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An ARTery of EMPIRE. Conquest, Commerce, Crisis, Culture and the Panamanian Junction (1513-1671). (ArtEmpire)

The project is funded by the European Research Council as a Consolidator Grant (StG).

ArtEmpire analyzes a convergence of peoples and goods from four continents on the Isthmus of Panama during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It brings together archaeologists, geneticists, historians, anthropologists and computer engineers to produce new knowledge about pre-Hispanic as well as early modern individuals. Data from sources rarely considered together enable the team to explore new methodological approaches to such questions as the conquest of America, the seventeenth-century crisis, or the biological and cultural impact of early globalization.

Universidad Pablo de Olavide

The project aims to recover the agency and experiences of the Africans, Americans and Europeans whose lives ended on an artery of Spanish imperial expansion.

The project, hosted by UPO, aims to:

  • Explore the relationship between data from disciplines as diverse as history, archaeology, genetics and paleobotany.
  • Design a new information system to cross this information and make it available to the general population.
  • Expand the sample of pre-Hispanic and colonial individuals from Panama la Vieja through excavation campaigns in two funerary contexts.
  • Analyze the impact of the European conquest of this area from a genetic and cultural perspective.
  • Examine processes of integration and social mobility.

In order to maximize its social impact, ArtEmpire's database will become accessible around the world 500 years after the foundation of the city of Old Panama.

The ArtEmpire project was the first ERC-CoG project achieved by an Andalusian university since the "Consolidator" funding modality was launched in Horizon 2020.

ArtEmpire's social contribution emerges from an inclusive, pluralistic approach to the past that seeks to overcome opposing historiographical legacies of euro-centricism, on the one hand, and hispano-phobia, on the other.

Europa, el Mundo Mediterráneo y su Proyección Atlántica

Code PAIDI: HUM 680

Bethany Aram. Coordinador. 

Universidad Pablo de Olavide

This project is coordinated by the Universidad Pablo de Olavide, with the following beneficiaries: REM - Curt-Engelhorn Center for Archaeometry (Germany), Universidad del Norte (Colombia), Universitá di Pavia (Italy); and with the collaboration of the Patronato Panamá Viejo (Panama).

Keywords: Early modern history, Global history, transnational history, comparative history, entangled histories, Colonial and post-colonial history, Archaeology, archaeometry, landscape archaeology, Conquest, Commerce, Cultural Exchange, Global History, Globalization
Duration: January, 1th 2016 to December, 31th 2020
Project cost: € 1,998,875.00