By Lauren Benton
A look for Sovereignty maps a brand new method of global heritage by means of reading the relation of legislations and geography in eu empires among 1400 and 1900. Lauren Benton argues that Europeans imagined imperial area as networks of corridors and enclaves, and they built sovereignty in ways in which merged rules approximately geography and legislation. Conflicts over treason, piracy, convict transportation, martial legislation, and crime created abnormal areas of legislations, whereas additionally attaching felony meanings to normal geographic different types akin to rivers, oceans, islands, and mountains. The ensuing felony and spatial anomalies motivated debates approximately imperial constitutions and foreign legislations either within the colonies and at domestic. This unique learn adjustments our figuring out of empire and its legacies and opens new views at the worldwide background of legislations.
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Additional resources for A Search for Sovereignty: Law and Geography in European Empires, 1400-1900
Russell, “Castilian Documentary Sources for the History of the Portuguese Expansion in Guinea, in the Last Years of the Reign of Dom Afonso V,” in Portugal, Spain, and the African Atlantic, 1343–1490: Chivalry and Crusade from John of Gaunt to Henry the Navigator and Beyond (Brookfield, VT: Variorum, 1995), XII, 1–23. P. E. Russell, “New Light on the Text of Eustache de la Fosse’s Voiaige a` la Guin´ee (1479–1480),” in Russell, Portugal, Spain, and the African Atlantic, XIII, 1–13, see especially 13.
Scholars have tended to regard voyage chronicles as falling within the genre of travel literature, but many accounts of early voyaging are better understood as examples of legal writing, produced by chroniclers who were also royal officials or by participants in overseas commercial ventures positioning themselves or others in relation to ongoing or anticipated cases. From an early stage in Atlantic voyaging, for example, royal interests compelled documentation of mariners’ and merchants’ activities by ˜ (legal officials who legal personnel.
See Daston and Park, Wonders and the Order of Nature, 237; Barrera-Osorio, “Nature and Experience in the New World”; and Juan Pimentel, who discusses the unstable relation between travelers and verisimilitude in Testigos del mundo: Ciencia, literature ´ Madrid: Marcial Pons, 2003, chap. 1. y viajes en la ilustracion. Daston and Park, Wonders and the Order of Nature, 240. An exception is Portuondo, who notes that Spanish cosmographers and letrados were closely associated and occasionally positioned as scientific rivals.
A Search for Sovereignty: Law and Geography in European Empires, 1400-1900 by Lauren Benton