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Violence and the Great Turkish War in the work of Romeyn de Hooghe
Michel van Duijnen

This chapter discusses a selection of the many prints on the Great Turkish War (1683–99) produced by the famous Dutch printmaker Romeyn de Hooghe. Through the analysis of three different types of prints – news prints, triumphalia, and satirical prints – the chapter dissects the role of unrestrained violence in De Hooghe’s imagination of Europe’s borderlands. It shows that De Hooghe’s portrayal of the battle against ‘the Turk’ cultivated an ambiguous view of south-east Europe as a distant and distinctly violent place beset by ruthless Christian soldiers and warlike border peoples. In doing so, De Hooghe approached unrestrained violence as a theme that went well beyond simple anti-Turkish propaganda. Instead, De Hooghe positioned violence as an inherent characteristic of a vaguely defined European borderland where all parties, not least the Christian ones, succumbed to gruesome behaviour.

in A global history of early modern violence
Open Access (free)
Legitimization and limits of Mughal military violence in early modern South Asia
Pratyay Nath

This chapter explores how the Mughal Empire legitimized its perpetration of military violence in early modern South Asia. It begins by highlighting that Mughal imperial discourse laid great emphasis on the dispensation of justice as the cornerstone of kingship. In turn, this allowed the empire to conceptualize the waging of war and the committing of violence as necessary means for establishing a just social order under the paternal guardianship of the emperor. Within such an ideological framework, war and violence were thought of more as a moral compulsion than a matter of princely whim or dynastic ambition. The chapter also studies the nature, purpose, and effects of military violence perpetrated by Mughal armies in the course of campaigns during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It argues that the scale of this violence was always limited by the urge of the Mughal emperors to project themselves – in both discourse and actuality – as the embodiment of just, tolerant, and caring universal sovereigns. The chapter concludes by assessing the role of military violence in Mughal empire-building and by comparing the Mughal case with other polities of early modern Eurasia.

in A global history of early modern violence
The revolt of Cairo and Revolutionary violence
Joseph Clarke

The repression that followed Cairo’s short-lived revolt against French occupation in October 1798 represents one of the single bloodiest episodes of the French Revolutionary wars. This chapter examines the violence that French forces deployed in suppressing the revolt and explores the attitudes towards civilian resistance that this violence reveals. In part, the violence of the French response to the rioting that swept Cairo that October echoed that of the counter-insurgency campaigns the Revolution’s armies had already conducted in other theatres of war in the 1790s. However, the ferocity of this violence also reflected the French soldiers’ intense antipathy towards Islam and, more generally, the religious ‘fanaticism’ they routinely blamed for the resistance encountered by the imposition of French rule. Drawing on these soldiers’ testimonies, this chapter traces the continuities that link this explosion of violence in a colonial context with the soldiers’ earlier exposure to, and cultural memory of, civil war at home in France.

in A global history of early modern violence
The changing scale of warfare and the making of early colonial South Asia
Manu Sehgal

Debates about the origins of a militarily dominant, territorially acquisitive regime of colonial rule in modern South Asia have invariably failed to assess the transformative impact of early colonial war-making on the East India Company state. This chapter studies the colonial regime within the framework of the bellicist origins of the modern state. Violent conquest depended on the modern state’s ability to vastly augment its capacity to author military violence. Dramatic expansion in the scale of war-making lent colonial specificities to the Company-state in India. As this scale expanded dramatically in the final decade of the eighteenth century, prolific war-making made the colonial state both colonial (in its extractive capabilities) and a hegemonic state formation. The most extensive, expensive, and politically consequential military conflict of the long eighteenth century – the Second Anglo-Maratha War in western India (1803–05) – provides a window into the crystallizing political economy of conquest. Below the surface of the image of an ever-ascendant military hegemon lies an under-studied universe centred on the extraction of resources to feed a ravenous machine of war, leading to fiscal crises and agrarian dislocation. Territorial conquest was both the principal objective and the primary mode of sustaining and expanding colonial rule across South Asia.

in A global history of early modern violence
Vũ Đức Liêm

The historiography of Vietnamese warfare is conventionally shaped by the view from the Grand Palace or dynastic chronicles: kings and empires dominate military and political narratives, positioning themselves at the centre of historical developments, with little room for local approaches. By contrast, this chapter gives voice to local understandings of war by considering local militia and their role in shaping early modern Vietnamese politics and society. It focuses on the densely populated Red River Delta and its process of militarization and increased social violence to argue that militarization was a significant social and political phenomenon in early nineteenth-century Vietnam. Although in the words of Charles Tilly ‘war made the state, and the state made war’, early modern Vietnam is a compelling case where warfare instead eroded the power of the central state.

in A global history of early modern violence
Caroline Rusterholz

Chapter 4 uses the testing of the Gräfenberg ring, the first intrauterine device (IUD), and the rivalry between the female doctor Helena Wright and the sexologist Norman Haire to exemplify the new expert position acquired by Wright in both the international and national spheres. This chapter explores in detail the first clinical trials of the Gräfenberg ring. It reveals broader issues surrounding power relationships and expertise within the medical body and points out the way that female doctors were increasingly perceived as experts and reliable voices in the production of scientific knowledge on new contraceptive methods both at international and national level. In addition, it shows how international conferences and journeys were determinant spaces for doctors working in birth control, not only for gaining knowledge on new contraceptive methods but also for asserting their expertise.

in Women’s medicine
Open Access (free)
Caroline Rusterholz

The conclusion highlights the principle contributions of the book: women doctors actively contributed to the medicalisation of contraception and family planning. They did so with a view to empowering women to avoid pregnancies and adopt female-oriented methods of birth control. But they also aspired to take these issues away from the moralists; instead, birth control, contraception and family planning were to be regarded as medical fields of research and practice in which female doctors would be central actors. By engaging medically with this topic and entering the field in large numbers, women doctors were trying to secure territory for themselves. Despite a feminist sensitivity to and awareness of their patients’ needs, they were nevertheless wielding their authority over the female body. At the national level, women doctors tirelessly advocated for access to contraception and reliable methods of birth control. At the international level, British women doctors participated in debates about the medicalisation of birth control at conferences in the 1920s and 1930s. They contributed to positioning birth control as an international health issue. The conclusion then engages with more contemporary debates on feminist criticisms of medical power and briefly assesses the legacy of these women doctors.

in Women’s medicine
Caroline Rusterholz

Chapter 1 is concerned with the relationship between British reproductive politics and gendered medical practices. It covers the history of female doctors’ practical engagement with birth control and contraception in Britain, from the opening of birth control clinics in the early 1920s to the Family Planning Act in 1967. The chapter argues that women doctors introduced birth control as a field of medical research and practice because birth control clinics provided them with job opportunities. It also shows women were disproportionally represented among doctors interested in birth control, and they dominated this field due to their active participation in birth control clinics, the development of training in contraception and the production of medical and scientific knowledge on birth control and contraception. Drawing on sex and medical manuals, scientific publications in the British Medical Journal and the Lancet, as well as the archives of the Medical Women’s Federation and the Family Planning Association, this chapter focuses on the medicalisation process and the initiatives and strategies women doctors used to position themselves as respectable experts in the new field.

in Women’s medicine
Open Access (free)
Caroline Rusterholz

After reminding the reader that the medicalisation of women’s bodies has a specific history, the introduction lays out the key arguments of the book. It presents the methodological framework adopted – namely a social, cultural and intellectual history framework that focuses on the environment in which women doctors lived, emphasising the opportunities they encountered and the constraints they faced. The introduction then reviews the main scholarship on birth control and family planning and makes the case for the need to study the role of women doctors. It locates women doctors’ contribution to the medicalisation of birth control and family planning within three different research strands: reproductive politics, gendered medical practices and contraceptive culture and scientific knowledge. It examines the interconnections of these elements to explain women doctors’ paths towards birth control and family planning.

in Women’s medicine
A British–French comparison
Caroline Rusterholz

This chapter turns to women doctors’ contributions at the international level between 1920 and 1937 through an explicit comparison between British and French women doctors by drawing on proceedings of international conferences and archival material. In the interwar years, British women doctors, although not numerous, were nevertheless agents of the legitimacy of birth control. Indeed, they were vocal and indispensable in the transnational movement for birth control. Owing to their somewhat peripheral position in the national medical field, they took up the task of the practical aspects of birth control; they opened clinics and fitted individuals. This practical experience paradoxically gave them specific female expertise and power, relative to men, in international associations. While birth control tended to be framed in eugenic/neo-Malthusian terms by male doctors before 1930, it gradually became a medical subject in which scientific vocabulary and concern for individual welfare predominated. Women doctors played a major role in this shift. The international conferences on birth control and population issues positioned women as experts in this medical field, but, as I show, also revealed national differences between Britain and France.

in Women’s medicine