Cindy Forster

Professor of History
Chair, Department of History

Office Address: Balch 308
Office Phone: (909) 607-2807
Cindy Forster

Academic History

  • B.A. Brown University (Phi Beta Kappa, Magna cum Laude)
  • M.A, Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley (various research awards)

Areas of Expertise

Race, ethnicity, class, and gender; politics from majority perspectives; oral history as the emergence of new evidence as well as critiques of dominant history; archival practices that draw closer to histories of workers and peasants; Guatemala; Indigenous and African protagonism in national histories in Bolivia, Haiti, Colombia, Honduras, Venezuela, and southern Mexico.

Selected Research and Publications


  • Completed and awaiting print publication by Fundación Editorial 'El perro y la rana', Caracas, Venezuela, "Para qué me voy a entregar" — Testimonios de tierras indígenas sobre la revolución guatemalteca, 2017
  • La Revolución Indígena y Campesina en Guatemala, 1970 a 2000: "Ver un día que nuestra raza maya fuera levantada", Guatemala, Editorial Universitaria, USAC, 2012
  • The Time of Freedom: Campesino Workers in Guatemala's October Revolution, University of Pittsburgh Press, 2001

Book manuscript completed:

  • National histories told mostly through oral histories of campesino and working-class members of movements for social justice in Haiti, Venezuela, Colombia, Bolivia, Honduras, Guatemala, and southern Mexico. The chapter on each country has a subplot that addresses the twists and turns of U.S. aggression against grassroots African and Indigenous movements.

Book manuscripts in progress:

  • Bolivia: Oral histories of past and present organizing; the second half of the book is an anatomy of the 2019 coup d'etat via testimonies
  • Guatemala: The Indigenous in struggle as told by those who knew Comandante Juan Tuyuc, assassinated in 2014

Selected Chapters and Articles:

  • “Bolivia for the Record: The People Speak,” People’s Dispatch, Parts I & II 2021
  • “Bolivia, La unidad africana e indígena a través de fronteras: una entrevista con Pambana Bassett”, Resumen Latinoamericano, 2020
  • "Bolivia's Indigenous Masses Have Changed the Course of History", Jacobin Magazine, December 2020
  • "Bolivia's Interim President Is Waging A War on Women", People's Dispatch, Parts I & II, 2020
  • “Venezuela en 2017: Entre la comuna y la recurrente práctica de la derecha de la quema de gente pobre, jóvenes negros para ser preciso”, albatv, Canal en Movimiento, 2018
  • “El pueblo de Haití en el marco de la patria grande: ‘Tantas veces me mataron’”, albatv, Canal en Movimiento, 2015
  • “Los golpes de junio, 2012, albedrí, Guatemala, 2012 (coup d'etats in Paraguay, Honduras, Guatemala, Bolivia)
  • "Not in All of America Can There Be Found a Country as Democratic as This One": Che and Revolution in Guatemala, in Che's Travels: The Making of a Revolutionary in 1950s Latin America, edited by Paulo Drinot, Duke University Press, 2010
  • "The Macondo of Guatemala": Banana Workers and National Revolution in Tiquisate, 1944 to 1953, in Banana Wars: Power, Production and History in the Americas, edited by Steve Striffler and Mark Moberg, Duke University Press, 2003
  • "Violent and Violated Women: Justice and Gender in Rural Guatemala, 1936-1956," in Journal of Women's History 11:3 (1999)
  • “… San Marcos Coffee Workers and the Radicalization of the Guatemalan National Revolution, 1944-1954” in Radical History Review, 1994, Issue 58

Recent invited manuscript and article reviews: Nicaragua, Guatemala, Chiapas in Mexico

Courses Taught

  • Haiti and Colombia: Maroon Nations and Paramilitary States
  • Gender and Testimony in Latin America and the Caribbean
  • Revolution: Cuba, Bolivia, Venezuela
  • Americas: Race, Gender and Organizing
  • Zapatistas / Mayan Rebels
  • History Proseminar: Decolonizing History

Office Locator