This reading is the first chapter from Kris Lane’s book Quito 1599. City and Colony in Transition (University of New Mexico Press, 2002). The book deals both with the city of Quito and with the larger area that the Spanish called Quito, which roughly corresponds to modern Ecuador. Lane explains that he was inspired to study the colonial history of the area after seeing this painting in a Spanish museum:

The painting was made in Quito to commemorate a treaty between royal officials and the leaders of a maroon community in the province of Esmeraldas (north coast of Ecuador), who are depicted in the painting. The story of these maroons is told in the chapter we are reading.
The Reading Response question is: “What does this chapter suggest about the margins, or peripheral areas, of the Spanish Empire, and how colonial control was established in them (or not)?”

Latin American History