John de Bhal

John de Bhal

Research topic:
The quest for grandeza: Brazil, status, and US hegemony, 1964-1976

Academic Profile

John completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia, completing a Bachelor of Arts with specialisations in International Relations, Spanish, and Philosophy. His previous research examined the Obama Administration's approach to the US-Cuba Thaw, looking specifically at the influence of Latin America's 'pink tide' of leftist governments in orchestrating the change of relations between Washington and Havana. His current project builds on these themes, but does so through the theoretical prism of the growing literature on hierarchy in international relations. Specifically, John is interested in the role of secondary states in the maintenance of hegemonic and hierarchical orders, and the conditions under which these states enthusiastically participate in the management of such orders. His MPhil thesis project takes these issues up with a case study of Brazil in the 1960s and 1970s, which became a reluctant target of Washington's policy of 'devolution'.


Spanish (fluent)

Brazilian Portuguese (intermediate)


de Bhal, John, 'Never Thaw that coming! Latin American regional integration and the US–Cuba Thaw', Third World Quarterly, Vol. 40(5), pp. 855-869.

de Bhal, John, (2018), 'More continuity than change? US strategy toward Cuba under Obama and Trump', Contemporary Politics, Vol. 24(4), pp.436-453.