Jeanette Favrot Peterson

Jeanette Favrot Peterson
Research Professor and Professor Emeritus


Precolumbian and Colonial Latin American art, Marian imagery, Early Modern Spain.


B.A. Wellesley College
M.A. Columbia University
Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles


In the field of Precolumbian and colonial Latin America, Jeanette Favrot Peterson's research interests include the intersection of European-indigenous visual culture, as seen in the hybridity of sixteenth-century mendicant murals and pictorial manuscripts, and the trans-Atlantic transmission of Marian devotions. Her 1993 study of Mexican wall painting, The Paradise Garden Murals of Malinalco won the national Charles Rufus Morey book award in History of Art; now out as a paperback, the book will appear in 2015 in a second, revised Spanish edition, Mexico. Her interests in theories of visuality and color perception inspired a co-edited volume, Seeing Across Cultures: Visuality in the Early Modern Period, (2012) in which she has a chapter on the Black Christs. Her most recent book, Visualizing Guadalupe (2014), follows the trajectory of several Guadalupe devotions, from the 12th-century Spanish Black Madonna in Extremadura, Spain, to the well-known Mexican Virgin of Guadalupe. Themes include the symbolic and racial implications of blackness; the reproducibility of the sacred in simulacra; and the ways the indigenous constituency was complicit in shaping civic-religious spectacles dedicated to Guadalupe. Currently, she is investigating the role of rhetoric in the “three texts” within Bernardino de Sahagún’s encyclopedic Florentine Codex (1575-78).


Jeanette Favrot Peterson, The Paradise Garden Murals of Malinalco: Utopia and Empire in Sixteenth-Century Mexico (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1993)