Within the innovative thematic and transnational emphasis of the history doctorate program at Stony Brook, Latin American history is a thriving area concentration. Indeed, Stony Brook is recognized as one of the country’s top Ph.D. training centers in Latin American history. Since the 1990s, Stony Brook has awarded more than two dozen doctorates in this field and Stony Brook students go onto important teaching and research posts across the Americas. Our students have won an especially impressive share of international fellowships for their doctoral research, such as Fulbrights and SSRC-IDRF fieldwork grants. They also benefit from such programs as a Stony Brook-LACS Tinker Fellowship for overseas summer travel research. Latin American History has enjoyed the leadership of internationally-renowned professors such as Brooke Larson (Bolivia, ethnicity); Paul Gootenberg (Peru, drugs); and Eric Zolov (Mexico, culture). They are now joined by two junior scholars, Elizabeth Newman (Mexico, material culture) and Lori Flores (Latinos, labor). Our students also work with related scholars within the History Department, such as Jennifer Anderson (slavery, commodities); Jared Farmer (borderlands, environmental); Ian Roxborough (revolutions, military); Chris Sellers (environmental, labor); and Kathleen Wilson (empire, Caribbean). Students also collaborate with distinguished Latin Americanist scholars in other fields, such as Sociology and Hispanic Languages, integrated by the cross-disciplinary Latin American and Caribbean Studies center (LACS), which is actually located in the History Department. Stony Brook doctoral students also interact regularly with peers from Columbia, NYU and other New York area universities through a class consortium program and monthly seminars of the New York City Workshop on Latin American History. Students have ample opportunity for developing their teaching skills in summer and adjunct posts, and participate in an annual international Latin Americanist graduate conference organized by LACS.
A Stony Brook training in Latin American history excels in several ways. It is rooted in a vibrant and collegial community which brings together young working historians from across Latin America–Peruvians, Argentines, Chileans, Colombians, Mexicans, and others–with their peers from North America. Moreover, each student, regardless of their country or topical specialization, develops close-knit mentoring relationships with each of our professors, who emphasize interpretative, comparative, and methodological skills in fostering new and critical perspectives on Latin American history.