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Unformatted text preview: COLT 250 Cultures of Latin America Section Instructor: Mills Final Exam Review Session 12/7/07 Below you will find a series of concise and succinct paragraphs summarizing the texts and films we have encountered in this course. Although each summary is not meant to be comprehensive, you should use each as a point of departure for organizing your notes and ideas. It should be noted that this superior review sheet was put together by your class mates. As always, I wish you the best! Part I. ‘Discovery,’ colonization, mestizaje, syncretism, colonial Baroque *Review the main themes of these readings: the cultural (mis)encounters of the ‘discovery’, the aspects of the indigenous cultures presented by Fuentes; the social and political questions raised by the colonization; the significance of colonial relations in Shakespeare’s text, and its re-writings in Rodo and Retamar; the main arguments of Mignolo’s chapter; the consequences of Garcilso’s mestizo writing (Giorgi) A. The Journal of Christopher Columbus’s first voyage to America—C. Columbus The Journal of Christopher Columbus most simply represents the (mis)reading and (mis)interpreting of the naked body. Or, in other words, the nakedness Columbus makes a point of describing is used as evidence of the natives' savagery, lack of religion, culture, language, and knowledge (from Columbus' perspective). The natives are seen as innocent, unknowing, and childlike-- as seen through the language Columbus uses in describing the natives as willing to give anything and eager to accept gifts. Columbus views the natives as "waiting" for the European's intervention to "save them from their own savagery." This ties in nicely with Mignolo's idea of the birth of racism and the relationship between coloniality and modernity; the natives, in Columbus' words, are defined by what they lack and are defined as a people needing "progress." B. The Buried Mirror, Ch. V: The Rise and Fall of the Indian World – Carlos Fuentes Quetzalcoatl, the Plumed Serpent, was honored in the Mesoamerican world (region between central Mexico and Nicaragua) as the creator of man, agriculture, and village society. Indian society recognized the need for sacrifice as an undoubted thing and believed that the very order of the universe depended on it. Aztecs developed a set of beliefs, which permeated the aboriginal culture of Mesoamerica, that the world had been created several times and believed that an understanding of nature and time was essential 1 and meant the difference between survival and destruction. After the Aztecs entered and meant the difference between survival and destruction....
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