Carnegie Mellon University

John Soluri

John Soluri

Associate Professor

  • Baker Hall 231 D
  • 412-268-7122


Professor Soluri's research and teaching explore the relationship between social and environmental change in Latin America. His book project Animals, Fibers, and the Transformation of Patagonia examines how the commodification of wild and domesticated animals for textiles transformed Patagonia. The University of Texas Press recently published a second edition (2021) of his award-winning book, Banana Cultures.

Other current projects include contributing and editing (with Regina Horta and Sandra Swart) a thematic volume on animal history for the journal Global Environments; an entry on biodiversity in twentieth-century South America for an on-line handbook published by the Maria Sibylla Merian Center for Advanced Latin American Studies; a Spanish- language chapter on guanaco hunting that will be published with collaborators in Argentina and Chile; and a chapter on the history of refrigeration and supermarkets in Argentina to appear in an interdisciplinary volume on material culture. He has also dabbled with script-writing for a TedEd youth and education video.

He is working with two graduate students: Francisco Javier Bonilla (sixth year), who is writing his dissertation on the history of water infrastructure in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Panama City; and Matthew Turetsky (second year), who is researching quinoa and agrodiversity in highland Perú.

Beyond the academy, Soluri chairs the Board of Directors of Building New Hope, a Pittsburgh- based not-for-profit that partners with Central Americans to promote youth education and sustainable agriculture.


Ph.D.: University of Michigan, 1998


  • “Fur Sealing and Unsettled Sovereignties.” In Crossing Empires: Taking U.S. History into Transimperial Terrain, edited by Kristin Hoganson and Jay Sexton. Duke University Press, 2020.
  • (with Claudia Leal and José Augusto Pádua) A Living Past: Environmental Histories of Modern Latin America. Berghahn Books, 2018; Spanish-language version: Un Pasado Vivo: Dos Siglos de Historia Ambiental Latinoamericana. Ediciones Fondo de Cultura Económica 2019.
  • “Home Cooking: Campesinos, Cuisine and Agrodiversity.” In Environmental Histories of Modern Latin America, edited by John Soluri, Claudia Leal, and José Augusto Pádua. Berghahn Books: 2018.
  •  “Limits: A Model T in Tierra del Fuego.” In Fueling Culture: 101 Words for Energy and Environment, edited by Imre Szeman, Jennifer Wenzel and Patricia Yaeger. Fordham University Press, 2016.
  • “Labor, Rematerialized: Putting Environments to Work in the Americas,” International Labor and Working-Class History, v. 85 (2014): 1-15.

Courses Taught

  • Food, Culture, and Power: A History of Eating
  • Coffee and Capitalism
  • Animal Planet: An Environmental History of People and Animals
  • Bananas, Baseball, and Borders: A History of Latin America-U.S. Relations
  • Advanced Seminar in Global Studies
  • Transnational Proseminar (Graduate)

Department Member Since: 1999