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The theoretical foundation of Native American serfdom and African Slavery in the Spanish Vice-royalties during the Sixteen Century

Grant number: 18/06397-3
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2018
Effective date (End): November 30, 2021
Field of knowledge:Humanities - History - History of America
Principal researcher:Carlos Alberto de Moura Ribeiro Zeron
Grantee:Manuel Mendez Alonzo
Home Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


The proposed research will investigate the contributions of authors who lived in the Indies and participated in the debate on the rights and slavery of Native Americans and Africans in Spanish America. For this reason, I must review the debates on natural rights and slavery in Spanish philosophy of the proposed timeline. After this, I will provide a fresh approach on the ideas of Vasco de Quiroga, Bartolomé de las Casas, Bartolomé de Albornoz, Tomás Mercado and Alonso de Sandoval, scholars very important on the debate of natural rights of Native Americans and African slaves, for this reason they made hash critiques in the context to the enslavement of non-European and its use for the development of the economy in the Spanish colonies. I will compare the differences ways in which the Spanish forced Africans and Native Americans to perform slave work. This will require a comparative study of the Atlantic slave trade and the legal and philosophical mechanisms that the Spanish law counted to justify slavery and another forms of serfdom. If the Spanish scholars lacked of good reasons to explain the conquest of Native American commonwealths; in the case of Africans, there was a political and legal framework that justify their enslavement.

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