Alejandro Quintana

Associate Professor
Ph.D., 2007, The Graduate Center of the City University of New York, Latin American HistoryM.A., 2004, Hunter College, CUNY, Global HistoryB.A., 1993, UPAEP, Puebla, Mexico, Architecture

Dr. Alejandro Quintana is an Associate Professor of History at St. John’s University, teaching Global and Latin American history. Dr. Quintana’s research interests include processes of modernization, globalization, post-colonialism, state formation, national identity, sovereignty, authoritarianism, revolutions, social movements, and democracy in Latin America.

He has written two monographs: Maximino Avila Camacho and the One-Party State (2011) and Pancho Villa: A Biography (2013). He is the editor and contributor to Lynn V. Foster’s A Brief History of Mexico (5th edition,2022) and A Brief History of Central America (3rd edition, 2024). He is currently working on a global history book project explaining the role of each part of the world in creating the modern world. 

He has also published numerous articles on Latin American history, including “Violence and Revolution in Latin America during the American Century,” and on World History, including “Archipelagos of Trade,” and “Migration, Diaspora, and Immigration in Modern World History.”

Prof. Quintana's pedagogical approach is based on the Writing Across the Curriculum movement. It uses various pedagogical techniques to help students understand course materials, enhance their reading and writing abilities, and improve critical thinking. 

May 2, 2015. Panel Organizer and Moderator at the Symposium World History Theory and Practice: Gender, Technology and Culture organized by St. John’s History Department.  Panel: “The Emergence of a Global Economic Culture.”

March 26-27. 2015. Symposium and Panel Organizer and Presenter, St. John's University’s CLACS Symposium: Looking Beyond the Fence: Politics, Power, and the Future of U.S. Immigration. Panel: US Immigrant Experiences. Presentation: “Need Them, Don’t Want Them: The History of Mexican Migration to the US.

January 3, 2015. Presenter, 129th American Historical Association Annual Meeting, CLAH, Purifying the Body Politics: Exile and Execution in Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Latin America, “Mier and Freedom of Thought in the Late New Spain and Early Mexico.

December 10, 2014, Columbia University Seminar on Law and Politics, “Mier: Political Thought and the Creation of a New Nation”

April 14, 2014. Presentation titled Interdisciplinary Research Roundtable—Tuning the Core as part of St. John's University’s CTL workshops.

April 5, 2014.  Presenter, Mier and Creole Intellectualism: the Emergence of new colonialism in post-independence Americas. The 42nd Annual National Association for Ethnic Studies Conference (NAES), Research as Ceremony: Decolonizing Ethnic Studies at Mills College Oakland.

March 17, 2014. Presentation at the Institute for Writing Studies in St. John's University on Low-Stakes Writing Assignments.

April 13, 2013. Presenter: Pancho Villa, Immigrants and Mexicanness: Changing Perceptions of Ethnicity in the Revolutionary Mexico. Presented at the annual conference of the National Association of Ethnic Studies, Fort Collins, CO.

April 4, 2013. Presenter: Maximino’s Personality Cult and the Creation of the post revolutionary Mexican State. University Seminar on Latin America, Columbia University, New York, NY.

March 21, 2013. Presenter: Fray Servando Teresa de Mier and Creole Liberalism, 1794-1821. Junior Faculty Research Colloquium, St. John’s University, Queens, NY.

January 9, 2011. Presenter at the panel Scoundrels, Politicos, and Prostitutes: Mythmaking in Latin American History. Paper titled: “Saint Maximino: The Mechanics of Personality Cult in Post-Revolutionary Mexico.” Presented at the 125th Annual American Historical Association (AHA) Meeting, Boston, MA.

September 14, 2010. Speaker: “Pancho Villa and the Legacy of the Mexican Revolution” as part of semester-long programming to celebrate the 100 and 200 year anniversaries of Mexican Independence and Revolution organized by the Latin American Studies and Women Studies, The University of Scranton, PA.

October 3, 2009. Chair and Presenter: Indigenous Movements in Latin America: Past, Present and Future. Paper titled: “Agrarian Reform or Coercion of Peasant Leaders? Cardenas and Avila Camacho in Puebla, Mexico (1937-1941).”  Presented at the 2009 annual meeting of the New England Council of Latin American Studies (NECLAS), Schenectady, NY.

November 7-8, 2008. Moderator: 1968 in the Global South. St. John’s University, New York, NY.

January 2007. Panel Organizer and Presenter: Interest Groups and the Consolidation of Authoritarian States: The Construction of Mexico’s Revolutionary Regime.  Paper titled: “With a Gun in His Hand: Maximino Ávila Camacho and the 1941 Challenge to Presidentialism.”  Presented at the 121st Annual American Historical Association (AHA) Meeting, Atlanta, GA.



Current project: A History of the Modern World: A Critic of the Human Obsession with Progress (ongoing) 

eBook: Updated, edited, and expanded by Alejandro Quintana. A Brief History of Central America. Lynn V. Foster. 3th edition. New York: Checkmark Books. (Forthcoming Summer 2024) 

eBook: Updated, edited, and expanded by Alejandro Quintana. A Brief History of Mexico. Lynn V. Foster. 5th edition. New York: Checkmark Books. June 2022

Pancho Villa: A Biography. Santa Barbara, CA: Greenwood, ABC-CLIO, LLC. 2013 

Maximino Ávila Camacho y el Estado unipartidista: La domesticación de caudillos y caciques en el México posrevolucionario (Traducido del Inglés). México: Educación y Cultura. 2012

Maximino Ávila Camacho and the One-Party State: The Taming of Caudillismo and Caciquismo in Post-Revolutionary Mexico. Lanham, MD:Lexington Books. 2011 

Other Publications: 

Book Review of “Bandits and Liberals, Rebels and Saints: Latin America since Independence by Alan Knight.” The Americas 80, no. 1 (January 2023): 167–168. 

Book Review of “Stormy Passage: Mexico from Colony to Republic, 1750–1850, by Eric Van Young.” The Americas 80, no. 2023 (n.d.): 357–358. 

Online Article. “Modern Latin America,” World History Project. Access fall 2022. 

Online Article. “The Spread of Communism,” World History Project, Access fall 2021. 

Online Article: Cycles of Collapse in Mesoamerica. Curriculum, OWHb 4.2.8. On World History (OWH), (summer 2019) 

Online Article (co-authored with Bennett Sherry). “The Mexican Revolution,” World History Project, WHP 7.1.8. Access: (spring 2020) 

e-Chapter. “Migration, Diaspora, and Immigration in Modern World History,” in Themes in Modern History. New York: Infobase (2020) 

Online Article. “Archipelago of Trade,” World History Project, OWhb 5.2.2. (Fall 2019) 

Online Article. “Cycles of Collapse in Mesoamerica,” World History Project, OWhb 4.2.8. (Fall 2019) 

Book Review of “ Orozco: The Life and Death of a Mexican Revolutionary”, by Raymond Caballero. New Mexico Historical Review, Volume 94, Number 1, (Winter 2019) 

Book Review of “Cuba's Revolution: Heroes, Martyrs, and Political Messiahs in Revolutionary Cuba, 1946–1958, by Lillian Guerra. The Americas. Vol. 76 / Issue 2 (April 2019) 

Online Article. “The Invention of National History and its Utility.” Trans. from Nueva Crónica, available in LinkedIn (2019) 

Book Review of “The Logic of Compromise in Mexico: How the Countryside Was Key to the Emergence of Authoritarianism,” By Gladys I. McCormick.The Americas. Vol. 75, pp. 441-442 (April 2017) 

Online Article: “La Invención de la Historia Nacional y su Utilidad,” Nueva Crónica. Lima, Perú. Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, No. 4, 30 pp. (2014) 

Online Article: “Students as Teachers: Transforming a History Course,” Morgan Zajkowski (co-author), Teaching and Learning Together in Higher Education, Vol. 13 (Fall 2014) 

Article: “Violence and Revolution in Latin America during the American Century,” History, Routledge, Vol. 40, No. 1: pp. 5-8 (2012) 

Undergraduate Courses:

  • HIS 1000C The Emergence of Global Society, 1500-Present (core curriculum)
  • HON 2200C The Emergence of Global Society (for Honor students)
  • HIS 2331 Colonial Latin American History (survey)
  • HIS 2332 Modern Latin American History (survey)
  • HIS 2001 Early Ancient Civilizations (survey)
  • HIS 2990 Seminar: Introduction to Historical Research
  • HIS 3150 History of Inter-American Relations
  • HIS 3301 History of Mexico
  • HIS 2340 Pre-Columbian Civilizations

Graduate Course:

  • HIS 220 Nationalism and Revolutions in Modern Latin America
  • HIS 702 Doctoral Seminar: War, Revolution and Peace
  • HIS 703 Doctoral Seminar: State and Society
  • HIS 719 The Contemporary World