Elena Machado Sáez is an Associate Professor of English at Florida Atlantic University, having joined the FAU English department in 2003. She received her doctorate from SUNY Stony Brook in English and attended the School of Criticism and Theory at Cornell University as part of a seminar led by Maryse Condé. Machado Sáez teaches surveys of American, Caribbean and US Latino/a literatures as well as more specialized courses in Caribbean Fabulist Fiction and US Latino/a Performance. She was the 2014 College of Arts and Letters Finalist for Distinguished Teacher of the Year Award as well as nominated for the Owl Award in Graduate Mentoring in 2010 and honored with the University Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching for in 2008.
Machado Sáez’s monograph, Market Aesthetics: The Purchase of the Past in Caribbean Diasporic Fiction will be published as part of the New World Series by University of Virginia Press in March 2015. The book analyzes historical fiction by Julia Alvarez, Robert Antoni, Dionne Brand, David Chariandy, Michelle Cliff, Junot Díaz, Edwidge Danticat, Marlon James, Andrea Levy, Ana Menéndez, and Monique Roffey, as part of a global literary trend that troubles the relationship between ethnic writers and their audiences. Machado Sáez argues that the novels address the problematic of intimacy and ethics in relation to readership by focusing on how gender and sexuality represent sites of contestation in the formulation of a Caribbean diasporic identity and history.
Machado Sáez is also the coauthor of The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature (Palgrave Macmillan, Hardcover 2007, Paperback 2013), which discusses parallels between Cuban-American, Dominican-American, and Puerto Rican literatures. The book identifies two approaches in US Latino/a cultural studies—multiculturalist and anticolonial perspectives—revealing that these politically opposed theorizations of Latino/a studies agree upon a historical division that situates Civil Rights Era cultural production as resistant to the market while framing post-Sixties texts as apolitical and assimilationist because of market popularity. Citing this critical consensus, the book makes the important contribution of analyzing how contemporary US Latino/a literature challenges established notions of the relationship between politics and the market. The Latino/a Canon has received positive reviews in Anthurium, Camino Real, Centro, MELUS, Latino(a) Research Review, Latino Studies, and Sargasso.