Office: TMH 01
Phone: 512.245.8254 (no voicemail, email preferred)
PH.D. – The Johns Hopkins University
M.A. – The Johns Hopkins University &
Texas State University—San Marcos
B.A. – Texas State University—San Marcos
Recent Research Topics and/or research interests
The impact of the Brazilian political dictatorship on national memory and civic commemmoration
Latin American and Atlantic History. Areas of specialization within those larger fields: Independence-Era Latin America and Brazilian History.
Debra Law is a native Texan and Bobcat alumnus who earned her undergraduate degree and taught English and History in Austin-area high schools. During that initial time at Texas State, it was by chance that she happened to take a World History class with Dr. Lydia Garner, and that encounter set her on the academic path of specializing in Latin American and Brazilian History. She is particularly interested in the complicated legacy of the role of the Portuguese royal family in Brazil’s national history and memory based on the uniqueness of Brazil’s experience as a constitutional monarchy in the Americas. After leaving secondary teaching and returning to Texas State to obtain a Masters degree, Dr. Law then attended The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. She spent a year in Rio de Janeiro conducting research for her doctoral dissertation on the ways in which the Brazilian government and intellectuals altered their perceptions of the nation’s first national leader, Pedro I. In her study, she assesses the place of the emperor in the nation’s memory by looking at how Brazilian writers responded to the construction and vandalism of his statue in the public square in Rio.
In 2014, Dr. Law joined the Texas State faculty. She enjoys adapting what she learned as a classroom teacher to the heightened intellectualism of the university setting and emphasizes the historical connections between the past and the present.