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Poem by Qiu Jin, Chinese feminist


While the discussion surrounding the Chinese practice of footbinding often focuses on the writings of western missionaries, the example of Qiu Jin, a Chinese feminist and poet, demonstrates that the practice was criticized by Chinese individuals as well. Qui Jin had her feet bound as a child and as an adult spoke out against the practice. In 1904, she moved away from her husband and children... Read More »

Portón de Campo


This stone structure, also known as the Puerta de la Ciudadela, belonged to the historic defensive walls of Colonia del Sacramento. Although the city is located in modern-day Uruguay, at the time of construction (1745), it was occupied by the Portuguese under Governor Vasconcellos. During the colonial period, both Spanish and Portuguese forces built these types of structures in their American... Read More »

Portrait of Francisco López de Solís


This partially damaged painting depicts Francisco López de Solís, who occupied many posts throughout his career. He served as a lawyer for the Fisco del Santo Oficio, a judge on the high court of both the Philippines and Guatemala. Also in Guatemala, López occupied the posts of President, Governor, and Capitan General, Inspector of the Chiapas Province, and Head Teacher at the Metropolitan... Read More »

Portrait of Gaspar Sánchez


This seventeenth century painting depicts the Jesuit theologian Gaspar Sánchez. He was born and educated in Spain, but his published works were distributed throughout the Spanish world. For example, the Jesuit library of Tepotzotlán has multiple volumes. Several aspects of this artwork shed light on the identity of Sánchez. The dark clothing he wears are traditional Jesuit robes, and the... Read More »

Portrait of General Artigas


José Gervasio Artigas Arnal (1764-1850) was a Uruguayan soldier who became a national hero for his contributions to the wars of independence from Spain. He is a celebrated figure in Uruguayan culture, and his name has become ubiquitous throughout the country. For example, one of the main roads in its capital city of Montevideo is Artigas Bulevard. Artist Juan Manuel Blanes painted this... Read More »

Portrait of Hernán Cortés


Hernán Cortés, a central figure in the establishment of Spanish rule in the Americas, is the subject of this painting. Throughout his career, he led several voyages back and forth between Spain, the Carribean, and Mexico. The Spanish Crown awarded him titles of honor for his efforts, including “Capitán General de las tierras conquistadas” and “Marqués del Valle de Oaxaca.” In the top corner of... Read More »

Portrait of Manuel Mansilla


This painting depicts Manuel Mansilla, the Alguacil Mayor (sheriff) of the city of Buenos Aires. He held this position from 1795-1821, during a key transitional moment. When he began his tenure, the city belonged to the Viceroyalty of the Rio de la Plata, under Spanish rule. However, by 1821, the region was establishing its independence as the nation of Argentina. The position of Alguacil... Read More »

image of gender roles being portrayed

Primer: Gender in World History


Gender history developed in the 1980s out of women’s history, when historians familiar with studying women increasingly began to discuss the ways in which systems of sexual differentiation affected both women and men. Historians interested in this new perspective asserted that gender was an appropriate category of analysis when looking at all historical developments, not simply those involving... Read More »

Title page of A Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Venture A Native of Africa, but Resident Above Sixty Years in the United States of America Related by Himself

Primer: Global Microhistory


In 1791, the commander of an East India Company ship commented on the interplay between macro-level political and economic forces and the decisions and actions of seemingly marginal actors: “Forgive me for mentioning the circumstance which I do, to show, amongst numberless other instances, how a splendid act of government may be linked with the conduct of obscure individuals, separated even... Read More »

Primer: Imperialism


World history courses often feature the rise and fall of various empires, but often little attention is paid to the concept of empire itself. While empires, defined as "expansionist states that governed different people differently" have been one of the most enduring forms of government going back to ancient history, the critique of empire implied by the word "imperialism" is a relatively... Read More »