Monographs and Edited Volumes by BCDSS Members

- 2024 -

RESIST! illuminates 500 years of anti-colonial resistance in the Global South and tells about colonial violence and oppression and its continuities. The exhibition and the book about it pay homage to the people who resisted in the most diverse ways and whose stories have hardly ever been told or heard to this day. The works of over 40 contemporary artists from the Global South and the diaspora tell stories of rebellion and war, violence and trauma as well as survival and resilience. Their stories are complemented by historical documents and numerous objects from the Rautenstrauch-Joest-Museum collection, silent witnesses of moments of anti-colonial resistance. 

Resist! The Art of Resistance
© Walther König

Pia Wiegmink and Jutta Wimmler: Special Issue - Beyond Slavery and Freedom (Journal of Global Slavery)

"The special issue Beyond Slavery and Freedom? makes concrete suggestions how we might move beyond this binary and why we should do so. The introduction argues that the conceptual pair slavery/freedom is deeply entwined with narratives of modernity and progress and has shaped scholarship in very diverse fields. On the basis of empirical research from the Bonn Center for Dependency and Slavery Studies (BCDSS), we identify six possible pathways of thematically and methodologically moving beyond slavery/freedom that the contributions to the special issue address: 1) investigating forms of dependency that are not usually defined as slavery, 2) paying attention to semantic fields that are closely connected to this binary but not usually understood in relation to it, 3) highlighting the connection between (political, institutional) power and dependency, 4) engaging with post-slavery periods and experiences, 5) problematizing the challenges of identifying slavery in non-written records, and 6) underscoring the voice of actors." (Jutta Wimmler and Pia Wiegmink, "Beyond Slavery and Freedom? An Introduction." Journal of Global Slavery 9(1–2): 1–16.)


Journal of Global Slavery
© Journal of Global Slavery

Christian Laes: Disability and Healing in Greek and Roman Myth

Disability and Healing in Greek and Roman Myth takes its readers to stories, in versions known and often unknown. Disabilities and diseases are dealt with from head to toe: from mental disorder, over impairment of vision, hearing and speaking, to mobility problems and wider issues that pertain to the whole body. This Element places the stories in context, with due attention to close reading, and pays careful attention to concepts and terminology regarding disability. It sets Graeco-Roman mythology in the wider context of the ancient world, including Christianity. One of the focuses is the people behind the stories and their 'lived' religion. It also encourages its readers to 'live' their ancient mythology.

Disability and Healing
© Cambridge University Press

- 2023 -

Trevor Burnard: Writing the History of Global Slavery

This Element shows that existing models of global slavery derived from sociology and modelled closely on antebellum American slavery being normative should be replaced a global slavery that is less American and more global. It argues that we can understand the global history of slavery if we connect it more closely to another important world institution – empires in ways that historicise the study of history as an institution with a history that changes over time and space. Moreover, we can learn from scholars of modern slavery and use more than we do the enormous proliferation of usable sources about the lives, experiences and thoughts of the enslaved, from ancient to modern times, to make these voices of the enslaved crucial drivers of how we conceptualise and describe the varied kinds of global slavery in world history. This title is also available as Open Access on Cambridge Core.


© Cambridge University Press

Christian G. De Vito, Adam S. Fagbore and Eric Vanhaute (eds.): Special Issue - Punishing Workers, Managing Labour

What is the historical role of punishment in the management of labour? This is the central question of this Special Issue. In order to answer this question, the contributors look into the histories of blinded slaves in ancient Mesopotamia, flogged peasant farmers in pharaonic Egypt, convict officers in the prisons of colonial India, and blacklisted factory workers in the nineteenth-century United States, as well as rural workers in the medieval Frankish kingdoms, soldiers and domestic servants in early modern Scandinavia, working children in colonial Bolivia, textile workers in Lombardy, enslaved Africans in Brazil and the US, and household workers in Late Imperial China. The introduction suggests ways to compare the role of punishment in the management of labour across space and time. The editors claim that the effective management of labour required the systematic differentiation of the workforce; to that end, the imposition of diversified forms of punishment did not merely reflect existing labour distinctions, but also contributed to their creation.


© Cambridge University Press

Frank J. Cirillo: The Abolitionist Civil War Immediatists and the Struggle to Transform the Union

The astonishing transformation of the abolitionist movement during the Civil War proved enormously consequential both for the cause of abolitionism and for the nation at large. Drawing on a cast of famous and obscure figures from Frederick Douglass to Moncure Conway, Frank J. Cirillo’s The Abolitionist Civil War explores how immediate abolitionists contorted their arguments and clashed with each other as they labored over the course of the conflict to create a more perfect Union. Cirillo reveals that immediatists’ efforts to forge a morally transformed nation that enshrined emancipation and Black rights shaped contemporary debates surrounding the abolition of slavery but ultimately did little to achieve racial justice for African Americans beyond formal freedom.


 Jennifer Leetsch , Frederike Middelhoff and Miriam Wallraven (eds.): Configurations of Migration Knowledges – Imaginaries – Media

In a global context in which phenomena of migration play an ever more important role, the ways individual and collective experiences of migration are covered in the media, represented in culture, and interpreted are coming under increasing scrutiny. This book explores the complex relationship between creative engagements with migration on the one hand, and forms of knowledge about migration on the other, inquiring into the ways aesthetic practices are intertwined with knowledge structures. The book responds to three pressing research questions. First, it analyses how fictional texts, plays, images, films, and autobiographical accounts mediate forms of knowledge about migration. Second, it identifies the ways in which specific media approaches and aesthetic practices influence people’s ideas about and awareness of migratory experiences in a globalized world. Finally, it delineates how historical perspectives help us compare epistemological approaches to migration in the nineteenth, twentieth, and early twenty-first centuries, and how these approaches affect the way critics and the public responded to and thought about different forms of (forced) migration. Bringing together renowned scholars working across disciplines, it investigates the possibilities and limitations that different media present when it comes to reflecting on, communicating, and imagining experiences of migration, and how these representations in turn create ways of knowing and understanding migration.


Claudia Bernardi, Viola Franziska Müller, Biljana Stojić, and Vilhelm Vilhelmsson (eds.): Moving Workers Historical Perspectives on Labour, Coercion and Im/Mobilities

This book explores how workers moved and were moved, why they moved, and how they were kept from moving. Combining global labour history with mobility studies, it investigates moving workers through the lens of coercion.

The contributions in this book are based on extensive archival research and span Europe and North America over the past 500 years. They provide fresh historical perspectives on the various regimes of coercion, mobility, and immobility as constituent parts of the political economy of labour.

Moving Workers shows that all struggles relating to the mobility of workers or its restriction have the potential to reveal complex configurations of hierarchies, dependencies, and diverging conceptions of work and labour relations that continuously make and remake our world. 


Berlin/Boston: De Gruyter, 2023. 

Moving Workers
© De Gruyter

Katja Makhotina, Falk Bretschneider, Natalia Muchnik, and Martin Aust (eds.): Monastery and prison - Places of Confinement in Western Europe and Russia from the Middle Ages to the Modern Age

Are there many similarities between voluntary confinement in a monastery and forced imprisonment? To what extent were the different detention and punishment practices characteristic of medieval monastic communities adopted by modern penal institutions? What insights can be drawn from a comparison of Western and Eastern  European experiences? The authors of this German-Russian-French publication, which was generously funded by the BCDSS, seek answers to these questions. The first part is devoted to monasteries as multifunctional places of detention, the second to the integration of the prison into urban space, and the third to the discourses and practices of deprivation of liberty in different temporal, national or institutional contexts. The contributions to this anthology do not constitute a history of progress from the Dark Ages to enlightened modernity: rather, the authors analyse individual spaces and modes of behaviour, comparing the Russian experience with the Western European one and finding  unexpected commonalities.

Damian A. Pargas and Juliane Schiel (eds.): The Palgrave Handbook of Global Slavery throughout History

This open access handbook takes a comparative and global approach to analyze the practice of slavery throughout history. To understand slavery - why it developed, and how it functioned in various societies – is to understand an important and widespread practice in world civilizations. With research traditionally being dominated by the Atlantic world, this collection aims to illuminate slavery that existed in not only the Americas but also ancient, medieval, North and sub-Saharan African, Near Eastern, and Asian societies. Connecting civilizations through migration, warfare, trade routes and economic expansion, the practice of slavery integrated countries and regions through power-based relationships, whilst simultaneously dividing societies by class, race, ethnicity and cultural group. Uncovering slavery as a globalizing phenomenon, the authors highlight the slave-trading routes that crisscrossed Africa, helped integrate the Mediterranean world, connected Indian Ocean societies and fused the Atlantic world. Split into five parts, the handbook portrays the evolution of slavery from antiquity to the contemporary era and encourages readers to realize similarities and differences between various manifestations of slavery throughout history. Providing a truly global coverage of slavery, and including thematic injections within each chronological part, this handbook is a comprehensive and transnational resource for all researchers interested in slavery, the history of labor, and anthropology.


London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2023. 

The Palgrave Handbook of Global Slavery
© Palgrave Macmillan

Winfried Schmitz: Leges Draconis et Solonis (LegDrSol) - Eine neue Edition der Gesetze Drakons und Solons mit Übersetzung und historischer Einordnung

[Leges Draconis et Solonis (Leg DrSol) - A New Edition of the Laws of Dracon and Solon with Translation and Historical Classification]

Prof. Dr. Winfried Schmitz provides a new edition of all fragments of the laws of Dracon and Solon with the original Greek and Latin text, a German translation and a detailed commentary as well as a historical classification. The new edition reveals new interpretations for many fragments of the laws. This allows a fundamentally new historical assessment of the legislators Drakon and Solon and their legislation and a more accurate record of the political, economic and social problems in Athens during this period. The edition gives a new perspective on the phase of the writing of ancient law in the late 7th and early 6th centuries B.C.E. - in response to pressing problems.

Laws on homicide and the establishment of a tyranny, provisions on admission to political office, on procedural law and permissible self-power, on the calendar of sacrifices and religious offenses, on cowardice before the enemy, on sexual offenses, on acts of violence, theft, and insult, on contract law, and on family law are covered. The law fragments are of central importance also for the debt law in Solonian times. A small part of the approximately 150 fragments of Solonian laws deals with regulations on slaves and free servants.

Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag, 2023.

Leges Draconis et Solonis
© Franz Steiner Verlag

Karoline Noack and Ana María Presta (eds.): Repensando la sociedad colonial - Perspectivas, abordajes y desadíos de los enfoques multidisciplinares - Perú y Nueva España, siglos XVI-XVIII 

[Rethinking Colonial Society - Perspectives, Approaches and Challenges of Multidisciplinary Approaches - Peru and New Spain, 16th-18th Centuries]

Repensando la sociedad colonial (edited by Prof. Dr. Karoline Noack and Prof. Dr. Ana María Presta) analyzes the colonial period in its social diversity, contextualizes the historical moment in which it emerged, and conceptualizes this era in terms of its epistemological variables. The colonial difference that appears among them created racialized subjects. Figures such as that of the noble savage are extraordinarily enduring, and despite the constantly changing temporal and spatial contexts, they can still be activated to this day. The questions that colonial authorities explored as part of the imagination of society begin by inquiring who the "Indians" were and how they could ultimately be integrated. From multidisciplinary perspectives, the contributions present case studies for a new understanding of the colonial period, which also includes insights into the present.

Bonn: V&R unipress, 2023. 

Repensando la sociedad colonial
© V&R unipress

Eva Marie Lehner: Taufe - Ehe - Tod - Praktiken des Verzeichnens in frühneuzeitlichen Kirchenbüchern

[Baptism - Marriage - Death - Practices of Indexing in Early Modern Church Records]

In the 16th century, Protestant and Catholic pastors began to register their parishioners. On the basis of baptisms, weddings and funerals, they not only recorded important church rituals, but also created the first comprehensive civil registers: church registers. Dr. Eva Marie Lehner examines for the first time the beginnings of church accounting in the 16th and 17th centuries. In doing so, she investigates the possible reasons why church staff systematically began documenting personal data. In addition, it shows which categories (gender, status, religion, marital status, body, salvation, etc.) were related to each other in order to identify persons. The research work makes visible differences between pre-modern and modern categories of personal registration as well as their fundamental changeability and negotiability. Thus, Taufe - Ehe - Tod offers an incentive to classify current discussions about personal data and identity in a longer historical development and to better understand.

Göttingen: Wallstein Verlag, 2023. 

Taufe - Ehe - Tod
© Wallstein Verlag

Christian Laes and Ville Vuolanto (eds.): A Cultural History of Youth in Antiquity

This first volume of A Cultural History of Youth examines the ambiguity of youth in the ancient world, depictions of youth in literature, adult views of the young, agency and experience of young people, and the broader social contexts in which the cultural histories of the ancient world played out. Overall, this volume offers a dynamic account of youth in the ancient world. providing a detailed study of the 500BCE-500CE period, and allowing readers to trace representations and enactments of youth across time. While still concentrating on the Graeco-Roman world, this collection provides a more global approach to antiquity than previous work in the field.

Richly illustrated with images of statues, sculptures, friezes, and artefacts, this volume offers a detailed study of youth in ancient culture and covers its interactions with themes such as Concepts of Youth; Spaces and Places; Education and Work, Leisure and Play; Emotions; Gender, Sexuality and the Body; Belief and Ideology; Authority and Agency; War and Conflict; and Towards a Global History.

London: Bloomsbury, 2023.

A Cultural History of Youth in Antuiquity
© Bloomsbury

Béla Bodó: Black Humor and the White Terror

Black Humor and the White Terror examines political humor as a reaction to the lost war, the post-war chaos, and antisemitic violence in Hungary between 1918 and 1922. While there is an increased body of literature on Jewish humor as a form of resistance and a means of resilience during the Holocaust, only a handful of studies have addressed Jewish humor as a reaction to physical attacks and increased  discrimination in Europe during and after the First World War. The majority of studies have approached the issue of Jewish humor from an anthropological, cultural, or linguistic perspective; they have been interested in the humor of lower- or lower-middle-class Jews in the East European shtetles before 1914.

On the other hand, this study follows a historical and political approach to the same topic and focuses on the reaction of urban, middle-class, and culturally assimilated Jews to recent events: to the disintegration of the Dual Monarchy, the collapse of law and order, increased violence, the reversal of Jewish emancipation and the rise of new and more pernicious antisemitic prejudices. Prof. Dr. Béla Bodó sees humor not only as a form of entertainment and jokes as literature and a product of popular culture, but also as a heuristic device to understand the world and make sense of recent changes, as well as a means to defend one’s social position, individual and group identity, strike back at the enemy, and last but not least, to gain the support and change the hearts and minds of non-Jews and neutral bystanders. Unlike previous scholarly works on Jewish resistance during the  Holocaust, this study sees Budapest Jewish humor after WWI as a joint adventure: as a product of urban and Hungarian culture, in which Jewish not only played an important role but also cofounded. Finally, the book addressed the issue of continuity in Hungarian history, the “twisted road to Auschwitz”: whether urban Jewish humor, as a form of escapism, helped to desensitize the future victims of the Holocaust to the approaching danger, or it continued to play the same defensive and positive role in the interwar period, as it had done in the immediate aftermath of the Great War.

London: Routledge, 2023.

Black Humor and the White Terror
© Routledge

- 2022 -

Julia Hillner: Helena Augusta - Mother of the Empire

Helena Augusta: Mother of the Empire and the  mother of the first Christian emperor Constantine, is best known for the last two years of her life, when she traveled around the Eastern Mediterranean, and for something that, in all likelihood, she did not do: the discovery of the True Cross relic. Using a vast range of sources, from textual and epigraphical to visual, and an array of archaeological insights from the places Helena lived at or visited, this book instead investigates Helena in the round, taking seriously the ruptures in her life course and her changing positions within the imperial and female networks of her time. Prof. Dr. Julia Hillner's book follows Helena’s life, the majority of which was spent in the third century and during the period of the tetrarchy, and explores the different ways in which she was commemorated after her death, up to the late sixth century. It wrestles Helena’s historical significance back from medieval legends, to demonstrate the development and purpose of her role within Constantinian politics and to chart her meandering impact on the image and behavior of the Christian empress in the late Roman world.

New York: Oxford University Press, 2022.

Oxford University Press
© Oxford University Press

Pia Wiegmink: Abolitionist Cosmopolitanism - Reconfiguring Gender, Race, and Nation in American Antislavey Literature

Abolitionist Cosmopolitanism redefines the potential of American antislavery literature as a cultural and political imaginary by situating antislavery literature in specific transnational contexts and highlighting the role of women as producers, subjects, and audiences of antislavery literature. Prof. Dr. Pia Wiegmink draws attention to locales, authors, and webs of entanglement between texts, ideas, and people. Perceived through the lens of gender and transnationalism, American antislavery literature emerges as a body of writing that presents profoundly reconfigured literary imaginations of freedom and equality in the United States prior to the Civil War.

Leiden: Brill, 2022.

EAAS 4 Wiegmink.jpg
© Pia Wiegmink

Julia Hillner: Prison, Punishment and Penance in Late Antiquity

Prison, Punishment and Penance in Late Antiquity traces the long-term genesis of the sixth-century Roman legal penalty of forced monastic penance. The late antique evidence on this penal institution runs counter to a scholarly consensus that Roman legal principle did not acknowledge the use of corrective punitive confinement. Prof. Dr. Julia Hillner argues that forced monastic penance was a product of a late Roman penal landscape that was more complex than previous models of Roman punishment have allowed. She focuses on invigoration of classical normative discourses around punishment as education through Christian concepts of penance, on social uses of corrective confinement that can be found in a vast range of public and private scenarios and spaces, as well as on a literary Christian tradition that gave the experience of punitive imprisonment a new meaning. The book makes an important contribution to recent debates about the interplay between penal strategies and penal practices in the late Roman world.

© Julia Hillner

Viola Franziska Müller: Escape to the City - Fugitive Slaves in the Antebellum Urban South

In the urban South, they found shelter, work, and other survival networks that enabled them to live in slaveholding territory, shielded and supported by their host communities in an act of collective resistance to slavery. While all fugitives risked their lives to escape slavery, those who fled to southern cities were perhaps the most vulnerable of all. Not dissimilar to modern-day refugees and illegal migrants, runaway slaves that sought refuge in the urban South were antebellum America's undocumented people, forging lives free from bondage but without the legal status of freed people. Spanning from the 1810s to the start of the Civil War, Dr. Viola Franziska Müller's Escape to the City reveals how urbanization, work opportunities, and the interconnectedness of free and enslaved Black people in each city determined how successfully runaways could remain invisible to authorities.

Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 2022.

Escape to the City.jpeg
© Viola Franziska Müller

Christoph Antweiler: Anthropologie im Anthropozän - Theoriebausteine für das 21. Jahrhundert

One Planet – Many Cultures: Towards Geoanthropology

We live in the Anthropocene: an epoch in which human actions are the driver of planetary change. This is not only climate change, but an irreversible transformation of the entire surface of the earth in a way that is unprecedented in the planet’s history.

The Anthropocene is the focal point of numerous current key debates in the sciences and in global politics. They address fundamental questions about the relationship between societies and material environments, and about the place of humans in nature. What potential does the concept of the Anthropocene hold for anthropological syntheses? What is the significance of questions and knowledge from cultural and social sciences for the discussion of the Anthropocene? Looked at from an ethnological perspective, where are the blind spots in existing theories? What might a transdisciplinary synthesis, a new geoanthropology, look like? This book offers a critical and transdisciplinary overview.

Geoanthropology: the very word caused a conceptual earthquake that put the deep temporal dimension of human life on the agenda. What we require is an anthropology of the whole human being: and of humanity as a whole. Anthropology must include not only cultural and biotic, but also geological dimensions of being human: Geoanthropology.

We must learn to think not just in global, but in planetary terms.

The subject is too important existentially, and too rich anthropologically, to misuse the word as a mere fashionable verbal accessory, or to build terminological sand castles that will soon be washed away by the (rising) tide. The debates about the Anthropocene demonstrate clearly that a truly contemporary anthropology should take not only a global stance, but look at the past and the future from an evolutionary perspective.

Darmstadt: WBG 2022.

Theoriebausteine für das 21. Jahrhundert.png

Christian G. De Vito and Viola F. Müller (eds.): Punishing the Enslaved - Slavery, Labor, and Punitive Practices in the Americas, 1760s–1880

This special issue explores how enslaved workers of African descent were punished in the Americas. It studies punishment inside and beyond the criminal justice system, investigating its legitimation and implementation in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Collectively, the articles address three main themes: the relationship between the enslaved, the slaveholders, and the state; the shifts in modalities of governance across space and time; and the entanglement of modes of punishment across geographies. This perspective illustrates the broader implications of punishment for issues of labor supply and labor control, and helps us understand how slavery was produced and reproduced in different, yet connected, regions of the Americas.

An interview with Sidney Chalhoub is available via open access.

Journal of Global Slavery, Special Issue: Vol. 7/ 1-2 (Mar 2022), Brill.

Cover-Journal of global slavery.png
© Brill

Paola Revilla Orías, Paulo Cruz Terra and Christian G. De Vito (eds.): Worlds of Labour in Latin America

This book reflects the development of Latin American labour history across broad geographical, chronological and thematic perspectives, which seek to review and revisit key concepts at different levels. The contributions are closely linked to the most recent trends in Global Labour History and in turn, they enrich those trends. 

Here, authors from Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru and Spain take a historical and sociological perspective and analyse a series of problems relating to labour relations. The chapters weave together different periods of Latin American colonial and republican history from the vice-royalties of New Spain (now Mexico) and Peru, the Royal Audiencia de Charcas (now Bolivia), Argentina and Uruguay (former vice-royalty of Río de La Plata) and Chile (former Capitanía General).

Berlin, Boston: De Gruyter Oldenbourg 2022.

Worlds of Labour-Coverbild.jpg
© De Gruyter Oldenbourg

- 2021 -

Paola A. Revilla Orías: Entangled Coercion - African and Indigenous Labour in Charcas (16th–17th Century)

This book investigates the phenomenon of slavery and other forms of servitude experienced by people of African or indigenous origin who were taken captive and then subjected to forced labor in Charcas (Bolivia) in the 16th and 17th centuries.

De Gruyter Oldenbourg 2021.

Entangled Coercion_Coverbild.jpg
© De Gruyter Oldenbourg

Michael Zeuske (ed.): Alexander von Humboldt - Diario Habana 1804

This is the diary that Humboldt began in Havana in 1804. In Cuba it is called "el diario perdido" (the lost diary) because it only became known with this edition. The book is the first publication of the diary with the Humboldtian title "Isle de Cuba. Antilles en général" in Spanish. Humboldt began writing it in the house of Juan Luis de la Cuesta, the richest slave trader in Havana around 1800. Cuesta was Humboldt's and Bonpland's host in Cuba for months. From him Humboldt obtained hard figures on Cuba's slave trade. Humboldt had observed slave ship landings and the local slave market himself, as well as the lives and work of slaves during visits to sugar plantations of Havana's elite. He also researched the costs of slavery. Humboldt wrote all this and much more, geographical, botanical, geological, biological, sociological, demographic information and judgements about the "culture" (general culture, theatre, architecture) and agriculture of Havana and Cuba in his diary. He later used the diary to compile his world-famous book Essay on the Island of Cuba (1826).
The original of the diary can be found today in the "Berlinka" collection in the Jagiellonian Library in Kraków (Poland)".

Alexander von Humboldt’s Havanna travel diary, edited by BCDSS principal investigator Michael Zeuske, is available to download as PDF.

Ediciones Bachiller 2021.

Titelblatt Diario Habana 1804 Zeuske.jpg
© Ediciones Bachiller

Pia Wiegmink, Katrin Horn, Leopold Lippert, and Ilka Saal (eds.): American Culture as Transnational Performance - Coomons, Skills, Traces.

This book investigates transnational processes through the analytic lens of cultural performance.

Structured around key concepts of performance studies––commons, skills, and traces––this edited collection addresses the political, normative, and historical implications of cultural performances beyond the limits of the (US) nation-state. These three central aspects of performance function as entryways to inquiries into transnational processes and allow the authors to shift the discussion away from text-centered approaches to intercultural encounters and to bring into focus the dynamic field that opens up between producer, art work, context, setting, and audience in the moment of performance as well as in its afterlife. The chapters provide fresh, performance-based approaches to notions of transcultural mobility and circulation, transnational cultural experience and knowledge formation, transnational public spheres, and identities’ rootedness in both specific local places and diasporic worlds beyond the written word.

London. Routledge 2021.

Wiegmink, Pia_American Cultures.jpg
© Routledge

Sinah Kloß, Dietrich Boschung, Thierry Greub, and Thoralf Schröder (eds.): Kontextwechsel und Bedeutung

The meaning of material artifacts that remain unchanged in their form can change through spatial references and through the change of context. Staged by spatial association, artifacts can become fixed in content or accentuated or acquire new meaning. Artefacts that are fixed in content can interpret a space, sometimes an entire landscape, in a new and specific way through their placement. In this process, various manifestations of contextual change can be found. In this volume, spatial, historical, topographical, and discursive context changes are analyzed in case studies and their meanings and intersections are critically reflected upon. For example, artifacts from antiquity show how pictorial works were deliberately removed from their original contexts of installation and reintegrated, and this could be done according to or contrary to their older use. For the modern era, it can be shown that knowledge systems can be established and stabilized through the collection and arrangement of artifacts. This raises questions about the use of objects created specifically for travel and transfer to other cultural spheres, or about the role of objects brought by migrants as markers of identity.

Leiden. Brill 2021.

Sammelband_SInah Kloß.jpg
© Brill

Birgit Ulrike Münch and Wiebke Windorf: Transformer le Monument Funéraire - Möglichkeitsräume künstlerischer Überbietung des französischen Monuments im 18. und 19. Jahrhundert

The thoroughly original French sculpture of the 18th and 19th centuries has so far too often been discussed only in the context of an illustrated history of mentality, thereby failing to recognize its independence. Certainly, the weighty assessment of Erwin Panofsky, who attested to a lack of innovative spirit in funerary sculpture after Bernini, also contributed to this. This volume, on the other hand, seeks to explore the "spaces of possibility" that contribute to a deeper understanding of memorial culture and its transformations, and in doing so argues for overcoming the rigid division into pre- and post-revolutionary art. In addition to the spaces of the monument, which were subject to change around 1800 due to the change of the place of burial, the contributions ask about the different public spheres of these transformations, about the innovative power of the "enlightened" (funerary) monument and its new as well as resilient functional assignments.

Heidelberg. arthistoricum 2021.

Münch, Birgit_Transformer le Monument.jpg
© arthistoricum

Kristina Großmann: Human–Environment Relations and Politics in Indonesia - Conflicting Ecologies

This book analyses how people in Kalimantan, the Indonesian part of the island of Borneo, relate to their environment in different political and historical contexts.

Drawing on multi-sited ethnographic studies of Dayak people, the indigenous inhabitants of Borneo, the book examines how human-environment relationships differ and collide. These "conflicting ecologies" are based on people's relation to the "environment", which encompasses the non-human realm in the widest sense, including forests, rivers, land, natural resources, animals and spirits. The author argues that relationality and power are decisive factors for the understanding and analysis of peoples’ ecologies. The book integrates different theoretical approaches, sheds light upon the environmental transformation taking place in Indonesia, as well as the social exclusion it entails, and highlights the conceptual shortcomings of universalistic concepts of human-environment relations.

An exploration of evolving human-nature relations, this book will be of interest to academics studying political ecology, environmental anthropology, sustainability sciences, political sciences, development studies, human geography, human ecology, Southeast Asian studies, and Asian studies.

London; New York. Routledge 2021.

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© Routledge

Martin Aust: Erinnerungsverantwortung - Deutschlands Vernichtungskrieg und Besatzungsherrschaft im östlichen Europa 1939–1945

Germany's responsibility towards Poland, Belarus, Ukraine and Russia to remember it's NAZI violence continues. This volume sheds light on the developments that led to the crimes, traces the emergence of the culture of remembrance, and gives contemporary witnesses a voice.

Bonn. bpb 2021.

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© book cover: bpb

Reinhard Zöllner: Wahrheitseffekte und Widerstreit - Die "Trostfrauen" und ihre Denkmäler

In the early 1930s, the Japanese military established a system of brothels, called "comfort stations", for the use of its soldiers and recruited tens of thousands of women as military prostitutes, called "comfort women". The majority of these women were recruited from the populace of Japan's colonies, in particular Korea, or occupied territories in China and South East Asia. Public discourse about the legality and morality of this system started in 1936 and intensified during the 1990s when Korean and other victims broke their silence.

München. iudicium 2021.

© iudicium

James Harland: Ethnic Identity and the Archaeology of the aduentus Saxonum - A Modern Framework and its Problems

For centuries, archaeologists have excavated the soils of Britain to uncover finds from the early medieval past. These finds have been used to reconstruct the alleged communities, migration patterns, and expressions of identity of coherent groups who can be regarded as ethnic 'Anglo-Saxons'. Even in the modern day, when social constructionism has been largely accepted by scholars, this paradigm still persists.

This book challenges the ethnic paradigm. As the first historiographical study of approaches to ethnic identity in modern 'Anglo-Saxon' archaeology, it reveals these approaches to be incompatible with current scholarly understandings of ethnicity. Drawing upon post-structuralist approaches to self and community, it highlights the empirical difficulties the archaeology of ethnicity in early medieval Britain faces, and proposes steps toward an alternative understanding of the role played by the communities of lowland Britain – both migrants from across the North Sea and those already present – in transforming the Roman world.

Amsterdam. Amsterdam University Press 2021.

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© Amsterdam University Press

Stefan Brink: Thraldom - A History of Slavery in the Viking Age

Nordic slavery is an elusive phenomenon, with few similarities to the systematic exploitation of slaves in households, mines, and amphitheaters in the ancient Mediterranean or the widespread slavery at American plantations during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Scandinavians in the early Middle Ages lived in a society foreign to us, characterized by different and shifting social statuses. A person could be at once socially respected and unfree. It was possible to hand oneself over as a slave to someone else in exchange for protection and food. One could be sentenced temporarily to enslavement for some offense but later purchase his manumission. Young men could enter into a kind of "contract" with a king or chieftain to join his retinue, accepting his authority, patronage, and jurisdiction, while at the same time making a quick social elevation.

Slavery was widespread all over Europe during the early Middle Ages and Scandinavians, as Stefan Brink illustrates in this book, became a major player in the northern slave trade. However, the Vikings were not particularly interested in taking slaves to Scandinavia; instead, their "business model" seems to have been to raid, abduct, and then sell captured people at major slave markets. Their goal was not people but silver. Using a wide variety of source materials, including archaeology, runes, Icelandic sagas, early law, place names, personal names, and not least etymological and semantic analyses of the terminology of slaves, Thraldom provides the most thorough survey of slavery in the Viking Age.

New York & Oxford. Oxford Uni Press 2021.

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© Oxford Uni Press

Wolfram Kinzig: Christian Persecution in Antiquity

Translated from German by Markus Bockmuehl

For centuries into the Common Era, Christians faced social ostracism and suspicion from neighbors and authorities alike. At times, this antipathy erupted into violence. Following Christ was a risky allegiance: to be a Christian in the Roman Empire carried with it the implicit risk of being branded a traitor to cultural and imperial sensibilities. The prolonged experience of distrust, oppression, and outright persecution helped shape the ethos of the Christian faith and produced a wealth of literature commemorating those who gave their lives in witness to the gospel.

Wolfram Kinzig, in Christian Persecution in Antiquity, examines the motivations and legal mechanisms behind the various outbursts of violence against Christians, and chronologically tracks the course of Roman oppression of this new religion to the time of Constantine. Brief consideration is also given to persecutions of Christians outside the borders of the Roman Empire. Kinzig analyzes martyrdom accounts of the early church, cautiously drawing on these ancient voices alongside contemporary non-Christian evidence to reconstruct the church’s experience as a minority sect. In doing so, Kinzig challenges recent reductionist attempts to dismantle the idea that Christians were ever serious targets of intentional violence. While martyrdom accounts and their glorification of self-sacrifice seem strange to modern eyes, they should still be given credence as historical artifacts indicative of actual events, despite them being embellished by sanctified memory.

Newly translated from the German original by Markus Bockmuehl and featuring an additional chapter and concise notes, Christian Persecution in Antiquity fills a gap in English scholarship on early Christianity and offers a helpful introduction to this era for nonspecialists. Kinzig makes clear the critical role played by the experience of persecution in the development of the church’s identity and sense of belonging in the ancient world.

Waco, Texas. Baylor University Press. 2021.

See full content here.

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Lisa Hellman and Edmond Smith (eds.): Global Border Making and Securitisation in the Early Modern World

In the early modern period, borders could be mutable, imprecise, and represent far more than the lines on a map or delineation between sovereign states. In this essay, as well as introducing the eight articles that form the body of the special edition, we set out the key ideas that serve as a common theme and thread across this collected body of work. First, the idea of ‘securitisation’ is examined, and consideration given to how it has been used by both scholars in International Relations and more recently in historical studies. Second, we consider the concept of ‘border making’ and explore how re-examining our preconceptions about the idea of borders can change the way we examine important questions related to state and imperial formation, identity, and the meaning of community. Finally, the possibilities for using borders and security as entry points into asking new questions about ‘emotional global history’ are discussed, and how this could be useful for thinking more carefully about the tensions, frictions and entanglements, as much as connection and exchange, that are at the core of globalising processes that
have done so much to shape the world as we know it today.

London. Journal of the British Academy, volume 9, supplementary issue 4, 2021
Available as Open Source Online Edition

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Rebekka von Mallinckrodt, Josef Köstlbauer und Sarah Lentz (eds.): Beyond Exceptionalism - Traces of Slavery and the Slave Trade in Early Modern Germany, 1650–1850

While the economic involvement of early modern Germany in slavery and the slave trade is increasingly receiving attention, the direct participation of Germans in human trafficking remains a blind spot in historiography. This edited volume focuses on practices of enslavement taking place within German territories in the early modern period as well as on the people of African, Asian, and Native American descent caught up in them.

Oldenburg. De Gruyter. 2021
Available as Open Accesd Online Edition

Beyond Exceptionalism
© De Gruyter Oldenbourg

Mariana Armond Dias Paes: Esclavos y tierras entre posesión y títulos - La construcción social del derecho de propiedad en Brasil (siglo XIX)

The book examines the social construction of legal relations between people and things in Brazil between the 1830s and 1890s. To this end, the research focuses on 74 legal proceedings of the Court of Appeals of Rio de Janeiro discussing dominion and possession over slaves and land. The first chapter assesses the contours that the legal category of possession acquired in 19th-century Brazil. It analyzes the role of social recognition in the configuration of situations of possession. This chapter also describes how interpretations of theories of possession delegitimized acts of land usage employed by certain groups – namely: indigenous and agregados – as possessory acts. The second chapter analyzes the debates over domain titles and the process of document production undertaken by parties in legal proceedings. It also highlights the role of judicial demarcations in this process of production and shows how courts often disregarded titles issued by married women. The chapter closes with a discussion of the new configurations that debates over titles acquired in the last decades of the century. The third chapter focuses on cases of illegal and irregular acquisitions of slaves and land. The detailed analyses of the court cases presented in the book show that during the 19th century the construction of property rights in Brazil built upon the pre-existing structures of ius commune, whose categories were re-signified.

Frankfurt am Main: Max Planck Institute for Legal History and Legal Theory 2021.
Global Perspectives on Legal History 17. Availabe as Open Access Online Edition

Bethany J. Walker & Abdelkader Al Ghouz (eds.): History and Society during the Mamluk Period (1250–1517) - Studies of the Annemarie Schimmel Institute for Advanced Study III

Abstract: This volume is a collection of research essays submitted by fellows of the Annemarie Schimmel Kolleg, an Advanced Center of Research in Mamluk Studies. It covers three themes, which correspond to the research agenda of the final three academic years of the Annemarie Schimmel Kolleg. These were: environmental history, material culture studies, and im/mobility. The aim of the contributions is to overcome the disciplinary boundaries of the field and to engage in scholarly debates in Ottoman Studies, European history, archae-ology and art history, and even the natural sciences.

Göttingen. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht / Bonn University Press 2021.

© Bonn University Press

Caroline Laske: Law, Language and Change - A Diachronic Semantic Analysis of Consideration in the Common Law

Abstract: In this monograph, Caroline Laske traces the advent of consideration in English contract law, by analysing the doctrinal development, in parallel with the corresponding terminological evolution and semantic shifts between the fourteenth and nineteenth centuries. It is an innovative, interdisciplinary study, showcasing the value of taking a diachronic corpus linguistics-based approach to the study of legal change and legal development, and the semantic shifts in the corresponding terminology. The seminal application in the legal field of these analytical methodologies borrowed from pragmatic linguistics goes beyond the content approach that legal research usually practices and it has allowed for claims of semantic change to be objectified. This ground-breaking work is pitched at scholars of legal history, law & language, and linguistics.

Leiden. Brill 2021.

Stephan Conermann & Michael Zeuske (eds.): The Slavery / Capitalism Debate Global - From "Capitalism and Slavery" to Slavery as Capitalism

The role of the slavery-based plantation economy in the development of capitalism has preoccupied many generations of scholars. This is related to a number of very important questions, the answers to which have a lasting impact on narratives about modernity and the ways it emerged in what is often called the early modern times. Was slavery-based production good for the initial accumulation of vast fortunes that became the precondition of modern capitalism, but ultimately incompatible with a capitalism based on the marketization of labour that is “freely” offered and demanded? Or did the history of slavery and other forms of forced and coerced labour, regardless of the moral scruples that became public for religious reasons (in England and the USA) or out of a predominantly secular-humanist motivation (in France), accompany capitalism until the social counterforces of decolonization were strong enough to shake off this form of particularly crass exploitation (even if not inconsiderable remnants persist to this day)?

Leipzig, Universitätsverlag 2020
Download full content

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© Leipziger Universitätsverlag

Wolfram Kinzig & Jochen Sautermeister (eds.) with Natalie Thies: Rausch - Ekstase zwischen Bacchanal und Cognitive Enhancement

Abstract: Since the beginning of time, human beings have consumed intoxicating drinks and substances. In addition, there are meditative techniques in almost all religions with which one can put oneself in a trance-like or ecstatic state and thus approach the divine. Nevertheless, intoxication, trance and ecstasy are taboo in many societies, unless they are experienced in a limited social space such as nightclubs or declared culturally productive in art, music or literature. The right to intoxication is controversially discussed among lawyers, pedagogues and physicians. Proponents like to point to the religious basis of intoxication, opponents to the moral duty of sobriety. A lecture series at the University of Bonn examined the ambivalence of "intoxication" from an interdisciplinary perspective - as a religious, psychological, social, legal and cultural-historical phenomenon. The results of this sensational lecture series are documented in the present volume. With contributions by Clemens Albrecht, Christoph Antweiler, Andreas Bell, Walter Bruchhausen, Robert Feustel, Dorothee Gall, Albert Gerhards, Tobias Janz, Jörg Kinzig, Wolfram Kinzig, Alexandra Philipsen, Irmgard Rüsenberg, Markus Saur, Jochen Sautermeister, Detlef Siegfried, Christoph Schreier, Birgitta Sträter, Nathalie Thies.

Baden Baden: Ergon 2021.

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- 2020 -

Heike Raphael-Hernandez and Pia Wiegmink (eds.): German Entanglements in Transatlantic Slavery

Germany has long entertained the notion that the transatlantic slave trade and New World slavery involved only other European players. Countering this premise, this collection re-charts various routes of German participation in, profiteering from, and resistance to transatlantic slavery and its cultural, political, and intellectual reverberations. Exploring how German financiers, missionaries, and immigrant writers made profit from, morally responded to, and fictionalized their encounters with New World slavery, the contributors demonstrate that these various German entanglements with New World slavery revise preconceived ideas that erase German involvements from the history of slavery and the Black Atlantic. Moreover, the collection brings together these German perspectives on slavery with an investigation of German colonial endeavors in Africa, thereby seeking to interrogate historical processes (or fantasies) of empire-building, colonialism, and slavery which, according to public memory, seem to have taken place in isolation from each other. The collection demonstrates that they should be regarded as part and parcel of a narrative that ingrained colonialism and slavery in the German cultural memory and identity to a much larger extent than has been illustrated and admitted so far in general discourses in contemporary Germany.

London: Routledge 2020.

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© Routledge

Claudia Jarzebowski, Daniela Hacke, and Hannes Ziegler (eds.): Matters of Engagement - Emotions, Identity, and Cultural Contact in the Premodern World

By drawing on a broad range of disciplinary and cross-disciplinary expertise, this study addresses the history of emotions in relation to cross-cultural movement, exchange, contact, and changing connections in the later medieval and early modern periods.

All essays in this volume focus on the performance and negotiation of identity in situations of cultural contact, with particular emphasis on emotional practices. They cover a wide range of thematic and disciplinary areas and are organized around the primary sources on which they are based. The edited volume brings together two major areas in contemporary humanities: the study of how emotions were understood, expressed, and performed in shaping premodern transcultural relations, and the study of premodern cultural movements, contacts, exchanges, and understandings as emotionally charged encounters. In discussing these hitherto separated historiographies together, this study sheds new light on the role of emotions within Europe and amongst non-Europeans and Europeans between 1100 and 1800.

New York: Routledge 2020.

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© Routledge

Bethany J. Walker & Abdelkader Al Ghouz (eds.): Living with Nature and Things - Contributions to a New Social History of the Middle Islamic Periods

This edited volume represents the research results of two international conferences organized and sponsored by the Annemarie Schimmel Kolleg: "Environmental Approaches in Pre-Modern Middle Eastern Studies" and "Material Culture Methods in the Middle Islamic Periods". The following work consists of three parts, which correspond to the themes of the aforementioned conferences (Contributions to Environmental History and Material Culture Studies) and a third which bridges the gap between the two approaches (Practice and Knowledge Transfer). The present contributions cover a wide range of such topics as urban pollution, local perceptions of weather, rural estate economy, Sufi understandings of nature and the body and mind, houses and socialization, text and gardens, local know-how and interdependence in medieval Syrian agriculture, crop selection and the medieval agricultural economy.

Göttingen. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht / Bonn University Press 2020.

© Bonn University Press

Jutta Wimmler & Klaus Weber (eds.): Globalized Peripheries Central Europe and the Atlantic World, 1680-1860

Globalized Peripheries examines the commodity flows and financial ties within Central and Eastern Europe in order to situate these regions as important contributors to Atlantic trade networks. The early modern Atlantic world, with its flows of bullion, of free and unfree labourers, of colonial produce and of manufactures from Europe and Asia, with mercantile networks and rent-seeking capital, has to date been describedalmost entirely as the preserve of the Western sea powers. More recent scholarship has rediscovered the dense entanglements with Central and Eastern Europe. Globalized Peripheries goes further by looking beyond slaveryand American plantations. Contributions look at the trading practices and networks of merchants established in Central and Eastern Europe, investigate commodity flows between these regions and the Atlantic world, and explore the production of export commodities, two-way migration as well as financial ties. The volume uncovers new economic and financial connections between Prussia, the Habsburg Empire, Russia, as well as northern and western Germany with the Atlantic world. Its period coverage connects the end of the early modern world with the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. More Information

Woodbridge: Boydell & Brewer 2020.

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Stephan Conermann & Gül Şen (eds.): Slaves and Slave Agency in the Ottoman Empire

Slaves and Slave Agency in the Ottoman Empire offers a new contribution to slavery studies relating to the Ottoman Empire. Given the fact that the classical binary of "slavery" and "freedom" derives from the transatlantic experience, this volume presents an alternative approach by examining the strong asymmetric relationships of dependency documented in the Ottoman Empire. A closer look at the Ottoman social order discloses manifold and ambiguous conditions involving enslavement practices, rather than a single universal pattern. The authors examine various forms of enslavement and dependency with a particular focus on agency, i. e. the room for maneuver, which the enslaved could secure for themselves, or else the available options for action in situations of extreme individual or group dependencies. 

Ottoman Studies / Osmanistische Studien, Vol. 7.
Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht / Bonn University Press 2020.

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Lennart Gilhaus, Imogen Herrad, Michael Meurer & Anja Pfeiffer (eds.): Transgression und Devianz in der antiken Welt

Norms facilitate and regulate social coexistence. Particular actions are designated and sanctioned as transgressive as the result of a process of negotiation. Transgressions and deviance may both stabilize and undermine established norms. The papers in this collection analyze select case studies from Classical Greece to Imperial Rome with the aim to generate impulses for the debate on norm and deviance in ancient societies. They focus on transgressive acts in, respectively, the cult of Artemis, the tragedian Agathon, and the writings of Cicero, Lucan and Tacitus. More Information

Metzler: Berlin 2020.

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Katharina Gröne, Boris Braun, Sinah Kloß, Martin Schüller & Michael Bollig (eds.): Fairer Handel - Chancen, Grenzen, Herausforderungen

This volume brings together the current state of research in the humanities and social sciences in the German-speaking world on the topic of fair trade. Despite an increased need for ethically responsible consumption, it has so far been discussed primarily in consumer research and hardly at all in the humanities and social sciences. Nine contributions, written by authors from very different disciplines, examine fair trade and its alternatives as a cultural phenomenon, analyze its value chains, and discuss its social, economic, and environmental impacts in a controversial way. In addition, there is a special focus on the Global South, which decisively expands previous research. More Information

[Fair Trade: Chances, Limits, Challenges] oekom Verlag: Berlin 2020.

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© oekom

Adrian J. Pearce, David G. Beresford-Jones & Paul Heggarty (eds.): Rethinking the Andes-Amazonia Divide - A Cross-disciplinary Exploration

Nowhere on Earth is there an ecological transformation so swift and so extreme as between the snow-line of the high Andes and the tropical rainforest of Amazonia. The different disciplines that research the human past in South America have long tended to treat these two great subzones of the continent as self-contained enough to be taken independently of each other. Objections have repeatedly been raised, however, to warn against imagining too sharp a divide between the people and societies of the Andes and Amazonia, when there are also clear indications of significant connections and transitions between them.

Rethinking the Andes–Amazonia Divide: A Cross-disciplinary Exploration brings together archaeologists, linguists, geneticists, anthropologists, ethnohistorians and historians to explore both correlations and contrasts in how the various disciplines see the relationship between the Andes and Amazonia, from deepest prehistory up to the European colonial period. The volume emerges from an innovative programme of conferences and symposia conceived explicitly to foster awareness, discussion and co-operation across the divides between disciplines. Underway since 2008, this programme has already yielded major publications on the Andean past, including Lenguas y Sociedades en el Antiguo Perú (2010, PUCP), History and Language in the Andes (2011, Palgrave Macmillan) and Archaeology and Language in the Andes (2012, Oxford University Press).  More Information

 UCL Press: London 2020.

© UCL Press

- 2019 -

Béla Bodó: The White Terror Antisemitic and Political Violence in Hungary, 1919–1921

The White Terror was a movement of right-wing militias that for two years actively tracked down, tortured, and murdered members of the Jewish community, as well as former supporters of the short-lived Council Republic in the years following World War I. It can be argued that this example of a programme of virulent antisemitism laid the foundations for Hungarian participation in the Holocaust.

Given the rightward shift of Hungarian politics today, this book has a particular resonance in re-examining the social and historical context of the White Terror.

London: Routledge 2021.

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Reuven Amitai & Stephan Conermann (eds.): The Mamluk Sultanate from the Perspective of Regional and World History - Economic, Social and Cultural Development in an Era of Increasing International Interaction and Competition

[= Mamluk Studies, Vol. 17]
Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht / Bonn University Press 2019

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Stephan Conermann, Albrecht Fuess & Stefan Rohdewald (eds.): Transottomanica - Osteuropäisch-osmanisch-persische Mobilitätsdynamiken - Perspektiven und Forschungsstand

[Transottomanica: Eastern European-Ottoman-Persian Mobility Dynamics. Perspectives and State of Research.]
[= Transottomanica. Osteuropäisch-osmanisch-persische Mobilitätsdynamiken,. Vol. 1]
Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht / Bonn University Press 2019.

© V & R

Julia Hillner (ed.): Clerics in Exile - Networks, Space and Memory

Special Issue of Studies in Late Antiquity 3(3).

Mariana Armond Dias Paes: Escravidão e Direito - o estatuto jurídico dos escravos no Brasil oitocentista, 1860–1888

The book draws on an extensive archival research on legal doctrine and legal procedures filled before the Court of Appeals of Rio de Janeiro during the last decades of Brazilian slavery. The main argument of the book is that slavery law was not a "law of exception" but was fully in accordance with liberal legal principles and civil law norms. Slavery was not incompatible with liberalism. In order to sustain this argument, the chapters analyze issues such as legal personality and civil incapacity of slaves; the extent of their right of action; the limitations imposed on their capacity to acquire property and make contracts; the issue of slave family; the role of possession in determining people's statuses; the influence of master's will in shaping legal interpretations of civil law; and the existence of legal categories of people in between slavery and freedom.

[Slavery and Law: The Legal Status of Slaves in Nineteenth-Century Brazil, 1860–1888].
São Paulo 2019. 

If you would like to know more about the book, a video is available here.

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Karina Kellermann, Alheydis Plassmann & Christian Schwermann: Criticising the Ruler in Pre-Modern Societies - Possibilities, Chances, and Methods

[= Macht und Herrschaft, Vol. 6]
Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht / Bonn University Press, 2019.

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Mader, Christian, Tim Kerig, Katerina Ragkou, Michaela Reinfeld, and Tomas Zachar (eds.): Social Network Analysis in Economic Archaeology - Perspectives from the New World

Understanding connectivity is a key to understanding decision-making. Social network analysis offers formalized ways of describing and thus comparing attributes of actors related to each other in networks. Using quantitative spatial data, social network analysis promises deeper insights into how social positions are achieved and developed, as mirrored in the ancient flows of materials.
The volume collects contributions of an international conference on network analysis in archaeology, held in 2015 at the University of Cologne as part of the DFG Research Training Group 1878 ‘Archaeology of Pre-Modern Economies’.

Studien zur Wirtschaftsarchäologie 3. Bonn: Habelt Verlag

© Habelt Verlag

Wolfram Kinzig: Christenverfolgung in der Alten Kirche

Persecution of Christians in the Old Church.
[Beck Wissen 2898]
Munich: C.H. Beck 2019.

Michael Zeuske: Handbuch Geschichte der Sklaverei - Eine Globalgeschichte von den Anfängen bis heute [Handbook on the History of Slavery - A Global History from the Beginnings to the Present Day]

Michael Zeuske has completely revised and updated his standard work for the second edition as well as significantly expanded it. The history of slavery is systematically presented in this handbook for the first time in a global historical perspective. The starting point is an understanding of slavery as a capitalization of human bodies. It analyzes the most diverse forms, types and developmental epochs of slavery and human trafficking systems – on all continents, oceans and seas, in their respective names and historical-cultural context. On a broad empirical basis, a history of slavery is thus created, which began around 10,000 BC and continues to this day.  

2 Volumes.
Berlin & Boston 2019 (2nd edition).

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- 2018 -

Michael Zeuske:  Sklaverei - Eine Menschheitsgeschichte von der Steinzeit bis heute [Slavery - A History of Humankind from the Stone Age to the Present Day]

The term "slavery" brings to mind African workers on plantations in the Americas. But abduction and forced labor have been part of the human condition virtually from the moment people settled down, occurring all over the globe. In this comprehensive account Michael Zeuske takes us through the entire history of slavery in all parts of the world. He writes about child slaves in China, Ottoman elite slaves, and the so-called "court moors" ("Hofmohren") at the court of Prussian kings. His account includes our own times, where people are still being treated like goods – from forced prostitutes to child soldiers.

Stuttgart 2018.

Reviews on
Review by Tagesspiegel, Berlin

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Michael Zeuske: Esclavitud - Una Historia de la Humanidad.

[Slavery: A History of Humankind from the Stone Age to the Present Day].
Pamplona 2018.

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- 2017 -

Stephan Conermann (ed.): Sklaverei in der Vormoderne - Beispiele aus außereuropäischen Gesellschaften. Dhau — Jahrbuch für außereuropäische Geschichte

The contributions to this edited volume explore forms of slavery and asymmetric dependencies in non-European pre-modern societies. Covering a wide range of societies, all have in common that their focus is on epochs prior to western influence and intervention which culminated in colonial order. Instead this collected volume wishes to provide access to emic concepts of the respective regions, which have not yet been overlaid by colonial conceptions.

While Anna Kollatz presents a study on Mughal India, Michael Zeuske focuses on China and Veruschka Wagner on the Ottoman Empire. Antje Gunsenheimer examines the phenomenon of slavery in Aztec society and Jeannine Bischoff deals with dependent peasants in Tibet.In a didactic article, Christian Grieshaber emphasizes the potential of the subject of Chinese slavery in history lesson. 

[Slavery in the Premodern Era: Examples from Non-European Societies. Dhau — Yearbook for Non-European History].
Saarbrücken 2017.

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Suraiya Faroqhi: Slavery in the Ottoman World - A Literature Survey. Vol. 4.

After decades of relative neglect, Ottoman slavery in recent years has become a favoured topic among historians. New sources especially on the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries have become available, due to the progressive cataloguing of the Ottoman archives, especially the newly instituted secular Nizamiye courts providing evidence of the difficult road toward the abolition of slavery.

As in the later centuries of the empire's existence, Ottoman slaves were so often female the topic has also interested historians of Ottoman women. Given the "literary turn" in historiography worldwide and the critical questioning of – mostly but not exclusively – European primary sources, the reports of liberated former slaves have also attracted historians. Rather than studying slavery per se, this group of scholars investigates perceptions of "the other" and the ways in which ex-slaves who had managed to return to their home countries negotiated patrons and publishers in their attempts to get their stories into print.

The result is a bibliography, dating largely from recent years, with divergent directions and discourses. Perhaps the time has come to pull together the different threads and survey the results, emphasizing at every turn how provisional they really are. On this occasion, we will take the opportunity of identifying questions and sources, which, at least in the opinion of the present author, have not received the attention they deserve.

Otto Spies Memory Lecture. Eds.: Stephan Conermann & Gül Şen.
Berlin 2017.

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Winfried Schmitz (ed.): "Die Sklaverei setzen wir mit dem Tod gleich" - Sklaven in globalhistorischer Perspektive. Beiträge der Tagung vom 14. Januar 2016 in der Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Literatur

["We Equate Slavery with Death": Slaves Seen from the Perspective of Global History. Proceedings from a Colloquium organized by the Academy of Sciences and Literature, Mainz, January 14, 2016].
Mainz 2017.

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- 2016 -

Winfried Schmitz (ed.): Antike Sklaverei zwischen Verdammung und Beschönigung - Kolloquium zur Rezeption antiker Sklaverei vom 17. bis zum 20. Jahrhundert

[Ancient Slavery between Condemnation and Glorification: Colloquium on the Reception of Ancient Slavery from the 17th to the 20th century].
Stuttgart 2016.

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Wolfgang Kunkel & Martin Schermaier: Römische Rechtsgeschichte

[A History of Roman Law]. 14th, revised edition. Cologne & Vienna 2015.  

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- 2015 -

Michael Zeuske: Sklavenhändler, Negreros und Atlantkikkreolen - Eine Weltgeschichte des Sklavenhandels im atlantischen Raum

[Slave Traders, Negreros and Atlantic Creoles: A World History of Slave Trade in the Atlantic Area]. Berlin & Boston 2015.  

© DeGruyter

- 2014 -

Winfried Schmitz: Die griechische Gesellschaft - Eine Sozialgeschichte der archaischen und klassischen Zeit

[Greek Society: A Social History of the Archaic and Classical Period]. Heidelberg 2014.

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- 2013 -

Stephan Conermann: Mamlukica - Studies on the History and Society during the Mamluk Era /  Studien zur Geschichte und Gesellschaft der Mamlukenzeit

Göttingen 2013.

© V&R unipress

Michael Zeuske: Handbuch Geschichte der Sklaverei - Eine Globalgeschichte von den Anfängen bis heute

[Handbook on the History of Slavery: A Global History from the Beginnings to the Present Day]. Berlin & Boston 2013.

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© DeGruyter
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