Imperial Reform in an Age of Globalization: Iberian Empires, Enlightenment and Commercial Society (Deadline February 13, 2015)
Fidel Tavárez (Princeton University) and J. Bohorquez (European University Institute) are putting together a panel for the 2016 AHA in Atlanta (January, 7-10) entitled “Imperial Reform in an Age of Globalization: Iberian Empires, Enlightenment and Commercial Society.” We are interested in papers concerning commercial reform in the eighteenth-century Portuguese and Spanish empires, paying particular attention to how Enlightenment political economy influenced the administration, governance and functioning of colonial outposts. Although we are interested in comparative, connected and entangled approaches, we are equally welcoming of more focused papers that deal with the issues at hand. We are not primarily interested in concentrating on how imperial policies affected the economic performance of these Iberian empires. Rather, the panel’s main goal is to trace the intellectual and cultural origins of eighteenth-century imperial reform by scrutinizing the relationship between commercial ideas and policies. We would like the panel to highlight two issues in particular: 1) the introduction of new vocabularies and concepts that affected policy-making, and 2) Imperial ministers’ attention to, what was then, a new type of knowledge called political economy, including related concepts like improvement, innovation, emulation, backwardness and international competition. Last but not least, we not only seek papers that study treatises of political economy proper, but also papers that consider texts that are less commonly analyzed (literature, administrative documents, history books, journals, images etc.).
Researcher, Department History and civilization
European University Institute
Via Boccaccio 121