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Slaves, Mestizos and Pedlars: Adjusting to Early Colonialism on Kisar Island, Maluku
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Cultural Sciences. (Concurrences)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4758-191X
2019 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Maluku, sometimes known euphemistically as the Spice Islands, has its niche in world history as the producer of cloves and nutmeg, and consequently the goal of early Iberian seafarers which were later superseded by the Dutch VOC. However, the southern regions of Maluku, an area of small to middle-sized islands stretching over 1,500 kilometres, has received limited attention by academic research even within Indonesia. Difficult to access from the outside, the islands did not produce commercially significant spices or valuable minerals and were not subjected to intense colonial rule until late. Politically they were not part of larger archipelagic kingdoms but traditionally fragmented in village-based polities, which formally acknowledged European suzerainty from about the 17th century. Southern Maluku has consequently been labelled "the forgotten islands". Nevertheless the islands were neither isolated or lacking in valuable products, nor did they lack historical agency in relations with the outside world. This is highlighted through a study of Kisar, a small island to the north of Timor which bonded the VOC after 1662. A study of early Kisarese-Dutch relations in the late 17th century shows how the VOC post in Banda took advantage of the strategical location of Kisar to anchor its authority in this part of the East Indies, and to secure deliveries of slaves. However, it also shows how the local pedlar elite took advantage of the Dutch presence, and the formation of a mestizo group on the island, to increase its own prerogatives in the region.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. p. 1-21
Keywords [en]
Kisar, Maluku, Indonesia, VOC, colonialism
National Category
Humanities and the Arts
Research subject
Humanities, History
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-90061OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-90061DiVA, id: diva2:1370078
Conference
ICAS 11, Leiden, 16-19 July 2019
Projects
Concurrences
Note

Paper presented at the panel Dutch Colonial Legacies, ICAS 11, 18 July 2019

Available from: 2019-11-13 Created: 2019-11-13 Last updated: 2019-11-13

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf