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Distant Tyranny

Markets, Power, and Backwardness in Spain, 1650-1800

Regina Grafe

Spain's development from a premodern society into a modern unified nation-state with an integrated economy was painfully slow and varied widely by region. Economic historians have long argued that high internal transportation costs limited domestic market integration, while at the same time the Castilian capital city of Madrid drew resources from surrounding Spanish regions as it pursued its quest for centralization. According to this view, powerful Madrid thwarted trade over large geographic distances by destroying an integrated network of manufacturing towns in the Spanish interior.

Challenging this long-held view, Regina Grafe argues that decentralization, not a strong and powerful Madrid, is to blame for Spain's slow march to modernity. Through a groundbreaking analysis of the market for bacalao--dried and salted codfish that was a transatlantic commodity and staple food during this period--Grafe shows how peripheral historic territories and powerful interior towns obstructed Spain's economic development through jurisdictional obstacles to trade, which exacerbated already high transport costs. She reveals how the early phases of globalization made these regions much more externally focused, and how coastal elites that were engaged in trade outside Spain sought to sustain their positions of power in relation to Madrid.

Distant Tyranny offers a needed reassessment of the haphazard and regionally diverse process of state formation and market integration in early modern Spain, showing how local and regional agency paradoxically led to legitimate governance but economic backwardness.

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Documents of the Spanish Vanguard

Paul Ilie

This collection of fifty-seven essays, manifestos, and other prose writings on literature, painting, music, and cinema is drawn from various "little magazines" published in Spain from 1919-1930. This volume, edited by Paul Ilie, is intended to serve as a tool with which to break new ground in the study of the Spanish vanguard.

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Drama and Ethos

Natural-Law Ethics in Spanish Golden Age Theater

Robert L. Fiore

Spanish Golden Age drama as an expression of morality falls between the extremes of art-for-art's-sake and utilitarianism. According to Spanish literary critics of the 16th and 17th centuries, drama imitated reality, the subject and domain of philosophy. The integration of drama and scholastic moral philosophy was an important aspect of the critical theory of this era, which held that art should both teach and delight.

Through close textual analysis of representative plays, this book examines the artistic fusion of natural-law philosophy and drama. It demonstrates the relationship between ethics and the central ideological themes of these works, illustrating that an awareness of the doctrines of natural law ethics is crucial to an enriched comprehension of the drama of Golden Age Spain.

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Economic History of Spain

Jaime Vicens Vives

The book description for "Economic History of Spain" is currently unavailable.

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The Eighteenth-Century Revolution in Spain

Richard Herr

The book description for "The Eighteenth-Century Revolution in Spain" is currently unavailable.

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El libro de los engaños

John Esten Keller

In 1253, this collection of fictional tales was translated from Arabic into the language of thirteenth-century Spain. It is one of the purest surviving representatives of a group of stories generally called the Book of Sindibad and is probably one of the most direct descendants of the long-lost original.

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The Embodied Word

Female Spiritualities, Contested Orthodoxies, and English Religious Cultures, 1350-1700

Nancy Bradley Warren

In The Embodied Word: Female Spiritualities, Contested Orthodoxies, and English Religious Cultures, 1350–1700, Nancy Bradley Warren expands on the topic of female spirituality, first explored in her book Women of God and Arms, to encompass broad issues of religion, gender, and historical periodization. Through her analyses of the variety of ways in which medieval spirituality was deliberately and actively carried forward to the early modern period, Warren underscores both continuities and revisions that challenge conventional distinctions between medieval and early modern culture. The early modern writings of Julian of Norwich are an illustrative starting point for Warren’s challenge to established views of English religious cultures. In a single chapter, Warren follows the textual and devotional practices of Julian as they influence two English Benedictine nuns in exile, and then Grace Mildmay, a seventeenth-century Protestant gentry woman, “to shed light on the ways in which individual encounters of the divine, especially gendered bodily encounters expressed textually, signify for others both personally and socio-historically.” In subsequent chapters, Warren discusses St. Birgitta of Sweden’s imitatio Christi in the context of the importance of Spain and Spanish women in shaping a distinctive form of early modern Englishness strongly aligned with medieval religious culture; juxtaposes the fifteenth-century mystic Margery Kempe with the life and writings of Anna Trapnel, a seventeenth-century Baptist; and treats Catherine of Siena together with the Protestant Anne Askew and Lollard and Recusant women. In the final chapters she focuses on the interplay of gender and textuality in women’s textual representations of themselves and in works written by men who used the traditions of female spirituality in the service of competing orthodoxies.

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Endless Empire

Spain's Retreat, Europe's Eclipse, America's Decline

Edited by Alfred W. McCoy, Josep M. Fradera, and Stephen Jacobson

Throughout four millennia of recorded history there has been no end to empire, but instead an endless succession of empires. After five centuries of sustained expansion, the half-dozen European powers that ruled half of humanity collapsed with stunning speed after World War II, creating a hundred emerging nations in Asia and Africa. Amid this imperial transition, the United States became the new global hegemon, dominating this world order with an array of power that closely resembled that of its European predecessors. As Brazil, Russia, India, China, and the European Union now rise in global influence, twenty leading historians from four continents take a timely look backward and forward to discover patterns of eclipse in past empires that are already shaping a decline in U.S. global power, including:• erosion of economic and fiscal strength needed for military power on a global scale• misuse of military power through micro-military misadventures• breakdown of alliances among major powers• weakened controls over the subordinate elites critical for any empire’s exercise of global power• insufficient technological innovation to sustain global force projection.

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Enemies and Familiars

Slavery and Mastery in Fifteenth-Century Valencia

by Debra Blumenthal

A prominent Mediterranean port located near Islamic territories, the city of Valencia in the late fifteenth century boasted a slave population of pronounced religious and ethnic diversity: captive Moors and penally enslaved Mudejars, Greeks, Tartars, Russians, Circassians, and a growing population of black Africans. By the end of the fifteenth century, black Africans comprised as much as 40 percent of the slave population of Valencia.

Whereas previous historians of medieval slavery have focused their efforts on defining the legal status of slaves, documenting the vagaries of the Mediterranean slave trade, or examining slavery within the context of Muslim-Christian relations, Debra Blumenthal explores the social and human dimensions of slavery in this religiously and ethnically pluralistic society. Enemies and Familiars traces the varied experiences of Muslim, Eastern, and black African slaves from capture to freedom. After describing how men, women, and children were enslaved and brought to the Valencian marketplace, this book examines the substance of slaves' daily lives: how they were sold and who bought them; the positions ascribed to them within the household hierarchy; the sorts of labor they performed; and the ways in which some reclaimed their freedom. Scrutinizing a wide array of archival sources (including wills, contracts, as well as hundreds of civil and criminal court cases), Blumenthal investigates what it meant to be a slave and what it meant to be a master at a critical moment of transition.

Arguing that the dynamics of the master-slave relationship both reflected and determined contemporary opinions regarding religious, ethnic, and gender differences, Blumenthal's close study of the day-to-day interactions between masters and their slaves not only reveals that slavery played a central role in identity formation in late medieval Iberia but also offers clues to the development of "racialized" slavery in the early modern Atlantic world.

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Enemies in the Plaza

Urban Spectacle and the End of Spanish Frontier Culture, 1460-1492

By Thomas Devaney

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