Prof. Dr. Barbara Potthast

E-Mail: barbara.potthast(at)

Tel.: + 49 221 / 470 2446

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Universität zu Köln
Historisches Institut
Iberische und Lateinamerikanische Abteilung
50923 Köln

Cur­ri­cu­lum Vitae

Barbara Potthast studied History and Hispanistic in Cologne and did the first state examination for the teaching profession in History and Spanish. 1986 she finished her Phd at the Institute for Iberian and Latin-American History at the University of Cologne. She received her postdoctoral lecture qualification in 1992 and got in the same year, after a substitution of a professorship in Cologne, a chair at the University of Bielefeld. Since the winter semester 2000 she is professor at the University of Cologne and director of the Institute for Iberian and Latin-American History.

Barbara Potthast is coeditor of the almanac for the history of Latin America and several books series.

Since 1996 she is member of the directorate and vice-president of the interdisciplinary “German Association of Research about Latin America” (ADLAF), from 2004-2006 she was its president.

Barbara Potthast is reviewer for several institutions, amongst others for the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). Since 2008 she is furthermore reviewer in the expert council on history of the German Research Foundation (DFG).

Research profile

The research of Prof. Dr. Barbara Potthast focuses on family and gender history and the general social history of Latin America. Another focus lies on the history of photography in Latin America. Geographically, she works primarily on the history of Paraguay and Argentina and the Caribbean coast of Central America.

Current third-party funded projects

  • a) Research Network for Latin America „Ethnicity, Citizenship and Belonging” in collaboration with the universities of Cologne, Bielefeld and Bonn, sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)
  • b) Research project „Integration, Exclusion, Exception: National discourses of identity and societal self-perception in Chile and Argentina (1780-1950)”, sponsored by the German Research Foundation (DFG).
  • c) Research project „Visions and visualizations. South America in visual media of the 19th and 20th century”. Directors: Prof. Dr. Barbara Potthast und PD Dr. Jens Jäger, sponsored by the German Research Foundation (DFG).
  • d) Program „multilingual competence“ in the BA/MA-program Area Studies of Latin America, sponsored by the initiative “German and more” of the Volkswagen Foundation.



Besides from the University of Cologne, the following Universities participate in the Research Network: