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Amelia Kiddle


Annual Fellow 2017-18


Amelia Kiddle is Associate Professor of History and Latin American Studies at the University of Calgary. She is the author of Mexico’s Relations with Latin America during the Cárdenas Era (University of New Mexico Press, 2016), and she has published articles on gender and diplomacy in the Journal of Latin American Studies and Mexican Studies/Estudios Mexicanos.


Research Activities: 

The Mexican Oil Expropriation of 1938 and the Roots of Resource Nationalism in Latin America

This project investigates the influence of the 1938 Mexican oil expropriation on resource nationalism in Latin American history. The expropriation became a touchstone, reverberating throughout the world, changing business practices, government policies, labour relations, and discourses of resource nationalism. Through qualitative historical analysis, we will investigate the history of resource nationalism in Latin America stemming from this critical event. Although the expropriation held multiple meanings for individuals, social groups, and governments throughout the region, it framed the transnational flow of ideas regarding resource nationalism and continues to influence Latin American petroleum policies into the present. The primary outcome will be a co-authored monograph to be published in both Spanish and English that will heighten awareness of the historical roots of contemporary energy issues. It is timely given that the government has now decided to end its oil monopoly, abandoning the country’s long history of sovereign control over the extraction of this national asset. Ironically, the Mexican government is now inviting the successors of the very companies that were expropriated in 1938 to cooperate in the development of Mexico’s natural resources. By studying the transnational history of the Mexican oil expropriation of 1938 we can begin to recognise the effects that the new landmark change in Mexican petroleum policy may have in the region.

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