• Document: FIRST SPACES OF COLONIALISM: THE ARCHITECTURE OF DUTCH EAST INDIA COMPANY SHIPS
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FIRST SPACES OF COLONIALISM: THE ARCHITECTURE OF DUTCH EAST INDIA COMPANY SHIPS A Dissertation Presented to the Faculty of the Graduate School of Cornell University In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy by Richard John Guy January 2012 © 2012 Richard John Guy FIRST SPACES OF COLONIALISM: THE ARCHITECTURE OF DUTCH EAST INDIA COMPANY SHIPS Richard John Guy Ph. D. (D.M.A.) (J.S.D) Cornell University 2012 This dissertation is an inquiry into spatial aspects of control, resistance and communication in the Dutch East India Company (VOC), as revealed by the architecture of its ships. The architectural type of the retourschip or “homeward bounder” is described and the history of its development, 1602- 1795 is traced, with special attention paid to the period 1740-1783, when the richest records concerning ship design were produced and the ships reached their most standardized forms. The retourschip was one of the highest technological achievements of its day and was used as an emblem for military and mercantile power by the VOC. The ship’s role and meaning as an armature for the VOC’s ideological constructs is examined. Ships also, in Paul Gilroy’s words, constituted "microcultural, micro-political systems," with their own social and spatial orders. These orders are explored, along with their ideological uses as structuring models for VOC society. Changes to the spatial design of the retourschip through the period of the VOC’s operation are linked to changes in the social structure aboard and to changes in the status of VOC mariners, officers and captains. Finally, the effects and effectiveness of the retourschip as a structuring model are interrogated using several mutinies, with special attention paid to the 1763 mutiny on the retourschip Nijenburg. The role of shipboard space in structuring mutinous actions is explored, as is the role of mutinies in forming the society of VOC mariners. Through the records of Admiralty and colonial court trials the socio-spatial order aboard the Nijenburg is closely examined both under the command of its VOC-appointed captain and under that of the mutineers, and the two conditions compared. Mutineers are shown to appropriate and subvert the VOC’s socio-spatial organization, while trial records are shown to reconstruct the social categories of the ship, incorporating mutiny into the Company’s dominant discourse. BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Richard Guy holds a Bachelor of Fine Art degree from the University of Oxford and a Master of Arts from Cornell University, his master’s thesis being awarded the Richmond Harold Shreve Outstanding Thesis Award. During the production of this dissertation he has been awarded a graduate fellowship at the Society for the Humanities and a Citation of Special Recognition from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts as part of the 2010 Carter Manny Award program. Parts of this work have been presented at conferences dedicated to history, art history, and maritime and area studies. In addition to his work as an architectural historian Richard has produced award-winning art and interactive design work for the American Museum of Natural History and independent software companies. iii To Aleksandra, Oliver and Katarina, without whose patience and support this would not exist. iv ACKNOWLEDGMENTS If I were to list everyone who has helped me with this dissertation it would be considerably longer than it already is. My gratitude goes out to all those who have answered my questions and given freely and generously of their time. Of particular note, I would like first to thank the members of my committee, Christian Otto, Eric Tagliacozzo and David Powers, who have enabled me to pursue a topic that falls between their disciplines and who have guided me with patience and great consideration. I would also like especially to thank Ab Hoving, Jerzy Gawronski, Femme Gaastra, Martijna Briggs, Marcus Rediker, Jaap Jacobs, Robert Parthesius, Herman Ketting, Tim Murray, Christopher Monroe, Jenny Gaynor and Magnus Fiskesjo, without whose extraordinary help and kindness this dissertation would certainly be poorer, and might not exist at all. The mistakes are, of course, entirely my own contribution. This work was supported by a Citation of Special Recognition from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts as part of the 2010 Carter Manny Award program. Further support was received from a Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship; a Mellon Graduate Fellowship at the Society for the Humanities, Cornell University; a Humanities,

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