Matthew B. Karush

Matthew B. Karush

Matthew B. Karush


Modern Latin American history: twentieth-century Argentina, cultural history

Matt Karush received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1997. He teaches a broad range of undergraduate and graduate courses on modern Latin American history and has published extensively on labor politics and mass culture in Argentina. He is the author of three books and co-editor of a fourth, and he has published numerous book chapters and articles in leading journals including Past and Present and the Hispanic American Historical Review.

His most recent book, Musicians in Transit: Argentina and the Globalization of Popular Music (Duke University Press, 2017), examines the transnational careers of seven of the most influential Argentine musicians of the twentieth century. The book reveals the way these artists navigated the economic and ideological structures of the global music business, in the process producing new musical forms and new identities. The research for this book was supported by a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities. 

Since August 2015, Karush has served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Social History. Founded 50 years ago, the JSH is one of the nation's leading history journals.

Current Research

Following the publication of Musicians in Transit, Karush has continued to work on the political history of Argentine mass culture and on transnational cultural history more broadly. He is currently conducting research on the global music business of the 1920s and has begun work on a book-length cultural history of Argentina in the twentieth century.

Selected Publications

Musicians in Transit: Argentina and the Globalization of Popular Music (Durham: Duke University Press, 2017). Published in translation as Músicos en tránsito: La globalización de la música popular argentina (Buenos Aires: Siglo XXI, 2019).

Culture of Class: Radio and Cinema in the Making of a Divided Argentina, 1920-1946 (Durham: Duke University Press, 2012).  Published in translation as: Cultura de clase: Radio y cine en la creación de una Argentina dividida, 1920-1946 (Buenos Aires: Ariel Historia, 2013). 

The New Cultural History of Peronism: Power & Identity in Mid-Twentieth Century Argentina (Duke University Press, 2010) [edited with Oscar Chamosa]

Workers or Citizens: Democracy and Identity in Rosario, Argentina (1912-1930), Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2002.

Recent Articles and Chapters:

“Mixed Messages: Tango and Argentine Politics,” in Kristin Wendland and Kacey Link, eds., The Cambridge Companion to Tango, forthcoming

Co-authored with Sam Lebovic, “Global Forms, Contested Meanings: Mass Culture in the Interwar Period,” in Andrew Denning and Heidi Tworek, eds., The Interwar World (Routledge), forthcoming

“Juan Moreira y Leonardo Favio: el significado político de un gaucho rebelde en 1973,” in Política y cultura de masas en la Argentina en la segunda mitad del siglo XX (Buenos Aires: Ediciones UNGS, forthcoming).

“The Politics of Tango: A Response to Michael Denning’s Noise Uprising,” Journal of Popular Music Studies 31:4 (2019), 51-66.

“Música y nación en la Argentina posperonista,” Boletín del Insituto de Historia Argentina y Americana ‘Dr. Emilio Ravignani,’ 50 (2019), 198-222.

Collaborative Digital Project:

(with Michael O’Malley) Hearing the Americas, Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media, George Mason University, an exploration of the early decades of the recording industry (launched, August 2022). Funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities. 

Courses Taught

HIST 272: Intro to Modern Latin American History

HIST 364: Revolutions & Radical Politics in Latin America

HIST 367: History, Fiction & Film in Latin America

HIST 387: Topics in World History: Race & Nation in Latin America

HIST 499: Latin America in the Cold War

HIST 510: Approaches to Modern World History

HIST 525/615: Popular Music in the Americas


Recent Presentations

“‘Juan Moreira, Which Side Is He On?’ The Politics of a Gaucho Rebel in 1970s Argentina,” presented to the Conference of Latin American Historians, January 6, 2020.

“An Unwelcome Import: Rock and Nation in Post-Peronist Argentina,” keynote address,LACS University of Stony Brook Conferenceon Globalizing Latin America, held at Columbia University, New York City, April 21, 2018.

“The Music of Globalization: Gustavo Santaolalla and the Production of Latin Rock,” presented to the Latin American Studies Association, New York, May 27-30, 2016.

“The Sound of Latin America: Sandro and the Invention of Latin Pop,” presented to the Conference on Latin American History, New York, January 2-5, 2015.

“Beyond Fusion: Jazz in Astor Piazzolla’s New Tango,” presented to the Latin American Studies Association, Chicago, May 24, 2014.

“Argentines into Latins: The Transnational Jazz Histories of Lalo Schifrin and Gato Barbieri,” invited lecture at Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, BC, March 25, 2014.

Dissertations Supervised

John R. Garnett, “Wheat Man's Burden”: Wheat Rust, Trickle Down Agricultural Economics, and the Origins of the Green Revolution in Mexico (1842-1970) (2021)

Rwany Sibaja, ¡Animales! Civility, Disorder, and Class Tensions in Argentinean Football, 1955-1970 (2013)