Viewing the world as a whole through the lens of global history

A HARBINGER OF TIMES TO COME

1688: A GLOBAL HISTORY BY JOHN E. WILLS JR. (2001) 348 PAGES ★★★★☆

Indigenous slaves work the mountain of silver at Potosi, Bolivia, in this 1590 print. Thousands of Natives and, later, African slaves dug the silver out of this mine that enriched the Spanish Empire and provided the capital for European nations to spread around the world and build their own empires. Image: Fine Art America

GLOBAL HISTORY VIEWED THROUGH THE LENS OF INTERESTING PERSONALITIES

  • Father Vincenzo Coronelli, a Venetian friar who founded the world’s first geographic society
  • A cloistered Hieronymite nun named Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, a Mexican who “is recognized today as one of the great poets in the history of the Spanish language”
  • An English buccaneer named William Dampier, whose beautifully written journal provides some of the earliest glimpses of the Aborigenes of Australia
  • Georg Everard Rumpf or Rumphius, a “brilliant and obsessed German in the service of the [Dutch East India Company],” which affords us “a sense of the Spice Islands in 1688”
  • “An adventurer of Greek origin who called himself Constantine Phaulkon [who] had risen to great power as director of the [Thai] kingdom’s finances and foreign trade

GAINING PERSPECTIVE ON GLOBAL HISTORY

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Prof. John E. Wills Jr. Image: Irene Fertik — USC Dornsife Magazine

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