Indigenous and Black Confraternities in Colonial Latin America
Negotiating Status through Religious Practices
Javiera Jaque Hidalgo
Amsterdam University Press
Employing a transregional and interdisciplinary approach, this volume explores indigenous and black confraternities –or lay Catholic brotherhoods– founded in colonial Spanish America and Brazil between the sixteenth and eighteenth century. It presents a varied group of cases of religious confraternities founded by subaltern subjects, both in rural and urban spaces of colonial Latin America, to understand the dynamics and relations between the peripheral and central areas of colonial society, underlying the ways in which colonialized subjects navigated the colonial domain with forms of social organization and cultural and religious practices. The book analyzes indigenous and black confraternal cultural practices as forms of negotiation and resistance shaped by local devotional identities that also transgressed imperial religious and racial hierarchies. The analysis of these practices explores the intersections between ethnic identity and ritual devotion, as well as how the establishment of black and indigenous religious confraternities carried the potential to subvert colonial discourse.
Javiera Jaque Hidalgo is an assistant professor of Spanish in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures in Virginia Tech. Her topic of research is the literature and culture of Colonial Latin America with a focus on Jesuit missions in Chile. More recently her research focus is on indigenous migration to urban spaces. She has published her research in A Contracorriente, Una revista de estudios latinoamericanos, Rocky Mountain Review, Revista Chilena de Literatura, and Revista Provinciana. Revista de literatura y pensamiento. She is currently working in her first monograph entitled Misiones Jesuitas en la Frontera de Arauco: Resistencia Mapuche, Negociación y Movilidad Cultural en la Periferia Colonial (1593-1641) , in which she analyzes the frontier dynamics among Mapuche people and Jesuit missionaries in the seventeenth century.
Miguel A. Valerio is assistant professor of Spanish at Washington University in St. Louis. His research focuses on the African diaspora in the literatures and cultures of the early modern Iberian world, particularly Afro-confraternities’ festive practices. His work has appeared in Afro-Hispanic Review, Confraternitas, Slavery and Abolotion, Colonial Latin American Review and the Journal of Festive Studies. His book, Sovereign Joy: Afro-Mexican Kings and Queens, 1539-1640, which studies Afro-Mexican confraternities’ festive practices, will be published with Cambridge University Press in 2022.
Nicole von Germeten, a professor of Latin American History at Oregon State University, has worked as the Director of the School of History, Philosophy, and Religious studies since 2017. She received her PhD from the University of California Berkeley in 2003 with research funded by the Fulbright Garcia Robles Scholarship and the Muriel McKevitt Sonne Endowment. She was a Fellow at the Princeton Center for the Study of Religion in 2004 and was affiliated with the Stanford University Center for Latin American Studies in 2008 and 2009. She has contributed essays, reviews, and articles in close to sixty edited volumes and academic journals. She has published three single-authored books and one edited book-length translation since 2006, most recently Profit and Passion: Transactional Sex in Colonial Mexico (California, 2018). Her fifth book, coming out in 2022 with the University of Nebraska Press, The Enlightened Patrolman: The Early History of Law Enforcement in Mexico City, examines how the Spanish viceroys attempted to modernize policing to suppress popular revolt and to curb what they viewed as an out-of-control drinking culture. This book focuses on the perspective of the men walking the beat. Her previous publications range in topics from sexuality, religion, legal history, and gender in Spain and the Iberian empires, to Afro-descended populations in Spanish America, Catholic brotherhoods and Jesuit proselytiza_x0002_tion. Her scholarship has also explored transactional sex, honor, violence, witchcraft, sodomy, and suicide. She is currently writing a manuscript entitled Death in Old Mexico: the 1789 Dongo Murders and a translation from Spanish to English of an 1869 novel which focuses on the same case.
Jaime Valenzuela Márquez is professor of history at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. He has been a fellow at the Centro Diego Barros Arana of the Biblioteca Nacional de Chile (1991-1993) and the John Carter Brown Library. He has been a visiting professor at many French and Latin Con tribu tors 403American universities. Some of his books include: Las liturgias del poder. Celebraciones públicas y estrategias persuasivas en Chile colonial (1609-1709); Fiesta, rito y política. Del Chile borbónico al republicano; América en diásporas. Esclavitudes y migraciones forzadas en Chile y otras regiones americanas (siglos XVI-XIX).
Ximena Gómez is Assistant Professor in the Department of the History of Art and Architecture at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She specializes in the art of colonial Latin America and that of the early modern transatlantic world more broadly. Her work has been published in Colonial Latin American Review and the edited volume, A Companion to Early Modern Lima. She is currently at work on her first book, which investigates the visual culture of Indigenous and Black lay confraternities in Lima during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
Krystle Farman Sweda received her Ph.D. from the Graduate Center, The City University of New York in 2020. Her larger research examines the emergence of Catholicism and its local expressions among Africans and their descendants in seventeenth-century New Spain. She currently works in Research Development under the Office of the Vice President for Research at the University of Kentucky, Lexington.
Candela De Luca is a professor of history at the Universidad Nacional de La Plata. Her research focuses on indigenous Catholic practices in the colonial Andes. De Luca has been part of CONICET. She currently is a member of the project “RESISTANCE: Rebellion and Resistance in the Iberian Empire, 16th-19th centuries,” sponsored by the Research and Innovation Staff Exchange(RISE) of the European Union.
Enrique Normando Cruz is professor of history at the Universidad Nacional de Jujuy. He has been a researcher at the Escuela de Estudios Hispanoamericanos in Seville, Spain, and the University of Bonn, and guest lecturer at several Latin American and European universities. His work has appeared in GLA_x0002_DIUS, TEMPUS, América Latina en la Historia Económica y LATINOAMERICA.
Grit Kirstin Koeltzsch is a Ph.D. candidate at the National Scientific and Technical Research Council of Argentina (CONICET). She was a Research Scholar in the George A. Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida and was awarded a Graduate Student Paper Award from the Latin American Studies Association in 2017. Her work has appeared in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Latin American History, Canadian Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Intercontinental Journal on Physical Education, Revista Interdisciplinar de Literatura e Ecocrítica, América Latina en la Historia Económica and TEMPUS: Revista en Historia General.
Cristina Masferrer is professor and researcher at the Ethnology and Social Anthropology Direction of the National Institute of Anthropology and History of Mexico (DEAS-INAH). Author of Muleke, negritas y mulatillos. Niñez, familia y redes sociales de los esclavos de origen africano de la Ciudad de México (INAH, 2013), as well as several publications on Afromexican population, childhood, education and racism. She studied Ethnohistory and Psychology, with a master’s degree in Social Anthropology and a Ph.D. in History and Ethnohistory. She was awarded the National Prize “Francisco Javier Clavijero 2010.” She coordinates the Seminar on Anthropology and History of the Racisms, Discriminations and Inequalities (DEAS-INAH/SURXE-UNAM) with Olivia Gall.
Lucilene Reginaldo is professor of history at the Universidade Estadual de Campinas. Her researches focuses on the Church and black brotherhoods in colonial Bahia, Brazil. She is the author of Os Rosários dos Angolas: ir_x0002_mandades de africanos e crioulos na Bahia Setecentista, for which she was awarded the Prêmio Katia Mattoso for best book on Bahian history in 2011.
Célia Maia Borges is professor of history at the Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora. Her research focuses on religious orders, popular saints, and black brotherhoods in Portugal and Brazil. She is the author of Escravos e Libertos nas Irmandades do Rosário and numerous articles.
Marina de Mello e Souza is professor of history at the University of Sao Paulo. She is the author of Paraty, a Cidade e as Festas; Reis Negros no Brasil Escravista: História da Festa de Coroação de Rei Congo; África e Brasil africano; Além do Visível: Poder, Catolicismo e Comércio no Congo e em Angola (Séculos XVI e XVII). He currently conducting research on the Congo in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Karen B. Graubart is Associate Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame. She is the author of two books, With Our Labor and Sweat: Indigenous Women and the Formation of Colonial Society 1550-1700 (Stanford: 2007) and Republics of Difference: Religious and Racial Self-Governance in the Spanish Atlantic World (Oxford University Press: forthcoming) as well as numerous articles in Hispanic American Historical Review, Colonial Latin American Review, Slavery and Abolition, The William and Mary Quarterly, and other journals. She is a member of the directing collectives of the Tepoztlán Institute for the Transnational History of the Americas and La Patrona Collective for Colonial Latin American Scholarship. Her work has been generously supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. An earlier version of this article appeared in Slavery and Abolition 33:1 (March 2012).
Tamara J. Walker is an historian of race, gender, and slavery in Latin America. Her research has received support from the Ford Foundation, the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the American Association of University Women and the John Carter Brown Library, and has appeared in such publications as Slavery & Abolition: A Journal of Slave and Post-Slave Studies, Safundi: The Journal of South African and American Studies, Gender & History, The Journal of Family History, and Souls. Her first book, Exquisite Slaves: Race, Clothing and Status in Colonial Lima, was published by Cambridge University Press and received the 2018 Harriet Tubman Prize. She is currently at work on two new book projects, one on the history of slavery and piracy in Latin America, and the other on black subjects in Latin American visual culture, which will be published by the University of Texas Press.
Angelica Serna Jeri is an Assistant Professor of Spanish and Portuguese in the University of New Mexico. She earned her Ph.D. in Romance Languages from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Her teaching and research meet at the intersection of indigenous studies, postcolonial theory, and digital humanities.
Laura Dierksmeier is a postdoctoral researcher in the German Research Foundation (DFG) research group “Resource Cultures” at the University of Tübingen in Germany. Previously, she worked as a researcher in the research group “Religious Knowledge in Pre-Modern Europe, 800 – 1800.” Her dissertation, completed in 2016 at the University of Tübingen, focused on indigenous confraternities in colonial Mexico. Dierksmeier received the Bartolomé de las Casas Dissertation Award from the University of Fribourg in Switzerland in 2017. She recently finished an edited book together with Fabian Fechner and Kazuhisa Takeda entitled: Indigenous Knowledge as a Resource: Transmission, Reception, and Interaction of Knowledge between the Americas and Europe, 1492-1800