Research

I write about Latin American soldiers and militaries. My interest goes back to 1999 when I studied at the University of Chile. The military’s influence in national life sparked my curiosity in topics such as military thought, human rights, and US-Chile relations. I am the author of two books about the topic.

Latin American Soldiers: Armed Forces in the Region’s History (Routledge, 2019) uses warfare and military traditions to examine Latin American society as well as major themes in the region’s history. Designed for undergraduates, it includes individual chapters on four very different countries –Brazil, Chile, Cuba, and Mexico.

The Pinochet Generation: The Chilean Military in the Twentieth Century (University of Alabama Press, 2016), follows the careers of officers who entered Chile’s military academies in the 1930s and 1940s, completed advanced training in the 1950s and 1960s, and went on to positions of senior leadership in the 1970s. This generation overthrew president Salvador Allende and decisively altered the country’s historical trajectory. A central argument of the book is that the peculiar nature of the Pinochet regime (1973–1990)—its policies, repressiveness, longevity, and political project—cannot be separated from a broader intellectual and institutional culture in the armed forces.

Two projects occupy me currently. First, I am revising an article entitled, “Memory as a Protagonist in Chile’s Armed Forces during the Allende Years.” It seeks to understand how members of the Chilean military understood their institutions’ experiences in the past and how such interpretations of the past shaped their politics, responses, and choices during the Allende years. Second, I am in the beginning states of a project about global press reactions to the overthrow of Chilean president Salvador Allende and U.S. meddling in Chilean democracy based on the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (US federal agency that monitors and translates foreign media into English). I intend to consult this archive of daily reports about foreign radio and television broadcasts, periodicals, and government statements.