Jesuits and Race examines the role that the Society of Jesus played in shaping Western understandings about race and explores the impact the Order had on the lives and societies of non-European peoples throughout history. Jesuits provide an unusual, if not unique, lens through which to view the topic of race given the global nature of the Society of Jesus and the priests' interest in humanity, salvation, conversion, science, and nature.
Jesuits' global presence in missions, imperial expansion, and education lends insight into the differences in patterns of estrangement and assimilation, as well as enfranchisement and coercion, with people from Africa, Asia, and the Americas. The essays in this collection bring together case studies from around the world as a first step toward a comparative analysis of Jesuit engagement with racialized difference. The authors hone in on labor practices, social structures, and religious agendas at salient moments during the long span of Jesuit history in this fascinating volume.
Nathaniel Millett is an associate professor of history at Saint Louis University. He is the author of The Maroons of Prospect Bluff and Their Quest for Freedom in the Atlantic World.
Charles H. Parker is a professor of history at Saint Louis University. His publications include Global Calvinism: Conversion and Commerce in the Dutch Empire, 1600-1800; Global Interactions in the Early Modern Age, 1400-1800; and Faith on the Margins: Catholics and Catholicism in the Dutch Golden Age.