Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara

Brianna N. Leavitt-Alcántara , Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Associate Professor

McMicken Hall

A&S History - 0373

Professional Summary

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara teaches Latin American History, specializing in the colonial period, and is Director of Latin American, Caribbean, and Latinx Studies. Her research focuses on gender and religion in colonial and nineteenth-century Central America. Her book, Alone at the Altar: Single Women and Devotion in Guatemala, 1670-1870 (Stanford University Press, 2018), considers how non-elite single women forged complex alliances with the Catholic Church in Guatemala's colonial capital, and how those alliances significantly shaped local religion and the spiritual economy, late colonial reform efforts, and post-Independence politics. Her new book project, The Virgin's Wrath, examines gender relations, Mayan Catholicism, and violence in eighteenth-century Chiapas. She teaches survey courses on colonial Latin America as well as upper division courses on topics such as gender, religion, the Spanish Inquisition, and Afro-Latin America. 


Ph.D.: University of California, Berkeley Berkeley, CA, 2009 (History)

B.A.: University of San Francisco San Francisco, CA, 1999

Research Support

05-01-2013 -06-30-2013 University Research Council, University of Cincinnati University Research Council Summer Fellowship Completed

08-20-2014 -08-20-2015 Taft Research Center Taft Center Fellows Completed Type:Fellowship

06-2012 -08-2012 Taft Research Center Taft Summer Research Fellowship Completed Type:Fellowship

Grant: #URC AHSS Faculty Research stipend FY18 Investigators:Leavitt-Alcantara, Brianna 05-01-2018 -05-31-2018 UC's University Research Council URC AHSS Faculty Research stipend FY18 Role:PI $16,275.00 Active Level:Internal UC


Peer Reviewed Publications

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (2014. ) "Intimate Indulgences: Salvation and Local Religion in Eighteenth-Century Santiago de Guatemala" .Colonial Latin American Review, , 23 (2 ) ,252-279

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (2014. ) "Holy Women and Hagiography in Colonial Latin America" .History Compass, , 12 (9 ) ,717-728

Published Books

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (2018. ) Alone at the Altar: Single Women and Devotion in Guatemala, 1670-1870 .Stanford, CA , Stanford University Press (Author)

Book Chapter

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (2018 ) Quiet Voices and Laconic Sources: A Synoptic Approach to Wills Imagining Histories of Colonial Latin America: Essays on Synoptic Methods and Practices .Albuquerque, University of New Mexico Press

Additional Publications


Paper Presentations

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (06-2011. ) Bringing Home Our Daily Bread: Women, Work, and Religious Practice in Guatemala City, 1750-1850 .Amherst, MA. Conference. Level:International

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (01-2011. ) Domestic Devotions and Sacred Domains: Gendered Ideals and Religious Practice in Guatemala City, 1750-1850 .Boston, MA. Conference. Level:International

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (01-2010. ) Pious Accounts: Laywomen, Capellanías, and the Gendered Pursuit of Salvation in Guatemala City, 1750-1860 .San Diego, CA. Conference. Level:International

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (06-2006. ) Sor María Teresa Aycinena: devoción, controversia, y reforma en la época de la Independencia .Antigua, Guatemala. Conference. Level:International

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (04-2005. ) Until Death Do Us Part: Women Bigamists in Late-Colonial New Spain .Las Vegas, Nevada. Conference. Level:International

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (11-2012. ) Navigating the Here and Hereafter: Single Women and Spiritual Networking in Colonial Guatemala City .Chicago. Conference. Level:International

Brianna Leavitt-Alcántara (01-2013. ) Devotional Networks and Spiritual Geographies: Single Women in a Spanish American City .New Orleans. Conference. Level:International

Leavitt-Alcántara, Brianna (03-12-2015. ) Alone at the Altar: Gender, Devotion, and Marriage in a Guatemalan City, 1670-1870 .Taft Research Center. UC. Level:Regional


(Events and Outreach ) Committee Member Type:Departmental Service Level:University 01-2012 -To Present