Dr Sophie Brockmann

Job: Senior Lecturer in History

Faculty: Arts, Design and Humanities

School/department: School of Humanities

Research group(s): History

Address: The Gateway, De Montfort University (DMU), Leicester, UK , LE1 9BH

T: +44 (0)116 207 8880

E: Sophie.brockmann@dmu.ac.uk

W: dmu.academia.edu/SophieBrockmann


Personal profile

I am a historian of modern Central America, specialising in the role of scientific enquiry in Central America from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries. My research and teaching interests include Global History, Latin American History, History of Science (especially history of geography and cartography), and Environmental History.

Research group affiliations


Key research outputs

I have recently published a monograph with Cambridge University Press, entitled "The Science of Useful Nature in Central America", which explores the interactions between Central American society and landscapes. I argue that environmental and scientific thinking was central to the construction of national identities in the Age of Enlightenment. I am also working on a new project which examines the making of Guatemalan national heritage in a transnational context, examining the relationship between archaeology, environment, agriculture and society. This project has been funded by a British Academy Small Grant, as well as a Smithsonian Institution fellowship and the De Montfort University Faculty Research Fund. I have also published peer-reviewed journal articles in Colonial Latin American Review, Cuadernos de Historia Moderna, and Anuario de Estudios Centroamericanos.

Research interests/expertise

History of Science, Latin American History (especially Central America), Environmental History

Areas of teaching

Global History, Latin American History, Central America, Environmental History, Colonial History


I hold a BA in Ancient and Modern History from Oxford, and an MPhil and PhD in History of Science from Cambridge. I have taught at the University of Pennsylvania, The Open University, and De Montfort University.

Courses taught

  • HIST1003 Nation, Empire and Revolution (BA)
  • HIST1006 Ideology, War and Society (BA)
  • HIST2024 The Historian’s Craft (BA)
  • HIST2027 Histories of the Global South (BA)
  • HIST3015 Environmental History of the Americas
  • HIST5040 Historical Methods (MA)

Honours and awards


Membership of external committees

AHRC Peer Review College

Membership of professional associations and societies

  • Teaching Indigenous Histories Network
  • Latin America in Global History Network

Conference attendance


Recent conference presentations and invited talks include:

  • ‘Agricultural and Archaeological Networks in Guatemala and Honduras, 1920-1940’, Collecting Latin America Symposium, University of Leiden, 27 June.
  • ‘Latin America, Eurocentrism, and the History of Science’, 9 June 2022. History of Science and the ‘Big Picture’, University of Warwick.
  • ‘Transnational connections in Guatemala, 1890-1940’, 1 April 2022. Atelier d'Études Transnationales, Université Paris – Sorbonne-Nouvelle
  • ‘Guatemala, Centroamérica y la construcción del Estado’, 28 October 2021. International Virtual Forum, Panamanian Ministry of Culture.
  • ‘Regiones fronterizas: imaginando el territorio nacional’, 24 Feb 2021. Simposio virtual internacional: Bicentenario de la independencia de Guatemala.

Conferences organised: Gender and Materiality in Latin American History (ILAS, London, 2016); Global Histories of Archaeology in the Field (ILAS, London, 2016); Nature and Knowledge in Latin America: New Historical Perspectives  (ILAS, London, 2015).

Externally funded research grants information

  • British Academy Small Grant
  • Smithsonian Institution Fellowship Program, Washington DC, Postdoctoral Fellowship
  • National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Fellowship, Newberry Library, Chicago
  • The John Carter Brown Library, Barbara S. Mosbacher Research Fellowship, Providence, RI
  • Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Predoctoral Fellowship
  • Arts and Humanities Research Council studentship (MA and PhD research)
Sophie Brockmann