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Sarah Hines

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Sarah Hines

Sarah Hines
Assistant Professor

PhD University of California, Berkeley, 2015

MA University of California, Berkeley, 2009

MEd City University of New York, 2005

BA Barnard College, 2002


My research and teaching focus on Latin America and the Caribbean with an emphasis on histories of the environment, infrastructure, race and ethnicity, and social movements. My first book, Water for All: Community, Property, and Revolution in Modern Bolivia (University of California Press, 2022) is a history of social struggle over water access and hydraulic engineering in Bolivia from the late nineteenth century to the early twenty-first. It concentrates on the Cochabamba Valley, the site of intense conflict over water tenure, hydraulic infrastructure, and attempts to reform both over this period, especially after Bolivia’s 1952 revolution. Through analysis of a wide variety of sources, from agrarian reform case records to engineering studies to oral historical interviews and ethnographic observation, the book explores a century-long process of water dispossession, recovery, and redistribution, providing a new vantage point on indigenous community closure, national revolution, and the water wars of the early 2000s.

My research has received support from the American Council of Learned Societies, the Mellon Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, the American Historical Association, the Inter-American Foundation, the UC Berkeley Institute for International Studies, the Barnard College Alumnae Association, the University of Oklahoma’s College of Arts and Sciences, and the University of Oklahoma Research Council. The book evolved out of my 2015 dissertation, “Dividing the Waters: How Power, Property and Protest Transformed the Waterscape of Cochabamba, Bolivia, 1879–2000,” which won the UC Berkeley History Department Dissertation Prize and the New England Council of Latin American Studies Dissertation Prize.

A related article, “The Power and Ethics of Vernacular Modernism: The Misicuni Dam Project in Cochabamba, Bolivia, 1944–2017,” appeared in the Hispanic American Historical Review in May 2018.

I am now working on two new projects. The first, tentatively titled “The Art of Resistance: Dictatorship and Dissent in Cold War Bolivia,” is a social, political, and cultural history of oppositional politics in Bolivia under dictatorship (1964–1982). It explores the visions and projects for social transformation and democratic restoration of a wide array of artists, intellectuals, and activists who constrained and ultimately overthrew Bolivia’s dictatorships. These groups included tin miners, miners’ wives and children, peasants, indigenous communities, leftist political parties and organizations, guerrilla groups, Catholic priests and parishioners, factory workers, high school and university students and faculty, writers, artists like musicians and filmmakers, and exiles. Not only did these groups resist dictatorship, they also built radical and revolutionary projects and created new ways of living and relating to one another in spite of and through their resistance to authoritarian rule.

I am also beginning a new project on the environmental history of glaciers in the Andes. This research will explore the impacts of warming and glacial retreat on Andean society since the end of the Little Ice Age in the nineteenth century as well as people’s changing perceptions of, responses to, and interactions with glaciers in rural and urban communities that depend on glaciers for irrigation and drinking water, hydropower, and tourism.

Before graduate school, I taught social studies at Taft High School in the Bronx, NY (2002–2004), conducted research in Bolivia with as a Fulbright scholar (2006–2007), and lived in Bolivia from 2010 to 2015 while conducting research and writing my dissertation. Before joining the faculty at OU, I taught at Smith College (2015–2017) and the University of Maine at Machias (2017–2018).

Selected Publications

Books in Progress:

“Rivers of Ice: An Environmental History of Glaciers in the Andes”
“Grassroots Utopias: Dictatorship and Dissent in Cold War Bolivia”


Water for All: Revolution, Property, and Community in Twentieth-Century Bolivia. Oakland: University of California Press, 2022.

Articles in Progress:

Evismo: The Historical Roots of Indigenous Populism in Evo Morales’s Bolivia.” Bolivian Studies Journal, special edition: The Depth of the Bolivian Crisis: Roots, Scope, and Forecast of the Recent Political Crisis. (Undergoing peer review)


“The Power and Ethics of Vernacular Modernism: The Misicuni Dam Project in Cochabamba, Bolivia, 1944-2016.” Hispanic American Historical Review 98.2 (May 2018).

“¿Desarrollo Ecológico?: el proyecto Misicuni de Cochabamba, Bolivia.” Decursos: Revista de Ciencias Sociales 32 y 33 (July 2016).

“La construcción histórica de los usos y costumbres del agua en Cochabamba.” In Construcción de la Agenda Departamental del Agua de Cochabamba, 17-47. Cochabamba, Bolivia: Gobierno Departamental, 2013.

“After the Water War: Contemporary Political Culture in Cochabamba, Bolivia.” CLAS Working Paper Series. Berkeley, CA: Center for Latin American Studies, University of California, Berkeley, 2009.

Book Chapters in Progress:

“Dispossession and Redistribution: Social Struggle over Water in Bolivian History.” Natural Resources and Political Struggle: A Brief History of Bolivian Politics, edited by Rossana Barragán and Carmen Soliz. University of New Mexico Press. (Forthcoming)


HIST 2623 Modern Latin America, 1810-Present
HIST 3573 Art and Revolution in Twentieth-Century Latin America
HIST 3573 Cold War Latin America
HIST 3573 Latin American Refugees, 1970-Present
HIST 3573 Rigoberta Menchú’s Testimony
HIST 3573 Social Movements and Revolutions in Twentieth-Century Latin America
HIST 3690 Indigenous Politics in Modern Latin American History
HIST 4553 Latin American Environmental History
HIST 4543 Latin America in the Age of the Cuban Revolution
HIST 6300 Latin American Environmental History (graduate)
HIST 6300 Race, Nation, and the Environment in Latin American History (graduate)