With Statue of Gabo in Barranquia, Colombia

I am a polyglot scholar and teacher invested in creating vibrant and respectful spaces for intellectual growth and exchange. My scholarship has focused on the history of Brazil and the Caribbean, and on black, Latin American and Caribbean migrations in the Atlantic world. My recent work and teaching center on dialogues and exchanges among people of African descent and other minorities in Europe and the Americas. As Fulbright Migrations Chair at the Institute of Advanced Studies in Marseille in 2021, I worked on various projects on migration and the cultural production of migrants.

My published works focus on human rights, patriotism, migration, and transnationalism. They include: books such as White Face, Black Mask: Africaneity and the Early Social History of Brazilian Popular Music (2009); works on Caribbean intellectuals; and books on the transnational lives and letters of Stefan and Lotte Zweig. I have also collaborated with various scholars on edited volumes such as  Beyond Slavery: The Multi-faceted Legacy of Africans in Latin America and the Caribbean (2006), and the Companion to US Latino Literatures (2007). My 2022 article “Migraciones, mezclas y poder en el Caribe. Apuntes transnacionales para entender el multiculturalismo poscolonial,” appears in Proceso Históricos: Revista de Historia (Venezuela).

Background and Associations


1992:  Ph.D. History/Latin American Studies, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA.

1989:  M.A. in Spanish/Latin American Studies, Notre Dame University, IN.

1987: Certificate, Catholic Course in Liberation Theology, University of San Marcos, Lima, Peru.

1986:  B.A. Degree, Economics, St. John’s University, Collegeville, MN. 

Fellowships and Awards  

2020-2021:  Recipient, Fulbright Scholar Award, Chair Migration Studies, L’IMéRA [L’institut d’études avancées d’Aix-Marseille Université] Projects:  “The Legacy of Black Orpheus” in France and “Mapping Black Migration in the Atlantic World,” Marseille, France. 

2017-2020:  Member, Davis Grant for Digital Humanities, Participant in 3-year grant across three departments, History, American Studies, Sociology, and Media Studies to develop courses and promote the digital humanities at Middlebury College, 2017-2020.

2018-2019:  Portuguese Language Fellowship, One Middlebury Grant.  (For Research on the Brazilian Diaspora, London, Paris and Brazil, 2018-2019).          

2018:  Middlebury College Community Engagement Grant.  (To create links with global human rights and diaspora and migrant organizations and support students in my course on History of Diasporas to reach out to local, national, and transnational organizations, Middlebury Centre for Community Engagement, Fall, 2018).  

2016:  Zukunftsfond of the Republic of Austria Grant (with Karin Hanta and Oliver Marshall) for research and updated publication in German of Stefan and Lotte Zweigs South American Letters, 1940-42.

2014-2015:  Simon Bolivar Chair, Institut des Hautes Etudes de l’Amérique Latine (IHEAL). Paris III, Paris, France.

2011-2012:  Ada Howe Kent, “Understanding Black Orpheus,” Research, Paris, France.

2011:  Andrew W. Mellon Grant (for organizing and facilitating workshop on the theme “The Impact of Intellectuals Abroad:  Transnational Influences Since World War II.” International Centre for Migration, Ethnicity and Citizenship (ICMEC, New School for Social Research, New York, NY. 

2008-2009:  Ada Howe Kent, African Diaspora research project.

2003-2007:  Middlebury Faculty Long Term Research Grant (LPDF) for travel and research to Vienna, London and Brazil, for book on Stefan Zweig and Brazilians abroad.

2005-2008:  Contributing Editor and Consultant, NEH Grant on Teaching Portuguese Across the Curriculum, 2005-2008.

2005:  Starr Foundation, Study Abroad Grant for research in Paris, France on manuscript on Brazilian performers in Paris, January.

2003-2004:  Fulbright-Hays Fellowship, Research residency in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  Theme: Music to His Ears: Popular Music and Nationality in the Time of Getúlio Vargas, President of Brazil.

2002: Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) Grant for seminar on “Economic Development in Brazil.”

1999: Ford Foundation Middlebury College Research Grant for travel to Morocco to study social and religious movements in the Islamic World, Summer 1999.

1996: Kellogg International Fellowship, Salzburg Seminar on Race and Ethnicity:  Models of Diversity, Salzburg, Austria.

1995:  Middlebury Language Fellowship/Scholarship Award to study German language at the Middlebury Summer Language School.


Speaking, writing and reading fluency in English, Portuguese, Spanish. 

Speaking, reading and writing proficiency in French and German.

Basic understanding in Haitian Kreyol.

Membership in Professional Associations

American Historical Association (AHA)

Latin American Studies Association (LASA)

Caribbean Studies Association (CSA)

Associação Brasileira de Pesquisadores Negros (APNB)

Association for the Study of the Worldwide African Diaspora (ASWAD)

Hobbies and Joys: Swimming, Reading Poetry, and Listening to Brazilian Music. In aiming for the balance of body, heart, and soul, I rely on the great poets, writers, as well as musicians: Ono no Kamachi, Fernando Pessoa, Rumi, Derek Walcott, Alice Walker, Bob Marley, Caetano Veloso, Maria Bethânia, Emicida, and others.