Portrait of JoAnna Poblete
  • Email
  • Degrees
    PhD, History, UCLA
    MA, History, UCLA
    BA, University of California, Davis
  • Research Interests
    Colonialism and empire, unincorporated territories, migration and labor, comparative ethnic studies, Asian-American and Pacific Islander studies, 20th-century United States, indigenous issues, environmental history, oral history, U.S. expansionism

JoAnna Poblete is associate professor of history at Claremont Graduate University. Her research interests connect studies of colonialism and empire, migration and labor, oral history, comparative ethnic studies, Asian-American and Pacific Islander studies, indigenous history, environmental history, identity, and 20th-century U.S. history.

Having received her PhD in history from UCLA, Poblete has taught at several academic institutions, including UNC Chapel Hill, University of Wyoming, and UCLA. At CGU, she has taught courses in oral history methodology, Pacific worlds, 20th-century US identities, 19th-century expansionism, comparative histories, and immigration, as well as environment and indigeneity.

Her recent book, Islanders in the Empire: Filipino and Puerto Rican Laborers in Hawai‘i, has been praised by many for its comprehensive study of US empire in the Pacific and the Caribbean. Of this book and of Poblete, Rick Bonus, a professor at the University of Washington, has written, “I know of no scholar who has tackled the histories of Filipino and Puerto Rican labor in Hawai’i in one cohesive and extensive volume, and with such intensity in its comparative scope.” For this work, Poblete received the Best Book Award in History from the Filipino Section of the Association for Asian American Studies in 2018.

Poblete will continue to examine the in-between spaces that U.S. imperialism imposes on colonized groups, specifically the history of fisheries and colonialism in her second book titled Balancing the Tides: Marine Practices in American Sāmoa, forthcoming through the University of Hawai’i Press. Her next major research project will study the history and impact of oil refining in the unincorporated territory of St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Islanders in the Empire: Filipino and Puerto Rican Laborers in Hawai‘i. The Asian American Experience Series. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2014.

“The S.S. Mongolia Incident: Medical Politics and Filipino Colonial Migration in Hawai’i.” Pacific Historical Review 82, no. 2 (2013): 248–78.

“Tenuous Colonial Leadership: Filipino and Puerto Rican local community ethnic mediators in Hawai‘i, 1900–1940.” In Transnational Crossroads: Remapping the Americas and the Pacific, edited by Camilla Fojas and Rudy Gueverra, Jr., 291–314. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press, 2012.

“Bridging Indigenous and Immigrant Struggles: A Case Study of American Sāmoa.” American Quarterly 62, no. 3 (2010): 501–22.

Intro to Oral History Methodology
Pacific Worlds
20th-Century US Identities: Third Spaces of Being
Environment & Indigeneity
Comparative Histories
19th-Century Expansionism
US Immigration
Global Histories