After completing research in Mexico and Spain, Christoph Rosenmüller earned his PhD in Latin American history from Tulane University in 2003. He is currently an assistant professor in the Department o...
Click here for more information.
Patrons, Partisans, and Palace Intrigues: The Court Society of Colonial Mexico 1702—1710
Palace intrigues and clientelism drove politics at the viceregal
court of colonial Mexico. By carefully reconstructing social networks
in the court of Viceroy Duke of Alburquerque (1702–1710), Christoph
Rosenmüller reveals that the Duke presided over one of the most
corrupt viceregal terms in Mexican history.
was appointed by Spain's King Philip V at a time when expanding state
power was beginning to meet with opposition in colonial Mexico. The
Duke and his retainers, though seemingly working for the Crown,
actually built close alliances with locals to thwart the reform
efforts emanating from Spain. Alburquerque collaborated with
contraband traders and opposed the secularization of Indian parishes.
He persecuted several local craftsmen and merchants, some of whom
died after languishing in jail, accusing them of treason to bolster
his own credentials as a loyal official. In the end, however, the
dominant clique at the royal court in Madrid sought revenge.
Alburquerque was forced to pay an unheard-of indemnity of 700,000
silver pesos to regain the king’s favour. Dealing with a topic and
period largely ignored by historiography, Rosenmüller demonstrates
the vast patronage power of the viceroy at the historical watershed
between the expiring Habsburg dynasty and the incoming Bourbon
rulers. His analysis shows that precursors of the Bourbon reforms and
the struggle for Mexican independence were already at play in the
early eighteenth century.
University of Calgary Press
B&W photos, map, tables Latin American and Caribbean series, no. 6U.S. Distribution
288 pp., 6 " x 9 ", April