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Latin America and Caribbean


Tribute rolls, New Spain, ca. 1520

Tribute rolls, New Spain, ca. 1520

Consistently ranked among the top-ten programs in the U.S., the Latin America and Caribbean section has four faculty members who specialize in the region and are all affiliated with UF’s Center for Latin American Studies.

David Geggus (Caribbean and slavery)
Lillian Guerra (Cuba and Caribbean)
Jeffrey Needell (Brazil and modern Latin America)
Heather Vrana (modern Latin America)

Affiliated faculty strengthen the department’s expertise and depth: James Cusik (Spanish Florida), curator of the P.K. Yonge Library of Florida History.

We offer graduate seminars on colonial and modern Latin America, Brazil, and Caribbean as well as Iberian Atlantic, Twentieth-Century Cuba, Andean Nations, Slavery in the Americas, and Early Modern Spain. Graduate students also work with faculty in the Departments of Anthropology, Art History, EnglishLanguages, and Women’s Studies. Moreover, the Center for Latin American Studies offers a range of interdisciplinary seminars, language programs in Haitian Creole and Portuguese, research and travel grants, and a graduate certificate.

Dutch Map of America, 1700

Dutch Map of America, 1700


The Latin American Collection ranks among the top in the world and contains 500,000 volumes and 50,000 microforms. It is a partner in the growing Digital Library of the Caribbean which provides access to materials at archives and libraries across the circum-Caribbean basin. Furthermore, the collection is supplemented by premier archival holdings in UF’s Special Collections, including:

  • Rochambeau and Jérémie Papers (Saint Domingue/Haïti)
  • Braga Brothers Sugar Collection (Cuba)
  • West Indies Papers (British Caribbean)
  • Neill Macaulay Collection (Cuban Revolution)
  • P.K. Younge Library of Florida History

Current Students and Recent Graduates

In recent years MA students have been accepted into doctoral programs at UF, Johns Hopkins, University of Chicago, UNC-Chapel Hill, and Warwick University (United Kingdom). Our doctoral students have successfully won dissertation research awards for work in Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, and France from the following funding agencies: Mellon International Dissertation Research Fellows of the Social Science Research Council, Wenner-Gren Foundation, Fulbright U.S. Student Program, and Chateaubriand Fellowship.

“Burning of Cap Français,” ca. 1815

“Burning of Cap Français,” ca. 1815

Recent PhDs

  • Diana Reigelsperger (’13)

Dissertation: “On the Edge of Empires: The Coastal Presidio of Spanish St. Augustine, 1668-1763″
Advisor: Ida Altman
Position: Adjunct Professor, Flagler College

  • Patrick Cosby (’11)

Dissertation: “Leviathan in the tropics: a postcolonial environmental history of the Papaloapan development projects in Mexico”
Advisor: Mark Thurner
Position: Visiting Assistant Professor of History, Presbyterian College

  • Juan Callirgos (’07)

Dissertation: “Reinventing the city of the kings : postcolonial modernizations of Lima, 1845-1930”
Advisor: Mark Thurner
Position: Assistant Professor, Catholic University of Lima




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