Fowler, Jessica

Ph.D. History, University of California – Davis (US) M.A. History, University of Georgia (US) B.A. History; Philosophy and Religion, Appalachian State University (US)

Dr. Jessica J. Fowler graduated in 2015 with a degree in History from the University of California, Davis and has spent her last years working as an Advanced Researcher at the National Research Council of Spain in Madrid. Her work studies how the Spanish Inquisition acted as an intellectual, legal, and bureaucratic network capable of spreading ideas across the entirety of the Spanish Empire. To demonstrate this her work traces the dissemination of a particular heresy – alumbradismo –as it appeared before each of the dozen tribunals in Spain over the course of two centuries while also simultaneously appearing in the colonies of Mexico, Peru, and eventually even the Philippines. Her work demonstrates the crucial role the Inquisition paradoxically—or perhaps ironically—played in disseminating the heresies it was mandated to extirpate. Currently, Dr. Fowler is revising and augmenting her dissertation into her first book manuscript entitled, Illuminating the Empire: The Spanish Inquisition and the Spread of Global Heresy, 1500-1700.