1st Edition

Contact, Conquest and Colonization How Practices of Comparing Shaped Empires and Colonialism Around the World

    360 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    360 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Contact, Conquest and Colonization brings together international historians and literary studies scholars in order to explore the force of practices of comparing in shaping empires and colonial relations at different points in time and around the globe.

    Whenever there was cultural contact in the context of European colonization and empire-building, historical records teem with comparisons among those cultures. This edited volume focuses on what historical agents actually do when they compare, rather than on comparison as an analytic method. Its contributors are thus interested in the ‘doing of comparison’, and explore the force of these practices of comparing in shaping empires and (post-)colonial relations between the sixteenth and twentieth centuries.

    This book will appeal to students and scholars of global history, as well as those interested in cultural history and the history of colonialism.

    Introduction: On ‘Doing Comparison’ – Practices of Comparing  Eleonora Rohland and Kirsten Kramer

    Part I: Women, Marriage Practices, and Morals

    1. Bridging the Gap: Jesuit Missionaries’ Perspectives on Marriage in the Philippines in the Period of Contact Marya Svetlana T. Camacho

    2. Constructing the Literati: The Jesuits’ Attempt to Understand China’s Confucian Elite by Dint of Comparison Nadine Amsler

    3. ‘Our’ Women, ‘Their’ Women: Domestic Space and the Question of Modernisation in Nineteenth Century Colonial India  Subhasri Ghosh

    Part II: Politics, Polemics, and Propaganda

    4. Entre Nos: Comparison and Authority in the Epistolary of Antonio Valeriano  Ezekiel Stear

    5. Global Benchmarks of Princely Rule in the Early Eighteenth Century? Transcultural Comparison in the Political Series of the German Publisher Renger (1704-1718)  Volker Bauer

    6. Spain and its North-African ‘Other.’ Ambivalent Practices of Comparing in the Context of Modern Spanish Colonialism around 1860  Sara Mehlmer

    7. Propaganda, Cultural Diplomacy and the Politics of Comparison in the Early Cold War, 1945 to the 1960s Benno Nietzel

    Part III: Literature, Science, and Literary Discourse

    8. Same Sky, Different Soil: Geographical Difference in Eighteenth-Century Astronomy and its Impact on Literature  Alexander Honold

    9. Between Nature and Culture: Comparing, Natural History, and Anthropology in Modern French Travel Narratives Around 1800 (François-René de Chateaubriand)  Kirsten Kramer

    10. Comparison as Context in Sir William Jones’s Translations of Eastern Literature  Catharina G.M. Janssen

    Part IV: Race, Civilization, and Religion

    11. Colonizing Complexions: How Laws of Bondage Shaped Race in America’s Colonial Borderlands  Christian Pinnen

    12. Tocqueville’s Compass: On History, Race and Comparison in A Fortnight in the Wilds  Julian T. D. Gärtner

    13. Climates, Colonialism, and the Politics of Comparison: The Construction of U.S.-American Tropicality in Colonial Medicine and Public Health, 1898-1912  Julia Engelschalt

    14. Between ‘Cannibals’ and ‘Natural Freemasons:’ The (Anti)Colonial History of Comparing Freemasonry to African Secret Societies  Stephanie Zehnle

    Concluding Observations: Modes of Comparing and Communities of Practice  Angelika Epple and Antje Flüchter


    Eleonora Rohland is Professor for Entangled History in the Americas and Director of the Center for InterAmerican Studies (CIAS) at Bielefeld University, Germany.

    Angelika Epple is Vice-Rector of International Affairs and Diversity and Professor of Modern European and Global History at Bielefeld University, Germany.

    Antje Flüchter is Dean of the Faculty of History, Philosophy and Theology and Professor for Early Modern History at Bielefeld University, Germany.

    Kirsten Kramer is Chair of the Department of Literary Studies and Professor for Comparative Literature and Romance Studies at Bielefeld University, Germany.