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Battlefield Diplomacy and Empire-building in the Indo-Pacific World during the Seven Years’ War

  • Kristie Patricia Flannery

Abstract

In 1762, at the height of the Seven Years’ War, Britain’s Royal Navy and East India Company mobilised a motley army of Europeans, South Asians, and Africans and invaded Manila, the capital of Spain’s Asian Empire. The Black Legend blinded the British to the complexities of the real balance of power in the Philippines. The Spanish colonial government quickly raised militias of Spaniards, Mexicans, Chinese mestizos, and indigenous Filipinos who ultimately defeated the British. The loyalties of the soldiers of many nations who converged in Manila could not be taken for granted. This article examines the ongoing bargaining that took place between imperial officials and soldiers, revealing the crucial role that negotiation played in eighteenth-century empire building beyond the Atlantic. War transformed fighting men of many nations into important historical actors who determined the outcome of the Seven Years’ War in the Indo-Pacific world.

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Copyright

Footnotes

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Kristie Patricia Flannery is a PhD student in the Department of History at the University of Texas at Austin. Her dissertation “Building Spain’s Asian Empire in the Age of Revolutions, 1749-1812” is a social and political history of imperial legitimacy based on extensive multi-site archival research. Versions of this article were workshopped at the Fifth International History Graduate Student Intensive at the University of Sydney, the Summer Institute on Contested Global Landscapes at Cornell University, and the American Historical Association’s annual conference. The author would like to thank those who generously provided helpful feedback on earlier drafts in these forums, as well as Jorge Cañizares Esguerra, Bruce Cruikshank, Ruth de Llobert, and the anonymous reviewers recruited by Itinerario.

Footnotes

References

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AMNArchivo Museo Naval, Madrid
BNEBiblioteca Nacional de España
POPapers of Sir George Pocock, The Huntington Library
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Battlefield Diplomacy and Empire-building in the Indo-Pacific World during the Seven Years’ War

  • Kristie Patricia Flannery

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