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Environment and History

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Environment and History

Winds of Colonisation: The Meteorological Contours of Spain's Imperium in the Pacific 1521-1898

Greg Bankoff

Environment and History 12(2006): 65-88

This paper examines the relationship between prevailing weather systems and colonialism in the context of Spanish possessions in the Pacific from Magellan till the end of the nineteenth century. It argues that any historical appreciation of Hispanic colonialism and culture would be incomplete without due consideration of the role meteorological phenomena played, both at the macro-level in terms of the form and extent of empire and at the more micro-level as manifest in the daily experience of communities.

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