Benjamin Breen

2018 Hellman Fellow

Assistant Professor History
UC Santa Cruz

Project Title: Indra’s Net: Technology and Magic in the Eartly Modern World, 1600-1820

Project Description:

My second book project, Indra’s Net, argues that technological change in the last four centuries cannot be seen in isolation from the intertwined histories of magic and globalization. In early modern colonial spaces ranging from Angola and Brazil to India and Mexico, Breen argues, practices that participants defined as ‘magic’ emerged as a kind of cross-cultural arena in which competing technologies of manipulating nature did battle.