Denah Levy Lida was born in New York City in 1923, received a B.A. from Hunter College, an M.A. from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Denah Lida moved to Cambridge in 1954 when her husband, Raimundo Lida, accepted a position at Harvard University. Shortly thereafter she accepted a position at Brandeis University, where she was one of the first tenured female faculty. She taught in the departments of Spanish, Romance Languages, and Comparative Literature from 1955 until 1986. She was the first woman to serve on the university's Faculty Senate. Professor Lida died in 2007 at the age of 83.