The cultural and missionary work inaugurated by Matteo Ricci, SJ (1552-1610) in Ming China (1368-1644) offered the hope of a brand of intercultural dialogue founded on the belief of the universality of the human experience and possibility of mutual understanding between cultures. In this spirit, the “Matteo Ricci Speaker Series," extending from 2014-2018, invites leading international scholars to speak on the subject of Chinese-Christian intercultural dialogue. Our Speaker Series celebrates both the bicentenaries of the restoration of the Society of Jesus (1814) and the Foundation of Saint Louis University (1818).
André Palmeiro was one of the first Europeans to travel across the breadth of China during the modern era. In his role as inspector of the Jesuit mission to China, he journeyed from Macau to Beijing and back in 1629, passing through the cities of the Jiangnan region inclucing Nanjing, Shanghai, and Hangzhou. While on his way, Palmeiro kept notes about what he saw in order to inform his decisions. His writings remain unpublished, but they provide wealth of detail about the late Ming Empire and the state of the Jesuit mission in the crucial years after the death of its founder, Matteo Ricci. This talk will follow Palmeiro's path through China and reveal his impressions of government, religion, culture, and foodways in the early seventeenth century.
Liam Matthew Brockey is a historian of Early Modern Europe. His primary area of interest is the history of Southern Europe, with a focus on Portugal, its overseas empire, and Catholicism.
Professor Brockey’s most recent book is The Visitor: André Palmeiro and the Jesuits in Asia (Harvard University Press, 2014), a study of the challenges faced by missionaries in Africa, South Asia, and East Asia in the early seventeenth century. His first monograph was titled Journey to the East: The Jesuit Mission to China, 1579-1724 (Harvard University Press, 2007; paperback 2008), a book which was awarded the John Gilmary Shea Prize by the American Catholic Historical Association and the First Book Prize by Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society. He also published a collection of essays called Portuguese Colonial Cities in the Early Modern World (Ashgate Publishing, 2009); and a study of the sacrament of confession in Late Imperial China in Forgive Us Our Sins: Confession in Late Ming and Early Qing China (ed. Nicolas Standaert and Ad Dudink; Monumenta Serica, 2007).
More broadly, Liam Brockey’s interests include the history of Spain, France, and
Italy; the history of early modern Catholicism; and the development of European empires in the Atlantic and Maritime Asia in the early modern period. His articles have appeared in the Journal of Early Modern History, Itinerario, Archivum Historicum Societatis Iesu, Monumenta Serica, The Catholic Historical Review, and the Journal of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. His article “Doubting Thomas: The Apostle, The Portuguese Empire, and Christianity in Early Modern Asia” (in Van Liere, Ditchfield, and Louthan, eds., Sacred History (Oxford University Press, 2012)) was awarded the A.H. de Oliveira Marques Prize by the Association for Spanish and Portuguese Historical Studies. Professor Brockey’s essays have been published by the New York Times and the International Herald Tribune, as well as the Huffington Post and the History News Network.