Irene María Vicente Martín


Marcel Bataillon Fellow

Irene Vicente Martín is a historian specialising in the political, social and cultural development of colonial Brazil, as well as in the role of American cities as intermediate nodes between local contexts and local conjunctures, and scenarios for the expression of group identities and collective resistance during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

Associated with the AMERMAD-UC3M and BRASILHIS-USAL groups, she graduated in History from the University of Salamanca (2014) and completed her PhD at the European University Institute of Florence with the thesis Holding the Empire at Bay: The Elites of Salvador da Bahia and the Hispanic Monarchy in Brazil, 1581-1640 (2022). During her pre-doctoral training, she carried out research stays at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa, the Universidade de São Paulo and the University of Leiden. She has been a postdoctoral researcher at the Mauritshuis Museum in The Hague (2021-2), and at Eurac Research in Bolzano (2023).

Her research has led her to examine the effects of Portugal's incorporation into the Hispanic Monarchy on the Luso-American territories, the articulation of imperial policies through the family networks of the inhabitants of Brazil, and the circulation of news and ideas between Europe and America across the Atlantic.



Irene Mª Vicente Martín's project is an innovative research project that aims to analyse how the stereotypes and imaginaries created in Europe to characterise the Brazilian cities of Olinda, Salvador, Filipéia and Rio de Janeiro influenced the activities and attitudes of their colonial inhabitants during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

Current historiography considers that the Habsburg creation of urban stereotypes, conceived as categories that simplify the complex and expedite judgements of affinity, reached its peak during the period when Portugal and its empire were under the rule of the Hispanic Monarchy (1580-1640). Thus, the objectification and adjectivisation of Portuguese cities, now ruled by the Habsburgs, in Portugal, Asia and Africa, became widespread in Europe, and the same happened with those existing in Brazil, a process yet to be explored due to the widespread consensus of being a "de-urbanised" region and of minor importance to the empire.

In this sense, the STEREOCITIES project argues that Brazilian cities experienced a process of stereotyping influenced by various cultural trends in Europe, and that the power relations created through the reactions of those affected to stereotypes contributed significantly to Brazil's transformation from a peripheral region to a central stage in the Habsburg imperial agenda in the early seventeenth century.



- 2023 (in press). “Governing at a Distance: the encounter between Bahian Society and Teles Barreto, Philip II’s Governor-General in Brazil (1583-1587)”, in Peter Edwards (ed.), The Crown, Government and Regional Elite in Early Modern Europe, Leiden; Boston: Brill.

- 2023. Salvador de Bahia 1625. La “Jornada del Brasil” en las noticias, las relaciones y el teatro, Madrid, Doce Calles Ediciones–co-authored with José Manuel Santos Pérez and Enrique Rodrigues-Moura.

- 2022. From Florence to Goa and Beyond: Essays in Early Modern Global History, Florence EUI Working Papers–co-edited with Tilmann Kulke.

- 2020. “«Toda la ciudad se altera»: sociedad imperial y política local en Salvador de Bahía tras la Restauración de 1625 (c. 1625-1640)”, in José Mauel Santos Pérez, et al (eds). Redes y circulación en Brasil durante la Monarquía Hispánica (1580-1640), Madrid, Sílex, pp. 367-402.

- 2019. “Fortifying the city of Salvador: municipal constraint or ‘informal imposition’? State-building and long-distance governance in early 17th century Brazil (c. 1604)”, Anais de História de Além-Mar, 2019, 20 (1), pp. 249-278.



Fronteras fluidas en las Américas: Movilidades e imaginarios modernos

14/05/2022 - 0 min 0 s - Espagnol