Department of Spanish and Portuguese
Department of Spanish and Portuguese

Archipiélagos de ultramar: Rethinking Spanish Colonialism in the Philippines and the Caribbean

By Dr. Yolanda Martínez-San Miguel

Tue, November 29, 2011 | BEN 2.104

4:00 PM - 5:00 AM

This presentation interrogates current paradigms defining Colonial Latin America and the Caribbean from an Area studies perspective using Archipelago studies as a counterexample.  Both the Caribbean and the Philippines experienced what I denominate as “extended colonialism,” that begins in the 16th and 17th centuries and extends until the twentieth century, and includes the coexistence of more than one colonial system (Spanish and French in Martinique, Spanish and U.S. American in Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Philippines).  In this presentation I revisit piracy in the Caribbean in the 17th century and filibusterismo in the Caribbean and the Philippines in the 19th century, to propose another approach that circumvents the master-narrative of nationalism, and that focuses instead on a postcolonial reading of Caribbean colonialities. I propose a close reading of the ambivalent nature of the protagonists of two texts from  the seventeenth century—the Misfortunes of Alonso Ramírez (1690) authored by Carlos de Sigüenza y Góngora and Pére Labat's Memoirs (1693-1705)— and two texts written in the 19th century—Cirilo Villaverde’s Cecilia Valdés (1839-1882), and El Filibusterismo (1896) by José Rizal— to analyze the articulation of antiheroes in pre or anti-nationalists narratives, to propose an interpretive paradigm that is appropriate for the study of colonial Spanish archipelagos.

This event is part of the Colonial Lecture Series.

Sponsored by: The Department of Spanish and Portuguese

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