The Indies of the Setting Sun: How Early Modern Spain Mapped the Far East as the Transpacific West

Ricardo Padr贸n (Author)

Product Details

University of Chicago Press
Publish Date
July 29, 2020
5.8 X 8.9 X 1.0 inches | 1.2 pounds

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About the Author

Ricardo Padr贸n is associate professor of Spanish at the University of Virginia and the author of The Spacious Word: Cartography, Literature, and Empire in Early Modern Spain, also published by the University of Chicago Press.


"The Indies of the Setting Sun is an original and thoughtful study of the 'invention' and subsequent reinventions of the Pacific Ocean as part of the Spanish empire. Padr贸n brings to this project the same lucid, elegant prose and methodology that characterized his earlier monograph, and again he provides an argument supported by a careful study of sources employing the best historical approaches, closely contextualized reading, and an expansive definition of cartography. This is a much needed intervention, highlighting the importance of Spanish Asia in the history of Spanish imperial expansion."--Mar铆a M. Portuondo, author of The Spanish Disquiet: The Biblical Natural Philosophy of Benito Arias Montano
"The Indies of the Setting Sun examines the way that Spanish knowledge about the South Sea--now known as the Pacific Ocean--was developed. Challenging the historical idea that Magellan's circumnavigation had established Europeans' understanding of the Americas as divided from Asia by the vast Pacific, Padr贸n reveals an 'alternative European cartography' that persisted across the sixteenth century. In this odd parallel universe, America was merely the forecourt to Asia, and the South Sea was a small basin within the larger Indies, then Spain's overseas empire. This is the first book I've ever read that colors the larger 'Indies' so vividly."--Barbara Mundy, author of The Death of Aztec Tenochtitlan, the Life of Mexico City