Katherine Bonil Gómez


I am a fourth-year student in the History Ph.D. program and work on colonial Latin American history with particular interest in the African Diaspora, Atlantic identities, discourses of difference and political culture. My dissertation explores public and political identities of free people of African descent in the late colonial New Granada (present-day Colombia). I trace the different ways in which notions and experiences of freedom shaped freed slaves and their descendants’ lives and political culture. My aim is also to articulate the study of free people of color political actions with a study of their economic role, especially in navigation and trade, in order to understand how these two spheres, often considered separately, interacted in very complex ways in the production of colonial identities.

Originally from Bogotá, Colombia, I received a B.A. in Anthropology and History and a M.A. in History from the Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá. My master’s thesis explored the uses of calidad in everyday social interactions between the colonial subjects and authorities in Colombia and was published in 2012. After graduating I spent some years working as undergraduate studies coordinator of the history department at the Universidad de los Andes.

Main Advisor: Professor Paquette, Professor Vinson