Colonial Latin America played an integral role in the creation of the early modern world. The paradigmatic example of this is the late sixteenth-century silver trade between Latin America and East Asia, in which indigenous and Afro-descendant miners extracted and amalgamated silver from the mines of Mexico and the Andes and Iberian officials organized its transport to China and Japan, where demand for silver outpaced that of gold. Iberian merchants used profits from bimetallic trades to buy and sell people and goods as they navigated around the Cape of Good Hope, to Europe, and back to the Americas, where they began the silver cycle anew. Since the 1990s, when Dennis Flynn and Arturo Giráldez mapped these macroeconomic trends and circumnavigational practices, this is generally how we have understood Latin America's role in the early modern global order. Iberian Empires and the Roots...

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