Dr Tobias Rupprecht
Lecturer in Latin American/Caribbean History
My research deals mostly with contacts between the Second and Third Worlds during the Cold War and its aftermath, the role of culture and religion in international relations, and the role of both Latin America and Russia in the global history of the late 20th century. I have recently published a book, with Cambridge University Press, which explores Latin American encounters with the Soviet Union and the ways in which arts and culture shaped how people made sense of the Global Cold War. In a follow up project, I am currently examining the impact of Chilean economic reforms under the military dictatorship on the transformation of Eastern European states around 1989.
My research addresses the global history of the late 20th century. I am especially interested in the political, cultural and economic history of modern Latin America and Eastern Europe, and the links between the two world regions. I have recently published a book with Cambridge University Press, which explores Latin American encounters with the Soviet Union and the ways in which arts and culture shaped the way people on both sides made sense of the Global Cold War. In other projects, I have re-examined Brazil’s role in the Cold War under populist and military rule, and I have written a number of other articles - published mostly in such exotic languages as German, Russian, Spanish and Italian - on Soviet foreign policy in the Third World, socialist internationalism, Latin American revolutionary folklore, the West European New Left, and Soviet avantgard art and architecture.
I have lately developed an interest in the transition from dictatorship to democracy in the 1980s and 1990s, in the mutual perception and inspiration of actors in Eastern Europe and Latin America, and in the role of ("neo-") liberal economists in this process. This project will address how so-called ‘semi-peripheries’ of the Cold War influenced each other in ways that historicise the contemporary rise of the so-called ‘authoritarian capitalist’ model. I have published research on how the Chilean neo-liberal model, and an ideialised image of General Pinochet, have provided a model for transition and political organisation in the Soviet Union/Russia. I am involved in a British-French project that examines how Eastern European and Latin American post-dictatorial societies tried to come to terms with their authoritarian past in the 1990s. And I will expand my research on the role of transnationally connected economists in the socialist world and during its disintegration.
I am happy to supervise Bachelor, Master and PhD students who want to specialise in modern Latin American, Eastern European, German or Russian/Soviet history as well as the history of (neo-)liberalism and (state) socialism.
External impact and engagement
Having considered a career in journalism, I was editor of a student magazine, and I have kept writing for newspapers and journals since. My feature articles, mostly on issues concerning contemporary Latin America and Russia, appeared, among others, in Le Monde Diplomatique, Neue Zürcher Zeitung and tageszeitung.
I was a consultant to the Russian pavillion at the Venice Biennale of architecture in 2014, which presented many international legacies of Soviet architecture, including in Chile and Cuba.
I alternately teach an Option module on the history of Latin America in the 20th century, and a Special Subject module on the history of Chile under Allende and Pinochet.
I studied Modern History, Art History and Comparative Literature in Salamanca and Tübingen, where I was awarded a Magister degree in 2007. Interrupted by research stays at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá and at the German Historical Institute in Moscow, I lived in Italy after that and wrote my PhD dissertation at the European University Institute in Florence, where I defended my thesis in 2012. After postdoc and teaching positions at FU Berlin and the University of Aarhus/Denmark, I have come to Exeter in January 2015. In early 2016, I was a guest professor at the Catholic University in Santiago de Chile.