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 Jesús Sanjurjo

Jesús Sanjurjo

Lecturer in Hispanic and Latin American Studies

School of Modern Languages

Room 1.46, 66a Park Place, Cathays, Cardiff, CF10 3AS


BA (Oviedo), MA (Leeds), PhD (Leeds), AFHEA (York).

I am a Lecturer in Hispanic and Latin American Studies as part of Cardiff University’s flagship new scheme, Darlithwyr Disglair and the author of In the Blood of Our Brothers: Abolitionism and the End of the Slave Trade in Spain’s Atlantic Empire, 1800–1870 (University of Alabama Press, 2021). I specialise in the history of slavery and the slave trade in the Spanish Caribbean and Anglo-Spanish diplomatic and cultural relations during the nineteenth century. I currently co-direct the Research network 'Blood & Radical Politics' with the poet and conceptual artist RJ Arkhipov.

I teach a variety of modules that range from the history of the slave trade in the Atlantic World and the history of crime in Latin America to translation studies from Spanish into English. I also supervise Year Abroad Essays and Final Year dissertations. I am the Student Voice coordinator in the Spanish Department and Personal Tutor. 

From Spring 2022, I will be joining the University of Cambridge as a Fellow of the Leverhulme & Isaac Newton trusts. I will be developing the research project 'Black Soldiers of the Caribbean: Race, Slavery and Radical Politics' in the Faculty on History.

Pre-order now In the Blood of Our Brothers.


I was born in Gijón, Asturias, on the northern coast of Spain. Before joining Cardiff, I taught at the universities of Leeds and York. I studied History at undergraduate level at the University of Oviedo. I then obtained an MA in Race & Resistance and a PhD in Spanish and Atlantic History at the University of Leeds, under the supervision of Prof. Manuel Barcia and Dr. Gregorio Alonso. I was awarded an AHRC-WRoCAH Doctoral Studentship.

Between 2010 and 2012, I worked as PA for the online magazine Periodismo Humano under the direction of the Pulitzer Prize winner Javier Bauluz. Periodismo Humano focuses on human rights violations with a particular interest in Spanish-speaking countries. In 2013, I was appointed by Ambassador Alan D. Solomont as a member of the US Embassy Youth Council of Spain at the United States Embassy in Madrid and continued serving under the mandate of Ambassador James Costos. At Leeds, I served as Vice-President of PILAS, the postgraduate affiliate of the Society for Latin American Studies (SLAS), and co-organised the PILAS Annual Conference 2017, which brought together more than 100 delegates from 12 different countries. More recently, I co-organised the research conference ‘Comparative Abolition in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans’ at the University of Leeds in partnership with the Afro-Latin Research Institute at Harvard University. I have also worked as an external reviewer for the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), collaborated as PhD tutor with the British educational charity The Brilliant Club.











During the academic year 2020/2021, I teach in the following modules:

My first monograph, In the Blood of Our Brothers, will be published as part of the prestigious ‘Atlantic Crossings’ series, by the University of Alabama Press in 2021. In my book, I analyse how anti-slavery ideas were shaped, transformed and developed in the Spanish Empire and explored the complexity of abolitionist discourses in Spain’s public life from the beginning of the nineteenth century to the end of the transatlantic slave trade. I have published several articles and book reviews, in English and Spanish, and I have recently co-edited a special issue for the journal Atlantic Studies: Global Currents on comparative abolition in the Atlantic and Indian oceans. I have also been commissioned by the journal European History Quarterly to direct a special issue on ‘European Black History and Slavery,’ which will be published in 2021. Since 2018, I co-direct the interdisciplinary research group ‘Blood and Radical Politics,’ and, in February 2020, I participated in the foundation of the ‘Antislavery Arts and Heritage Network’ at Cardiff University. 

Together with the publication of my first book, my next major research project is entitled 'Black Soldiers of the Caribbean: Race, Slavery and Radical Politics.' It aims to define the liberal uprising of 1836 in Santiago de Cuba as a fundamental episode in the history of revolutions of the Atlantic World and evaluate the motivations, fears and aspirations of the black soldiers who participated in this failed attempt to establish a representative government in colonial Cuba. This project will provide a novel and comprehensive analysis of the role that Black soldiers played in the construction of radical politics across the Caribbean region.

I have been invited to speak at various universities and research centres, including the Centro de Altos Estudios Fernando Ortiz of the University of Havana, the Latin American Centre of the University of Oxford, the Centre de reserche d’histoire de l’Amerique Latine at du monde ibérique at the University of Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne and the Research Centre of Historia Constitucional de España (ICOES) in Madrid, among others. I have acted as a reviewer for the academic journals Atlantic Studies: Global Currents, The Journal of African History, The Journal of Iberian and Latin American Studies and the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of African History.


Enquiries in the following topic areas are particularly welcome: 

  • History of Spain's Atlantic Empire (from conquest to colony)
  • History of slavery and the slave trade
  • History of Spanish American Wars of Independence
  • History of piracy and navigation in the Caribbean
  • Military history of the Caribbean (until 1889)
  • History of diplomacy and espionage in the Atlantic World
  • History of crime and punishment in Latin America and Spain
  • Cultural studies and history of memory and legacies of slavery in the Atlantic World (including racism and white-supremacism)