Jorge Chinea

Jorge Chinea

Director, Center for Latino/a and Latin American Studies

313 577-4378

313 993-4073 (fax)

  790.3 Student Center Building

Curriculum Vitae


Jorge Chinea

Secondary Title

Distinguished Service Professor, History


Jorge L. Chinea specializes in the social and economic history of colonial Latin America, with particular emphasis on European colonialism, hhjkkllagriculture, forced labor regimes, and coerced and free immigration during the 18th and 19th centuries. His book, Race and Labor in the Hispanic Caribbean: The West Indian Worker Experience in Puerto Rico, 1800-1850 (2005), received a Wayne State University’s Board of Governors Faculty Recognition Award in 2006. A revised, augmented Spanish-language edition was released in 2014 by the School of Hispanic-American Studies in Seville, Spain, the Asociación Cultural La Otra Andalucía, the Official Historian of Puerto Rico and Wayne State University.

He has researched or lectured in Colombia, Guyana, Mexico, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Ecuador, Ireland, Spain and Austria. He has been awarded grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Society for Irish Latin American Studies and the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation. He is a former resident scholar of the John W. Kluge Center at the U.S. Library of Congress (Winter 2000) and former contributing editor for the Handbook of Latin American Studies (2002-2008). His latest work, Esclavos, penados y exiliados en Puerto Rico, siglo xix: Cambios y continuidades en una sociedad en transformacion, co-edited with J. Raúl Navarro García, was published by the Universidad de Cadiz in 2021.

From 2010-12 he served on the Board of Directors of the Michigan Humanities Council and sits on the Advisory Board of the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan. He serves on the editorial committee of the journal of Agua y Territorio and on the Advisory Council of the journal Revista Brasileira do Caribe. At present he is an Associate Professor in the Department of History and Director of the Center for Latino & Latin American Studies at Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan (USA).

Research interest(s)/area of expertise

 Latin American History, Colonial Period; Caribbean History, Colonial and Modern Periods; Immigration; African Diaspora; Ethnohistory; Latino/a Studies


Education – Degrees, Licenses, Certifications

Ph.D., Latin American History, University of Minnesota, 1994 M.A., History/Chicano Studies Minor, Suny-Binghamton, 1983 B.A., Latin America and Caribbean Area Studies Program/Psychology, Suny-Binghamton, 1980

Awards and grants

 BIOGRAPHICAL CITATIONS (National/Regional or Professional Directories):

“Interviewed in Today@Wayne Podcast, Season 2, Episode 5, September 28, 2021

“Forward Ever: Scholar, Community Activist Remembers Humble Beginings,” Warriors Magazine, Wayne State University, Fall 2020

“Thought Leaders,” Office of Public Relations, Wayne State University, 2019

“Professors Who Do,” Office of Public Relations, Wayne State University, 2017

“100 Puerto Ricans Who Have Made a Difference,” Center for Puerto Rican Studies, Hunter College, City University of New York, 2014

Who’s Who in America (Chicago: A.N. Marquis Co., 2011)

Who's Who in the Midwest: A Biographical Dictionary of Noteworthy Men and Women of the Central and Midwestern States (Chicago: A.N. Marquis Co., 1997)

Ramón Bosque-Pérez, compiler, National Directory of Puerto Rican Professionals Working in Institutions of Higher Education in the United States (New York: Higher Education Task Force, Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños, 1992)


Education Award, Caribbean Community Services Center, Detroit, MI, 2020.

Excellence in Education Award, Hispanic Business Alliance, Detroit, MI, 2008

Outstanding Alumni Achievement Award, Office of Opportunity Programs, The State University of New York, Albany, N.Y., 2007

Board of Governors Faculty Recognition Award, Wayne State University, 2006

Alumni Award of Excellence, Michael V. Boyd Educational Opportunity Program, Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY, 2005

Sigma Xi Honor Society, The Scientific Research Society, 2005

ALSAME Exceptional Service Award, Advocates for Latino Student Advancement in Michigan Education (ALSAME), 2005

President's Award for Excellence in Teaching, Wayne State University, 1999

Jessamine Allen Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship for Racial Minorities, Graduate School, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, 1987

Certificate of Recognition, Martin Luther King Program, College of Liberal Arts, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, 1987

Recipient, National Hispanic Scholar Award, National Hispanic Scholarship Fund, San Diego, CA, 1985, 1986, 1987

Departmental Honors, Latin American & Caribbean Area Studies Program, State University of New York at Binghamton, Binghamton, NY, 1980

 Fellowships/Grants/Special Awards

Faculty Teaching Travel Grant, Office of Teaching and Learning, Wayne State University, Fall 2015-2016.

Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad [Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, Government of Spain], 2011-2014, co-pi for a research project on the impact of Spanish liberal constitutions on Puerto Rico during the first three decades of the 19th century.

Irish Latin American Research Grant, Society for Irish Latin American Studies, Switzerland, Summer 2005, to research Irish immigration in the Hispanic Caribbean.

Munusculum Grant, Humanities Center, WSU, Winter 2005, to help subsidize the publication of my book, Racial Politics and Commercial Agriculture: The West Indian Immigrant Worker Experience in Puerto Rico, 1800-1850 (Gainesville, FL: University Press of Florida, 2005).

Mellon Foreign Area Fellowship, Winter 2000, to research the history of fugitive slaves in the Hispanic Caribbean during its pre-plantation era as a resident scholar in Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

Small Research Grant, WSU, Fall 1999 to research and present a paper on the African Diaspora in Cuba.

Humanities Center International Travel Grant, WSU, Fall 1999, to deliver a paper in Cuba, July 2000.

Research Development Fund Grant, WSU, Winter 1999, to explore funding opportunities with the National Endowment for the Humanities.

University Research Grant, WSU, Summer 1999, to research the history of the Hispanic Caribbean during the Spanish colonial period at the Archivo General de Indias, in Seville, Spain.

Humanities Center Fellowship, WSU, Detroit, MI, 1998, to research freedom quest for escaped slaves in Puerto Rico.

Library Travel Grant, Center for Latin American Studies, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL., Summer 1998, to research history of maroons in Florida and the Caribbean.

Summer Faculty Research Grant, CULMA, WSU, Winter 1997, to research the social and economic history of Spanish colonial Puerto Rico.

Minority/Women Summer Grant, WSU, Winter 1997, to begin revising my dissertation while researching new materials at Puerto Rico's Archivo General.

Research Grant, Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, WSU, Summer 1997, to present a paper at the International Congress of Americanists in Quito, Ecuador.

NEH award for college teachers, Summer 1995, to participate in the seminar, "Slavery and the Atlantic Plantation Complex: 1450-1890," Johns Hopkins University, led by Dr. Philip D. Curtin.

Selected publications

Esclavos, penados y exiliados en Puerto Rico, siglo XIX: Cambios y continuidades en una sociedad en transformación (jointly coordinated with J. Raúl Navarro García), Universidad de Cádiz, Spain, 2021.

"Un Recorrido por la Historia de Toa Alta: La Familia Chinea y sus Primeros Vinculos con las de Cintron y Cheveres," pp. 129-139, in Thoa Arriba, Toa Alta: Una Historia. Ensayos Historicos y Culturales, ed. by Gloria Tapia Rios. Toa Alta, P.R.: Ediciones Magna Cultura, 2021.

“Hydraulic Heritage and the Control of Malaria in the Aragon and Catalonia Canal, Urgell Canal and the Irrigation System of Alto Aragon, Spain” (co-authored with Jesús Raúl Navarro García), forthcoming in Patrimonio hidráulico en Iberoamérica, edited by Jesús Raúl Navarro García. Jaén and Sevilla: Jaén, Spain: Universidad de Jaén y Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, 2020.

"Fronteras Porosas, Destinos Compartidos: Notas sobre los Vínculos Históricos entre Puerto Rico y La Española/Santo Domingo desde la Época Precolonial hasta la Consolidación del Control Colonial Español, ca. 1550," Revista Brasileira do Caribe, vol. 20, num. 39 (julio-diciembre 2019), pp. 7-39.

“Los Grandes Proyectos Hidráulicos y las Políticas Antipalúdicas: un Estudio Comparativo entre el Plan de Riegos del Alto Aragón y el Canal de Panamá,” co-authored with Raul Navarro Garcia, Anuario de Estudios Americanos, 76:2 (2019): 679-713.

“Medidas legais e extralegais na exploração do trabalho: trabalho, trabalhadores e controle sociorracial em uma colônia espanhola, Porto Rico, c. 1500-1850.” In: Mundos do trabalho e dos trabalhadores: experiências e vivências no Brasil e no Caribe, coord. by Elaine P. Rocha, Leonardo Rabelo de Matos Silva and Thiago de Souza dos Reis, 15-39. Rio de Janeiro, Brasil: Grupo Multifoco, 2018.

“Legal and Extra-Legal Measures of Labor Exploitation: Work, Workers and Socio-Racial Control in Spanish Colonial Puerto Rico, c. 1500-1850,” Revista Brasileira do Caribe, 19:35 (July-December 2017): 89-110.

“Slavery and Child Trafficking in Puerto Rico at the Closing of the African Slave Trade: The Young Captives of the Slaver Majesty, 1859-1865,” Revista Brasileira do Caribe, 17:32 (2016), pp. 59-98.

“Miguel Enríquez,” Dictionary of Caribbean and Afro-Latin American Biography, vol. II, edited Franklin W. Knight and Henry Louis Gates, Jr., 457-460. New York: Oxford University Press, 2016.

“In the Royal Service of Spain: The Milicianos Morenos Manuel and Antonio Pérez during the Napoleonic Invasion, 1808-1812” [reprint, English-language version only], Afro-Latino Voices (Shorter Edition): Translations of Early Modern Ibero-Atlantic Narratives, edited by Kathryn J. McKnight and Leo J. Garofalo, 200-207. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing Co., 2015.

Raza y trabajo en el Caribe hispánico: Los inmigrantes de las Indias Occidentales en Puerto Rico durante el ciclo agro-exportador, 1800-1850. Sevilla: Escuela de Estudios Hispano-Americanos/Oficina del Historiador Oficial de Puerto Rico, 2014.

“Spain is the merciful heavenly body whose influence favors the Irish”: “Jaime O’Daly y Blake, Enlightened Immigrant, Administrator and Planter in Late Bourbon-Era Puerto Rico, 1776-1806,” Tiempos Modernos: Revista electrónica de Historia Moderna, 7:25 (2012), pp. 1-33.

“The Impact of the Haitian Revolution in the Caribbean” [bilingual Spanish and English essay], Enciclopedia de Puerto Rico. San Juan, P.R.: Fundación Puertorriqueña de las Humanidades, 2011 (online publication:

“Confronting the Crisis of the Puerto Rican Plantation System: Bureaucratic Proposals for Agricultural Modernisation, Diversification, and Free Labour in Puerto Rico, 1846-1852,” Journal of Latin American Studies, 42:1 (2010), 121-54.

“Diasporic Marronage: Some Colonial and Intercolonial Repercussions of Overland and Waterborne Slave Flight, with Special Reference to the Caribbean Archipelago,” Revista Brasileira do Caribe, 10:19 (2009), 259-284.

“Un discurso esclavista de la Ilustración: la trata negrera en el proyecto plantocrático de Louis Balbes des Berton, duque de Crillón y Mahón,” Revista Complutense de Historia de América, 34 (2008), 257-268.

“Irish Indentured Servants, Papists and Colonists in Spanish Colonial Puerto Rico, ca. 1650-1800,” Irish Migration Studies in Latin America, vol. 5, no. 3 (November 2007). Available online at:

“Francophobia and Interimperial Politics in Late Bourbon Puerto Rico: The Duke of Crillón y Mahon’s Failed Negotiations with the Spanish Crown, 1776-1796,” New West Indian Guide/Nieuwe West-Indische Gids, 80:1-2 (2007), 37-53.

Race and Labor in the Hispanic Caribbean: The West Indian Immigrant Worker Experience in Puerto Rico, 1800-1850. Gainesville, FL: University Press of Florida, 2005.

“The Control of Foreign Immigration in the Spanish American Colonial Periphery: Puerto Rico during its Transition to Commercial Agriculture, c.1765-1800,” Colonial Latin American Historical Review, 11:1 (2002), 1-33.

“Fissures in el Primer Piso: Racial Politics in Spanish Colonial Puerto Rico during its Pre-Plantation Era, c.1700-1800,” Caribbean Studies, 30:1(2002), 169-204.

“Deconstructing the Center, Centering the Margins: Revisiting Eurocreole Narratives on the History of Colonial Latin America,” Revista Mexicana del Caribe, 6:11 (2001), 261-273.

“The Spanish Immigrant Joseph Martín de Fuentes: A Self-Styled Reformer, Imperial Watchdog and Nativist in Puerto Rico at the end of the Eighteenth Century,” Revista Mexicana del Caribe, 6:12 (2001), 85-109.

“A Quest for Freedom: The Immigration of Maritime Maroons into Puerto Rico, 1656-1800,” Journal of Caribbean History, 31: 1/2 (1997), 51-87.

“Race, Colonial Exploitation and West Indian Immigration in Nineteenth-Century Puerto Rico, 1800-50,” The Americas: A Quarterly Journal of Inter-American Cultural History, 52:4 (1996), 495-519.

Currently Teaching

LAS 2420: History of Puerto Rico and Cuba
LAS 3990: Directed Studies

LAS/HIS 2430: History of Latinos/as in the U.S.

Courses taught

ANT 3110: Detroit Area Minorities: Arabs, Hispanics and African Americans
LAS/HIS 1910: Latin America from Independence to the Present
LAS 2420: History of Puerto Rico & Cuba
LAS/HIS 2430: History of Latinos/as in the United States
LAS 3610: Seminar in Latino Urban Problems I
LAS 3990: Directed Studies
HIS 3995/6000: Special Topics in Latin American History
HIS 7990: Directed Studies