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date: 09 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Borderlands arise where two or more spheres of hegemony that claim jurisdiction over resources and people limit each other and often overlap, where two or more groups of people with different cultures and modes of life intermingle, and where the prevailing ecological conditions challenge particular forms of human life. Drawing on theorists from historical sociology, geography, anthropology, and spatial history, the editors and contributors to this volume understand borderlands as diffuse spaces of contestation, adaptation, and admixture that are produced through historical processes in specific times and places. Providing a broad approach to borderlands applicable to time periods predating the modern nation-state and areas not standing at the limits between two constituted polities, this perspective addresses indigenous America and the character of early Iberian empires. We advance the interrelated notions of successive frontiers and internal borderlands to address these territorial and cultural processes over time and in different continental and maritime regions.

Keywords: Frontier, Contact zone, Cultural landscapes, Imperial spheres, Territorial borders, Indigenous borderlands, Maritime, fluvial networks

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