Professor Emerita Isabel Livosky

Taught Spanish at Knox from 1977 to 2004

November 08, 2011

Isabel LivoskyIsabel Livosky, Professor Emerita of Modern Languages and Literatures at Knox College, died Friday, October 28, 2011 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She was 76.

Livosky lived in Galesburg and taught Spanish at Knox from 1977 until her retirement in 2004, when she returned to her native Argentina. A scholar of contemporary Spanish/Spanish-American literature, Livosky was the founding director of Knox's program in Buenos Aires. She was also an expert in Renaissance and Golden Age Spanish literature, and in literary theory and analysis. For two decades she was a faculty member for the Summer Graduate Program in Spanish at Middlebury College, and served as the program's associate director for several years as well. Livosky earned her B.A. in Spanish and Latin American literature at Columbia University, and her Ph.D. at New York University.

Livosky is remembered by her students for her dedication, rigor and inspiration in the classroom, and by her colleagues for her intellectual and social collegiality and her support and commitment to the College. The College recognized the breadth and depth of her contributions to the mission of the College and the life of the College community through the award of the Caterpillar Faculty Achievement Award in 2000.

"Isabel was always very engaged in the world, including the political world," said Karen Kampwirth, professor of political science, currently living in Buenos Aires as director of the Knox program there. "As soon as she was eligible to become a U.S. citizen she did so. She thought that someone who lived in the United States should exercise the right, and the privilege, to vote and to play an active part in society."

Kampwirth recalled Livosky as a talented and demanding professor. "I was fortunate to be her student. I took every course I could with Isabel. If not for Isabel I am confident that I would have never majored in Spanish and so quite literally she changed my life."

Funeral arrangements are pending.