Barbaros : Spaniards and Their Savages in the Age of Enlightenment

Barbaros : Spaniards and Their Savages in the Age of Enlightenment

Details

Author(s)
David J. Weber
Format
Paperback | 480 pages
Dimensions
178 x 254 x 27.18mm | 1,043g
Publication date
15 Aug 2006
Publisher
Yale University Press
Publication City/Country
United States
Language
English
Edition
Annotated
Illustrations note
41 b-w illus.
ISBN10
0300119917
ISBN13
9780300119916
Bestsellers rank
1,602,684

Description

A majestic exploration of Bourbon Spain's efforts to come to terms with the native peoples of the Americas, from Argentina to Alaska

Two centuries after Cortes and Pizarro seized the Aztec and Inca empires, Spain's conquest of America remained unfinished. Indians retained control over most of the lands in Spain's American empire. Mounted on horseback, savvy about European ways, and often possessing firearms, independent Indians continued to find new ways to resist subjugation by Spanish soldiers and conversion by Spanish missionaries.

In this panoramic study, David J. Weber explains how late eighteenthcentury Spanish administrators tried to fashion a more enlightened policy toward the people they called barbaros, or "savages." Even Spain's most powerful monarchs failed, however, to enforce a consistent, well-reasoned policy toward Indians. At one extreme, powerful independent Indians forced Spaniards to seek peace, acknowledge autonomous tribal governments, and recognize the existence of tribal lands, fulfilling the Crown's oft-stated wish to use "gentle" means in dealing with Indians. At the other extreme the Crown abandoned its principles, authorizing bloody wars on Indians when Spanish officers believed they could defeat them. Power, says Weber, more than the power of ideas, determined how Spaniards treated "savages" in the Age of Enlightenment.


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