Colonial Objects

Colonial Objects: Materiality and the Invention of the New World
Beyond gold and silver, what objects served as the building blocks of Spanish colonialism in the New World? What is the relationship between material culture and mestizaje? How do indigenous and black bodies—the flesh of unsovereign otherness—materialize in the language of empire? In this seminar we will explore the role of objects and material culture in shaping colonial discourse during the long history of colonialism in Latin America and the Hispanic Caribbean. Our primary readings assemble an operational canon: from “discovery” and early-contact narratives by Cristóbal Colón and Fray Ramón Pané to the proliferation of ambivalent discourses about colonial subjects, objects, and others that pose a threat to colonial order, including works by Bernardo de Balbuena, Inca Garcilaso de la Vega, and Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz. Alongside these texts, we will consider as well examples of material culture (maps, visual art, artifacts, commodities, and archaeological remnants) from pre-Columbian and colonial times to the present (Two Spanish courses numbered 0350 or above, or by waiver.) 3 hrs. sem.
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SPAN 0461

All Sections in Spring 2022

Spring 2022

SPAN0461A-S22 Seminar (Albarran)