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Economic Interests and Political Decision Making in the History of Dutch Brazil, 1621-1656
In Lobbying in Company, Joris van den Tol argues that people made a difference in the Dutch West India Company colony in Brazil (1630-1654). Through a combination of petitions, personal relations, and public opinion, individuals were able to exercise influence on the decision-making process regarding Dutch Brazil. His thorough analysis of these different elements offers a new perspective on the Atlantic and the Dutch Republic in the 17th century as well as a better understanding of lobbying in the Early Modern period. It was not the organizational structure that decided success and failure, but it was the people that made a difference.
Personality, Persona, and the U.S. President
The turbulent and unpredictable presidency of Donald Trump has intensified public and scholarly attention to the personalities of presidents. Profiles in Power approaches the presidency as a personal affair that is shaped, in part, by the character of the occupants of the Oval Office and their attempts to craft public personas. In ten biographical essays that focus on individual presidents and on one First Lady, the authors in this volume build on a renewed interest in presidential studies that emphasizes individual agency. As such, the book seeks to bring the personal aspect of the presidency back into U.S. political history.
Based on a multi-year ethnography in one Spanish-speaking community in New Jersey, this book is a meticulous account of six Mexican families that explores the relationship between siblings’ language use patterns, practices, and ideologies. Combining insights gained from language socialization and heritage language studies within the larger field of sociolinguistics, the book’s findings examine siblings’ sociolinguistic environments and the ways in which these Latino children use and view their multilingual resources in the home, school, and broader community. This study emphasizes the links between siblings’ language ideologies, agentive decision making, and linguistic patterns, and the ways in which birth order influences the different dimensions of heritage language maintenance in the U.S..
Volume Editors: Boris Barth and Rolf Hobson
The civilizing mission associated with nineteenth-century colonialism became harder to justify after the First World War. In an increasingly anti-imperialist culture, elites reformulated schemes for the “improvement” of “inferior” societies. Nation building, social engineering, humanitarianism, modernization or the spread of democracy were used to justify outside interventions and the top-down transformation of non-western, international or even domestic societies.

The contributions in Civilizing Missions in the Twentieth Century discuss how these justifications influenced Polish nation building, Scandinavian disarmament proposals and technocratic social policies in the interwar years. Treatment of the second half of the century covers the changing cultural context of European humanitarianism, as well as the influence of American social science on US foreign policy, more particularly democracy promotion.

Contributors are: Boris Barth, Rolf Hobson, Jürgen Osterhammel, Frank Ninkovich, Bianka Pietrow-Ennker, Karen Gram-Skjoldager, Esther Moeller, and Jost Dülffer.
Geographies of Law and Accumulation in Mexico
In contrast to analyses that view systemic violence in Mexico as simply the result of drugs and criminality, a deviation of a well-functioning market economy and/or a failing and corrupt state, Muñoz Martínez argues in Uneven Landscapes of Violence that the nexus of criminality, illegality and violence is integral to neoliberal state formation. It was through this nexus that dispossession took place after 2000 in the form of forced displacement, extorsion and private appropriation of public funds along with widespread violence by state forces and criminal groups. The emphasis of the neoliberal agenda on the rule of law to protect private property and contracts further reshaped the boundaries between legality and illegality, concealing the criminal and violent origins of economic gain.
In A Grammar of Murui (Bue), Katarzyna Wojtylak provides the first complete description of Murui, an endangered Witotoan language, spoken by the Murui-Muina (Witoto) people from Colombia and Peru. The grammar is written from a functional and typological perspective, using natural language data gathered during several fieldtrips to the Caquetá-Putumayo region between 2013 and 2017. The many remarkable characteristics of Murui include a complex system of classifiers, differential subject and object marking, person-marking verb morphology, evidential and epistemic marking, head-tail linkage, and a system of numerals, including the fraternal (brother-based) forms for ‘three’ and ‘four’. The grammar represents an important contribution to the study of Witotoan languages, linguistic typology of Northwest Amazonia, and language contact in the area.
Author: Renzo S. Duin
Thanks to Renzo Duin's annotated translation, the voice of Lodewijk Schmidt—an Afrodiasporic Saramaka Maroon from Suriname—is finally available for Anglophone audiences worldwide. More than anything else, Schmidt's journals constitute meticulous ethnographic accounts telling the tragic story of the Indigenous Peoples of the Eastern Guiana Highlands (northern Brazil and southern French Guiana and Suriname). Schmidt's is a story that takes account of the pathological mechanisms of colonialism in which Indigenous Peoples and African Diaspora communities—both victims of colonialism—vilify each other, falling privy to the divide-and-conquer mentality mechanisms of colonialism. Moreover, silenced in the original 1942 publication, Schmidt was sent on a covert mission to determine if the Nazis had established bases and airfields at the southern border of Suriname. Schmidt described the precariousness of the Amazonian forest and the Indigenous Peoples and African Diasporic people who lived and continue to live there, drawing on language that foreshadows our current anthropic and ecological concerns. Duin's profound knowledge of the history, geography, and ecology of the region contextualizes Schmidt's accounts in a new introduction and in his analysis and afterthought forces us to take account of the catastrophe that is deforestation and ethnocide of the Indigenous Peoples of Amazonian Guiana.

Lodewijk J. Schmidt (1898-1992) Saramaka from Gansee (modern Saamaka spelling: Ganzë; pronounced Ganzè), upper Suriname river, Suriname, South America. The Saramaka are one of the largest African Diaspora communities in Suriname. He was educated by the Herrnhutters in the school of the Moravian Church, and during the mid-twentieth century he took part in several momentous expeditions, such as the 1935-38 Border Expedition between Suriname and Brazil. The present work is the annotated translation of his accounts of a tri-partite expedition conducted between 1940 and 1942 at and across the southern border of Suriname.

Renzo S. Duin (1974) obtained a PhD in Anthropology from the University of Florida (USA). Between 1996 and 2019 he conducted over 40 months of fieldwork in the Guianas (Suriname, French Guiana, and Guyana). His research and publications cover a broad range of topics: socio-political landscape studies; material culture; intangible heritage; social memory; oral history; identity; ethno-astronomy; historical ecology; decolonization; and the intertwining nature of these topics, and as such offers an alternative to the twentieth century model of tropical forest cultures in Amazonia.
A Biographical Account of Racial, Class, and Gender Inequities in the Americas
Using auto-ethnography as a methodological framework, this book captures two diametrical poles of the author’s experiences growing up poor and being educated in a colonial school system in a developing country and currently working as a university professor in the United States. The author begins by recollecting his mixed childhood and adolescence experiences, including being subjected to abject poverty, escaping a sexual predator as a teenager, witnessing class, gender, and sexual inequities, while at the same time being supported by family, neighbours, and friends in his community. Next, the author talks about the social class privileges that he has enjoyed as a result of becoming a university professor while juxtaposing such privileges to micro-aggression, systemic racism, xenophobia, linguicism, and elitism that he has been facing in society, including in the Ivy Halls of White America.