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Peter Sigal, Professor of History and Director of Graduate Studies in the Program

Peter Sigal

The relationships between gender, sexuality, and colonialism have intrigued me since I began my first book on Maya sexuality. I recently completed a study on the interaction of writing and sexual representation in sixteenth and seventeenth-century Nahua societies--The Flower and the Scorpion: Sexuality and Ritual in Early Nahua Culture (Durham: Duke University Press, 2011); I am currently co-editing with Neil Whitehead a volume on “ethnopornography,” the relationship between the colonial and ethnographic gaze and sexuality throughout the world; and engaging in research on the position of the hyper-masculinized Aztec warrior in early modern literature from Europe and the Americas. I have moved from studying sexual desires in indigenous communities to examining the early modern cultural processes that created global concepts of modern sexuality, gender, masculinity, and femininity.

Contact Info:
Office Location:  234 Classroom Building, Durham, NC 27708
Office Phone:  (919) 684-3014
Email Address: send me a message

Teaching (Fall 2021):

  • HISTORY 370.01, AZTECS AND MAYANS Synopsis
    Class Bldg 240, TuTh 12:00 PM-01:15 PM
  • GSF 960S.01, INTERDISCIPLINRY DEBATES (TOP) Synopsis
    Smith Wrhs 177, W 01:45 PM-04:15 PM
Education:

Ph.D.University of California - Los Angeles1995
M.A.University of California - Los Angeles1992
B.A.Bucknell University1986
Specialties:

Comparative Colonial Studies
Gender
Military History
Medieval and Early Modern History
Global Transnational History
Cultural History
Global and Comparative
Latin America and the Caribbean
Research Interests:

The relationships between gender, sexuality, and colonialism have intrigued me since I began my first book on Maya sexuality. I recently completed a study on the interaction of writing and sexual representation in sixteenth and seventeenth-century Nahua societies--The Flower and the Scorpion: Sexuality and Ritual in Early Nahua Culture (Durham: Duke University Press, 2011); I am currently co-editing with Neil Whitehead a volume on “ethnopornography,” the relationship between the colonial and ethnographic gaze and sexuality throughout the world; and engaging in research on the position of the hyper-masculinized Aztec warrior in early modern literature from Europe and the Americas. I have moved from studying sexual desires in indigenous communities to examining the early modern cultural processes that created global concepts of modern sexuality, gender, masculinity, and femininity.

Areas of Interest:

Colonial Latin America
Indigenous Peoples of Latin America
The History of Sexuality

Keywords:

Anthropology • Cross-Cultural Comparison • Gender • Historiography • History, 16th Century • History, 17th Century • History, 18th Century • History, 19th Century • History, 20th Century • Internationality • Language • Latin America • Men's Health • queer theory • Queer Theory • Religion • Sexual Behavior • Sexuality • Social Change • Women's Health

Current Ph.D. Students  

  • Farren Yero  
  • Priya D. Shah  
  • Caroline Garriott  
Representative Publications   (More Publications)

  1. Sigal, P, The flower and the scorpion: Sexuality and ritual in early nahua culture, Latin America Otherwise (December, 2011), pp. 1-361, Duke University Press, ISBN 9780822351511 [ViewProduct.php]  [abs]
  2. Sigal, P, Imagining Cihuacoatl: Mexica Masculinity and Spanish Colonization, Gender & History, vol. 22 no. 3 (November, 2010), pp. 538-563, WILEY (Republished in Historicising Gender and Sexuality. Kevin P. Murphy and Jennifer M. Spear, eds. West Sussex: Wiley-Blackwell, 2011.) [doi]  [abs]
  3. Sigal, P, Latin America and the challenge of globalizing the history of sexuality., American Historical Review, vol. 114 no. 5 (December, 2009), pp. 1340-1353, Oxford University Press (OUP), ISSN 0002-8762 [20425925], [doi]
  4. Sigal, P, Queer Nahuatl: Sahagún's faggots and sodomites, lesbians and hermaphrodites, Ethnohistory, vol. 54 no. 1 (December, 2007), pp. 9-34, Duke University Press, ISSN 0014-1801 (Republished in Indigenous Religions. Steven Hunt, ed. London: Ashgate, 2010.) [Gateway.cgi], [doi]  [abs]
  5. Sigal, P, Sexual Encounters/Sexual Collisions: Alternative Sexualities in Colonial Mesoamerica, edited by Sigal, P; Chuchiak, J, Ethnohistory, vol. 54 no. 1 (January, 2007)
  6. Sigal, P, The Cuiloni, the Patlache, and the Abominable Sin: Homosexualities in Early Colonial Nahua Society, The Hispanic American Historical Review, vol. 85 no. 4 (November, 2005), pp. 555-593, Duke University Press, ISSN 0018-2168 [Gateway.cgi], [doi]
  7. Sigal, P, Infamous Desire: Male Homosexuality in Colonial Latin America (2003), University of Chicago Press [html]
  8. Sigal, P, To Cross the Sexual Borderlands: The History of Sexuality in the Americas, Radical History Review, vol. 82 (2002), pp. 171-185 [repository]
  9. Sigal, P, Gender, male homosexuality, and power in colonial Yucatán, Latin American Perspectives, vol. 29 no. 2 (January, 2002), pp. 24-40, SAGE Publications, ISSN 0094-582X [Gateway.cgi], [doi]  [abs]
  10. Sigal, P, From Moon Goddesses to Virgins: The Colonization of Yucatecan Maya Sexual Desire (2000), University of Texas Press [sigfro]


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