David Wheat

Position: Associate Professor
Region: Latin America & Caribbean, Africa, Iberian world

Office: 343 Old Horticulture
Email: dwheat@msu.edu

David Wheat is a historian of the early modern Iberian world with particular interests in the Caribbean, Atlantic Africa, slavery, cross-cultural exchange, and transregional connections during the 16th and 17th centuries.

His book Atlantic Africa and the Spanish Caribbean, 1570-1640 (OIEAHC / UNC Press, 2016) won the American Historical Association’s James A. Rawley Prize in Atlantic History and the Lapidus Center for the Historical Analysis of Transatlantic Slavery’s Harriet Tubman Prize. With Ida Altman, he edited The Spanish Caribbean and the Atlantic World in the Long Sixteenth Century (University of Nebraska Press, 2019), and a special issue of the journal Colonial Latin American Review titled “The Seventeenth-Century Spanish Caribbean as a Global Crossroads: Transimperial and Transregional Approaches” (2023). With Alex Borucki and David Eltis, he co-edited From the Galleons to the Highlands: Slave Trade Routes in the Spanish Americas (UNM Press, 2020). A fuller list of publications may be viewed here: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9396-4276.

His current book project, facilitated by an MSU Humanities & Arts Research Program award in Fall 2022 and a National Endowment for the Humanities Faculty Fellowship in 2023-2024, reconstructs the travels, social ties, and commercial contacts of an Afro-Caribbean widow and shipowner named Catalina de los Santos during the 1590s.