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College of Arts & Sciences
Department of History

Faculty Directory

Martine Jean

Assistant Professor of History

Office: 228 Gambrell Hall
Degrees: B.A. Brooklyn College, CUNY
Ph.D. Yale University
Phone: (803) 777-4205
Research Interests: Latin America
Curriculum vitae: Download PDF


My research is grounded in a broad interest in the legacy of slavery and colonialism in shaping the socio-political and economic experiences of people of African descent in the Americas with a particular focus on Haiti and Brazil from the long nineteenth-century into the mid-twentieth century. My dissertation explored the making of Brazilian modernity from 1900 to 1930 on the heels of the abolition of slavery through a focus on the police and the maintenance of public order. The dissertation, which is currently being revised as a book manuscript, brings to the foreground of the historical record the contribution and participation of common working class men in the national project of creating a modern Brazil through policing as a domestic civilizing mission in the early twentieth-century.

In parallel to my work on Brazil, I've returned to a long held research interests on on the meaning of the Haitian Revolution in World History. I'm completing an article manuscript on the violence of the Haitian Revolution which forms part of a long term project that seeks to understand revolution and counterrevolution in the early national period and its importance in the making of Haiti. Whether focusing on Brazil or Haiti, my work explores and contributes to the expanding historiography on the African Diaspora in Latin America and the Caribbean as informed by the modernizing tentacles of the state and ideologies as well as politics of race and nation.

Current Activities 

I currently teach Hist. 109 (Latin American Civilization) and Hist. 420 (Latin American: the Founding of New Societies). I developing an upper level undergraduate course on race and nation in Latin America as well as a course on Modern Brazil that explores the country's history as well as the changing narratives on Brazil from "the country of tomorrow" to "the future is now" in light of Brazil's new standing as the world's 6th largest economy and the location of the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympics in 2016.


Book Reviews

Micol Seigel, Uneven Encounters: Making Race and Nation in Brazil and the United States (Durham: Duke University Press, 2009),, summer 2010
Alejandro de la Fuente, Havana and the Atlantic in the Sixteenth Century (2008), Canadian Journal of History, winter 2009 issue

"The Furies of the Haitian Revolution: Colonial Violence and the Struggle for Universal Emancipation in St Domingue/Haiti, 1791-1804," in progress
"Civilizing Rio: Modernity, Policing, and the Wages of the Poor in Rio de Janeiro's Civil Guard, Brazil, 1900-1930" in progress
"Guardians of Order: Police and Society in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 1900-1930" book manuscript