Carina Johnson

Professor of History

On Sabbatical Spring 2022

With Pitzer Since: 2002
Field Group: History
Campus Address: Bernard 221
Phone: 909.607.3696
Campus Email:
Office Hours: Mondays 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm, Tuesdays 1:00pm – 3:00 pm, and by appointment

Educational Background

PhD, University of California, Berkeley, History
MA, University of California, Berkeley, History
BA, Yale College, summa cum laude, Archeological Studies and History

Research Interests

Professor Johnson’s research is closely related to the courses that she offers. Her current research focuses on cross-cultural encounters, proto-ethnography, memory, and the experience of violence in the sixteenth-century Habsburg Empire. She is also interested in questions of material and visual culture, religious and cultural identities, and theorizing colonialism in the early modern era. This work has been supported by grants from the Institute for Advanced Study (Princeton), the American Academy in Berlin (Nina Maria Gorrissen Fellowship), John Carter Brown Library (NEH Fellowship), the Huntington Library (Barbara S. Thom Fellowship), the Graves Foundation (ACLS Award for Outstanding Teaching), the Fulbright Program (Austria), and the Woodrow Wilson Institute (Postdoctoral Humanities Fellowship at Northwestern University).

Recent Courses

The World Since 1492 (HIST/ANTH11) with Professors O’Rourke and Segal

Things (ARHI186T) with Professor Anthes

Travel and Encounter, 1200-1800 (HIST64)

The Sixteenth-Century Problem with Profit (HIST73)

Queering the Medieval??Holiness, Heresy, and the Body (HIST74), cross-listed with GFS

Empire and Sexuality: Gender, Nations, British and French Colonialism (HIST134), cross-listed with GFS, IDAAS

Hybrid Identities: Spain, Spanish America, and the Philippines (HIST170), cross-listed with RLST

Religion, Violence, and Tolerance, 1450-1650 (HIST173), cross-listed with RLST

Magic, Heresy, and Gender in the Transatlantic World, 1400-1700 (HIST175), cross-listed with GFS, IIS, RLST

Information Revolutions x.0 and z.0: the Printing Press and the Internet (HIST/POST185), with Professor Herrera

The Seminar in History (HIST197)

Selected Publications


Archeologies of Confession: Writing the German Reformation, 1517-2017, with co-editors David M. Luebke, Marjorie E. Plummer, and Jesse Spohnholz. New York: Berghahn Press, 2017.

Cultural Hierarchy in Sixteenth-Century Europe: the Ottomans and Aztecs. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2011(hb) and 2014 (pb).


“Putting Europe in Its Place: Material Traces, Interdisciplinarity, and the Recuperation of the Early Modern Extra-European Subject,” co-authored with Catherine Molineux, Radical History Review 130 (2018): 62-99.

“Heritable Identity Markers, Nations, and Physiognomy,” in William Caferro, ed., The Routledge History of the Renaissance. London: Routledge Press, 2017.

“Imperial Succession and Mirrors of Tyranny in the Houses of Habsburg and Osman,”?in Barbara Fuchs and Emily Weissbourd, eds., Rivalry and Rhetoric in the Mediterranean. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2015.

“Forum: Globalizing Early Modern German History,” German History, vol. 31, no. 3 (September 2013).? With Renate Dürr, R. Po-Chia Hsia, Ulrike Strasser and Merry Wiesner-Hanks.

“Native Americans in Europe,” in Trevor Burnard, ed., Oxford Bibliographies Online: Atlantic History, September 2013.

“Aztec Regalia and the Reformation of Display,” in Daniela Bleichmar and Peter C. Mancall, eds., Collecting Across Cultures: Material Exchanges in the Early Modern Atlantic World. Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2011.

“Stone Gods and Counter-Reformation Knowledges,” in Pamela H. Smith and Benjamin Schmidt, eds. Making Knowledge in Early Modern Europe : Practices, Objects, and Texts, 1400-1800. Chicago: Chicago University Press, 2008.

“Some Peculiarities of Empire in the Early Modern Era,” in Politics and Reformations: Communities, Polities, Nations, and Empires: Essays in Honor of Thomas A. Brady, Jr. Boston: Brill, 2007.

“Idolatrous Cultures and the Practice of Religion,” The Journal of the History of Ideas, vol.67, no. 4 (2006).

Page last updated on November 12, 2021