Graduate Studies at Vanderbilt - Latin American and Caribbean History
Vanderbilt University has one of the oldest programs in Latin American studies in the United States. Our doctoral program focuses on developing scholars and teachers with both a broad knowledge of Latin American and Caribbean history and intensive training in research and writing in their specialty. Doctoral students normally do five semesters of classes, then take their general exams at the beginning of their sixth semester. Working closely with our eight historians of Latin America and the Caribbean, students develop a dissertation topic and prospectus during their fifth and sixth semesters.
From their first semester, we encourage our doctoral students to become actively engaged in the profession through field research, networking, publishing, collaborative projects, and grant applications. Our students have presented their research at numerous national and international conferences including the American Historical Association, Conference on Latin American History, Latin American Studies Association, Brazilian Studies Association, and the Southern Historical Association. Over the last decade our students have won many prestigious internal and external research awards (including seven Fulbright awards).
Since 1989, twenty-six students have entered our doctoral program. Twelve have completed their dissertations, and thirteen are currently in the program. The average time to completion of dissertation has been 6 years. Close individual supervision of our students has been key to the timely and successful progress of our students.
Vanderbilt University has a distinguished tradition in Latin American and Caribbean history beginning with the hiring of Alexander Marchant (and four other Brazil specialists) and the creation of an Institute of Brazilian Studies in 1947. Among other noted historians of Latin America who have taught at Vanderbilt are Simon Collier, Robert Gilmore, J. León Helguera, and Barbara Weinstein.
Current faculty include: Richard Blackett (19th-century British Caribbean), Celso Castilho (19th-century Brazil), Marshall Eakin (19th/20th-century Brazil), James Epstein (19th-century Caribbean), Peter James Hudson (20th-century Caribbean Diaspora), Jane Landers (Iberian Atlantic world); Frank Robinson (20th-century Panama), Edward Wright-Rios (19th/20th-century Mexico).
Caree Banton, 6th year, Caribbean and African Diaspora
Courtney Campbell, 5th year, 20th-century Brazil
Joanna Elrick, 7th year, Race and Slavery, Brazil and Cuba
Daniel Genkins, 2nd year, Early Modern Latin America
Lance Ingwersen, 3rd year, modern Mexico
Nicolette Kostiw, 6th year, race relations and social mobility, 19th/20th-century Brazil
Miriam Martin, 5th year, revolutionary Atlantic world
Max Pendergraph, 1st year, immigration, Brazil, 19th/20th centuries
Christian Rocha, 2nd year, Modern Mexico
Kara Schultz, 4th year, Brazil and Angola, 17th century
Erin Woodruff Stone, 5th year, indigenous history, 16th-century Spanish Caribbean
Angela Sutton, 6th year, piracy, 17th-century Caribbean
Danyelle Valentine, 1st year, 18th/19th centuries
LaFevor, David C. (2011) “Forging the Masculine and Modern Nation: Race, Identity and the Public Sphere in Cuba and Mexico, 1890s – 1930s”
Assistant Professor, Berry College
Gomez, Pablo (2010) “Bodies of Encounter: Health, Illness and Death in the Early Modern African-Spanish Caribbean”
Assistant Professor, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Wheat, David (2009) “The Afro-Portuguese Maritime World and the Foundations of Spanish Caribbean Society, 1570-1640”
Assistant Professor, Michigan State University
Berger, Eugene (2006) “Permanent War on Peru's Periphery: Frontier Identity and the Politics of Conflict in 17th Century Chile”
Associate Professor, Georgia Gwinnett College
Story, Emily (2006) “Constructing Development: Brasília and the Making of Modern Brazil”
Assistant Professor, Salisbury University
Robinson, Barry (2005) “The Limits of Loyalty in Colotlán: Subversion, Pardon, and Society in Late Colonial New Spain, 1780-1821”
Assistant Professor, Queens University of Charlotte, North Carolina
Williford, Tom (2005) “Armando los Espíritus: Political Rhetoric in Colombia on the Eve of La Violencia, 1930-1945”
Associate Professor, Southwest Minnesota State University
Breuer, Kim (2004) “Reshaping the Cosmos: Maya Society on the Yucatecan Frontier”
Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Texas, Arlington
Guitar, Lynne (1998) “Cultural Genesis: Relationships among Indians, Africans and Spaniards in Rural Hispaniola, First Half of the Sixteenth Century”
Director, Council on International Educational Exchange, Dominican Republic
King, John (1998) “Cooperation or Conflict?: Relations between Chile and the United States during the 1960s”
Director of Social Studies, Ransom Everglades School, Coconut Grove, Florida
Ford, Talisman (1995) “Passion Is in the Eye of the Beholder: Sexuality as Seen by Brazilian Sexologists, 1900-1940”
Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs
Corse, Theron (1995) “Projecting Peron: The Constructed Image of Juan Peron, 1945-1949”
Associate Professor, Tennessee State University
Center for Latin America Studies
Latin American Collection, Vanderbilt University Library
Program in African American and Diaspora Studies
Department of Anthropology
Department of Spanish & Portuguese
Caree Banton is a Ph.D. candidate working with Dr. Richard Blackett. She studies the abolitionist, anti-slavery and colonization movements of the 19th century. She is interested in the significance of these movements to the Caribbean, the African Diaspora and the larger Atlantic World. Caree is the recipient of a 2012-2013 Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities Graduate Student Fellowship in conjunction with the Sawyer Seminar entitled “The Age of Emancipation: Black Freedom in the Atlantic World.” Caree received the Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship to do a yearlong research in Africa while serving as a Rotary Ambassador 2010-2011. The fellowship seeks to use scholars and their research as a medium to further international understanding and foster goodwill among different nations. Her dissertation explores migration from the West Indies (particularly Barbados) to Africa (particularly Liberia) and the implications of this to experiences of freedom, citizenship and black nation-building. She can be contacted at email@example.com .
Courtney J. Campbell is a Ph.D. candidate in Latin American History, with a focus on Modern Brazil. Her dissertation, “Inside Out: Region, Nation and Globalization in the Brazilian Northeast (1940-1968)," focuses on international events that generated representations and transformations of regional identity in the Brazilian Northeast. Courtney has been invited to participate in the early career workshop 'Rethinking Sports in Latin America' hosted by Emory University, which includes presenting new research, receiving feedback from peers and senior scholars, and revising for publication in an edited volume or special journal issue. Courtney received the IIE/Mellon Graduate Fellowship (funded by the Mellon Foundation to replace the Fulbright-Hays DDRA fellowship), funding her research in several cities of Brazil in 2012. Her paper “Inside Out: Intellectual Views on Northeastern Brazilian Regional Identity and Transnational Change, 1926-1952” won the 2011 Ralph Lee Woodward Jr. Prize from the Latin American and Caribbean Section of the Southern Historical Association. In addition to the IIE Graduate Fellowship, Courtney has received a FIPSE-CAPES grant, the College of Arts and Sciences Summer Research Award, and two Tinker Field Research Grants to carry out research in Brazil. She has presented her work at several venues including the Casa de Oswaldo Cruz in Rio de Janeiro and the meetings of the Associação Nacional de Pós-Graduação e Pesquisa em Ciências Sociais in Águas de Lindóia, the Simpósio Nacional de História Cultural in Teresina, the Brazilian Studies Association X and XI in Brasília and Urbana-Champaign, and the Southeastern Council of Latin American Studies in New Orleans. Her paper "'Tinha apenas em vista chamar a atenção': Joaquim Nabuco, abolicionistas britânicos e o caso de Morro Velho" appeared in the edited collection Conferências sobre Joaquim Nabuco: Joaquim Nabuco em Wisconsin published by Bem-te-vi publishers in 2010. Courtney served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Paraguayan Chaco and completed her Master's degree in Education at the Universidade Federal de Pernambuco in Brazil, where her research centered on the concept of Linguistic Imperialism and the history of the teaching of English in the city of Recife. She has two B.A.s in French and in Spanish/International Studies from the University of Michigan-Flint. Her adviser at Vanderbilt is Dr. Marshall C. Eakin and in Brazil she works with Dr. Marcos Chor Maio at the Casa de Oswaldo Cruz. You can reach Courtney at firstname.lastname@example.org and can find her CV at http://vanderbilt.academia.edu/CourtneyJCampbell .
Joanna Elrick is an ABD student who focuses on the cultural and religious history of the Iberian Atlantic World. She earned her B.A. with a double major in English and History from Western Kentucky University in 2006 and her M.A. in History from Vanderbilt in 2009. She is currently in the research phase of her dissertation, tentatively titled “Black Religions with White Faces: the Creolization of Religious Belief and Cultural Practice in Colonial Brazil, Angola and Cuba, 1600-1800.” Her work focuses on the religious, ideological, and cultural influences African-descended peoples had on their white neighbors in the slave societies of Brazil, Cuba and Angola. Joanna has presented her research at national and international conferences including the CERLAC Graduate Student Research conference (York University, Toronto, 2008) “Charting New Courses in the Study of Slavery and Emancipation” (University of Southern Mississippi, 2010), the Brazilian Studies Association (Brasília, 2010) and the Latin American Studies Association (Toronto, 2010).
Joanna’s work has been supported by numerous fellowships and grants. Joanna has been awarded a 2012 Cuban Heritage Collection Research Fellowship in support of her research project, “Religion, Race and Culture in Colonial Cuba, Angola, and Brazil.” She has been awarded the Social Science Research Council International Dissertation Research Fellowship to perform archival research in Portugal and Spain during the 2010-2011 academic year. She is also the recipient of two Foreign Languages and Area Studies (FLAS) awards, a summer research grant from Harvard University’s Atlantic World Seminar, a College of Arts and Sciences Summer Research Award, the Lydia Cabrera-Council of Latin American History Award, an Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship at the Huntington Library, a FIPSE-CAPES award, and a John Carter Brown Library fellowship. Joanna has conducted archival research in Cuba, Brazil, Portugal, and the United States. Joanna works under the direction of Dr. Jane G. Landers, and can be contacted via email at email@example.com.
Daniel Genkins is a second year graduate student in the field of Early Modern Latin American and Atlantic history. He received a B.S. in economics from Duke University in 2009 and an M.A. in history from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 2011. His M.A. thesis was titled “Commercial Paradigms in the Revolutionary Atlantic: An Interimperial Comparative Analysis of Three Port Cities during the Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Centuries.” Daniel is studying with Professor Jane Landers. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lance Ingwersen is a third year student in the Latin American history program, with a focus on modern Mexico. His research examines associative life, civil society, and the public sphere in late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Mexico. Lance Ingwersen has been awarded a Fulbright-García Robles Grant to conduct dissertation research in Mexico during the 2013-14 academic year. In 2012, Lance received the James R. Scobie Award from the Conference on Latin American History and a Summer Research Award from the College of Liberal Arts and Science to support pre-dissertation research. His advisor is Dr. Edward Wright-Rios. Lance earned his B.A. in Latin American Studies at Rhodes College in 2003 and his M.A. in Latin American history from Arizona State University in 2010. His M.A. thesis was titled "Beggars, Vagrants, and the Asilo Particular de Mendigos in Mexico City, 1879-1939." Feel free to contact him at email@example.com.
Nicolette Kostiw Nicolette Kostiw is a Ph.D. candidate in Latin American History, with a focus on Modern Brazil. Her dissertation, "A Lost Generation: The Tutelage of Minors, Slavery, and the Black Family in Rio de Janeiro," has been awarded the 2012 Ida B. Wells Graduate prize from the Coordinating Council for Women in History. She is a NSEP/IIE Boren Fellow for the 2010-2011 academic year and is currently conducting dissertation research in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She is also the recipient of a James and Sylvia Thayer Short-Term Research Fellowship and will conduct research at UCLA's Special Collections in January 2012. Her research centers on Brazil's transition from the slavery era through the Old Republic (approx. 1870-1932). Specifically, she is interested in the ways in which former slaves and their descendants navigated their post-abolition role in society. Within this, she focuses on the development of modern Brazilian race relations, social mobility and education. Nicolette has presented work at the Southeastern Council of Latin American Studies (SECOLAS) in New Orleans (2009), the Graduate Association of African American History (GAAAH) conference in Memphis (2009) and the Brazilian Studies Association (BRASA) in Brasília, Brazil (2010). Before becoming enamored with Brazil, Nicolette worked as a Spanish instructor at West Virginia University where she received her M.A. in Spanish, as well as her double B.A. in History and Spanish. Her advisor is Dr. Marshall Eakin and she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Miriam Martin is a doctoral candidate studying Latin America and the Atlantic World with a focus on race, rebellion and revolution. Her dissertation titled "Black Auxiliary Forces in the Eighteenth Century Atlantic World" focuses on black militias from the Saint Domingue Rebellion and their entrance into Central America. Miriam has presented her work at several conferences including the American Historical Association in January 2012, the Harriet Tubman Summer Institute in August 2011, and the Consortium on Revolutionary Era in March 2011. She has conducted research at Archivo General de CentroAmerica in Guatemala, London's National Archives, Spain's archives in Simancas and Seville and the Newberry Library archives in Chicago. She has received the HASTAC Scholar Award for 2012/13 through the Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities, Newberrry Short Term Fellowship (2012), Vanderbilt's Summer Research Award (2012), Weaver Research Fellowship (2011), Harvard University’s Atlantic World Summer research grant (2010) and the Title VI Foreign Language Area Study Fellowship for Portuguese (2009). Miriam received her BA from David Lipscomb University in Comparative Literature, and her MA from St. John's College in Annapolis, MD. She is working with Dr. Jane Landers and can be reached at email@example.com.
Max Pendergraph is a first year graduate student studying Latin America. He received his master's in Latin American Studies from Vanderbilt University in 2012 and his undergraduate degree in history and international studies from Northwestern University in 2007. He has also spent two academic years teaching English in Europe and one year teaching middle school Spanish in Gary, Indiana. His research interests pertain to migration and modern Brazil. His advisor is Dr. Marshall Eakin, and he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Christian Rocha is a second year graduate student in Latin American History, with a focus on Modern Mexico. He is particularly interested in the cultural history of post-revolutionary Mexico, Mexican popular culture, mass media, and the state's cultural policies after 1940. He received his BA in History from the University of California, Berkeley in 2010. His advisor is Dr. Eddie Wright-Rios. He can be reached at email@example.com .
Kara Schultz is a fourth year graduate student in Latin American and Atlantic history. She is particularly interested in the political, social, and cultural connections between Brazil and Angola during the seventeenth century. Kara received her B.A. in History from the University of Richmond in 2008. She is working with Dr. Jane Landers and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Erin Woodruff Stone is a Ph.D. candidate studying indigenous/Spanish interactions in the Colonial Circum-Caribbean in the sixteenth century. She received her B.A. in International Studies and Spanish from the University of Miami in 2004 and her M.A. in American History (with a focus on early Florida History) from the University of North Florida in 2007. Erin is currently completing research for her dissertation entitled “Resistance, Rebellion, and Slavery: Indians in Española and the Circum-Caribbean, 1493-1575,” in which she focuses on the rise and consequences of indigenous slavery. During the academic year of 2011-2012 Erin conducted dissertation research in the archives of Spain and the Dominican Republic with the support of the IIE/Mellon Graduate Fellowship (funded by the Mellon Foundation to replace the Fulbright-Hays DDRA fellowship). While she spent the majority of her time working in the Archivo General de Indias of Sevilla, Spain she also undertook archival research in the Archivo Historico de la Nacion (Madrid), La Biblioteca Nacional (Madrid), the Biblioteca de la Real Academia de la Historia (Madrid), the Archivo de Simancas (Simancas), the Sociedad de Bibliografós (Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic), and the Archivo General de la Nacion (Santo Domingo). In addition to the IIE Fellowship, Erin is also the recipient of many short term research grants including the grant offered by the Program for Cultural Cooperation Between Spain's Ministry of Culture & United States' Universities in the summer of 2012, the Vanderbilt College of Arts and Science Summer Research Award in 2011, a Short-Term Research Grant from the International Seminar on the History of the Atlantic World in 2010, and a Tinker Field Research grant to begin her dissertation work in 2009. Following her many research trips Erin has had the opportunity to present her work at several conferences including the meetings of the Florida Historical Society (Spring 2010), the Southern Historical Association (Fall 2009 and Fall 2011), and the Conference of Ethnohistory (Fall 2009). The paper presented at the Ethnohistory conference, “America’s First Slave Revolt: Indians and African Slaves in Hispaniola, 1500-1534,” will be published shortly in the Journal of Ethnohistory. This fall Erin will be presenting her latest research at the annual meeting of the American Historical Association. She is working with Dr. Jane Landers. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Angela Sutton is a Ph.D. candidate in Atlantic History under the supervision of Dr. Jane Landers. Angela will present a paper, “West African, Prussian and Dutch slave traders at Fort Gross Friedrichsburg: An investigation of enslavement as a Process of Cross-Cultural Exchange,” at the Wilberforce Institute for the study of Slavery and Emancipation (University of Hull) in January of 2012. She was awarded a bursary by the Wilberforce Institute to attend this conference. Angela has been awarded the Vanderbilt University Dissertation Enhancement Grant for research into the Swedish Slave trade in the Royal Archives in Stockholm. She was awarded a Max Kade Student Research Grant to go to Berlin summer 2011 to do research in the Brandenburg Africa Company Archives. She was a NAF-Netherlands Fulbright Scholar for the 2010-2011 academic year, and received a Binkley-Weaver travel grant to conduct research in Ghana during the 2010 summer. Angela uses 17th century Dutch, German and English-language sources to investigate piracy and the culture of lawlessness surrounding the Atlantic slave trade. She received her B.A. in History & Religious Studies from the University of Stirling, Scotland, and has worked as a research assistant for the Clyde Maritime Trust in Glasgow. Angela is also currently a news editor for History Compass Exchanges (http://historycompass.wordpress.com/author/suttonangela/) and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Danyelle Valentine is a first year graduate student in Caribbean History with a focus on the formation slave communities in relation to revolutionary histories. She received her B.A. in Latin American Studies from Scripps College in Claremont, California. She intends to study under the supervision of Dr. Jane Landers. Danyelle can be reached at email@example.com .