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American Baroque – Pearls and the Nature of Empire, 1492-1700 - North Carolina Scholarship Online
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American Baroque: Pearls and the Nature of Empire, 1492-1700

Molly A. Warsh


Patterns of pearl cultivation and circulation reveal vernacular practices that shaped emerging imperial ideas about value and wealth in the early modern world. Pearls’ variability and subjective beauty posed a profound challenge to the imperial impulse to order and control, underscoring the complexity of governing subjects and objects in the early modern world. Qualitative, evaluative language would play a prominent role in crown officials’ attempts to contain and channel this complexity. The book’s title reflects the evolving significance of the term barrueca (which became “baroque” in Englis ... More

Keywords: Pearls, Baroque, Pearl fisheries, Caribbean, Spanish empire, Vernacular, Subjectivity, Value, Wealth

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2018 Print ISBN-13: 9781469638973
Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2019 DOI:10.5149/northcarolina/9781469638973.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Molly A. Warsh, author
University of Pittsburgh