Dos Republicas: An Architecture of Settler Colonialism Without Treaties

Mar 24, 2021, 4:30 pm4:30 pm
Event Description

Dos republicas - or the principle of two republics - is a well-known ideology underpinning Spanish colonialism in the Americas. Some scholars cite dos republicas as key to the distinction between Spanish and Anglophone colonialisms, which tended to rely on treaty-making - a distinction more recently cast as highlighting the Spanish inclination for extractivism vs. the Anglophone propensity for eliminationism. By Extension, the reasoning has gone, Spanish colonialisms in the Americas were something other than settler. Drawing on research focused on Maya experiences of Spanish colonialism on the Yucatan Peninsula, I suggest that by tracing dos republicas as both an organizing ideology an an infrastructural architecture we can see strong argument for extending the settler colonial analytic to former Spanish colonies. Doing so is not simply a move to apply a theory developed in an Anglophone dominated field to a non-Anglo context; rather, it serves to make the settler colonial analytic more robust.

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  • Princeton American Indian and Indigenous Studies Working Group
  • Program in American Studies