I am a social historian focusing in Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Atlantic World. Originally from Seville (Spain), I earned my Ph. D. from the University of Pennsylvania. My research focuses on Spanish Caribbean societies during the seventeenth century. I am interested in the role that Spanish societies played in the forging of a Caribbean world caught in between the competing imperial agendas of the expanding European powers of the day, namely England, France, and the United Provinces. My current book project, provisionally entitled At the Edge of Empire: Social and Political Defiance in Hispaniola, 1580-1697 explores how local elites in Santo Domingo transcended their marginal location and status within the Spanish colonial world and took advantage of the intense imperial competition that engulfed the Caribbean during the seventeenth century, with the arrival of Northern European settlers. A chapter, "Atlantic Peripheries: Diplomacy, War and Spanish-French Interactions in Hispaniola, 1660s-1690s," in the forthcoming book The Atlantic World 1400-1850 deals with the changing connections between Spanish and French colonists in Hispaniola in the last decades of the 17th century. Other current projects include a study of the evolving relationship between slave owners, slaves, and free people of color in Santo Domingo during the first half of the 17th century, as well as a book chapter dealing with the narratives that 20th century Dominican scholars have created around the Depopulations of 1605.
I teach both introductory and upper level courses on colonial and modern Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Atlantic world. Recent courses I have developed include "Yankees in the Tropics: American Imperialism in the Caribbean," "Earthquake and Hurricanes: History of Haiti and Dominican Republic," "City and Empire in the Spanish Atlantic," and "American Empires: Introduction to Atlantic History." I enjoy interacting with students and exposing them to the intricacies of historical analysis and writing. My teaching goals include helping students become valued professionals and educated citizens. Before coming to St. Lawrence University, I also taught at the Department of Latino and Hispanic Caribbean Studies at Rutgers University.
I am an avid baseball fan and a Philadelphia Phillies enthusiast despite the dark moments the team is experiencing. When the weather allows, I love riding my motorcycle, hiking, and the outdoors. My first year in the North Country tested my tolerance for long winters. Now in my third year at St. Lawrence, I have learned that a good coat makes everything possible.
Regularly Taught Courses:
- Survey of Caribbean and Latin American Studies
- Modern Latin America
- Colonial Latin America