Dr. Florette R. Koffler holds a Ph.D. in Romance Languages and
Literatures from the University of Pennsylvania, with
specializations in philology and Medieval and
Renaissance Spanish and Italian Studies.
A native of Bucharest, Romania, she has taught English as a
Second Language in Genoa, Italy and at Rutgers
University–Newark; Spanish and Italian language courses and
World Literature in English translation at the University of
Pennsylvania and at Wesleyan University in Connecticut.
At St. Thomas Aquinas College since 1989, Dr. Koffler has been
active in most faculty
committees and in student advisement. She has been a strong
advocate for the Humanities, and for the centrality of foreign
language programs not only for a liberal arts education but for
the development of an educated and enlightened citizenry. Dr.
Koffler believes that language and culture are not separable,
and she works steadfastly to instill in her students both the
will and commitment to succeed in both language acquisition and
the appreciation of other cultures.
Dr. Koffler has also devoted herself to thorough, peer-reviewed
scholarship in her several fields, from articles on
Hispano-Romanian ballad correspondences, to the Sephardic
Romancero, and to literary relationships between Spain and Italy
during the Renaissance. She is a translator and coeditor of
Uncertain Refuge: Italy and the Jews during the Holocaust,
published by the University of Illinois Press.
She has spearheaded and led a series of Aquinas faculty research
colloquia at St. Thomas, and participated in several of our
faculty Spring retreats, where she offered presentations on,
among other topics, “the Art of Translation” and “Literatures of
Dr. Koffler is a recipient of awards such as a Woodrow Wilson
Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Humanities grant, and
the STAC Board of Trustees Award of Excellence.
Over her time at St. Thomas, Dr. Koffler has taught Italian
language classes and several
levels of Spanish. She has taught upper-level courses spanning
the Peninsular tradition, from Golden Age theater to lyric
poetry, contemporary drama and poetry, the novel in the
nineteenth century, the Generation of ’98, the novel after the
Spanish Civil War, and also a course on the Latin American
She reserves special affection for the work of Miguel de
Cervantes Saavedra, whose Don
Quijote is the most translated and published work throughout the
world after the Bible.
Dr. Koffler is not sure whether she is multilingual or a
polyglot. She currently uses four languages daily, and has done
research in several others over the years.