January 13, 2012 3:40 p.m.
Seymour Menton, UCI professor emeritus of Spanish & Portuguese, has been awarded the Order of the Aztec Eagle by the Mexican government for his teaching and dissemination of Mexican literature and culture in the U.S., Latin America and many parts of Europe since 1948. It's the highest honor Mexico accords to foreigners. Menton (pictured on right) received the decoration Jan. 11 at his home from Mexican Consul General of Los Angeles David Figueroa Ortega. In 2007, Menton was named to Sigma Delta Pi's Order of Don Quijote, the supreme honor from the National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society, joining such literary luminaries as Carlos Fuentes and Carmen Laforet. He has taught at UCI since 1965 and was founding chair of the Department of Foreign Languages & Literatures and, later, of the Department of Spanish & Portuguese. Menton was unable to attend the December ceremony in Washington, D.C., due to illness but is now recovering at home.
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