Judy Bieber

Photo: Judy Bieber

A&S Senior Associate Dean & Associate Dean of Faculty

Email: jbieber@unm.edu
Phone: (505) 277-3765
Office: 2084 Mesa Vista Hall


B.A., Rutgers College, 1987
Ph.D. in History, The Johns Hopkins University, 1994

Research Interests:

Politics and State Building, Slavery, African Diaspora, Race and Ethnicity, Frontiers and Borderlands, Indigenous Peoples

Research Statement:

My research emphasizes the history of Brazil's long nineteenth-century, roughly 1760-1910, focusing mostly on the Brazilian Empire.  I am interested in the process of state formation as it occurs among ordinary people and in frontier regions.  My first book, Power, Patronage and Political Violence: State Building on a Brazilian Frontier (U. of Nebraska, 1999) examines the relationship of municipal politics and institutionalized corruption in a rural region.  I am currently working on a study of frontier consolidation in northeastern Minas Gerais, focusing on the interrelationships of native peoples, soldiers, the landless poor, businessmen and state agents.  I have also published on slavery and race relations, one of my primary teaching fields.  I seek to embed my scholarship within a broader Atlantic framework, situating borderlands within networks of power and exchange that connected Africa, Europe, and the Americas.


Professor Bieber received an appointment at the University of New Mexico in 1994 following the completion of her doctoral degree. She offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate courses on the history of Latin America and the Atlantic World. These include the colonial and modern Latin American surveys, a two-semester series on Brazil, Slavery and Race Relations in the Americas, and specializes seminars on race, ethnicity, and political history in Latin America. She has also taught the undergraduate historiography course and is developing a new course on the history of chocolate, coffee, and sugar. Bieber has published a monograph and several articles on the themes of nineteenth-century Brazilian politics, frontiers, and race relations. She has also published historiographical essays on Brazilian history in the U.S. and in Brazil. Her current research examines policy towards indigenous peoples in nineteenth-century Brazil.

Recent/Select Publications:

IPlantation Societies in the Era of European Expansion, 1450-1800 (Hampshire: Variorum Press, 1997)

Power, Patronage, and Political Violence: State Building on a Brazilian Frontier, 1822-1889 (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1999)

Brazilian History (Albuquerque: Latin American and Iberian Institute (UNM), 2001)


2002 Honorable Mention for the Warren Dean Prize for Power, Patronage, and Political Violence

2000: NEH Summer Stipend


  • Colonial Latin America
  • Modern Latin America
  • Comparative Slavery
  • Society and Development in Latin America
  • Brazil 1500-present 
  • Modern Brazil
  • Women and Family in Latin America
  • Brazilian History