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Imagining the Americas in Print

Books, Maps and Encounters in the Atlantic World

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Michiel van Groesen

In Imagining the Americas in Print, Michiel van Groesen reveals the variety of ways in which publishers and printers in early modern Europe gathered information about the Americas, constructed a narrative, and used it to further colonial ambitions in the Atlantic world (1500–1700). The essays examine the creative ways in which knowledge was manufactured in printing workshops. Collectively they bring to life the vivid print culture that determined the relationship between the Old World and the New in the Age of Encounters, and chart the genres that reflected and shaped the European imagination, and helped to legitimate ideologies of colonialism in the next two centuries.

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Micah True

The French Jesuit Pierre-François-Xavier de Charlevoix’s 1744 journal of his voyage through French North America—New France, Louisiana, and the Caribbean—is among the richest eighteenth-century accounts of the continent’s colonization, as well as its indigenous inhabitants, flora, and fauna. Micah True’s new translation of this influential text is the first to appear since 1763. It provides the first complete and reliable English version of Charlevoix’s journal and reveals the famous Jesuit to have been a better literary stylist than has often been assumed on the basis of earlier translations. Complemented by a detailed introduction and richly annotated, this volume finally makes accessible to an Anglophone audience one of the key texts of eighteenth-century French America.

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Edited by Corinne Hofman and Floris Keehnen

Material Encounters and Indigenous Transformations in the Early Colonial Americas brings together 15 case studies focusing on the early colonial history and archaeology of indigenous cultural persistence and change in the Caribbean and its surrounding mainland(s) after AD 1492. With a special emphasis on material culture and by foregrounding indigenous agency in shaping the diverse outcomes of colonial encounters, this volume offers new perspectives on early modern cultural interactions in the first regions of the ‘New World’ that were impacted by European colonization. The volume contributors specifically investigate how foreign goods were differentially employed, adopted, and valued across time, space, and scale, and what implications such material encounters had for indigenous social, political, and economic structures.

Contributors are: Andrzej T. Antczak, Ma. M. Antczak, Oliver Antczak, Jaime J. Awe, Martijn van den Bel, Mary Jane Berman, Arie Boomert, Jeb J. Card, Charles R. Cobb, Gérard Collomb, Shannon Dugan Iverson, Marlieke Ernst, William R. Fowler, Perry L. Gnivecki, Christophe Helmke, Shea Henry, Gilda Hernández Sánchez, Corinne L. Hofman, Menno L.P. Hoogland, Rosemary A. Joyce, Floris W.M. Keehnen, J. Angus Martin, Clay Mathers, Maxine Oland, Alberto Sarcina, Russell N. Sheptak, Roberto Valcárcel Rojas, Robyn Woodward

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Edited by Emily A. Engel

A Companion to Early Modern Lima introduces readers to the Spanish American city which became a vibrant urban center in the sixteenth-century world. As part of Brill's Companions to the Americas series, this volume presents current interdisciplinary research focused on the Peruvian viceregal capital. From ancient roots to its foundation by Pizarro, Lima was transformed into an imperial capital positioned between Atlantic and Pacific exchange networks. An international team of scholars examines issues ranging from literary history, politics, and religion to philosophy, historiography, and modes of intercontinental influence. The volume is divided into three sections: urban development and government, society, and culture. The essays collectively represent the scope of contemporary approaches, methodologies, and source materials pertinent to the study of sixteenth-century Lima, a city at the center of global interchange in the early modern world.

Aztec Religion and Art of Writing

Investigating Embodied Meaning, Indigenous Semiotics, and the Nahua Sense of Reality

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Isabel Laack

In her groundbreaking investigation from the perspective of the aesthetics of religion, Isabel Laack explores the religion and art of writing of the pre-Hispanic Aztecs of Mexico. Inspired by postcolonial approaches, she reveals Eurocentric biases in academic representations of Aztec cosmovision, ontology, epistemology, ritual, aesthetics, and the writing system to provide a powerful interpretation of the Nahua sense of reality.
Laack transcends the concept of “sacred scripture” traditionally employed in religions studies in order to reconstruct the Indigenous semiotic theory and to reveal how Aztec pictography can express complex aspects of embodied meaning. Her study offers an innovative approach to nonphonographic semiotic systems, as created in many world cultures, and expands our understanding of human recorded visual communication.
This book will be essential reading for scholars and readers interested in the history of religions, Mesoamerican studies, and the ancient civilizations of the Americas.

'This excellent book, written with intellectual courage and critical self-awareness, is a brilliant, multilayered thought experiment into the images and stories that made up the Nahua sense of reality as woven into their sensational ritual performances and colorful symbolic writing system.'
- Davíd Carrasco, Harvard University

Bartolomé de las Casas, O.P.

History, Philosophy, and Theology in the Age of European Expansion

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Edited by David Thomas Orique O.P. and Rady Roldán-Figueroa

Bartolomé de las Casas, O.P.: History, Philosophy, and Theology in the Age of European Expansion marks a critical point in Lascasian scholarship. The result of the collaborative work of seventeen prominent scholars, contributions span the fields of history, Latin American studies, literary criticism, philosophy and theology. The volume offers to specialists and non-specialists alike access to a rich and thoughtful overview of nascent colonial Latin American and early modern Iberian studies in a single text.

Contributors: Rolena Adorno; Matthew Restall; David Thomas Orique, O.P.; Rady Roldán-Figueroa; Carlos A. Jáuregui; David Solodkow; Alicia Mayer; Claus Dierksmeier; Daniel R. Brunstetter; Víctor Zorrilla; Luis Fernando Restrepo; David Lantigua; Ramón Darío Valdivia Giménez; Eyda M. Merediz; Laura Dierksmeier; Guillaume Candela, and Armando Lampe.

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Laura Caso Barrera

In Chilam Balam of Ixil Laura Caso Barrera translates for the first time a Yucatec Maya document that resulted from the meticulous reading by the Colonial Maya of various European texts such as the Bible and the Poem of the Mío Cid, as well as various studies on astronomy, astrology, calendars, and medicine.

The Maya, showing considerable astuteness and insight, appropriated this knowledge. With this study and facsimile, experts can further their knowledge of Mayan calendars or traditional medicine; and Mayan enthusiasts can discover more about the culture’s world view and history.



En el Chilam Balam de Ixil Laura Caso Barrera traduce por primera vez un documento en maya yucateco, que resultó de la minuciosa lectura que realizaron los mayas coloniales de distintos textos europeos como la Biblia o el Cantar del Mío Cid, así como de diversos estudios de astronomía, astrología, calendarios y medicina.

Con astucia y perspicacia, los mayas hicieron propio ese saber. Con esta edición, los expertos podrán ahondar en las anotaciones calendáricas o la medicina tradicional maya; y los amantes de esta cultura conocerán otros aspectos de su pensamiento e historia.

Mesoamerican Manuscripts

New Scientific Approaches and Interpretations

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Edited by Maarten Jansen, Virginia M. Lladó-Buisán and Ludo Snijders

Mesoamerican Manuscripts: New Scientific Approaches and Interpretations brings together a wide range of modern approaches to the study of pre-colonial and early colonial Mesoamerican manuscripts. This includes innovative studies of materiality through the application of non-invasive spectroscopy and imaging techniques, as well as new insights into the meaning of these manuscripts and related visual art, stemming from a post-colonial indigenous perspective.

This cross- and interdisciplinary work shows on the one hand the value of collaboration of specialists in different field, but also the multiple viewpoints that are possible when these types of complex cultural expressions are approached from varied cultural and scientific backgrounds.

Contributors are: Omar Aguilar Sánchez, Paul van den Akker, Maria Isabel Álvarez Icaza Longoria, Frances F. Berdan, David Buti, Laura Cartechini, Davide Domenici, Laura Filloy Nadal, Alessia Frassani, Francesca Gabrieli, Maarten E.R.G.N. Jansen, Rosemary A. Joyce, Jorge Gómez Tejada, Chiara Grazia, David Howell, Virginia M. Lladó-Buisán, Leonardo López Luján, Raul Macuil Martínez, Manuel May Castillo, Costanza Miliani, María Olvido Moreno Guzmán, Gabina Aurora Pérez Jiménez, Araceli Rojas, Aldo Romani, Francesca Rosi, Antonio Sgamellotti, Ludo Snijders, and Tim Zaman.

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Robert H. Jackson

In the 17th and 18th centuries Spain and Portugal contested control of the disputed Rio de la Plata borderlands. The Jesuit missions among the Guarani played an important role in regional conflict through the provision of manpower for campaigns and supplies. However, regional conflict and particularly the mobilization of the mission militia and the movement of soldiers on campaign had demographic consequences for the populations of the missions such as the spread of contagion. This study documents regional conflict in the Rio de la Plata, the militarization of the Jesuit missions, and the demographic consequences of conflict for the mission populations.

The Specter of Peace

Rethinking Violence and Power in the Colonial Atlantic

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Edited by Michael Goode and John Smolenski

Specter of Peace advances a novel historical conceptualization of peace as a process of “right ordering” that involved the careful regulation of violence, the legitimation of colonial authority, and the creation of racial and gendered hierarchies. The volume highlights the many paths of peacemaking that otherwise have hitherto gone unexplored in early American and Atlantic World scholarship and challenges historians to take peace as seriously as violence. Early American peacemaking was a productive discourse of moral ordering fundamentally concerned with regulating violence. The historicization of peace, the authors argue, can sharpen our understanding of violence, empire, and the early modern struggle for order and harmony in the colonial Americas and Atlantic World.

Contributors are: Micah Alpaugh, Brendan Gillis, Mark Meuwese, Margot Minardi, Geoffrey Plank, Dylan Ruediger, Cristina Soriano and Wayne E. Lee.