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Nicolás Gómez Baeza

I am a Chilean historian PhD candidate. My personal backgrounds from Patagonia are strongly linked with my research interests that I started with my Master Degree at the Universidad de Santiago de Chile. Here, at the Department of History of the University of Warwick, my dissertation topic is about transnational trajectories of managers from the British world, and their practices in the discipline of labour in stations (ranches) and refrigeration sites of sheep farming industry in Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego. My supervisors are Dr. Camillia Cowling and Dr. Robert Flecther, and I am fully funded by ANID (“Agencia Nacional de Investigación y Desarrollo”) Chile, to develop my Doctoral studies.

My current research

The ongoing title of my research project is Gringos Duros: Transnational British managements of labour disciplines in sheep farming industry (Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego, 1837–1950 c.)”. In detail, it proposes a transnational analysis of management of labour disciplines, focussing in the influence that managers established to shape them within sheep farming industry at Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego from late-nineteenth to mid-twentieth century. Through the revision of local and British world sources from different actors, the main methodological approach is biographical, tracking cases of sheep farming managers’ practices, studying personal connectedness and transmissions from their backgrounds in mid-nineteenth century Britain and British Empire, to their local agencies and relationships in the mentioned Patagonian context.

Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego, in Southern Argentina and Chile, became increasingly integrated into globalized capitalism, especially from 1876 with the arrival of sheep from the Falkland Islands. Skilled workers, shepherds and managers arrived to the region mostly from different parts of Britain and the British Empire, majorly driving the regional stations (ranches/estancias) and refrigeration sites labour regimes. Therefore, by approaching to representative and different managerial experiences in the relationship and/or exertion of control over workers, this project firstly has the local historiographical intention to extend the understanding of the establishment of different British-world sheep farming labour disciplines in Patagonia, challenging homogenizing definitions of those practices.

My research adheres to Global Labour History efforts, studying relationships between employers and subaltern workers by analysing the shaping of Patagonian sheep farming labour disciplines into a bigger picture of influences and transmissions of know-hows. Here, it comprehends British power in South America through extended private forms of control, aiming to outspread the understanding of their “informal” incidence, specifically in the Patagonian sheep farming industry. More broadly, it is associated to a decolonial effort by highlighting imperial backgrounds and social makings in regional borderlands. Hence, it makes critical and diverse points of view about localized capitalist mechanisms and its consequences, situated in the broad context of unequal global commodity-based economic processes, where subaltern working classes under British managed labour regimes experienced different conditions and/or contradictions.

Interests

  • Global Labour History.
  • History of Commodity Frontiers.
  • History of Latin America, specially of Patagonia and other borderlands (19th-20th centuries).
  • History of British imperialism, settler colonialism and “informal empire” (19th-20th centuries).
  • Economic History of modern industrial and rural British metropolitan and colonial spaces.
  • Environmental History, specially grasslands.
  • Animal History, specially of the sheep.
  • History of migrations.
  • Decolonial agenda.
  • Micro-global History approaches.
  • Biographical approaches.
  • Public History.

Professional development

My first and significant work experience was in Santiago de Chile from 2011, as Teacher of History in different diverse secondary schools, following with some undergraduate teaching and tutoring. Between 2016 and 2019 I worked as research assistant with archival material in different projects, remarkably two with ongoing contributions through academic publications about history of colonization and indigenous population in Patagonia during 20th century (FONDECYT Nº 1181386 and FONDAP Nº 15150003). During 2018, I was awarded with a scholarship for a stay as a short-cut fellowship at the Bielefeld Graduate School of History and Sociology, Universität Bielefeld (Germany), where I was able to begin the formulation of a research project about labour disciplines in Patagonian sheep farming in a transnational perspective and discussing it with international academic staff.

My academic contributions are linked with the trajectory that I began with my MA thesis achieved in 2015, writing about labour disciplines in the biggest sheep farming company in that region: the "Sociedad Explotadora de Tierra del Fuego" in late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries. Since I was coursing that programme and later, I attended to expose my progress in different seminars and congress in Chilean universities. Abroad, in 2018, I participated in a symposium about Patagonia in regional, national and transnational perspectives in the 56º International Congress of Americanists in Salamanca, Spain. Finally, I also participated in publishing collaborations in books complied by academics in the Universidad de Santiago de Chile, linked with labour relationships in 19th and 20th centuries (2018) and migration processes from 19th century until the present days (2019).

At the moment, I am also part-time working in a project (FONDART 2021) called "Río Seco en el imaginario del estrecho de Magallanes: Una mirada hacia nuestro Patrimonio Industrial", with the Museo de Historia Natural de Río Seco (Natural History Museum of Río Seco). Here, I am helping in the collecting of unpublished material and memories from old workers and families about the old freezing works of Río Seco, a locality near the city of Punta Arenas (Chile). The aim of this project is to set up a museum exhibition in the near future, and to create a repository of new available sources for research.

Academic profile

  • January 2020-January 2024: PhD in History, University of Warwick.
  • March 2013-September 2015: MA in History with mention on History of Chile (“Magíster en Historia, mención Historia de Chile”), Universidad de Santiago de Chile.
  • March 2006-May 2011: BA in Education in History and Social Science (“Licenciado en Educación en Historia y Ciencias Sociales”) with Professional Tittle on State Teacher of History and Social Science (“Profesor de Estado en Historia y Ciencias Sociales”), Universidad de Santiago de Chile.

 

Scholarships-Awards

  • ANID (“Agencia Nacional de Investigación y Desarrollo”) Chile Doctoral Scholarship: “Becas Chile para Doctorado en el Extranjero, convocatoria 2019” (January 2020-December 2023).
  • Start-Up Programme at Bielefeld Graduate School in History and Sociology (BGHS), Universität Bielefeld, Germany: short-cut scholarship (April-July 2018). URL: https://www.uni-bielefeld.de/(en)/bghs/Personen/Fellows/startup_fellows.html

 

Academic publications

  • Gómez Baeza, Nicolás. “Vigilancia, represión y disciplina laboral en la Sociedad Explotadora de Tierra del Fuego (1910-1919)” [“Surveillance, repression and labor discipline in the Sociedad Explotadora of Tierra del Fuego (1910-1919)”]. Izquierdas, 49, enero 2020: 123-140. URL: http://www.izquierdas.cl/images/pdf/2020/n49/art08_123_140.pdf
  • Gómez Baeza, Nicolás. “Migración de trabajadores en la Sociedad Explotadora de Tierra del Fuego. Prácticas, representaciones y experiencias de una cultura empresarial transnacional, 1910-1919”. Palomera, A; Boric, L; Norambuena, C. Migraciones e integración. Camino recorrido y desafíos pendientes. Ril Editores, 2019: 193-216.
  • Gómez Baeza, Nicolás. “Disciplinamiento laboral ganadero y conflicto en Magallanes: la administración de la Sociedad Explotadora de Tierra del Fuego y los trabajadores (1893-1919).” Venegas, Hernán. Empresas, empresarios y trabajadores, Chile siglos XIX y XX.”. Departamento de Historia, Facultad de Humanidades, Universidad de Santiago de Chile, 2018: 17-54.
  • Gómez, Nicolás; Retamal, Felipe; Rivas, Javier. “El Lenguaje de los Desterrados en las Guerras de Independencia”. In: Revista de Historia Social y de las Mentalidades. Departamento de Historia, USACH. Volume 15, Nº 1, 2011: 165-186.

 

Conference and seminars presentations

  • “Labour relations on British managed “estancias” in Tierra del Fuego: isolated inlands, or sites of imperial capitalism?”. In: Inland Empires in the Modern World History Symposium. Rothermere American Institute. 22 and 23 July 2021. Oxford, United Kingdom.
  • “Administraciones británicas del mundo del trabajo en la ganadería ovina: comparación de particularidades y discusiones conceptuales (Patagonia y Tierra del Fuego, 1876-1950 c.)”. In: Congreso virtual LASA (Latin American Studies Association) 2021.
  • Warwick PG Podcast series. Department of History, University of Warwick. Coventry, United Kingdom. Participation in episode 3: "Latin America in Transnational Perspective." 10 June 2020. URL: https://soundcloud.com/user-627299331/latin-america-in-a-transnational-perspective
  • “Visiones sobre administradores británicos en la ganadería de Magallanes: Avances y reflexiones para historias del trabajo y el empresariado regional.” I Jornadas de Historia del Trabajo: Experiencias laborales en Chile Contempoeáneo. Universidad de Santiago de Chile. 28-29 November 2018. Santiago, Chile.
  • “Cultura Empresarial Imperialista y Transnacional: prácticas y visiones de la construcción británica de espacios de producción ganadera en el Territorio de Magallanes (1910-1930)”. In symposium “Entre lo regional, lo nacional y lo transnacional: la Patagonia en las practicas, imaginarios y representaciones de los Siglos XIX, XX y XXI”, chaired by Dr. Martha Ruffini and Dr. Mauricio Dimant. 56th International Congress of Americanists (ICA). Universidad de Salamanca. July 2018. Salamanca, Spain.
  • “La Sociedad Explotadora de Tierra del Fuego y los trabajadores: disciplinamiento y conflicto en Magallanes (1893-1919).” XXII Jornadas de Historia de Chile. Universidad Austral de Chile. 24-26 October 2017. Valdivia, Chile.
  • “Migración y control de trabajadores en la Sociedad Explotadora de Tierra del Fuego: conclusiones sobre prácticas disciplinantes de una cultura empresarial transnacional (Territorio de Magallanes, 1894-1919)”. XXIV Jornadas de Estudios Migratorios. Universidad de Santiago de Chile. 17-18 August 2017. Santiago, Chile.
  • “Disciplinamiento laboral en los inicios de la Sociedad Explotadora de Tierra del Fuego: conformación de la clase dominante y conflicto social de Magallanes hacia el siglo XX (1894-1910)”. XXI Jornadas de Historia de Chile. “(In) Seguridad, Estado y Transformaciones Sociales.” Universidad del Biobío. 4-6 November 2015. Chillán, Chile.
  • “Abundancia de brazos. Migración y conflicto en la prensa magallánica, 1914-1915”. XVII Jornadas de Historia Regional de Chile. “Identidades, desarrollo y conflictos: ¿Qué tienen que decir las Historias Regionales?” Universidad de Concepción. 20-23 October 2014. Concepción, Chile.

 

Public History contributions

Nicolás Gómez Baeza

Contact details

E-mail: nicolas.gomez-baeza@warwick.ac.uk / ngomezbaeza@gmail.com

Twitter: @NIGomezBaeza