Heather Roller - Professor of History Skip Navigation

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Heather Roller

Heather Roller

Associate Professor of History; Director, Benton Scholars Program
History, 322 Alumni Hall
p 315-228-7563
Amazonian Routes book cover


BA 2002, Yale University
MA 2005, PhD 2010, Stanford University


Amazonia and Brazil; ethnohistory; indigenous history; borderlands; environmental health history

Publications and Works-in-Progress

Contact Strategies: A History of Independent Indians in Brazil (book manuscript in progress).

"Autonomous Indian Nations and Peacemaking in Colonial Brazil," in Borderlands of the Iberian World: Environments, Histories, Cultures, ed. Cynthia Radding and Danna Levin Rojo (Oxford: Oxford University Press, expected 2019).

“On the Verge of Total Extinction? From Guaikurú to Kadiwéu in Nineteenth-Century Brazil,” Ethnohistory 65:4 (October 2018): 647-670.

Amazonian Routes: Indigenous Mobility and Colonial Communities in Northern Brazil (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2014).

“River Guides, Geographical Informants, and Colonial Field Agents in the Portuguese Amazon,” Colonial Latin American Review 21:1 (April 2012), 101-126.

“Colonial Collecting Expeditions and the Pursuit of Opportunities in the Amazonian Sertão, c. 1750-1800,” The Americas 66:4 (April 2010), 435-467. [Em português:  “Expedições coloniais de coleta e a busca por oportunidades no sertão amazônico, c. 1750-1800,” Revista de História 168 (July 2013), 201-243.]


  • NEH Fellowship for Contact Strategies (2017-2018)
  • Roberto Reis Book Prize, Brazilian Studies Association (2015)
  • Howard Francis Cline Memorial Prize, Conference on Latin American History (2015)
  • ACLS Fellowship (2013-2014)
  • Warren Dean Prize, honorable mention, Conference on Latin American History (2011)
  • Tibesar Prize, Conference on Latin American History (2010)
  • Helen Hornbeck Tanner Award, American Society for Ethnohistory (2009)
  • Mabelle McLeod Lewis Dissertation Fellowship (2008-2009)
  • Fulbright-Hays Research Abroad Fellowship for Brazil (2006-2007)
  • Mellon Fellowship in Humanistic Studies (2003-2004)

Selected Courses

CORE 193: Brazil
FSEM 192: Ethnohistory of the Amazon
HIST 231: Resistance and Revolt in Latin America
HIST 322: Race and Ethnicity in Latin America
HIST 358: Conquest and Colony: Cultural Encounters in the New World
HIST 399: Reading Seminar on Toxic Exposure and Contamination
HIST 480: Seminar in Latin American History