Myrna Santiago

Myrna Santiago


Professional Overview: 

Professor, History Department

Coordinator, Women's and Gender Studies

Environmental Studies Affiliate

School of Liberal Arts » Women's and Gender Studies
School of Liberal Arts » History
School of Science » Environmental and Earth Science
SMC Email Address: 
Contact Information: 

Galileo Hall - 314

Phone: 4606


  • Ph.D. History, University of California, Berkeley, 1997
  • M.A. History, University of California, Berkeley, 1992
  • B.A. Latin American Studies, Princeton University, 1982

Professional Experience

Professional Experience:

  • Professor - Saint Mary's College (1998 - Present)

Courses Taught

Recently Taught:

  • Historical Interpretation: The Problem of 1492 (The Conquest)
  • On the Global History of Sexuality
  • Disasters in Latin American History
  • Revolution! Latin America and the Search for the Common Good
  • The Drug Trade in US-Latin America Relations
  • The Sandinista Revolution in Nicaragua: Problems and Issues
  • Women in Latin American History: Biography, Memoir, and Testimony

Regularly Taught:

  • Latin American History
  • World History



  • Chair, History Department (July 01, 2010 - July 2018)
  • Director, Women's Studies (July 01, 2005 - July 01, 2009)


"Nicaragua and the Battle over Memory and History," presented at the Center for Latin American Studies, University of California, Berkeley, November 1, 2018




  • Myrna Santiago. 2018. "Extraction Stories: Workers, Communities and Nature in the Mining and Oil Industries."  In New Environmental Histories of Latin America and the Caribbean, edited by John Soluri, Claudia Leal, and José Augusto Padua (Munich:  The Rachel Carson Center, 2018)


  • Myrna Santiago. 2017. “La reforma energética y la ecología del petróleo: Lecciones desde la historia.” In Efectos y Dinámicas Territoriales del Petróleo en México, edited by Martín Checa Artasu and Regina Hernández Melgar (Mexico City: Instituto José María Luis Mora).


  • Myrna Santiago. 2016. “Oil and Environment in Mexico,” Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Latin American Environmental History (Oxford: Oxford University Press).


  • Myrna Santiago. 2015. "Mexico’s Energy Reform:  National Coffers, Local Consequences” ReVista the Harvard Review of Latin America, Summer: 16-19.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2014. "The Promise and Perils of Nationalization:  The Case of the Mexican Oil Industry.” In Resources, Empire, and Labour:  Crises, Lessons & Alternatives, edited by David    Leadbeater (Halifax & Winnipeg: Fernwood Publishing): 216-228.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2013. "Tampico, Mexico: The Rise and Decline of an Energy Metropolis.” In Energy Capitals:  Local Impact, Global Influence, edited by Joe Pratt and Marty Melosi (Pittsburg: University of Pittsburg Press): 147-158. 


  • Myrna Santiago. 2013.  "Extracting Histories: Mining, Workers, and Environment." Rachel Carson Center, Perspectives 7:81-88.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2013. "Cocaine in United States History". In Alcohol and Drugs in North America: A Historical Encyclopedia. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2012. "Culture Clash: Foreign Oil and Indigenous People in Northern Veracruz, Mexico, 1900-1921". Journal of American History 99 (1): 62-71.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2012.  "Work, Home, and Natural Environments: Health and Safety in the Mexican Oil Industry, 1900-1938". In Dangerous Trade: Histories of Industrial Hazard Across a Globalizing World, edited by Christopher Sellers and Joseph Melling (Philadelphia: Temple University Press): 33-46.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2012. "Class and Nature in the Oil Industry of Northern Veracruz, 1900-1938". In A Land Between Waters: Environmental Histories of Modern Mexico, edited by Christopher Boyer (Tucson: University of Arizona Press): 173-191.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2011. "The Huasteca Rainforest: An Environmental History". Latin American Research Review 46: 32-54.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2009. "Women of the Mexican Oil Fields: Class, Nationality, Economy, Culture, 1900-1938". Journal of Women's History 21(1): 89-112.
  • Myrna Santiago. 2007. The Ecology of Oil: Environment, Labor, and the Mexican Revolution, 1900-1938 (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press).
  • Myrna Santiago. 2002. "De 'paraiso' a 'tierra baldia': ambiente y extraccion petrolera en la Huasteca veracruzana, 1908-1921". In El siglo XIX en las Huastecas, edited by Antonio Escobar Ohmstede & Luz Carregha Lamadrid (Mexico City: CIESAS): 321-347.
  • Myrna Santiago. 1988. "Rejecting Progress in Paradise: Huastecs, the Environment, and the Oil Industry in Veracruz, Mexico, 1900-1935". Environmental History 3 (2): 169-188.

Active Research Projects

Researching the history of the 1972 earthquake that destroyed the city of Managua, Nicaragua


Honors, Awards & Grants

  • Outstanding Scholar Award, 2016-2017 - Saint Mary's College     
  • Distinguished Professor Award, 2013-2014 - Mexican Academy of Sciences 
  • Professor of the Year, 2013-2014 - Saint Mary's College of California 
  • Elinor Melville Book Prize - Conference on Latin American History, 2008,
    Best Book on Latin American Environmental History: "The Ecology of Oil"
  • Bryce Wood Book Award - Latin American Studies Association, 2007,
    Outstanding Book on Latin America in the Social Sciences and the Humanities: "The Ecology of Oil"


Scholarly Interests: 


  • oil, labor, environment, earthquakes, disaster studies. 
Pedagogical Interests: 
  • Environmental History
  • Women's, Gender, and Sexuality History
  • Latin American Working Class History
  • US-Latin American Drug  Trade
  • JanTerm Travel Courses:  Cuba 2004, China 2008, Colombia 2011, China 2012, Cuba 2013, Western Europe 2015