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AtitlanSponsored by the UC Consortium for the Humanities, “Early Modern Globalization” is a Multi-Campus Research Group composed of historians, art historians and literary scholars from across the UC system.  The purpose of the group is to explore the history of global modernity through the lens of Iberian expansion and its impact on local cultures.

Iberian imperialism was the first modern attempt to implant supposedly universal religious, epistemological, and economic models in widely divergent regions of the globe.  Through multiple and intersecting disciplinary methods, the group proposes to analyze the interaction between the theoretical foundations of Iberian imperialism and the practice of administering regions with deep histories of their own.  Of particular interest will be the responses and perspectives of the African, Asian, and Amerindian peoples who were incorporated through evangelization, labor, slavery and immigration into Iberian colonial models.  Through concrete examples we will compare the particular histories of regions formed by Iberian imperialism as well as study the advent of global modernity through the Iberian experience.  By linking these two concerns, we hope to move beyond assumptions that still mark the literature on globalization, such as the secular character of modern science, the liberal foundations of capitalism, the Enlightenment origins of racial classification, and the passive reception of European colonial models.

The group’s goals are to highlight the particular strength of UC faculty in the area of early modern Iberian history and to provide a flexible and long-term collaboration among faculty and graduate students across UC campuses.  In 2010-2011, the group will hold several workshops in which members will produce research in a collaborative setting.  In future years, the group wishes to include graduate students working on topics related to Iberian empires and their colonies and to further coordinate the research and pedagogy of its members through complementary graduate seminars at two or more UC campuses, interdisciplinary courses at home campuses, and international conferences and publications based on the group’s ongoing dialogue.


Jody Blanco, Associate Professor, Comparative Literature, UCSD
Carolyn Dean, Professor, History of Art & Visual Culture, UCSC
María Elena Díaz, Associate Professor, History, UCSC
Barbara Fuchs, Professor, Spanish & Portuguese, UCLA
Anna More, Associate Professor, Spanish and Portuguese, UCLA (Co-Convener)
Stella Nair, Assistant Professor, Art History, UCR
Rachel O’Toole, Assistant Professor, History, UCI
Patricia Seed, Professor, History, UCI
Kevin Terraciano, Professor, History, UCLA
Ivonne del Valle, Assistant Professor, Spanish and Portuguese, UCB (Co-Convener)
Charlene Villaseñor Black, Associate Professor, Art History, UCLA
Charles Walker, Professor, History, UCD