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"Empire, classical history and world discoveries. Uses of classical scholarship in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Portuguese expansion." (EMPIRECLASICS)
Start date: Jun 1, 2012, End date: May 31, 2014 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"This project will investigate the uses of classical antiquity in the discovery, perception and incorporation of the extra-European realities of the early modern Portuguese empire. It will analyse the phenomenon from a markedly broad perspective, comparing it to the Spanish, British, and Dutch experiences overseas. The project will analyse the presence and meanings of classical referents in both written and visual representations of worlds overseas (historical accounts, geographic descriptions, images of “conquerors” “natives” and ultramarine territories...). Three specific areas of interest will be examined. The first is the utilization of the classics for anthropological description, and for reflecting on social institutions and customs. The second concerns their use as a narrative model, a pattern for personal action, and a rhetorical resource. The third is the influence of classical sources in developing an overarching political and historical interpretation of the discoveries, and the ways in which this contributed to a reassessment of the Portuguese and European past and historical consciousness."
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