European Baroque Influences in East Asia, 1557-1815


Learn about intercultural exchanges between Europe, China, Japan, Korea and the Philippines between 1557 and 1815. Discussions will include gold-laden Manila Galleons, ingenious Jesuits, syncretic art and architecture, early printed linguistic texts and astronomical instruments. Find out where the drama, light, and shadow of the Baroque era left its mark in East Asia.

Target audience:
This course will interest both history buffs and those with no background in the subject. Curiosity is the only prerequisite.

Learning objectives:
By the end of this course, you will have:

  • Increased your knowledge of Baroque architecture, art, and ideas.
  • Appreciated different expressions of Baroque art from all over the world.
  • Developed a sense of how Baroque architecture encapsulated larger social, intellectual, and economic movements of the time. 
  • Questioned commonly held ideas about East-West relations.

Course outline:
Each session includes a lecture presentation with time for questions and group discussion.

Session 1:
Overview of Baroque Architecture in Europe: Italy and Elsewhere (including Spain & Portugal, France, Germany, Austria)
Session 2:
Baroque Conceptions of Art: Renaissance vs. Counter-Reformation Ideals and Emotion’s Drama, Light, and Shadow
Session 3:
Baroque Art Around the World: Macau & Goa and Manila & Zacatecas
Session 4:
Baroque-era Movements in East Asia: The Jesuit Order and the first Global Economy
Session 5:
Baroque Influences upon East Asian Religious History: Missionaries and Asian Christianity in the 16th-17th centuries

There is a short break halfway through each session and you are welcome to bring your own refreshments if you wish.

Nancy Marquez earned a BA in Classics and Medieval Studies from Stanford University and an MA in Spanish & Latin American Literatures and Languages from the University of Notre Dame. In 2017, she received a PhD in History from Victoria University of Wellington. Her current research is on migration from the Pacific to Spanish America and related transoceanic cultural exchanges during the 16th and 17th centuries.

Relevant links:
School of History, Philosophy, Political Science and International Relations

For further information:
Continuing Education, Victoria University of Wellington, PO Box 600, Wellington 6140.
Phone 04 463 6556,  Email:

Please note: Courses need a minimum number of enrolments to go ahead. If your course doesn’t reach the number required, we’ll have to cancel it. If this happens, we’ll contact you by phone or email about a week before the scheduled start date and arrange a full refund. Please check your emails regularly.