Dr. Guillaume Candela

Dr. Guillaume Candela


I joined the University of Leeds as a Teaching Fellow in Colonial Latin American History in 2022, before which I have been a CLIR Postdoctoral Fellow at Brown University (Providence, USA) at the John Carter Brown Libray where I developed the digital project “Caribbean and Latin American Indigenous Languages at the JCB”. I took my BA and MPhil in Spanish and Latin American Studies at the Université Aix-Marseille in Aix-en-Provence. I studied for my PhD at the Université of Sorbonne-Nouvelle Paris III.

After completing my PhD, in 2017, I travelled, worked and lived in Paraguay as a Minister of Culture Counsellor of Paraguay. In 2019, I went to the US and join the John Carter Brown Library as a CLIR Postdoctoral Fellow highlighting the Caribbean and Latin American indigenous languages collection at the John Carter Brown Library.

The main goal of this initiative is to share digitized manuscripts and books partially or totally written in indigenous languages from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century and engage with indigenous peoples, scholars, and the widest possible public interested in this vast collection.

The project showcases over five hundred historical items written in more than thirty indigenous languages spoken across the Caribbean and Latin America, from Mesoamerica to Tierra del Fuego. Items are grouped by indigenous language and listed in chronological order.

This project also draws attention to the potential of digital tools for reconnecting bibliographic materials to the communities where they originated. In 2020, I start my UK experience as a Teacher at Aberystwyth University and in 2022, I was a Visiting Professor in History at the Université of Guyane in Cayenne. Since I start my BA, I have acquired international experience working and living in Latin America, the USA, France, Spain and the UK.

My first book, ‘Entre la pluma y la cruz – El clérigo Martín González y la desconocida historia de su defensa de los indios del Paraguay – Documentos inéditos (1543–1575)’, was published by Tiempo de Historia in 2018. In this book, I transcribed and studied the letters of Martín González, a priest who lived in Paraguay between 1542 and 1564, and who dedicated his life to the defence of Indigenous people from Spanish abuse. This book presents a new vision of the conquest of Paraguay, which has been long depicted in the historiography of the Rio de la Plata as an idyllic encounter.

I am a member of the editorial board of the ‘REVISTA ESTUDIOS PARAGUAYOS (RESPY)’. In 2021, I have co-edited a book, ‘El Libro de oro y su época : Historia, sociedad y patrimonio del Paraguay (1850-1890)’ published by Tiempo de Historia. This book is the result of an International Congress I co-organized in 2019 in Paraguay. 

Research interests

My main work studies the History and Culture of Indigenous Peoples in the Rio de la Plata during the conquest and colonisation period (16th-17th centuries). I also specialise in Digital Humanities in order to study ways to connect early colonial cultural materials with current Latin American Indigenous languages and cultural diversity.

My dissertation focuses on the colonization and on first evangelisation campaigns in Paraguay before the arrival of the Jesuits between 1537 and 1585.

My work analyses the actions and writings of secular and regular clergy during the conquest. I also examine the contact and the linguistic interaction between missionaries and Guarani natives to understand conversion techniques.

In my publications, I have explored different subjects such as Indigenous Studies; Women’s History; Colonialism and Missionary Linguistics; Religious Studies, and borderlands. In all these publications, I focus on understanding the impact of the conquest and colonisation on Indigenous People and Africans and Afro-Paraguayan using a multidisciplinary approach.

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD in Hispanic and Latin American Studies
  • MA in Hispanic and Latin American Studies
  • BA in Hispanic and Latin American Studies

Student education

I teach undergraduate modules on the social and cultural history of Early Modern Europe, Colonial Caribbean and Colonial Latin America, as well as contributing to other undergraduate and postgraduate modules within the School of History.