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Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century

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Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Groundbeaking in its global and historical scope, Racisms is the first comprehensive history of racism, from the Crusades to the twentieth century. Demonstrating that there is not one continuous tradition of racism in the West, distinguished historian Francisco Bethencourt shows that racism preceded any theories of race and must be viewed within the prism and context of social hierarchies and local conditions. In this richly illustrated book, Bethencourt argues that in its various aspects, all racism has been triggered by political projects monopolizing specific economic and social resources.

Bethencourt focuses on the Western world, but opens comparative views on ethnic discrimination and segregation in Asia and Africa. He looks at different forms of racism, particularly against New Christians and Moriscos in Iberia, black slaves and freedmen in colonial and postcolonial environments, Native Americans, Armenians in the Ottoman Empire, and Jews in modern Europe. Exploring instances of enslavement, forced migration, and ethnic cleansing, Bethencourt reflects on genocide and the persecution of ethnicities in twentieth-century Europe and Anatolia. These cases are compared to the genocide of the Herero and Tutsi in Africa, and ethnic discrimination in Japan, China, and India. Bethencourt analyzes how practices of discrimination and segregation from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries were defended, and he systematically integrates visual culture into his investigation.

Moving away from ideas of linear or innate racism, this is a major interdisciplinary work that recasts our understanding of interethnic relations.

Review:

"Bethencourt, professor of history at King's College London, examines how expansion abroad shaped European systems of ethnic prejudice in a tour de force spanning the Americas, West Africa, India, and other colonial environs. He views racism instrumentally, not as a blind animus towards the other, but as a flexible, precise tool for engineering social realities among diverse populations: 'ethnic prejudices were never isolated; they belonged to a rational, hierarchical system concerning different ethnicities (and constructed races) in time and space.' Across different periods seemingly deprecated strands of thought reoccur, refracted through successive generations' worldviews; Bethencourt is able to compare the Hindu caste system to the finely graded racial hierarchy governing mixed peoples in Latin America, while elsewhere noting how 'he difficulty of matching skin tones with precise professions and occupations... in Iberian America' in turn influenced the British colonies, which implemented the simpler biracial dichotomy of the 'one drop' rule. Finally, we see aristocratic European notions 'challenged by intermixing and inevitable decline, as the darker races carried within them the seeds of democracy and egalitarianism that flourished because of their low standards,' a sentiment visible in the assertion common today that certain peoples or nations are unprepared for democratic rule, now the sine qua non of civilized society." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

"Racisms impresses the reader by its author's vast reading, his thoroughness and precision, his intellectual ambition, and his use of visual and textual sources."--Peter Burke, University of Cambridge

"There will probably never be a consensus about the origins, nature, chronology, and future of racism. Now, however, thanks to Francisco Bethencourt's brave, reflective, provocative, painstaking, and searching history, the problems are clearer than ever before, and the continuing debates will be immeasurably better informed."--Felipe Fernndez-Armesto, author of 1492: The Year the World Began

About the Author

Francisco Bethencourt is the Charles Boxer Professor of History at King's College London. He is the author of "The Inquisition" and the coeditor of "Correspondence and Cultural Exchange in Europe", "Portuguese Oceanic Expansion", and "Racism and Ethnic Relations in the Portuguese-Speaking World." He has served as director of the Gulbenkian Cultural Center in Paris (1999-2004) and the National Library of Portugal (1996-1998).

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations ix

List of Maps xii

Acknowledgments xiii

Introduction 1

Part I The Crusades 11

Chapter 1 From Greek to Muslim Perceptions 13

Chapter 2 Christian Reconquest 19

Chapter 3 Universalism: Integration and Classification 37

Chapter 4 Typologies of Humankind and Models of Discrimination 48

Part II Oceanic Exploration 63

Chapter 5 Hierarchies of Continents and Peoples 65

Chapter 6 Africans 83

Chapter 7 Americans 101

Chapter 8 Asians 117

Chapter 9 Europeans 137

Part III Colonial Societies 159

Chapter 10 Ethnic Classification 163

Chapter 11 Ethnic Structure 181

Chapter 12 Projects and Policies 204

Chapter 13 Discrimination and Segregation 216

Chapter 14 Abolitionism 228

Part IV The Theories of Race 247

Chapter 15 Classifications of Humans 252

Chapter 16 Scientific Racialism 271

Chapter 17 Darwin and Social Evolution 290

Part V Nationalism and Beyond 307

Chapter 18 The Impact of Nationalism 309

Chapter 19 Global Comparisons 335

Conclusions 365

Notes 375

Index 423

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691155265
Author:
Bethencourt, Francisco
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Author:
co
Author:
Bethencourt, Francis
Subject:
World
Subject:
World History-General
Subject:
World History/Comparative History
Subject:
European History
Subject:
American history
Subject:
Anthropology
Subject:
Sociology
Publication Date:
20140131
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
73 halftones. 18 maps.
Pages:
464
Dimensions:
10 x 8 in

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology
History and Social Science » Ethnic Studies » Racism and Ethnic Conflict
History and Social Science » World History » General

Racisms: From the Crusades to the Twentieth Century New Hardcover
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Product details 464 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691155265 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Bethencourt, professor of history at King's College London, examines how expansion abroad shaped European systems of ethnic prejudice in a tour de force spanning the Americas, West Africa, India, and other colonial environs. He views racism instrumentally, not as a blind animus towards the other, but as a flexible, precise tool for engineering social realities among diverse populations: 'ethnic prejudices were never isolated; they belonged to a rational, hierarchical system concerning different ethnicities (and constructed races) in time and space.' Across different periods seemingly deprecated strands of thought reoccur, refracted through successive generations' worldviews; Bethencourt is able to compare the Hindu caste system to the finely graded racial hierarchy governing mixed peoples in Latin America, while elsewhere noting how 'he difficulty of matching skin tones with precise professions and occupations... in Iberian America' in turn influenced the British colonies, which implemented the simpler biracial dichotomy of the 'one drop' rule. Finally, we see aristocratic European notions 'challenged by intermixing and inevitable decline, as the darker races carried within them the seeds of democracy and egalitarianism that flourished because of their low standards,' a sentiment visible in the assertion common today that certain peoples or nations are unprepared for democratic rule, now the sine qua non of civilized society." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , "Racisms impresses the reader by its author's vast reading, his thoroughness and precision, his intellectual ambition, and his use of visual and textual sources."--Peter Burke, University of Cambridge

"There will probably never be a consensus about the origins, nature, chronology, and future of racism. Now, however, thanks to Francisco Bethencourt's brave, reflective, provocative, painstaking, and searching history, the problems are clearer than ever before, and the continuing debates will be immeasurably better informed."--Felipe Fernndez-Armesto, author of 1492: The Year the World Began

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