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Structuring the Colonies: Labour, Demography, Administration

Lecture powerpoint


  • How did Spain and Portugal structure their overseas empires? Describe the different administrative and judicial structures.
  • What role did the Catholic church play in sustaining (or challenging) colonial authority?
  • Explain the centrality of labour, and disputes over labour, to the colonial enterprise.

Required Seminar Reading

Additional Reading

  • Bryant, Sherwin. “Enslaved Rebels, Fugitives, and Litigants: The Resistance Continuum in Colonial Quito.” Colonial Latin American Review, 13:1 (2004): 7-46
  • Jacobsen, Nils and Cristóbal Aljovín de Losada, “The Long and Short of It: A Pragmatic Perspective on Political Cultures, Especially for the Modern History of the Andes,” in Political Cultures in the Andes, 1750-1950, ed. Jacobsen and Aljovín, Durham, Duke, 2005.
  • Lane, Kris “Africans and Natives in the Mines of Latin America,” in Matthew Restall (ed.), Beyond Black and Red: African-Native Relations in Colonial Latin America (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2005)
  • Owensby, Brian. Empire of Law and Indian Justice in Colonial Mexico (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2008)
  • Schwartz, Stuart B, Sugar Plantations in the Formation of Brazilian Society: Bahia, 1550-1835 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1985)
  • Spalding, Karen. Huarochirí: An Andean Society under Inca and Spanish Rule. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1984.

Primary Source