Indiana University Indiana University


Dr. Arlene Diaz
Associate Professor of HistoryProfessor Diaz has published articles on the history of Venezuela, the Spanish Caribbean, and Brazil. Her book, Female Citizens, Patriarchs, and the Law in Venezuela, 1786-1904 was published by Nebraska University Press in 2004. She is currently working on two projects: one on the discourse of equality in Venezuela during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century, and a transnational study of Cuban and Puerto Rican communities in New York City and their involvement in the Spanish-Cuban-American War. In addition, she is a principal investigator in the Indiana University History Learning Project (HLP), a Teagle and Spencer-funded project, that investigates how students learn history and how we can more effectively help them succeed in the discipline. In addition to her publications in history, she has co-authored articles in the scholarship of teaching and learning in The Journal of American History (which won the McGraw-Hill and Magna Publications Scholarly Work on Teaching and Learning Award in 2009), and The National Teaching and Learning Forum. Another HLP article is forthcoming in an edited volume entitled The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning In and Across the Disciplines (forthcoming Indiana University Press).

Dr. Lessie Jo Frazier

Associate Professor of American Studies and  Gender Studies Adjunct Assistant Professor in Anthropology, and Cultural Studies Professor Frazier explores political cultures: the gendering of, as well as erotics/sexualizations, racializations, class/capitalism, space/place, nation-state formations, movements, human rights, prison camps, militarism, democratization, and citizenship in Salt in the Sand: Memory, Violence, and the Nation-State in Chile, 1890-Present (Duke 07), Gender and Sexuality in 1968: Transformative Politics in the Cultural Imagination (Palgrave 09), Gender’s Place: Feminist Anthropologies of Latin America (Palgrave 02), “Revolutions and Heterotopias, Special Forum” Journal of Transnational American Studies (in press); and in two books in progress: Desired States: Gender, Sexuality, and Political Culture in Chile and Beyond ‘68: The Gendering of Political Culture in the 1968 Mexican Student Movement and Its Legacies (under contract, U Illinois Press).

Luis Gonzalez
Librarian for Latin American, Spanish & Portuguese, and Latino Studies
Adjunct Associate Professor in History
Dr. Gonzalez has published in the fields of Brazilian agrarian, social, and socio-legal history, and in Latin American Studies librarianship. Recent selected publications include Collecting Global Resources (2011); articles in both the Encyclopedia of United States—Latin American Relations (forthcoming, 2011), edited by Thomas M. Leonard, and in the revised edition of the Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture, edited by J. Kinsbruner and E. Langer (2008). He is the Contributing Editor of the Handbook of Latin American Studies (HLAS) for the history of Puerto Rico section.

Jeffrey Gould
James H. Rudy Professor of History From 1995-2008, Dr. Gould was Director of the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. His most recent book is To Rise in Darkness: Revolution, Repression, and Memory in El Salvador, 1920-32 (with Aldo Lauria), Duke University Press, 2008. Previously he published To Lead as Equals: Rural Protest and Political Consciousness in Chinandega, Nicaragua, 1912-1979 UNC Press, 1990; El Mito de Nicaragua Mestiza y la Resistencia Indígena Editorial de la Universidad de Costa Rica, 1997; and To Die in This Way: Nicaraguan Indian Communities and the Myth of Mestizaje, 1880-1965 Duke University Press, 1998. He is co-author of The Twentieth Century: A Retrospective (Westview 2002) He is also co editor of Memorias de Mestizaje: la política cultural en América Central desde 1900. The latter book derived from an NEH collaborative project that he co directed with Charles Hale and Darío Euraque. Gould co-directed and co-produced “Scars of Memory: El Salvador, 1932.” (Icarus, 2003), a 53-minute documentary film (Award of Merit, LASA). In 2002, he was awarded a John Simon Guggenheim fellowship.

Peter Guardino
Professor of History Dr. Guardino's research focuses on peasant movements, nationalism, and popular political culture in eighteenth and nineteenth century Mexico. He is the author of Peasants, Politics, and the Formation of Mexico's National State: Guerrero, 1800-1857, (Stanford University Press, 1996) and The Time of Liberty: Popular Culture in Oaxaca, 1750-1850 (Duke University Press, 2005) as well as various articles. Dr. Guardino is currently working on a cultural history of the 1846-48 Mexican-American War.

Daniel James
Bernardo Mendel Chair in Latin American History Professor James is the author of Resistance and Integration: Peronism and the Argentine Working Class, 1946-1976 (Cambridge University Press, 1988) and Dońa Maria's Story: Life History, Memory and Political Identity (Duke University Press, 2000). Daniel James has also written many articles on collective memory and oral history in Latin America, labor and gender history in the Southern Cone, and modern Argentine history. He received a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in 2006.

Dr. Jason McGraw
Assistant Professor of History. Dr. McGraw's work examines popular politics, popular culture, and labor in slave and post-slavery societies of Latin America and the Caribbean. His book, The Work of Recognition: Caribbean Colombia and the Postemancipation Struggle for Citizenship (University of North Carolina Press, 2014), investigates how plebeian women and men in Colombia struggled for rights and an acknowledged role in public life during the decades after the abolition of slavery. His current book project is a transnational history of Jamaican popular music from the 1940s to the 1970s.

Dr. Eden Medina
Associate Professor of Informatics and Computing
Adjunct Associate Professor of History
Director of the Rob Kling Center for Social Informatics
Dr. Medina's research bridges the history of technology and the history of Latin America and asks how studies of technology can enrich our understanding of broader historical processes. She is the author of Cybernetic Revolutionaries: Technology and Politics in Allende's Chile. The book uses computer history in Chile to study the connection between political innovation and technological innovation and the ways that political beliefs shape the design of computer systems. Medina received her Ph.D. in 2005 from MIT in the History and Social Study of Science and Technology. She also holds a degree in Electrical Engineering and a Certificate in Women's Studies from Princeton University and is spending the 2013-2014 academic year at Yale Law School. An extended profile is available here.

Dr. Kathleen Myers
Professor of Spanish
Adjunct Professor of History
Dr. Kathleen Myers is a specialist in Colonial Studies. She has focused on questions of gender and religion (Word from New Spain: the Spiritual Autobiography of María de San José (1656-1719), 1993; A Wild Country out in the Garden: The Spiritual Journals of a Colonial Mexican Nun, co-authored with Amanda Powell, 1999; Neither Saints nor Sinners: Writing the Lives of Women in Spanish America; 2003) as well as on early European writings about the Americas (Fernández de Oviedo's Chronicle of America: A New History for a New World, 2007). Recently, Dr. Myers has teamed up with photographer Steve Raymer to create a traveling exhibit and book, In the Shadow of Cortés: From Veracruz to Mexico City, focusing on the legacy of the Conquest in the formation of Mexican cultures and identities today (forthcoming, University of Arizona Press). Funding for research has been provided by the NEH, the Lilly Foundation, Spain’s Ministry for Education and Culture, and Indiana University.

Dr. John Nieto-Phillips
Associate Professor in the Department of History
Director of Latino Studies
Professor Nieto-Phillips is interested in the varied ways Latinas and Latinos have responded to colonialism, imperialism and shifting boundaries of citizenship. With Christopher Schmidt-Nowara, he co-edited Interpreting Spanish Colonialism: Empires, Nations, and Legends (Univ. New Mexico, 2005). His book, The Language of Blood: The Making of Spanish-American Identity in New Mexico, 1880-1940s, was published by the University of New Mexico Press in 2004. His current book project examines the roles that Latina and Latino scholars played in the development of intellectual networks and the rise of global Hispanism between the 1910s and the 1940s.

Dr. Micol Seigel
Assistant Professor of African American and African Diaspora Studies and American Studies
Micol Seigel is associate professor of American Studies and History, and affiliated with CLACS, Gender Studies, and Cultural Studies. Her work on race in the Americas, particularly the U.S. and Brazil, transnational method, cultural politics, prisons and policing, has appeared in such venues as the Hispanic American Historical Review, Radical History Review, Social Text, and in Uneven Encounters: Making Race and Nation in Brazil and the United States (Duke, 2009), which received a Finalist Mention for the Lora Romero first book prize of the American Studies Association. Micol's current research on transnational policing during the Cold War received fellowship support from the ACLS in 2012 and the University of Sydney's United States Studies Centre, where she will be in residence in spring 2014. Micol is a member of the organizing collective of the Tepoztlán Institute for the Transnational History of the Americas a week-long conference held every summer in Tepoztlán, Morelos, Mexico, and was director in 2013.

Arlene Diaz

My work seeks to understand the ways in which Latin American women responded to the limitations imposed on their lives by a pervasive patriarchal social and political culture, racial prejudice, and poverty during the process of nation-building in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.  Writings on the late colonial and early republican periods have argued that women were not affected by the changes brought by independence.  One problem of the scant work on the subject has been that they evaluate women's actions based on what was evident in legal documents and in print media.  This position reflects the assumption that challenge to the status quo has to be manifested in a public medium.  This perspective fosters the impression that because women did not react in a particular way, they must have been passive members of society during a period of revolutionary change. We must consider, however, that a substantial number of women's everyday activities in Latin America (as in other parts of the world) unfolded not in a public sphere, which was mostly dominated by men, but in private places like the home.  We should not evaluate women's actions using a male standard; rather, we should be careful to go beyond the masculine bias of documents and histories.

My scholarship has been guided by the need to understand women in their own terms.  Understanding the logic of their lives is essential to explaining the particularities of family organizations and forms of political struggle in Latin America.  For example, why did households headed by women constitute a third of all households in many Latin American cities and towns in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries?  This question is particularly important to address when studying a culture that is overwhelmingly patriarchal. Why was at least half of the population born to unwed parents in the nineteenth century?  Why have female organizations from the early twentieth century to the present been organized around traditional symbols such as motherhood?  Why is motherhood such a powerful bonding symbol in Latin American culture and politics?   Understanding the logic of women's existence and women's response to the world they lived in is vital to showing how their actions have affected the Latin American past and present.  Women also constitute an important thread in current historical production focusing on the ways in which subordinated people respond to domination as individuals, not as an indistinct and anonymous mass.

 Identifying the voices of the common people who lived over two centuries ago is a difficult task and this is even more so when trying to uncover the often hidden lives of women.  Usually periods of war and revolution provide a wealth of information about the lower classes.  However, information about people's daily life entails careful research that must be theoretically informed and guided by a multidisciplinary approach.  Theory cannot be accepted without questioning because not all critical models apply to concrete historical experiences.  As a social historian, however, I have found useful the works of feminists, literary theorists, political scientists, anthropologists and sociologists.  Such methodological and theoretical perspectives inform my work in multiple ways leading to new understandings of language usage, domestic relations, forms of resistance, hegemonic processes, and the relationship between home and state events. This understanding in turn has been instrumental in clarifying people's choices when faced with particular situations.  An eclectic approach with regards to available models has also aided me in analyzing how and why a certain document was produced and how the circumstances behind its production may have determined its content. 

In the challenging and ongoing process of understanding women's gendered world I have progressively moved from a tight focus on women's experience to most recently broader research on men and sexual interrelations within a patriarchal structure.  Women's actions cannot be separated from men's ideas about femininity and from the ways in which men have solidified their position of power through time.  Consequently, expressions of masculinity and their social and political repercussions on women became the next logical area of research for me.  


Ph.D. University of Minnesota 1997, History
M.A. University of Minnesota 1991, History
B.A. (Magna Cum Laude) Universidad de Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus 1987, History


Director of Undergraduate Studies, Department of History,  2004-

Associate Professor, Department of History, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana, (July) 2003-

Assistant Professor, Department of History, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana 1997-2003 .

Lecturer, Department of History, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana, Fall 1996.


Female Citizens, Patriarchs and the Law in Venezuela, 1786-1904 (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2004).

“Women, Order, and Progress in Guzmán Blanco’s Venezuela, 1870-1888," in Ricardo D. Salvatore, Carlos Aguirre and Gilbert Joseph, eds., Crime, and Punishment in Latin America: Law and Society Since Colonial Times (Durham: Duke University Press, 2001), 56-82.

“Because my sex without honor is good for nothing: Challenging Normative Gender Roles in Guzmán Blanco’s Venezuela, 1870-1888.” Occasional Paper Series, Indiana University-University of Michigan Consortium on Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Bloomington, July 1999.

“Gender Conflicts in the Courts of the Early Venezuelan Republic, Caracas, 1811-1840" Crime, Histoire & Sociétés / Crime, History & Societies. 2:2 (1998): 35-53.

"'Necesidad hizo parir mulatas': liberalismo, nacionalidad e ideas sobre las mujeres en la Cuba del siglo XIX," in Pilar Gonzalbo (ed.), Familia, género y mentalidades en América Latina. Río Piedras: Editorial de la Universidad de Puerto Rico , 1997, 199-226.

"Occupational Class and Female-Headed Households in Santiago Maior do Iguape, Brazil, 1835," Journal of Family History 16:3 (Fall, 1991): 299-313. Co-author: Jeff Stewart.

"Las trabajadoras asalariadas en Santurce, Puerto Rico, 1910", Anales de Investigación Histórica (Departamento de Historia, Universidad de Puerto Rico, Río Piedras) 1 (Nueva Serie, 1988): 1-119.

Survey of Latin American History, 1800-1929: A Study Guide for Independent Study Course. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota, 1996. Co-author: Luis A. González.


Faculty Summer Fellowship, Indiana University, 2003

Nominated for the Student's Choice Award, IU Student Alumni Association, 2003

Travel Grant, Overseas Conference Fund, Office of International Programs, Indiana University, 2002.

Teaching Excellence Recognition Award, Department of History, Indiana University, 2000.

American Bar Foundation Dissertation Fellowship, 1994-1996.

University of Minnesota Graduate School Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship, 1993-1994.

Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellowship, 1992-1993.

Woodrow Wilson Latin American Program, Venezuelan Fellowship Award, 1992-1993, declined.

Graduate School Doctoral Dissertation Special Grant, University of Minnesota, 1992.

MacArthur Predissertation Fieldwork Grant, University of Minnesota, 1990.



Latin American Culture and Civilization I

History of Women in Latin America

History of Cuba and Puerto Rico

Slavery in the Americas

Women in Latin America and the United States

Latin American History Survey Courses

Gender in Latin American History

Masculinities in Latin America


Citizenship, Race, and Gender in Latin America

Caribbean History

Gender in Latin American History

Latin American Legal History



Lessie Jo Frazier

Associate Professor of Gender Studies
Adjunct Assistant Professor in History, Anthropology, and Cultural Studies

(812) 856-0402 | Memorial Hall E. 130


Ph.D., University of Michigan, 1998


Professor Frazier's teaching includes courses on transnational feminisms; gender, race and the erotics of imperialism; gender and sexuality in Latin America; theories of gender and sexuality; feminist perspectives on warfare and militarism; methodology; and gender and human rights.

G101 - Gender, Culture & Society
G300 – Gender Studies: Core Concepts & Key Debates
G410 – International Feminist Debates
G718 - Transnational Feminisms and the Politics of Globalization


Professor Lessie Jo Frazier's work focuses on political culture in the Americas. She is particularly interested in the intersection of cultural studies theories of power, subjectivity, and ideology with questions of political economy. She has published on gender, nation-state formation, human rights, mental health policies, memory, poetics, activism, and feminist ethnography. She is currently writing a book on gender, sexuality, and political culture in Chile; a co-edited volume on gender and sexuality in a global 1968; as well as articles on Cold War POWs and masculinity (using film and oral history), and amnesia as a paradoxical form of agency (using queer theory). Professor Frazier's teaching includes courses on transnational feminisms; gender, race and the erotics of imperialism; gender and sexuality in Latin America; theories of gender and sexuality; feminist perspectives on warfare and militarism; methodology; and gender and human rights.

She is the author of Salt in the Sand: Memory, Violence and the Nation-State, in Chile, 1890-Present (Duke 2007) and co-editor of Gender's Place: Feminist Anthropologies of Latin America (Palgrave 2002) and Love-In, Love-Out: Gender, Sex, and Sexuality in 1968 (forthcoming 2010 with Palgrave).

Her research on political cultures of the Americas has focused on Chile and Mexico. On Chile, she is currently writing Desired States: Sex, Gender, and Political Culture. On Mexico, her collaborative research with Dr. Deborah Cohen has resulted in "Defining the space of the movement: "Defining the Space of Mexico 1968: Heroic masculinity in the prison, and women's participation on the campus and street" ť (Hispanic American Historical Review 2003) and a book project extending that work on 1968 and its legacies in Mexican political culture.

Jeffrey Gould

Department of History
Indiana University
Bloomington, Indiana 47405-7103

Phone: 855-6934
Office: BH 829

Current Work  

          After the relative success of Cicatriz de la Memoria in El Salvador, my collaborator, Santiago and I decided to launch another documentary film project. we did some preliminary visits to the eastern department of Morazán, due to Santiago’s great familiarity with the area. I immediately found narratives about peasant social experiments were both inspiring and intriguing. During the early 1970s, hundreds of peasants, inspired by the early Christians began to work the land together and build communities based on solidarity. Akin to what Jay Winter has called “minor utopias”, the communities became the focus of the film project.  I was also struck by issues of memory, as those who became guerrillas considered these communities as an expression of a lower form of consciousness. Similarly, the violent state repression of the latter part of the decade colored the informants’ recollections of motives for joining the guerrillas. Finally, I found fascinating the memories of the past communities in tension with the neo-liberal moment today. In 2011, after four years of off-again, on-again research and filming we completed La Palabra en el Bosque (the Word in the Woods).

Since then, we have joined forces with the filmmaker Guillermo Escalón and the documentarian Tom Lennon to embarck on a new film project, tentatively called, Port Triumph. Although we are still in a very preliminary stage, primarily seeking funding, the broad outlines of the story have emerged. Port Triumph will be the story of the rise and fall of the El Salvadoran shrimp industry; itis a microcosm that throws into sharp relief some of the most powerful forces shaping Central America, and more broadly, the obstacles facing organized labor world-wide. I am also writing a book on the subject.

In the 1970s, the 1500 organized workers of the port, thanks to their struggles and to the profitability of the Salvadoran shrimp industry, were amongst the more privileged laborers in the country. By the latter part of the decade, their hopes for a dignified life for their children seemed on the verge of realization. By the 1990s, however, the collapse of the industry had extinguished those hopes. Our story reveals the internal functioning of the unions (and of the companies) and sheds light on their early forms of resistance to the neo-liberal inspired transformation of labor relations that emerged on a global scale during the 1980s. Often known as the flexibilization of labor, management typically has striven to cut costs by reducing the permanent labor force to whom it must pay benefits, employing a temporary, “casual,” workers who lack fundamental labor rights. In 1987, the fishermen’s union launched one of the longest strikes in the history of the world labor movement against such management tactics. The collapse of the strike in 1990 coincided with the demise the largest shrimp company in Central America, also caused by the owners’ financial corruption. Port Triumph will attract viewers in part because of the raw power of the story and because the small-scale intimacy of our tale will put a human face to the impersonal forces of globalization, tropical de-industrialization and environmental decay. The main protagonists of the film are former packinghouse workers and shrimp fishermen. It is time to hear their stories because of their age and because their stories resonate with people around the world who have endured decades of deindustrialization and neo-liberal policies.

Port Triumph is not, however, about unmitigated defeat. Faced with the dramatic decline of the industry in Puerto el Triunfo, many of the fishermen and packinghouse workers turned to shellfish collection or artisanal fishing. The obstacles facing the port’s population today are many: the negative effects of climate change, a legacy of environmental degradation, the competition with other industrial fishing enterprises over fishing rights, and the plague of the middlemen who sharply cut into their earning. Yet these men and women remain determined to sustain their traditional relationship to the sea and the receding mangrove forests upon which the region’s marine life depends. Viewers will recognize the richness and moral worth of their struggle: we all need vibrant mangrove forests and we want these folks to survive. We are still very much in the early stages of fund-raising.

I have spent much time on these documentary film projects primarily out of a sense of commitment to make our research available to those people who participate in the project or the subjects of study. Yet, the documentary film process also helps research efforts. First, video recorded interviews offer a supplement to oral historical research in that one can analyze the semiotics of facial and bodily gestures, allowing the historian greater interpretive reach. Similarly, there is obvious overlap between the research for the film and for scholarly pursuits (many of the over 200 interviews I did for To Rise in Darkness were subsequently filmed).  Finally, as many scholars have pointed out the reverberations between past and present form a subject of intrinsic interest and importance. The documentary filmmaker is in an advantageous position to both study and highlight those reverberations.



EDUCATION Latin American History, 1988, Yale University

M.A. in History, 1984, Yale University

Licenciatura in Latin American Studies, 1981, Universidad Nacional Autónoma (Costa Rica)

B.A. in History, 1976, Yale College



James. H. Rudy Professor of History, 2004-

Director, Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Indiana University, 1995 - 2008

Professor of History, Indiana University, 1998 - 2004

Associate Professor of History, Indiana University, 1993-1998

Assistant Professor of History, Indiana University, 1988-1993

Lecturer in History, Yale University, 1987-1988

Professor of Latin American Studies, Universidad Nacional Autónoma (Costa Rica), 1985-86

Teacher's Assistant in Latin American History, Yale University, 1982-1983 and 1986-1987

Instructor in History, Universidad Nacional Autónoma, 1980-82



John W. Ryan Award for Service in International Studies (2013)

Member, School of Historical Studies, Institute for Advanced Study, 2012-2013

New Frontiers in the Arts and Humanities Fellowship, Indiana University, 2011

College of Arts and Humanities Fellowship, Indiana University, 2010

Nominated, Outstanding Documentary, La Palabra en el Bosque Queens World Film Festival

Award of Merit, Latin American Studies Association, 2003 for Documentary Film "Scars of Memory, El Salvador, 1932"

Honorable Mention, Festival del Cine de El Salvador, 2003 for Documentary Film, "Scars of Memory, El Salvador, 1932"

John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, 2002

Arts and Humanities Initiative Fellowship, Indiana University, 2001

College of Arts and Sciences, Humanities Travel Fellowship, 2001

Fulbright-Hays Research Fellowship, 2001

National Endowment for the Humanities, Collaborative Grant, "Memories of Mestizaje in Central America," Co-Project Director, 1996-1999, $270,000.

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship for University Teachers, 1995 (Declined).

James Robertson Prize for Article, Conference on Latin American History 1994

Fulbright Fellowship (Research-Lecturer) 1995

Rockefeller Fellowship in the Humanities, 1991-1992

Social Science Research Council Post-Doctoral Fellowship, 1990

Fulbright Research Fellowship, 1990

Summer Faculty Fellowship, Indiana University, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1998

Grants-in-Aid, Indiana University, 1988, 1990, 1991, 1992, 2001

NEH Travel to Collections Grant, 1989

A. Whitney Griswold Faculty Research Grant, Yale University, 1988

Fulbright-Hays Dissertation Research Grant, 1984

Tinker Research Grant, 1983

Honorary University Scholarships, Universidad Nacional Autónoma, 1979, 1980




To Lead as Equals: Rural Protest and Political Consciousness in Chinandega, Nicaragua (1912-1979), Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1990. (Spanish Translation, Managua: Editorial Universidad Centroamericana, in press).

El Mito de la Nicaragua Mestiza y la Resistencia Indígena, 1880-1960, San José: Editorial de la Universidad de Costa Rica 1997.

To Die in This Way: Nicaraguan Indians and the Myth of Mestizaje, 1880-1965, Durham: Duke University Press, 1998.

El Orgullo Amargo: El Movimiento Obrero Nicaragüense, 1920-1950, Managua: Editorial Universidad Centroamericana, 1998.

The Twentieth Century: A Retrospective, coauthor, Westview Press, 2002.

Memorias de Mestizaje en América Central, La Política Cultural desde 1920, (coeditor and author of several chapters) CIRMA, 2004.

To Rise in Darkness: Revolution. Repression and Memory in El Salvador, 1920-32 (Aldo Lauria, co author) Durham: Duke University Press, 2008.

Rebelión en la Oscuridad: Revolución, Represión, y Memoria en El Salvador, 1920-32, San Salvador, Editorial MUPI, 2008 (translation)

Articles and Book Chapters:

“Utopías Menores en América Central” co-authored with Charles R. Hale, Boletín para el Fomento de Historia Centroamericano, 53, April-June 2012.

“The Word in the Woods: Historical Analysis and the Documentary,” Mesoamérica. 54, 2012.

“Notes on Costeńo Politics,” Dialectical Anthropology, October 2012.

“Response to Anthony Pereira’s Rural Social Movements in Nicaragua, Jeffrey Gould’s “To Lead as Equals in Political Opportunities and the Emergence of Protest,” edited by Jeffrey Goodwin and James Jasper, Stanford University Press, 2011.

“On the Road to El Porvenir: Revolutionary and Counterrevolutionary Violence in El Salvador and Nicaragua” in A Century of Revolution: Insurgent and Counterinsurgent Violence in Latin America, editors Greg Grandin and Gil Joseph, Duke University Press, 2010.

“Camino al “El Porvenir”: Violencia Revolucionaria y contrarrevolucionaria en El Salvador
y Nicaragua,” in Izquierdas y Sociedad. Hacia una historia social en América Latina, edited by José Domingo Carrillo, Editorial de la Universidad Autónoma de Aguascalientes, 2011 (translation).

“Solidarity Under Siege: the Latin American Left, 1968,” The American Historical Review,114:2, April 2009.

“Mataron Justos Por Pecadores: Las Masacres Contrarrevolucionarias,” Trasmallo, 3, 2008.

"They Call Us Thieves and Steal Our Wage: Toward a Reinterpretation of the Salvadoran Rural Mobilization, 1929-1931, "Hispanic American Historical Review, May 2004.

"Revolutionary Nationalism and Local Memories in El Salvador," Reclaiming "the Political" in Latin American History: the View from the North, Edited by Gilbert Joseph, Duke University Press,2001, 138-171.

"Central American Historiography After the Violence" (coauthored with Lowell Gudmundson). Latin American Research Review, 32:2,1997, 244-256.

"Gender, Politics, and the Triumph of Mestizaje in Early 20th Century Nicaragua," Journal of Latin American Anthropology, 2:1, 1996, 2-30.

"Y El Buitre Respondió: Aquí No Hay Indígenas:" La Cuestión Indígena en Nicaragua," Mesoamérica 30, December 1995, 327-354.

"El Movimiento Obrero Chinandegano" and "Nicaragua Mestiza, Mas allá del Mito" in Encuentros con la Historia edited by Margarita Vaninni, (Managua: Editorial de la Universidad Centroamericana) 1996.

"Memorias de Mestizaje en el Movimiento Campesino Nicaragüense" Entrepasados (Buenos Aires) V:9, pp. 85-96.

"Nicaragua: La Nación Indohispana" in Identidades nacionales y Estado Moderno en Centroómerica ed Arturo Taracena and Jean Piel, Editorial de la Universidad de Costa Rica, San José, 1995, 253-268.

"El Café, El Trabajo, y La Comunidad Indígena de Matagalpa, 1880-1925," in Tierra, Café, y Sociedad, editors Hector Pérez-Brignoli and Mario Samper, FLACSO, San José, Costa Rica, 1994, 279-376.

"La Alianza Frustrada: Los Socialistas y la Oposición, Nicaragua, 1946-1950" Anuario de Estudios Centroamericanos 19:2, 1993, 51-69.

"Vana Ilusión!': The Highlands Indians and the Myth of Nicaragua Mestiza, 1870-1924," The Hispanic American Historical Review, 73:3, August 1993, 393-429. Translation appeared in Taller de Historia (Managua) 6, 1994. Reprinted in Identity and Struggle at the Margins of the Nation State, edited by Avi Chomsky and Aldo Lauria, (Durham: Duke University Press, 1998).

"Nicaragua" in Latin America between the Second World War and the Cold War, 1944-1948, edited by Leslie Bethell and Ian Roxborough, Cambridge University Press, 1993, 243-279.

"La Raza Rebelde de Sutiava: la historia de una comunidad indígena 1900-1960," Revista de Historia, no. 21-22, January-December 1990, pp. 169-217. Reprinted in América Indígena LIII: 1-2 1993.

"Notes On Peasant Consciousness and Revolutionary Politics, Nicaragua, 1955-1990," Radical History Review, 48, Fall 1990, pp. 65-87.

"Estábamos Principiando. Un estudio sobre el movimiento obrero en Chinandega, Nicaragua, 1920-1949," Revista de Historia (Costa Rica), no. 18, (July-December 1988), pp. 93-162.

"On Resistance and Participation in the Nicaraguan Countryside," Peasant Studies v. 15, no. 4 (Summer 1988) pp. 75-85.

"For an Organized Nicaragua: Somoza and the Labor Movement (1944-1948)," Journal of Latin American Studies, V. 19, no. 3 (November 1987), pp. 353-387.

"For Their Skill and Resistance:Â Labor Relations in the San Antonio Sugar Mill, Chichigalpa, Nicaragua (1912-1936)" The Americas V.46, no.2, (Oct. 1989), pp. 159-188.

"Amigos Peligrosos, Enemigos Mortales: Un análisis de Somoza y el movimiento obrero nicaragüense (1944-1946)," Revista de Historia (Costa Rica), July 1986, no. 12-13, pp. 19-65.

"Por su resistencia y pericia: Un análisis de las relaciones laborales en el Ingenio San Antonio (1912-1936)", Anuario Centroamericano, V. 13, No. 1, (1987), pp. 25-42.

"Sugar War: The Sugar Cane Cutters' Strike of 1887 in Louisiana", Southern Exposure, V. 12, no. 6, (November-December 1984), pp. 45-55.

Documentary Film

"Scars of Memory: El Salvador, 1932," 53 minutes, First Run Films/Icarus Screened, Latin American Film Festival, New York, February 2003.

"La Palabra en el Bosque" 56 minutes, with Carlos Henriquez Consalvi, 2011.


Peter Guardino

Department of History
Indiana University
Bloomington, Indiana 47405-7103

Phone: (812) 855-6108
Office: BH 709


    My research focuses on major issues that have eluded the historiography of late colonial and early national Latin America. I seek to understand how the lives, concerns and actions of the poor, often illiterate majority of people are related to the macro political events which dominate most historical writing on the period. These events -- the destruction of the Spanish Empire, the formation of independent national states, and the failure of those states to successfully institutionalize pluralist, representative government--have usually been attributed solely to the political activity of the wealthy and powerful. My work shows that in many cases that is far from true.

    I write about the impoverished majorities of eighteenth and nineteenth-century Latin America. I am interested in understanding the experiences of these people, recovering what I can of their voices, and probing what difference their activities made in the historical processes that shaped Latin America. These people did not just live, they developed understandings of their lives, communicated those understandings, and acted on them. Both what they did and what they said had a significant role in making the world of today.

    In 1996 I published a book called Peasants, Politics, and the Formation of Mexico’s National State: Guerrero, 1800-1857. (Stanford University Press) The book traces the ways in which the political activity of poor rural people in the relatively isolated Guerrero region of Mexico shaped some of the most important processes of Mexican history. The region was a bastion of several crucial broad-based political movements: the 1810-21 revolution which brought Mexico's independence from Spain, electoral and armed movements which carried the radical populist Vicente Guerrero to presidential office in the late 1820s, peasant rebellions which rocked Mexico in the 1840s, and the 1854-55 rebellion which brought Mexico's liberals to power. The overarching story here is about the development of key elements of Mexico's political culture. These elements are two: the prevalence of regionally-based cross-class coalitions in determining national political outcomes, and the gradual elaboration of popular federalism and liberalism, political idioms which allowed relatively impoverished and marginalized Mexicans to make arguments to, and in some senses make their own, Mexico's liberal, republican national state.

    In 2005 I published "The Time of Liberty: " Popular Political Culture in Oaxaca, 1750-1850 (Duke University Press).  In this book I examined how the Enlightenment, the Bourbon Reforms, independence, and the formation of republican governments changed that way that both the urban poor and indigenous peasants acted and spoke politically. The book compares the different ways in which urban and rural people addressed state power and each other. Urban and rural people had very different experiences in the period. Urban groups developed and engaged in a fierce partisan politics organized around elections and civil wars. Indigenous villagers, at least in the district I studied, stayed away from that partisan politics but used various new laws and forms of politics to reshape politics within their villages.

    I am currently writing a comparative cultural history of the Mexican-American War of 1846-1848, probing the attitudes shown by common people on both sides in order to further investigate national identities in the nineteenth century. The work focuses on how gender, religion, and race shaped the ways in which people understood and experienced the war. Many people in both countries, for instance, saw religion as a primary difference. Many Protestant Americans saw Catholicism as a backward, superstitious religion which damaged Mexican politics and the Mexican economy, and American volunteers soldiers often targeted churches. At the same time most Mexicans saw Catholicism as the only path to eternal salvation, and they resented the attitude of Americans.This research has already resulted in articles and conference papers and will eventually lead to a major book.


    Graduate Courses that I have taught at Indiana University
    F546 Modern Mexico
    H665 Colloquium in Latin America's Long Nineteenth Century
    H665 Colloquium in Social Movements in Latin America
    H665 Colloquium in Colonial Latin America
    H665 Colloquium in Resistance and Rebellion in Latin America
    H665 Colloquium on Nations and Nationalism in Latin America
    H765 Seminar in Latin American Social History

    Undergraduate Courses that I have Taught at Indiana University
    E104 Ethnicity, Race, and Identity in Latin America
    H101 The World in the Twentieth Century I
    H212 Modern Latin America
    F300 The US and Mexico
    F346 Modern Mexico
    J400 Mexican Revolution
    J400 The U.S. and Mexico

    Some Thoughts on Graduate Teaching

    I try to help graduate students learn to critically analyze information and synthesize it to answer questions. I believe they learn best by doing. Ultimately graduate students need space and encouragement to develop their own questions and style. They also require frequent and copious criticism, especially on written assignments. I believe graduate students need feedback from experienced researchers on everything they write. I encourage them to bring me all their efforts, including grant proposals, assignments for other professors and essays they are working on for journals. I work to develop graduate students’ research skills, critical acumen, and collegiality. I want students to develop some appreciation of the degree to which successful research is a collective process, the product of a particular community of scholars. I have also come to believe that although the subjects covered in courses are important, ultimately courses best serve students by allowing them to examine and critically discuss a wide variety of theoretical and methodological approaches to problems. This process of exposure is ultimately what allows students to develop their own questions and intellectual styles.

    I make a special effort to teach history graduate students three essential professional skills that are not often taught in the traditional graduate curriculum. First, students need to learn how to write effective research proposals which frame their work for multidisciplinary audiences. Without this skill students will never receive funding in our shrinking academic world. I read multiple drafts of student proposals and make copies of successful grant proposals available to them. I also incorporate proposal-writing assignments into my graduate classes. Second, advanced history graduate students need to prepare for the specific forums encountered in the job market. I discuss interviewing and the job search process with individual students as needed. Interviewing skills are often the deciding difference when departments choose between equally qualified job candidates. Third, graduate students need preparation to become effective teachers. In addition to discussing teaching issues in my graduate classes, and incorporating syllabi-writing as an assignment, I observe and critique the teaching of three different graduate students in their first courses.



    1992 University of Chicago. Ph.D. in History. Dissertation: "Peasants, Politics, and State Formation in Nineteenth Century Mexico: Guerrero, 1800-1855."

    University of Chicago. M.A. in Latin American History. Additional studies in Economics, Anthropology. M.A. Paper, "The Caudillo and Rural Alliances in Nineteenth Century Mexico: Manuel Lozada and Nayarit."

    1985 University of Chicago. B.A. with Honors in Latin American Studies. Course work in History, Economics, Sociology. B.A. Paper, "The Peso and the Priest: Tenant Response to Mexico's Lerdo Law of 1856."

    1984-85 Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. Mexico City. Centro de Estudios para Extranjeros and Facultad de Filosofía y Letras. Exchange student in Latin American History, Spanish Language and Literature.



    1993-Present Assistant, Associate, and Full Professor. Department of History, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.

    1994-96 Associate Editor. American Historical Review.

    1992-93 Visiting Assistant Professor. Center for Latin American Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago. Courses: Introduction to Mexican Studies, Modern Mexico.

    1992 Lecturer. Department of Political Science, Loyola University of Chicago. Course: Introduction to Latin American Politics.

    1991-92 Visiting Assistant Professor. Department of History, Central Washington University. Courses: Modern Mexico, Colonial Latin America, Central America and the Caribbean, World History.

    1991 Research Assistant. California Institute for Rural Studies, Davis, California. Conducted field research on migrant agricultural workers in San Diego County, California.

    1990 Research Assistant. John Coatsworth, Department of History, University of Chicago.

    1989 Research Assistant. José Luís Reyna, Visiting Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Chicago.

    1987-88 Teaching Assistant. University of Chicago. Led weekly discussion section, prepared and graded exams for Introduction to Latin American Civilization I and II.

    1986 Research Assistant. David Galenson, Department of Economics, University of Chicago.



    2008 U.S. Department of Education Fulbright-Hays Faculty Research Abroad Fellowship.

    2008 College Arts and Humanities Institute Research Travel Grant, Indiana University.

    2007 Meritorious Service Award, Department of History, Indiana University.

    2005 College Arts and Humanities Institute Research Travel Grant, Indiana University.

    2005 Summer Faculty Fellowship, Indiana University.

    1999 National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship for University Teachers. Awarded for book on changes in popular political culture in Oaxaca, Mexico from 1750-1850.

    1998 Summer Faculty Fellowship, Indiana University.

    1997 Teaching Excellence Recognition Award. Department of History, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.

    1996 Advanced Research Grant, Social Science Research Council and American Council of Learned Societies. Awarded for research on changes in popular political culture in Oaxaca, Mexico from 1750-1850.

    1994 Summer Faculty Fellowship, Indiana University.

    1990-91 Visiting Research Fellowship, Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies, University of California, San Diego. Awarded for research on peasants and state formation in Mexico.

    1988 Social Sciences Research Council Fellowship. Awarded for dissertation research in Mexico.

    1988 U.S. Department of Education Fulbright-Hays Dissertation Research Abroad Fellowship. Awarded for dissertation research in Mexico.

    1988 International Institute of Education Fulbright Fellowship. Awarded for dissertation research in Mexico.

    1987 Mellon Travel Grant. Awarded by the Latin American Studies Center of the University of Chicago for preliminary dissertation research in Mexico.

    1986 Tinker Travel Grant. Awarded by the Latin American Studies Center of the University of Chicago for preliminary dissertation research in Mexico.

    1985 Century Fellowship. Awarded by the University of Chicago for graduate study in History.

    1985 Graduated from the College of the University of Chicago with Honors in Latin American Studies, General Honors.

    1984 Lincoln-Juárez Fellowship. Awarded by the Ministro de Relaciones Exteriores of the Mexican government for study in Mexico.



    Forthcoming “In the Name of Civilization and with a Bible in their Hands: Religion and the 1846-48 Mexican American War,” Mexican Studies/Estudios Mexicanos.

    Forthcoming “Gender, Soldiering, and Citizenship in the Mexican-American War of 1846-1848,” American Historical Review February 2014.

    Forthcoming “La vida comunal y la política para los campesinos indígenas de México,” en Pablo Piccato y Erika Pani, eds., Los laboratorios de la legitimidad: La nueva historia política en América Latina, siglo XIX. Mexico City: El Colegio de México

    2010 “Los campesinos mexicanos y la guerra de independencia: Un recorrido.” Tzintzun 51(enero-junio 2010) 13-36.

    2010 Revuelta, rebelión y revolución revistado: La resistencia campesina y el estado nacional en México,” pp. 35-47 en Javier Garciadiego y Emilio Kourí, coord. Revolución y exilio en la historia de México. Mexico: El Colegio de México/The University of Chicago/Ediciones Era.

    2010 “La iglesia mexicana y la guerra con Estados Unidos,” pp. 236-264 en Brian Connaughton y Carlos Rubén Ruiz Medrano, coord. Dios, religión y patria: intereses, luchas e ideales socioreligiosos en méxico, siglos xviii-xix. Perspectivas locales.San Luis Potosí: Colegio de San Luis.

    2010 El tiempo de la libertad: La cultura política popular en Oaxaca, 1750-1850. Oaxaca, Mexico:Â Universidad Autónoma Benito Juárez de Oaxaca/Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana/El Colegio de Michoacán/El Colegio de San Luis/H. Congreso del Estado de Oaxaca 2010. (Translation of 2005 Duke University Press book).

    2008 “‘Por la virtud y el merito, y no por el dinero y grandeza de los hombres': Los orígenes del igualitarismo político en Antequera, de los borbones a la Independencia,” pp. 169-189 in Daniel Traffano, coord., Reconociendo al pasado. Miradas históricas sobre Oaxaca. Oaxaca: Universidad Autónoma Benito Juárez de Oaxaca/Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social. 2008.

    2007 “La identidad nacional y los afromexicanos en el siglo XIX,” pp. 259-301 in Brian Connaughton, coord. Prácticas Populares, Cultura Política y Poder en México, Siglo XIX. Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Iztapalapa/Juan Pablos.

    *“El nombre conocido de república: Municipios en Oaxaca, de Cádiz a la Primera República Federal.” Pp. 213-234 in Juan Ortiz Escamilla y José Antonio Serrano Ortega (eds.), Ayuntamientos y liberalismo gaditano en México. Zamora, El Colegio de Michoacán /Universidad Veracruzana.

    2005 “No se nos debe desigualar: Movilización realista, ideario insurgente, y liberalismo español en Oaxaca, México.” Pp. 11-21 in Germán Cardozo, ed. Colectivos sociales y participación popular en la Independencia Hispanoamericana. Maracaibo/ Venezuela: Universidad del Zulia, Nacional de Antropología e Historia y El Colegio de Michoacán.

    2005 “El nacionalismo: una microhistoria.” Fractal. 2005. (Translation of 1994 Journal of Historical Sociology article).

    2005 “Community Service, Liberal Law, and Local Custom in Indigenous Villages: Oaxaca, 1750-1850,” pp. 50-65 in Sueann Caulfield, Sarah Chambers, and Lara Putnam, eds. Honor, Status, and Law in Modern Latin America, Duke University Press.

    2005 The Time of Liberty:" Popular Political Culture in Oaxaca, 1750-1850. Duke University Press.

    2004 “Las bases sociales de la insurgencia en la Costa Grande de Guerrero,” in Ana Carolina Ibarra, Coord., La independencia en el Sur de México. Facultad de Filosofía y Letras-Instituto de Investigaciones Históricas/Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, 2004.

    2003 "Postcolonialism as Self-fulfilled Prophecy? Electoral Politics in Oaxaca, 1814-1828,” pp. 248-271 in Mark Thurner and Andrés Guerrero, eds. After Spanish Rule: Postcolonial Predicaments in the Americas. Duke University Press.

    2001 Campesinos, política, y la formación del estado nacional mexicano: Guerrero, 1800-1857.  Chilpancingo, Guerrero, Mexico:  Instituto de Estudios Parlamentarios Eduardo Neri. (Translation of 1996 Stanford book).

    2001 "El gobierno en el campo después de la Independencia: Las municipalidades en Guerrero, 1820-1857," pp. 399-422 en José Gilberto Garza Grimaldo y Tomás Bustamante Alvarez, coords.  Los Sentimientos de la Nación.  Chilpancingo, Guerrero, Mexico Instituto de Estudios Parlamentarios Eduardo Neri.

    2000 “Me ha cabido en la fatalidad”: Gobierno indígena y gobierno republicano en los pueblos indígenas: Oaxaca, 1750-1850,” Desacatos 5 (Invierno 2000)119-130.

    2000 “Toda libertad para emitir sus votos:’ Plebeyos, campesinos, y elecciones en Oaxaca, 1808-1850.” Cuadernos del Sur 15(Junio de 2000)87-114.

    2000 “The War of Independence in Guerrero,” pp. 93-140 in Christon Archer, ed. Wars of Independence in Latin America. Wilmington, Delaware: Scholarly Resources. (Reprint of chapter from Peasants, Politics and the Formation of Mexico's National State: Guerrero, 1800-1857).

    1999"¿Barbarismo o ley republicana?” Los campesinos de Guerrero y la política nacional, 1820-1846,” pp. 35-73 in Guerrero, 1849-1999, Edgar Neri Quevedo, coord., Chilpancingo: Gobierno del Estado de Guerrero. (Translation of 1995 Hispanic American Historical Review piece).

    1999 “Community Service, Liberal Law and Local Custom in Indigenous Villages: Oaxaca, 1750-1850.” Occasional Papers Series of the Indiana University-University of Michigan Consortium on Latin American and Carribbean Studies. Bloomington.

    1996 Peasants, Politics and the Formation of Mexico's National State: Guerrero, 1800-1857. Stanford University Press.

    1995 "Barbarism or Republican Law: Guerrero's Peasants and National Politics, 1820-1846," Hispanic American Historical Review 75:2 (May 1995) 185-213.

    1995 Essays on Guerrero and Juan Alvarez, Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture. Charles Scribner and Sons.

    1994 With Charles Walker. "Estado, sociedad y politica en el Peru y Mexico entre fines de la colonia y comienzos de la republica", Histórica, 18:1 (julio 1994) 27-68. (Translation of 1992 Latin American Perspectives piece).

    1994 "Identity and Nationalism in Mexico: Guerrero, 1780-1840," Journal of Historical Sociology. 7:3(September 1994) 314-342.

    1992 With Charles Walker. "State, Society, and Politics in Peru and Mexico in the Late Colonial and Early Republican Periods," Latin American Perspectives. 19:2 (Spring 1992) 10-43.

    1989 "Las Guerrillas y la independencia peruana: un ensayo de interpretación," Pasado y Presente. II:


Daniel James

Department of History
Indiana University
Bloomington, Indiana 47405-7103

Phone: (812)855-6321
Office: BH 825

Daniel James was educated at Oxford University and received his doctorate from the London School of Economics. He was a Research Fellow at Cambridge University and from 1979 to 1982 taught sociology at the University of Brasilia. Since coming to the United States he has taught Latin American history at Yale University and Duke University until coming to Indiana in 1999 to take up the Bernardo Mendel Chair in Latin American History.

His primary research interests have been in Argentina. Since first going to Argentina in 1972 he has spent frequent prolonged periods in Argentina. His principle interest has been in modern Argentine labor, social and cultural history. Much of the focus of his work has been on Peronism. His first book, Resistance and Integration: Peronism and the Argentine Working Class 1943 - 1976, was published by Cambridge University Press in 1988. A new edition of this book has recently been published in Argentina. Dr. James has a new edition of hisSince the late 1980s he has been engaged in a long-term collaborative project with Professor Mirta Zaida Lobato of the University of Buenos Aires focused on the history of the meatpacking community of Berisso. A central part of this project has involved the collection of oral testimonies in the community. This interest in oral history led to a second book, Dona Maria’s Story: Life History, Memory and Political Identity, published by Duke University Press. This book presents a long testimony by an elderly woman meatpacking activist. In addition, there are a series of chapters that offer a prolonged meditation on the practice of oral history, its methodology and its ethical and epistemological assumptions.

Daniel James and Mirta Lobato are currently working on a book on the history of the community of Berisso. This book will focus on issues such as immigration, ethnic identity, political mobilization, deindustrialization and the cultural bases of community. A crucial part of Daniel James’ research interests has centered on the history of women workers and the theme of gender. This interest was reflected in the publication in 1997 of a collection of essays entitled, The Gendered Worlds of Latin American Women Workers, edited with John French and published by Duke University Press. This book brought together a wide range of essays on the topic of women workers in Latin American history. Many of the essays adopted innovative historical research methods and the collection was framed by a theoretical introduction by the James and French setting the essays within the context of recent work on feminism and gender theory. As a result of his work on Berisso Daniel James has also developed a growing interest in the use of photographs as historical evidence, and the general theme of the relationship between the visual and the historical. He and Mirta Lobato have recently authored an article “Family Photographs and Ethnic Identity: the Ukrainians of Berisso” to be published in the Hispanic American Historical Review, 2002.

Much of his scholarship of the past decade has been focused on and influenced by the emergence of what is called the new cultural history. At Duke Daniel James was involved in the setting up of a Latin American Cultural Studies doctoral program. Since coming to Indiana he has also been active in the creation of the Cultural History graduate program.

Daniel James has long experience of graduate teaching, having supervised many dissertations at both Yale and Duke. Most recently his graduate students have taken positions at University of Pennsylvania, University of Mississippi and UC Irvine. He has been involved in either directing or co-directing graduates doing research on topics as widely dispersed as the history of the Sephardic Jewish community in Argentina and women textile workers in Medellin, Colombia. Recent graduate seminars that he has offered include, “Voices from the Past: the Problems and Promise of Oral History in Latin America”, “Social and Cultural History Topics in 19th and 20th Century Latin America” and “Revolutions in 20th Century Latin America” co-taught with Jeffrey Gould.

Jason McGraw

Assistant Professor of History
Department of History
Ballantine Hall, Rm. 736
Indiana University
Bloomington, Indiana 47405-7103
(812) 855-5106

The questions I ask in my research revolve around the imbricated processes of slavery, emancipation, colonialism, and capitalism in the Americas and the wider Atlantic World. From these presumed global questions, I am interested in studying local instantiations of social, political, and cultural change in Latin American and Caribbean contexts. As with many other scholars in and of the contemporary world, I see citizenship as a core framework for getting at these questions and contexts. How citizenship is defined, but especially how it is practiced and wrangled over, is a historical contingency bound by locality, yet studying struggles around citizenship in one context offers us new ways of understanding how citizenship has become a central problematic of modernity the world over. My hope is that the conclusions I draw from the history of citizenship in Colombia, and my ongoing research on the transnational origins of national culture in Jamaica, can offer students who work on other countries new ways to think about similar subjects in their bailiwick.

My first book, The Work of Recognition: Caribbean Colombia and the Postemancipation Struggle for Citizenship, is the first book-length study in any language on Colombia after slave emancipation. In this book I examine how people of color on Colombia’s Caribbean coast made citizenship by demanding rights and a belonging in the decades after abolition in the early 1850s. In this era plebeian notions of civic participation and vernacular expression continually ran up against rarified elite ideas of legality and lettered civilization. Amid these struggles, many Colombians considered recognition to be the everyday understanding and practice of citizenship. This recognition, as both the means and ends of public interaction, was often shaped by racialized and gendered understandings of behavior. Hence, I argue that by examining labor, partisan politics, religious practices, and the interplay of high and low cultures, we can think through how Colombian women and men created inclusion and exclusions in republican life. Postemancipation citizenship was hammered out between local freedom struggles and an evolving national regime of rights and recognition.

My book challenges the historical erasure of African-descended Colombians, a population estimated at ten-million strong today, who are treated in the scholarly and popular imagination as either slaves in historical narratives or else subjects of an ethnographic present. Yet as citizens after emancipation, they fundamentally shaped national life. In my research I uncovered events that, while unknown to scholars today, reveal how people of color contributed to the republic. In 1857, for instance, boatmen of African descent known as bogas went on strike for higher wages and to be acknowledged as an honorable labor force—an event fifty years before the industrial actions that historians have presumed to be the country’s first strikes. Moreover, thousands of women and men of color led the country’s only millenarian movement, El Enviado de Dios (The One Sent from God, 1898-1899), which attempted to dismantle state and church authority along the Caribbean coast. Although forgotten today, these and other struggles influenced the making of modern Colombia.

Help in conceptualizing my book came from an unlikely source—a Colombian poet from the Caribbean coast named Candelario Obeso. Yet Obeso (1849-1884) was not just any poet. He was a skilled translator of multiple languages, a self-trained lawyer, and prolific writer. He was also the earliest known Colombian writer of African descent, and one of the few Afro-Colombians of the nineteenth century we know by name. Obeso was, moreover, perhaps the only Colombian after the abolition of slavery to publicly identify himself as black. He did so in his poetry, where he also leveled a critique against the country’s racial order, which sought to deny the existence of people of African descent. In response, Obeso demanded recognition for plebeian folk as citizens and for himself as a letrado of color. His insistence on portraying a multiracial citizenry ran counter to the era’s legal denial of difference, itself a legacy of slave emancipation. As part of this insistence, Obeso demanded that

In return for my friendship
I ask only a single thing of you…
You should say how citizens
Are the black, the white, the indian…

—Candelario Obeso, “Epresion re mi Amitá” [Expression of My Friendship], from Cantos Populares de Mi Tierra, 1877

My new book project, The Transnational Origins of Jamaica’s National Song, examines how the making of Jamaican popular music from the 1940s to the 1970s was the product of a tension between nationalism in Jamaica and the growing internationalization of Jamaican life. Jamaicans themselves created this tension through efforts to decolonize the island in the years around independence in 1962, and through movement to the United States and Great Britain in the decades after the Second World War. Working class Jamaicans who through their travels embraced African American rhythm & blues, jazz, and other music genres stood in contrast to Jamaican political leaders at home with anxious desires to create an authentic national culture. As nationalists sought to Jamaicanize the island, consumption by immigrants in London and New York underwrote the expansion of the recording industry in Kingston. Jamaica became known as the “the loudest island in the world” because its people, who continually rethought their relationship to their homeland and its culture, were listening in from distant parts of that world. My work on Jamaican music expands out from the local story about Colombia to integrate a Caribbean national culture into the history of the wider Atlantic world. In both the Colombia and Jamaica stories there is an evident tension between particularism and universalism, where cultural practices of one group shaped forms of belonging for all members of the nation, although each story takes place in different periods and at a different geographical scale.

I have other ongoing projects that attempt to think about change on various temporal and geographical scales, all tending toward the longue durée or the global. One project entails writing a history of the Wayúu (Guajiro) people of Caribbean South America, a transnational population that is today the largest indigenous group in Colombia and Venezuela, respectively. Their history allows for a fruitful consideration of European domination versus indigenous autonomy over a long time period. I intend to show how space and capital mediated changing relations between center and periphery, insider and outsider, and free and slave. During the colonial era, the Guajiros were a regional military power who made alliances with the British and Dutch, which helped keep the Spanish off their lands for centuries. By the mid twentieth century, however, they had given up armed resistance and had lost control of a great deal of territory. By examining dynamics of mapping and boundary setting, nation-state formation, urbanization, and new extractive economies (specifically, coal in Colombia and petroleum in Venezuela), I want to consider how violence was only one factor in Wayúu decline over the last two centuries. By situating the Wayúu in regional, national, and transnational contexts, I want offer a new way to think about indigenous history.

My other future book project is a global history of the shantytown.

The geographical focus of my courses ranges from Latin America to the hemispheric Americas to the global. I often teach on concepts and subject matter such as race, class, gender, labor, nation, diaspora, and popular culture. My own training in the Atlantic World has shaped the kinds of readings I assign, and I seek to contribute to students’ learning over modern Latin America by offering transnational and diasporic perspectives to their base of knowledge.

Graduate Courses
H699 Colloquium on Popular Culture
H699 Colloquium on the Atlantic World since 1800
H665 Colloquium on Afro-Latin America

Undergraduate Courses
H212 Modern Latin America
H101 The World in the Twentieth Century I
F200 Latin American Popular Culture
C104 Global Pop Culture
A100 What is America?
A350 Zombies!

B.A. Reed College, 1997
M.A. University of Chicago, 2000
Ph.D. University of Chicago, 2006

2007-present: Assistant Professor, Departments of History and American Studies, Indiana University

2007 Lecturer, Department of History, Department of Latino and Hispanic Caribbean Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick

2005-2006 Visiting Assistant Professor of History and African-American and African Studies, Rutgers University, Newark

2004 Lecturer, Department of History, Latin American Studies Program, University of Chicago

2013 Trustee Teaching Award, Indiana University
2013 New Frontiers Exploratory Travel Fellowship, Indiana University
2011 New Frontiers Faculty Fellowship, Indiana University
2010-2011 Visiting Scholar, Lozano Long Institute for Latin American Studies, University of Texas
2010 College Arts & Humanities Institute Residential Fellowship, Indiana University
2009 Indiana University Office of the Vice President for International Affairs, Overseas Conference Fund
2008 Indiana University Summer Fellowship
2008 Center for Caribbean and Latin American Studies Faculty Travel Grant, Indiana University
2004 Mellon Prize Lectureship in Latin American History, University of Chicago
2003-2004 Mellon Dissertation-Year Fellowship, University of Chicago
2001-2002 Fulbright IIE Scholarship (Colombia)
1998-1999 Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship in Humanistic Studies

2014 The Work of Recognition: Caribbean Colombia and the Postemancipation Struggle for Citizenship (University of North Carolina Press)

2011 “Spectacles of Freedom: Public Manumissions, Political Rhetoric, and Citizen Mobilisation in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Colombia,” Slavery and Abolition, 32:2 (June), 269-288.

2010 “Purificar la Nación: Eugenesia, Higiene y Renovación Moral-racial de la Periferia del Caribe Colombiano, 1900-1930,” in Historias de Raza y Nación en América Latina, eds. Claudia Leal and Carl Langebaek (Bogota: Universidad de los Andes, 2010) [Reprint]

2007 “Purificar la Nación: Eugenesia, Higiene y Renovación Moral-racial de la Periferia del Caribe Colombiano, 1900-1930,” Revista de Estudios Sociales 27 (August), 62-75.

Under Reivew “Bogas and the Problem of Free Labor-and-Industry in Nineteenth-Century Colombia” (Under Review, Journal of Latin American Studies)

2012 “Colombian Carnival, Jamaican Music, and the Iron Law of Unintended Consequences.” “Rethinking Resistance” Roundtable, North American Labor History Conference, Detroit.

2011 “Affection and Sorrows, or the Poetics of Postemancipation Citizenship in Colombia,” The Center for the Humanities, City University of New York, October.

2011 “Liberalism and the Problem of Lettered Exclusion in Late-Nineteenth-Century Colombia,” Institute for Historical Studies, University of Texas, March.


2013 “The American Roots of Jamaican Rhythm & Blues,” Conference on Latin American History, New Orleans.

2010 “The Political Uses of Armed Insurgency and Blackness in Nineteenth-Century Colombia,” Conference on Latin American History, San Diego

2008 “Spectacles of Freedom: Symbolic Abolitionism, Liberal Rhetoric, and the Mobilization of Free Blacks in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Colombia,” Atlantic Emancipations conference, McNeil Center for Early American History, Philadelphia

2007 “Sanitizing the Nation: Eugenics, Hygiene, and the Moral-Racial Renovation of Colombia’s Black Periphery, 1900-1930,” Latin American Studies Association, Montreal

2006 “Race, Commercial Transformation, and the Black Worker in Colombia,” Latin American Studies Association Congress, San Juan, PR

2005 “Race in Colombian Political Discourse,” Conference on Latin American History, American Historical Association, Seattle

2004 “Candelario Obeso and the Cultural Politics of Blackness in Post-Abolition Colombia, 1850-1880,” Creating Identity and Empire in the Atlantic World conference, University of North Carolina, Greensboro

2001 “The Construction of Race, Labor and Region in the Colombian Caribbean,” Mellon Conference on Latin American History, Harvard University

Eden Medina

Associate Professor of Informatics and Computing
edenm [at]
(812) 856-1871
Informatics West, Room 305

Other Titles and Honors

Co-Director, Rob Kling Center for Social Informatics

Adjunct Associate Professor of History

Affiliated Faculty, Center for Latin and Caribbean Studies


  • Ph.D. in History and Social Study of Science and Technology at MIT, 2005
  • B.S.E. in Electrical Engineering at Princeton University, 1997


  • I202 Social Informatics
  • I400 Geographies of Technology
  • I453 Computer and Information Ethics
  • I590 Geographies of Technology
  • I609 Advanced Seminar I in Social Informatics
  • I690 Cybernetics and Revolution


Eden Medina is associate professor in the School of Informatics and Computing and co-director of the Rob Kling Center for Social Informatics. Her research explores the relationship of technological innovation and political innovation, how political values can shape the design of computer systems, and how technological systems represent configurations of social and political order. Medina received her Ph.D. from MIT in the History and Social Study of Science and Technology. Her book Cybernetic Revolutionaries: Technology and Politics in Allende's Chile (MIT Press, 2011) received the Edelstein Prize for outstanding book in the history of technology and the Computer History Museum Prize for outstanding book in the history of computing.

Medina is the recipient of the IEEE Life Members' Prize in Electrical History, the Outstanding Junior Faculty Award from Indiana University, Bloomington, a Scholar's Award from the National Science Foundation, and a New Directions Grant from the Mellon Foundation. She is also a Fulbright Senior Specialist in the area of engineering education. Her current research interests include studies of information technology in areas of the world outside of the United States and Europe and the intersection of information technology and human rights law.


John Nieto-Phillips

Dr. John Nieto-Phillips is Associate Professor in the Department of History and Director of Latino Studies. He is interested in the varied ways Latinas and Latinos have responded to colonialism, imperialism and shifting boundaries of citizenship. With Christopher Schmidt-Nowara, he co-edited Interpreting Spanish Colonialism: Empires, Nations, and Legends (Univ. New  Mexico, 2005). His book, The Language of Blood: The Making of Spanish-American Identity in New Mexico, 1880-1940s, was published by the University of New Mexico Press in 2004. His current book project examines the roles that Latina and Latino scholars played in the development of intellectual networks and the rise of global Hispanism between the 1910s and the 1940s.

  • Director, Latino Studies Program
  • Associate Professor, Department of History
  • Adjunct Associate Professor, American Studies Program


  • B.A. at University of California, Los Angeles, 1987
  • M.A. at University of California, Los Angeles, 1992
  • Ph.D. at University of California, Los Angeles, 1997

Selected Awards

  • Indiana University "New Frontiers in the Humanities" Faculty Research Grant (2006)
  • Indiana University Trustee's Teaching Award (2005)
  • Gaspar Pérez de Villagrá Award, NM Historical Society (2005)
  • Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship, National Academy of Education (2003)
  • National Endowment for the Humanities, Faculty Research Grant (2002)
  • Outstanding Faculty Award, New Mexico State University (2000)

Research Interests

  • U.S. Latina/o history
  • Race and citizenship
  • Latin America and Caribbean

Courses Recently Taught

  • Memory and the American Dream: Latino Narratives of Migration and Community
  • Latino Immigration from Mexico and the Caribbean
  • Mexican-American History
  • Latina/o History: Race, Immigration and Citizenship

Publication Highlights
Christopher Schmidt-Nowara and John M. Nieto-Phillips, eds. Interpreting Spanish Colonialism: Empires, Nations and Legends. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2005.
John M. Nieto-Phillips. The Language of Blood: The Making of Spanish American Identity in New Mexico, 1880s-1930s. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2004.
"Mémoire et consanguinité: Les origines de l'identité Spanish-American au Nouveau Mexique." Amérique Latine Histoire et Mémoire (Les Cahiers ALHIM), no. 7 (2003): 83-99.
"Spanish American Ethnic Identity and New Mexico's Statehood Struggle." In Erlinda Gonzales-Berry and David Maciel, eds., The Contested Homeland: A Chicano History of New Mexico (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2000), pp. 97-142.
"Citizenship and Empire: Race, Language, and Self-Government in New Mexico and Puerto Rico, 1898-1917." Journal of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies (Fall, 1999): 51-74.
Other Links

  • IU Latino Studies Program
  • IU Community Outreach & Partnerships in Service-Learning

Micol Seigel

Associate Professor
Department of American Studies
Department of History

Office: Ballantine Hall 517
Phone: (812) 855-7707
E-mail: mseigel at


Ph.D., New York University, 2001

Research Interests

Policing, prisons, and race in the Americas; Critical Ethnic Studies; racial theory; transnational method; popular culture; Brazil; Latin American studies; history; mass incarceration; the Cold War; postcolonial and queer theory; Cultural Studies. Micol is on sabbatical 2013-2014 and will be in Australia during the spring at the U.S. Studies Centre of the University of Sydney. In addition to research and teaching, Micol is involved in the Critical Prison Studies caucus of the American Studies Association and the Tepoztlán Institute for the Transnational History of the Americas. She occasionally performs around town with Voces Novae and can sometimes be found in the water here.

Courses Recently Taught

  • AMST-G751 Seminar in American Studies / Topic: Nation, State, Police (spring 2013)
  • AAAD-G 605 Race in the Global City (fall 2011)
  • AAAD-G 620 / ENG-G 648 Post-Colonial Theory and Comparative Ethnic Studies (co-taught with Shane Vogel, English, fall 2011)
  • AMST-A 350 & AMST-G 620 (combined undergraduate and graduate course), Place, Culture, Prison: An Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program course (fall 2011)
  • AMST-A399 / AAAD-A354: Advanced Topics in Society & History: Transnational Americas (fall 2008)
  • SHUM 419 (also AS&RC 419): Transnational Method Then & Now: Historiography, Theory, Practice (Cornell, fall 2006)
  • Liberal Studies 410: National Identity, Race and Popular Culture: Chicana Feminist Performance (Cal State L.A., spring 2006)

Publication Highlights

"Brazil's protests reveal the tension of a people moving ahead of their country," with Osmundo Pinho, Quartz, The Atlantic.

"Privatization in Mexico is a road to nowhere," with Elliott Young, Quartz, The Atlantic.

Uneven Encounters: Making Race and Nation in Brazil and the United States Uneven Encounters: Making Race and Nation in Brazil and the United States (Durham: Duke University Press, 2009).

"Black Mothers, Citizen Sons," in Quase-Cidadão: histórias e antropologias da pós-emancipação no Brasil, ed. Flávio dos Santos Gomes and Olívia Gomes da Cunha, Rio de Janeiro: FGV, 2007.

"The Disappearing Dance: Maxixe's Imperial Erasure," Black Music Research Journal, 25 No. 1/2: 93-117, Spring/Fall 2005.

"Beyond Compare: Historical Method after the Transnational Turn," Radical History Review 91, 62-90, Winter 2005.

"World History's Narrative Problem," Hispanic American Historical Review 84, 3 (2004):  431-446.

"Cocoliche's Romp:  Fun with Nationalism at Argentina's Carnival," TDR44, 2 (Summer 2000):  56-83.  Republished in Latin American Theatre and Performance, ed. Jill Lane (Routledge, forthcoming).

Honors and Awards

  • American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS)/Oscar Handlin Fellowship for Research in American History, 2012
  • Finalist Mention, Lora Romero first book prize of the American Studies Association, 2010, for Uneven Encounters
  • Society for the Humanities Fellowship, Cornell University, 2006-07
  • Rockefeller Foundation Humanities Fellowship, CSULA, Los Angeles, 2005-06
  • David C. Driskell Center for African Diaspora Studies Postdoctoral Fellowship, UMCP, Spring 2003
  • Dean’s Dissertation Fellowship, New York University, 2000-2001
  • Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Dissertation Fellowship, affiliate of the Advanced Program in Contemporary Culture, UFRJ (Rio de Janeiro), 1998-99
  • Rockefeller Foundation Humanities Fellowship, UNICAMP, São Paulo, Winter, 1998

For more information...

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