CFP (IAS Lima 2014): Boundaries and Belief: Colonialist Spirituality and Indigenous Alterity in the Visual Culture of the US-Mexico Borderlands, 1800-1925
Call for Papers Date:
International Association of Inter-American Studies, Biennial Conference, August 6-8, 2014, Lima, Peru
CFP: Boundaries and Belief: Colonialist Spirituality and Indigenous Alterity in the Visual Culture of the US-Mexico Borderlands, 1800-1925
Located at a geographical crossroads of Spanish colonialism and US imperialism, the borderlands of the American Southwest and northern Mexico have produced a multiplicity of cultural crusades in the quest for regional dominance. Religion, in particular, was a key component these endeavors. Recent studies by Jeanette Favrot Peterson and other historians of colonial religious art in Mexico have explored how sacred images were both a means for indoctrinating native populations and an avenue for the preservation of native cultural values. Art historian Christine Mather has investigated similar split perspectives in Mexican missionary activities and religious art in the Southwest. Using the work of these authors as a starting point for discussion, this panel explores the symbolic capitol of spirituality within alternative colonialist and imperialist negotiations of “self” and “other” in the visual culture of nineteenth- and early twentieth-century US-Mexico borderlands. If religion was a pre-eminent instrument of Spanish colonization in the past, what place did it occupy for either the US or Mexico as they sought to consolidate their presence in the region post-1800? Did the visual arts still function in the same way as key aids to conversion? Finally, to what extent and in what manner did religion serve as an arena in which indigenous resistance was staged to obstruct absorption by either country?
Possible paper topics include: the use of religious imagery in Mormon, Presbyterian, and other Protestant missionary activities in the Southwest, the re-tooling of former Jesuit mission churches and sacramental paraphernalia by native communities, ethnographic and archaeological investigations of past and present native religious practice, and efforts to situate the pre-colonial indigenous past in relation to evolving conceptions of national history.
Proposals (maximum 400 words) should be emailed to Matt Johnston, Art History, Lewis & Clark College (email@example.com), or Breanne Robertson, Art History, Wesleyan University (firstname.lastname@example.org) no later than Thurs., 10/3.
Matt Johnston, Art History, Lewis & Clark College
Breanne Robertson, Art History, Wesleyan University Email: email@example.com
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