Jeffrey L. Gould received his doctorate in history at Yale University. From 1995 to 2008, he was director of IU's Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies.
His first book, To lead as Equals: Rural Protest and Political Consciousness in Chinandega, Nicaragua, 1912-1979, is a study of the peasant movement in Nicaragua. His second book, To Die in This Way: Nicaraguan Indian Communities and the Myth of Mestizaje, 1880-1965, challenged the myth of a mestizo Nicaragua. His 200 interviews with survivors of la matanza resulted in To Rise in Darkness: Revolution, Repression, and Memory in El Salvador, in 1920-1932 (co-authored with Aldo Lauria), which challenged interpretations of the insurrection and subsequent massacres. Solidarity Under Siege: Solidarity and Discord in the Salvadoran Labor Movement, 1970-1990 deals with the labor mobilization in a Salvadoran shrimp port. Entre el Bosque y los Arboles: Utopias MEnores en El Salvador, Nicaragua, y Uruguay [in press] uncovers minor utopias and their challenges to official and oppositional hierarchies.
Gould co-directed and co-produced the film Scars of Memory: El Salvador, 1932, with Carlos Henriquez. His next film, LaPalabra en el Bosque, also with Henriquez, highlights the Christian Base Communities in El Salvador during the 1970s. His most recent film, Port Triumph, is rooted in the same research as Solidarity Under Siege.
Gould received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2002. He was a member of the School of Historical Studies at the Institute for Advanced Stuy from 2012 to 2013 and a fellow at the Charles Warren Center, Harvard University, from 2016 to 2017. The Center for Advanced Latin American Studies, a consortium of German universities and the Universidad de Guadalajara, named him one of eight founding fellows in 2018.
Gould received the IU Bicentennial Medal in September 2020 in recognition of his distinguished contributions to Indiana University.