The Université de Montréal’s Research Group for the History of the Americas (GÉHA) will be hosting a three day workshop on the history of collective identities in colonial Latin America. This question has long been framed by the language and logic of mestizaje in which groups were defined according to degrees of blood mixture. More recent historiography has revealed the importance of other criteria of collective identification – such as community ascriptions, lineage, calidad, or naturaleza – that point to more relational and situational forms of collective self-definition and interaction.
Following a keynote address given by Nathan Wachtel of the College de France, the workshop will address three broad themes: the reconfiguration of collective identities across time; their conceptualization and institutionalization; and the social fields of identity formation. Specialists on ethnicity, culture change, social relations and the law in the colonial period have been convened to discuss recent research on the question of identities in Mexico, the Caribbean and the Andes. Emphasis will be placed on conversation and exchange to facilitate the effort of comparison and help identify new avenues of research. Preparatory materials – thematic bibliographies, selected works and a set of commissioned essays by the participants – will all pre-circulate.
The workshop is open to the public but pre-registration is required.
R. Jovita Baber, (University of Chicago/Texas A&M) Herman Bennett (Rutgers
University) Leo Garofalo (Connecticut College) Karen Graubart (Cornell
University) Tamar Herzog (University of Chicago) Sonya Lipsett-Rivera
(Carleton University) Ed Osowski (Concordia University) Nathan Wachtel
(College de France - EHESS).
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