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  • Author or Editor: Jorge Cañizares-Esguerra x
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In: Theorising the Ibero-American Atlantic

Abstract

By the mid-eighteenth century sixteenth-century Spanish American testimonies on the New World suddely lost credibility with European audiences. This study seeks to explain this curious episode and traces it to new developments in ways to create and validate knowledge in early modern Europe. The genre of travel accounts proved instrumental in undermining the authority of Spanish accounts. Editors of travel compilations developed a "new art of reading" that privileged "internal" over "external" criticism. If in the past editors apportioned credit according to the number, character, and social standing of witnesses and favored knowledge gathered personally through the senses, by the mid-eighteenth century editors read accounts in the light of contemporary social theories : those accounts that proved inconsistent with the theories of political economy were dismissed. The reliability of sixteenth century Spanish eyewitnesses on the grandeur of the Aztec and Inca civilizations was called into question because these witnesses were deemed incapable of regulating their perceptions through reason (good taste). Since the new art of reading deployed by editors of travel compilations emerged out of a close dialogue between Europe and its colonies, this study shows the deep colonial roots of European modernity.

In: Journal of Early Modern History
In: Encounters between Jesuits and Protestants in Asia and the Americas
In: Encounters between Jesuits and Protestants in Asia and the Americas

Abstract

The categories that structure the study of early modern science are organized around the epistemological liberal regime of facts, objectivity, skepticism, print culture, the public sphere, and the Republic of Letters. The regime of early-modern science in the global Spanish Monarchy is not well known because it was forged in a very different system, one of rewards and legislation in which most activities were transacted through one-on-one epistolary correspondence and intimate transference of information in translation workshops. This global system, nevertheless, engendered ceaseless technical and scientific innovations. I study three cases: the extraction and transformation of silver ores in several spaces; the production of ships and new botanical resources that reorganized global dockyards; and the creation of local translation workshops to facilitate the circulation of knowledge within the global empire. “European” science, the “West,” and instrumental reason have always been global co-creations. However, colonial and postcolonial Manichean dichotomous historiographical categories have made this truism hard to see.

In: Journal of Early Modern History
The present volume is a result of an international symposium on the encounters between Jesuits and Protestants in Asia and the Americas, which was organized by Boston College’s Institute for Advanced Jesuit Studies at Boston College in June 2017.
In Asia, Protestants encountered a mixed Jesuit legacy: in South Asia, they benefited from pioneering Jesuit ethnographers while contesting their conversions; in Japan, all Christian missionaries who returned after 1853 faced the equation of Japanese nationalism with anti-Jesuit persecution; and in China, Protestants scrambled to catch up to the cultural legacy bequeathed by the earlier Jesuit mission.
In the Americas, Protestants presented Jesuits as enemies of liberal modernity, supporters of medieval absolutism yet master manipulators of modern self-fashioning and the printing press. The evidence suggests a far more complicated relationship of both Protestants and Jesuits as co-creators of the bright and dark sides of modernity, including the public sphere, public education, plantation slavery, and colonialism.
In: Encounters between Jesuits and Protestants in Asia and the Americas
In: Encounters between Jesuits and Protestants in Asia and the Americas