Camilo Trumper


Camilo Trumper.

Camilo Trumper


Camilo Trumper



History of Latin America; Urban History


  • PhD, University of California, Berkley, 2008
  • MA, University of California, Berkley, 2003
  • BA, University of British Columbia, 2000

Current Research

 My first book, Ephemeral Histories: Public Art, Politics and the Struggle for the Street in Chile (Berkeley: The University of California Press, 2016), is a cultural history of political change in late twentieth-century Chile. Ephemeral Histories is a study of the myriad ways in which traditionally marginalized individuals claimed city spaces as a means of entering into political debates. It suggests that protests, marches, strikes, public art, street photography and documentary film were part of a broader attempt to challenge the limits of citizenship and the public sphere in post-war Chile. These often fleeting forms of urban and visual practice generated new ways of acting on and thinking about the city as a space of fluid democratic debate and a stage for creative political citizenship in democracy and dictatorship.

My second project builds on research conducted with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities. It takes up one of Ephemeral Histories most compelling subplots regarding urban politics in democracy and dictatorship, but pivots to explore childhood, schooling, and activism in Pinochet’s Chile. Tentatively titled “Dictatorship’s Children: Education, Repression and Protest among Youth in Chile,” this study places a granular investigation of young people’s response to bodily discipline and state terror at the center of a broader exploration of the textured experience of everyday life in dictatorship, focusing closely on the schoolhouse as a site of state-making, citizenship and association. My third is a hemispheric history of the Chilean port city of Valparaíso, Chile’s central seaport, in the context of a wider Pacific World from the mid 19th century California Gold Rush to the opening of the Panama Canal in the early 20th century.

Selected Publications


Ephemeral Histories: Public Art, Politics and the Struggle for the Street in Chile (Berkeley: The University of California Press, 2016)


“Social Violence, Political Conflict and Latin American Film: The Politics of Place in the ‘Cinema of Allende’.” Radical History Review. Special Issue: Taking Sides: The Role of Visual Culture in Situations of War, Occupation, and Resistance 106 (2010).

“The Politics of Public Space: Santiago de Chile’s Estadio Nacional Through a Historical Lens.” Brújula, 4, December 2006.

“Ephemeral Histories: Public Art and Political Process, Chile 1970-1973” in S. Nagy et al., Democracy in Chile: The Legacy of September 11, 1973, UK: Sussex Academic Press, 2005.  (Awarded the 2007 Middle Atlantic Council of Latin American Studies’ Arthur P. Whitaker prize for best book in Latin American studies.)


  • Best Book Award, Historia Reciente y Memoria Section, Latin American Studies Association, 2018
  • Marysa Navarro Best Book Prize, New England Council of Latin American Studies, 2017
  • Best Book Prize in the Humanities, Latin American Studies Association Southern Cone Studies Section, 2017
  • Murdo J. MacLeod Book Prize, Southern Historical Assocation, latin American and Caribbean Section (Honorable Mention), 2017
  • Latin American Studies Association Southern Cone Studies Section Book Prize for Ephemeral Histories, 2017