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Verónica Gutiérrez, M.F.A., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Latin American History, Department of History and Political Science
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 3134
Verónica A. Gutiérrez, MFA, Ph.D, joined the department in the Fall of 2012. The first Latin American specialist at APU, her training in Colonial Mexico, Mesoamerican Cultures, Medieval Castile, Franciscan Spirituality, and the Early Modern Catholic World landed her a position as an Internationalization Faculty Fellow in APU’s Center for Global Learning and Engagement. In that capacity she is working toward improving student experience in various study abroad and outreach programs, especially the Semester in Ecuador.

Gutiérrez’s research traces the transmission of Early Modern Mediterranean Catholicism to sixteenth-century Mexico and the consequent development of indigenous Christian identity, especially as influenced by the Franciscan Order. Her publications include “A Satellite Community in a Spanish City: The Barrio of Santiago Cholultecapan in Colonial Puebla de los Ángeles,” and “Quetzalcoatl’s Enlightened City: A Close Reading of Bernard Picart’s Engraving of Cholollan/Cholula,” for which she received the Hubert Herring Award from the Pacific Coast Council on Latin American Studies. Her book project, _Converting a Sacred City: Franciscan Re-Imagining of San Pedro Cholula, 1528-1648_, is a micro-history that places the friars’ appropriation of this pre-hispanic holy site into a larger Franciscan narrative, while also exploring the role of native Cholulteca in re-envisioning their city. Gutiérrez has received support from a variety of institutions and fellowships, including the Fulbright Program, the Ford Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, Spain’s Ministry of Culture, the Academy of American Franciscan History, and the Latin American Institute at UCLA. She has presented her research at various national and international conferences and has lectured at the San Gabriel Mission, the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, Our Neighborhood Homework House in Azusa, and for the Juan Bruce-Novoa Series on the Chicano/Latino Experience at APU.

In addition to her degrees in history, Gutiérrez holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction; pedagogically affected by her twelve years in creative writing classrooms, she infuses all of her history courses with creativity. Both she and her husband are avid CrossFitters who enjoy an active life near the beach with their infant daughter.


  • Ph.D., Colonial Mexican History, UCLA
  • C.Phil., Colonial Latin American History, UCLA
  • M.A., Latin American History, UCLA
  • M.F.A., Creative Nonfiction, Pennsylvania State University
  • B.A., Creative Writing, University of San Francisco


College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

  • History and Political Science


  • Early Modern Catholicism
    The Mendicant Church and the Origins of Mexican Catholicism
  • Latin American History
    Franciscan Evangelization of Native Peoples in 16th-Century Mexico
  • Mesoamerican Cultures
    Native Peoples in Colonial Mexico

Courses Taught

  • HIST 120 – World Civilizations to 1648
  • HIST 484 – Historical Themes
  • POLI 300 – Research and Writing