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Center for Iberian Historical Studies

The Saint Louis University Center for Iberian Historical Studies (CIHS) promotes advanced research and scholarly conversations on any topic related to Iberian studies and analyzes them through a historical lens. The SLU center welcomes initiatives dealing with Iberian studies from late antiquity up to the present. We are particularly interested in promoting the study of the “First Iberian Globalization (Medieval period-1800s)” by focusing on the local, colonial, transregional, and global history of Iberian interactions and/or exchanges.

The CIHS offers a transdisciplinary and collaborative platform for scholarly and public outreach, which will promote conversations about methods of historical analysis and critical theory that empower scholars and students to deepen their understanding of the diversity of Iberian cultures and environments across the globe.

By leveraging Saint Louis University’s two campuses — in St. Louis and Madrid, its cluster of Iberian-focused faculty, and the Teofilo Ruiz Library — the CIHS fosters original research in the field of Iberian historical studies at SLU and beyond.

In collaboration with the SLU Department of History, the CIHS is committed to supporting graduate and undergraduate research at both SLU-STL and SLU-Madrid, considering students’ needs when undertaking research on Iberian materials held in archives and libraries in the U.S. and across the world.

News and Events

Upcoming Events

  • April 26, 2024, Madrid: CIHS Inaugural Event (SLU-Madrid). Prof. Paul Freedman (Chester D. Tripp Professor of History, Yale University), "Studying the Middle Ages in Enlightenment Catalonia."
  • April 26th-27, 2024, St. Louis: "Mediterranean Ecologies," The Mediterranean Seminar Spring Workshop (a co-sponsored initiative with the TGI Spatial Humanities Working Group). Location: Saint Louis University, DuBourg Hall, Sinquefield Stateroom
  • Oct. 3-5, 2024, Madrid: The CIHS will co-sponsor the Crusade Studies Conference

Past Events

The CIHS builds on the SLU Department of History's decade-long record of convening events related to Iberian studies between SLU's campuses in St. Louis and Madrid:

  • April 5, 2024, St. Louis: Breakfast Discussion with Cécile Fromont (Yale University) "Ibero-African Aesthetics and Tastes in the Making and Unmaking of Renaissance Empires," DuBourg Hall 406
  • March 13, 2024, Newberry Library, Chicago: "New Approaches for Understanding the Rhizome in Iberian Studies." Co-sponosored with the Newberry Library Center for Renaissance Studies.
  • March 5, 2024, online: "Thinking Race Through at the ARSI." A Hands-On Workshop for Research in Jesuit Archives. 
  • Dec. 1, 2023, St. Louis: CIHS Inaugural Event. Professor Teofilo Ruiz (UCLA Distinguished Professor and Recipient of the National Humanities Medal) “Serendipity: or How I Became a Historian of Spain."
  • The Republic of Letters and the Formation of Transoceanic Empires across Renaissance Iberian Worlds (Dec. 3-4, 2021, Madrid)
  • San Fernando and His Age (1217-1252) (Oct. 6-7, 2017, Madrid).
  • The Tasks of the Translator: Developing a Sociocultural Framework for the Study of Translation across the Early Modern World” (March 20-21, 2017, St. Louis)
  • Iberian Legitimacies (SLU-CMRS Annual Conference, Summer 2016)
  • Religious Alterity and Political Power in Medieval Polities (April 10-11, 2015, Madrid)
  • Medieval Association of the Midwest 30th Annual Conference (Jan. 23-25, 2015, Madrid)
  • Alfonso VIII and Eleanor of Castile (SLU-CMRS Annual Conference, Summer 2014)
  • The Friars and their Influence in Medieval Spain, (April 12-13, 2013, Madrid).

Leadership Team

Executive Board

Advisory Board

  • Diane Bodart (Columbia University)
  • Thomas Barton (University of San Diego)
  • Thomas Burman (University of Notre Dame)
  • Pedro Cardim (Universidade Nova de Lisboa)
  • Ana María Echevarría Arsuaga (Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia)
  • Ana Rodríguez López (CSIC, CCHS-Madrid, Instituto de Historia)
  • Giuseppe Marcocci (University of Oxford)
  • Lisa Voigt (Yale University)

Executive Sponsors

Resources and Partners

The CIHS houses a library for researchers (faculty, advanced undergraduates and graduate students, and independent researchers). The Teofilo Ruiz Library was created thanks to a generous gift from friend and colleague Professor Teo Ruiz. The collection's core is based on the books Professor Ruiz gathered and used during his career. The library is on the SLU-STL campus and is accessible by appointment on the second floor of the Adorjan Building.