Combining religious studies, historical connections and literary classics, students will learn about the global reach of Iberian (Portuguese and Spanish) culture in Asia and Africa. For centuries, the monarchs of Portugal and Spain reigned from the Low Countries to the Philippines and from Mexico to Macau in South China. Catholic priests from Spain and Portugal traveled and proselyted in Japan, China and India, becoming agents in the globalization of Christianity and the spread of their languages – Portuguese and Spanish. There are more Spanish and Portuguese speakers outside of Iberia today than inside the peninsula. Iberian traditions of Catholicism have also spread, becoming an important case-study of religious syncretism and diversification in an era of nation-states and international borders. Nine of the twelve countries visited by Semester-at-Sea students interacted with the Iberian kingdoms. Examples include colonial rule in Macau (an hour’s ferry ride from Hong Kong), Inquisition trials and Jews of the Cochin, India synagogue, the Cape of Good Hope, rounded and named by the Portuguese where we will stop at Cape Town, South Africa and the Portuguese fort at Elmina, Ghana, a World Heritage site because of the thousands of Africans shipped from here to the Americas in the Slave Trade. Even, Casablanca in Morocco has a Spanish name, although the Portuguese controlled the city, followed by the French, while today it is Morocco’s largest city and chief port.
Field WorkCountry: Hawaii, United States
Day: 1 - Hilo - 17 January
We will tour the Big Island with historians of Hawaii who write about world history and local legacies, especially in Hilo, Honokaa, Kamuela, Puukohola. Students will observe models and practices of world history, seeing global patters in local settings. Having the specific lens of Iberian examples in Hawaii will provide a limiting factor to an infinitely interesting field. Academic Objectives:
- Model the “Iberia in . . .” assignments for the other in-port assignments
- Gain awareness of the paths of globalization, methods of world history
- Learning history through everyday experiences