Jonathan Ablard

Professor and Latin American Studies Coordinator, History
School: School of Humanities and Sciences
Phone: 607-274-3558
Office: Muller Faculty Center 403, Ithaca, NY 14850
Specialty: Latin American History

I am a historian of Latin America and the Caribbean. In addition to teaching general surveys,  I also offer courses on public health, revolution and counterrevolution, literature and dictatorship, conspiracy theories, and commodities. ​One of the core ideas of all of my classes is that we cannot understand the United States without understanding Latin America and the Caribbean. And the histories of Latin America and the Caribbean should be viewed within wider global narratives. Students often remark that Latin America and the Caribbean barely exists in high school history classes. The region is rarely mentioned in U.S. courses and gets short shrift in world history courses. I hope that my courses can offer a corrective to these deficits.

My book Madness in Buenos Aires: Patients, Psychiatrists, and the Argentine State, 1880-1983 was published in 2008. Since then, I have published articles on the history of military conscription in Argentina, conspiracy theoriesobesity in Latin America, and many book reviews. Here is a list of major publications to date. 


“Pescado podrido. Domestic and International Circuits of Argentine Rumors and Conspiracy Theories (1930-1943),” (co-authored with Ernesto Bohoslavsky, Universidad Nacional General Sarmiento) (accepted for publication in Journal of Social History)

“Archivos, Derechos Humanos y Psiquiatría en Argentina” (accepted for publication in the edited volume Locura en el Archivo to be published by Siglo XXI publishing house, Mexico City)

“Framing the Latin American Nutrition Transition in Historical Perspective” História, Ciencia, Saúde: Manguinhos  (2021)

‘”Our archaic system:” Debating and Reforming Military Justice in Argentina, 1905-1935,’ Journal of Latin American Studies (accepted for publication in 2020)

 “Counter-revolution without revolutionaries: Conspiracy in the Barracks, 1919-1930” A Contracorriente (accepted for publication in Fall 2019 or Winter 2020): 1-30.

“‘The barracks receives spoiled children and returns men:’ Debating Military Service, Masculinity and Nation-building in Argentina, 1901-1930” The Americas (July 2017): 299-330

“Authoritarianism, democracy and psychiatric reform in Argentina, 1946-1983,” History of Psychiatry (September 2003): 361-76.

“¿Dónde está el delirio?: La autoridad psiquiátrica y el estado argentino en perspectiva histórica,” in María Silvia Di Liscia and Ernesto Bohoslasky, editors, Instituciones y formas de control social en América Latina, 1880-1940 (Editorial de la Universidad Nacional de General Sarmiento, Argentina, 2005): 199-216.

“The limits of psychiatric reform in Argentina, 1890-1946,” in Roy Porter and David Wright, editors, The Confinement of the Insane: International Perspectives, 1800-1965 (Cambridge University Press, 2003): 226-47.

“Law, medicine and confinement to public psychiatric hospitals in twentieth century Argentina,” in Mariano Ben Plotkin, editor Argentina on the Couch: Psychiatry, the State, and Society in Argentina, 1880-1970. (University of New Mexico Press, 2003): 87-112.

“My New Attendance Policy,” Perspectives on History: The Newsmagazine of the American Historical Association 52:4 (April 2014): 29-30.

 Works in Progress

“’Sin pensar en las consecuencias’: Desertion from the Army during the Argentine Dictatorship (1976-1983)” (will submit to peer reviewed journal in summer 2021)


Please email me at if you have questions!