Nigro, Jenna
Assistant Professor - Modern Europe
CB 303G
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Last Updated: 10/24/18 -


Jenna Nigro is a historian of modern France and Senegal. Her research and teaching focus on the history of global connections, exchanges, and power relations, and in particular on modern European imperialism. Her current book project is a study of French experimentation with various colonial practices in Senegal from 1763 to 1870. 

Professor Nigro teaches courses in world history, modern European history, and African history and serves as the faculty advisor for UVU's History Club. 



Ph.D., History, University of Illinois at Chicago, 2014

           Dissertation: “Colonial Logics: Agricultural, Commercial, & Moral Experiments in the Making of
                     French Senegal, 1763-1870”
            Concentration: Encounters, Ethnographies, and Empires
            Major Field: Modern Europe
            Minor Fields: Modern Africa, Modern France, World History

M.A., French Studies, New York University, 2006

B.A., History and French, Allegheny College, 2005


Courses Taught

Please check the online schedule of classes for Professor Nigro's upcoming courses.

HIST 151G: World History 1500 to the Present

HIST 3010: The Historian's Craft

HIST 3030: Introduction to African History

HIST 3170: Absolutism, Enlightenment, and Revolution: Europe from 1600 to 1815

HIST 3180: Nineteenth-Century Europe

HIST 3190: Twentieth-Century Europe

HIST 4980 and 4990: Senior Thesis


Past Special Topics Courses:

HIST 320R: The French Revolution and Napoleon

HIST 420R: European Empires and Decolonization

HIST 420R: The History of Human Rights and Humanitarianism


Recent Presentations

“‘Your Huddled Masses Yearning to Breathe Free’: France, the U.S., and the Question of Liberty in the 1800s,” Southern Utah University, Cedar City, UT, March 2017

 Roundtable participant, “Colonial Regime Change in the History of the French Empire,” Western Society for French History Conference, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, November 2016

 “Between Slavery and Forced Labor: 'Engagés à temps' in Senegal, 1817-1848,” French Colonial Historical Society Conference, Ottawa, May 2016

 “The Black Nova Scotians: Slavery, Freedom, and Canada’s Global History,” Global Spotlight: Canada Lecture, Utah Valley University, Orem, UT, February 2016

 “Trading Rules: Commerce and the Gum Trade in French Senegal, 1830-1860,” Western Society for French History Conference, Chicago, IL, November 2015 (organized panel “Creating and Defining the French Empire across Borders in the Nineteenth Century”)

“French primacy, French prowess: references to British and Portuguese imperialism in early nineteenth-century accounts of the French presence in West Africa,” Politics of Colonial Comparison Workshop, All Souls College, Oxford, UK, September 2014

 “Interior Motives: Spiritan Missionaries, Plantations, and Salvation in Senegal, 1845-1872,” American Society for Church History Winter Meeting, Washington, D.C., January 2014

 “Civilizing Without a Mission: The Meanings of Civilization in French Senegal, 1820-1870,” Western Society for French History Conference, Atlanta, GA, October 2013

 “Missionaries, Senegalese Clergy, and Education in Saint-Louis and Gorée, 1830s-1860s,” African Studies Association Conference, Philadelphia, November 2012

“From Colony to comptoir? Science and Trade in French Exploratory Missions in Senegal, circa 1817-1848,” French Colonial Historical Society Conference, New Orleans, June 2012