Empire of Eloquence: The Classical Rhetorical Tradition in Colonial Latin America and the Iberian World

Stuart M. McManus

The global reach of the Spanish and Portuguese empires prompted a remarkable flourishing of the classical rhetorical tradition in various parts of the early modern world. Empire of Eloquence is the first study to examine this tradition as part of a wider global renaissance in Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa, with a particular focus on the Iberian world. Spanning the sixteenth to the early nineteenth centuries, the book argues that the classical rhetorical tradition contributed to the ideological coherence and equilibrium of this early modern Iberian world, providing important occasions for persuasion, legitimation and eventual (and perhaps inevitable) confrontation. Drawing on archival collections in thirteen countries, Stuart M. McManus places these developments in the context of civic, religious and institutional rituals attended by the multi-ethnic population of the Iberian world and beyond, and shows how they influenced public speaking in non-European languages, such as Konkani and Chinese.

Stuart M. McManus is Assistant Professor of World History at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and an Affiliated Scholar of the Faculty of Law’s Center for Transnational and Comparative Law. His published work ranges widely across Hispanic and global history from antiquity to the present, and has been supported by prestigious fellowships from Princeton, Brown, Yale and SIFK at the University of Chicago.

Series: Ideas in Context

Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 2021
ISBN: 9781108909181
Pages: xiv, 300 pp.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108909181


List of Figures
List of Abbreviations

Introduction: An Empire of Eloquence in a Global Renaissance

1. The Foundations of the Empire of Eloquence

2. Philip IV’s Global Empire of Eloquence

3. A Japanese Cicero Redivivus

4. Indo-Humanist Eloquence

5. Centers, Peripheries and Identities in the Empire of Eloquence

6. The Republic of Eloquence


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