Professor Premo is interested in a wide range of topics in Latin American history. Her most recent book, The Enlightenment on Trial: Ordinary Litigants and Colonialism in the Spanish Empire is a comparative study that reveals how ordinary, often illiterate litigants made law modern in the courtrooms of vast regions of the 18th-century Spanish empire. Her first book, Children of the Father King: Youth, Authority and Legal Minority in Colonial Lima (2005), reveals how Lima’s children were socialized into colonial hierarchies and how adults viewed and practiced their roles as authority figures over children in a legal culture that favored elite fathers and distant kings. She also co-edited Raising an Empire (2007) a volume of historical scholarship about children and childhood in early modern Spain, Portugal and colonial Latin America. She has authored over a dozen articles and multiple book chapters on colonial Peru and Mexico and early modern Spain in the fields of legal studies, ethnohistory, gender and family history and Atlantic history. Her next research projects involve delving deeper into the history of childhood and gender and expanding her research into the twentieth century.
Professor Premo has a lot of fun exposing undergraduate students to Latin America's dynamic past in large introductory courses, as well as offering specialized upper-level courses on themes such as gender and colonial Latin American society. At the graduate level, she shares with students her longstanding fascination with everyday forms of colonial rule, along with broader interests in law, colonial and postcolonial theory, and the eighteenth-century Atlantic World.
Scholarly & Creative Works
2019A Court of Sticks and Branches: Indian Jurisdiction in Colonial Mexico and Beyond. AMERICAN HISTORICAL REVIEW. 124:28-55.
2014Custom Today: Temporality, Customary Law, and Indigenous Enlightenment. HAHR-HISPANIC AMERICAN HISTORICAL REVIEW. 94:355-379.
2014Felipa's Braid: Women, Culture, and the Law in Eighteenth-Century Oaxaca. ETHNOHISTORY. 61:497-523.
2013Familiar: Thinking beyond Lineage and across Race in Spanish Atlantic Family History. WILLIAM AND MARY QUARTERLY. 70:295-316.
2011An Equity Against the Law: Slave Rights and Creole Jurisprudence in Spanish America. SLAVERY & ABOLITION. 32:495-517.
2011Before the Law: Women's Petitions in the Eighteenth-Century Spanish Empire. COMPARATIVE STUDIES IN SOCIETY AND HISTORY. 53:261-289.
2010An Old Father in a New Tragedy: Fatherhood in the Legal Theater of the Spanish Atlantic, 1770-1820. CLIO-A JOURNAL OF LITERATURE HISTORY AND THE PHILOSOPHY OF HISTORY. 40:109-130.
2020Meticulous Imprecision: Calculating Age in Colonial Spanish American Law. AMERICAN HISTORICAL REVIEW. 396-406.
chaired theses and dissertations
- Solis, Gracia G, Reading Spaces: Nation and Popular Learning in Nineteenth-Century Lima 2017
- Babb, John K, The Viceroyalty of Miami: Colonial Nostalgia and the Making of an Imperial City 2016
- Oelze, Micah J, The Symphony of State: São Paulo's Department of Culture, 1922-1938 2016
- Mansilla, Judith M, Firm Foundation: Rebuilding the Early Modern State in Lima, Peru after the Earthquake of 1687 2016
principal investigator on
- The Smallest Subject: Peru's Youngest Mother and the Rise of Modern Research Ethics awarded by American Council of Learned Societies 2018 - 2019
- Enlightenment on Trial, University of Texas- Austin Residential Fellowship awarded by University of Texas at Austin 2015 - 2016
- Taking Tyrants to Court: Civil Litigation in the Spanish Empire awarded by National Science Foundation 2009 - 2012
- Taking Tyrants to Court: Civil Litigation in the Spanish Empire during the Enlightenment awarded by American Council of Learned Societies 2010 - 2011
- Taking Tyrants to Court: Civil Litigation in the Spanish Empire. awarded by National Endowment for the Humanities 2008 - 2009
- The Symphony of State: Sao Paulo's Department of Culture, 1922-1954 awarded by U.S. Department of Education 2014 - 2016
- LAH5905-U02: Readings in Latin American History Fall Term 2019
- Bianca Premo
Recent publications and grants in Scholars@FIU
publication subject areas
- Arts & Humanities - Other Topics