Professor Carla Gardina Pestana to Serve as Center & Clark Director in 2024-25

Published: July 11, 2024

We are pleased to announce that Professor Carla Gardina Pestana, Distinguished Professor and Joyce Appleby Endowed Chair of America in the World (Department of History), will serve as Director of the Center for 17th– & 18th-Century Studies and the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library for Academic Year 2024-25. Professor Pestana studies the seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Atlantic worlds, especially the English Atlantic; the Caribbean; and religion and empire. In addition to serving as the Director of the Center and Clark, Professor Pestana will hold the position of Clark Professor in 2024-25, along with Professor Gabriel de Avilez Rocha, Vasco da Gama Assistant Professor of History and Portuguese and Brazilian Studies, Brown University. Together they are organizing the annual Core Program, Early Global Caribbean.

Professor Pestana received her Ph.D. at UCLA in 1987 in early American history. Before joining UCLA’s faculty in 2012, she taught at The Ohio State University, Canterbury University in Christchurch, New Zealand, and Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Professor Pestana has published books on religion and empire in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, most notably Protestant Empire: Religion and the Making of the British Atlantic World (2009). On the subject of empire, she authored The English Atlantic in an Age of Revolution, 1640-1661 (2004) and The English Conquest of Jamaica: Oliver Cromwell’s Bid for Empire (2017). She is also the co-editor with Sharon V. Salinger of Inequality in Early America (1991) and a multi-volume collection of primary texts on early English engagement in the Caribbean, The Early English Caribbean, 1570-1700. Her most recent books are The World of Plymouth Plantation (2020) and, co-edited with Eliga Gould and Paul Mapp, volume 1 of the Cambridge History of America and the World, 1500-1820.

Please join us in welcoming Professor Pestana to this significant leadership role at the Center & Clark, and in thanking her for her willingness to contribute to UCLA and the Humanities in this capacity.

Bronwen Wilson, Professor of Art History and Edward W. Carter Chair in European Art, has served as Director of the UCLA Center for 17th– & 18th-Century Studies and the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library since Winter 2021. She has recently concluded her initial term as Director and is taking a long-overdue sabbatical for Academic Year 2024-25. We are most grateful to Professor Wilson for her many exemplary contributions to date and are thrilled to share that she will serve another term as Director effective July 1, 2025, through June 30, 2028.

Photo credit: Scarlett Freund