of EDICE (Estudios sobre el Discurso de Cortesía en Español), an international research group hosted at Stockholm University. She also became interested in new linguistics and literature topics as diverse as conversation analysis in Spanish, the influence of English on the Romanian spoken in the US by first and second generation immigrants, the syntax and semantics of focused pronouns and clitic-doubled constructions in Spanish and Romanian, and images of exile in Argentinean women writers like Alina Diaconú.

At California State University, Los Angeles, she presented two Faculty Colloquia, one (1993) on the historical development of Romanian and its place among the other Romance languages, and another one (1996) on the cross-cultural pragmatics of conversational routines used for thanking, apologizing and complimenting in several languages of the world. She gave her President’s Distinguished Professor Address before the Academic Senate in May 2008, with the title: “Spanish in the United States : Lessons from the past and challenges for the future.”

She has also sponsored the research of two students who became Mc Nair Scholars and earned several prizes at student competitions both at the local and the national level. She served on several MA Thesis Committees outside of her own department, and provided scholarly guidance to numerous CSULA graduates who pursued graduate careers in linguistics.

Domnita Dumitrescu is a frequent presenter at national and international meetings of the profession, in particular periodical meetings of the learned societies to which she belongs, such as Asociación Internacional de Hispanistas, American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese, Modern Language Association of America, International Pragmatics Association, Asociación de Lingüística y Filología de la América Latina, Romanian Studies Association of America, Linguistic Association of the Southwest, and the International Programa EDICE (Estudios sobre el discurso de cortesía en español). She has organized and chaired many special sessions and panels at such scholarly meetings, and she has held several offices in the above-mentioned professional organizations. Among others, she was the president of the Southern California Chapter of the AATSP, and the President of the Romanian Studies Association of America. From 1995 to 2007 she served as the Sigma Delta Pi National Vice-President for the West. She also served on the Executive Committee of the MLA Division on Language Theory, on the MLA Delegate Assembly, and on the Executive Committee of the Linguistic Association of the Southwest. She was the LASSO 2005 president, and delivered her presidential address at Texas Tech University, in Lubbock, Texas, on October 7, 2005.At Cal State LA, she has been involved with the Latino Book and Family Festival, held on campus in October 2009, and the co-organization of the Octavio Paz International Conference, held on campus in May 2010.

She has given more than140 scholarly presentations at congresses and conferences held in the US, Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Spain, Italy, Germany, France, Hungary and Romania, and was invited as a guest of honor to deliver two plenary addresses at the I Congreso Internacional de Didáctica y Metodología del Español in Montevideo (Uruguay), August 1994. She was also invited to deliver a plenary address at the Jornadas de lingüística aplicada a la enseñanza de la lengua (San Carlos de Bariloche, November 1993), and to coordinate an Encuentro de Investigadores at the XI Congreso Internacional de la ALFAL (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, August 1996). In 1997, the Linguistic Society of America awarded her a National Science Foundation competitive travel grant to participate in the International Congress of Linguists, in Paris. Among other places, she gave lectures on Spanish in the US at the University of Costa Rica, in San José, in July 2008, at at the University of Alicante, in September 2010.

As for Domnita Dumitrescu’s publications, she is the author of a book on Spanish pragmatics (in English), three books on the structure of Spanish and on the theory and practice of translation from Romanian into Spanish (in Romanian), the editor of a volume on cultural relations between Romania and the Hispanic world, and the author of 48 chapters in books and proceedings volumes, and more than 50 articles in scholarly journals published in Europe, Latin America and the United States. She has also translated into Romanian several major works of modern peninsular literature by Carmen Martín Gaite, Emilia de Pardo-Bazán, Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer, Ignacio Aldecoa, Ramón del Valle-Inclán, etc, and she published more than 75 book reviews and book notices, as well as other miscellaneous materials of professional interest.