Nicolas Shumway joined the Rice faculty in the fall of 2010 and served as Dean of Humanities through academic year 2017-18. He currently holds the Frances Moody Newman Chair of Humanities. He taught for 14 years at Yale University where he received tenure in 1987 and was promoted to full professor in 1992. In 1993, he accepted an appointment at The University of Texas (UT) at Austin as the Tomás Rivera Regents Professor of Spanish American Literature. While at UT, he headed the Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies for 11 years and later served as chair of the UT Department of Spanish and Portuguese for three years. Shumway has been a visiting professor at the University of São Paulo in Brazil and at two Argentine universities: the Universidad de San Andrés and the Universidad Torcuato Di Tella.
Shumway has published and lectured widely on Latin American literature and intellectual history throughout the Americas and in Europe. His best-known book is “The Invention of Argentina,” which has been in print since 1991. The book received honorable mention for the Bryce Wood Book Award from the Latin American Studies Association and was chosen as “a notable book of the year” by The New York Times. A substantially revised version of the book was published in Argentina in 2005, and a Portuguese translation appeared in 2009, published by the Editora da Universidade de São Paulo. In 2011, he published another book on Argentina titled "Historia personal de una pasión argentina," a significant portion of which is dedicated to the study of Argentine liberalism. Shumway received his doctoral degree in romance languages from the University of California, Los Angeles, in 1976.