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The Conquest of the Mainland


Week 4 lecture slides

Handout

Questions

  • How did indigenous people understand and make sense of the 'conquest'?
  • How did Europeans understand and make sense of the 'conquest'?
  • Can we create a single, coherent history of the 'Spanish conquest of America'?

Required Seminar Readings

At least TWO of:

  • Clendinnen, Inga, ‘ “Fierce and Unnatural Cruelty”: Cortés and the Conquest of Mexico’, Representations, 33 (1991), pp.65-100. Available on-line through JSTOR.
  • Matthew Restall, Seven Myths of the Spanish Conquest (Oxford University Press, 2003), “Introduction: The Lost Words of Bernal Díaz,” pp. xiii-xix and “Epilogue: Cuauhtémoc’s Betrayal,” pp. 147-157, e-book at library
  • Cortés, Hernán, Letters from Mexico (New Haven, 2001), pp. xxxix-lxxi; 160-281: ‘Introduction’ and ‘Third Letter’. Available on-line through ACLS Humanities e-books.

Further Reading

  • Cortés, Hernán, Letters from Mexico (New Haven, 2001), pp. xxxix-lxxi; 160-281: ‘Introduction’ and ‘Third Letter’. Available on-line through ACLS Humanities e-books.
  • Elliott, John, ‘The Spanish Conquest and Settlement of America’ in Leslie Bethell, (ed), The Cambridge History of Latin America (10 vols., Cambridge, 1984), vol. 1, pp. 147-206. Available through Cambridge Histories Online.
  • Restall, Matthew, 'The New Conquest History', History Compass, vol. 10:2 (2012). [this is a useful recent survey of how the historiography on the conquest has changed over recent years]
  • Patricia Seed, “Failing to Marvel: Atahuallpa’s Encounter with the Word,” Latin American Research Review, 26:1 (1991): pp. 7-32 [available through JSTOR or similar databases]
  • Williamson, Edwin, The Penguin History of Latin America (London, 2009), pp. 3-37, Ch. 1: ‘Discovery and Conquest’.
  • Bakewell, Peter, A History of Latin America (Oxford, 1997), Part II: ‘Approaches’.
  • Burkholder, Mark, and Lyman Johnson, Colonial Latin America (Oxford, 1990), Ch. 2: ‘The Age of Conquest’.
  • Chasteen, John Charles, Born in Blood and Fire: A Concise History of Latin America (New York, 2002), Ch. 2: ‘Encounter’.
  • Clendinnen, Inga, ‘ “Fierce and Unnatural Cruelty”: Cortés and the Conquest of Mexico’, Representations, vol. 33 (1991), pp.65-100.
  • Crosby, Alfred, ‘Conquistador y Pestilencia: The First New World Pandemic and the Fall of the Great Indian Empires’, Hispanic American Historical Review,vol. 47 (1967).
  • Gerhard, Peter, "A Black Conquistador in Mexico", The Hispanic American Historical Review, vol.58 (1978), pp.451-459
  • Hassig, Ross, Mexico and the Spanish Conquest (Harlow, 1994).
  • Matthew, Laura, and Michel Oudijk, eds., Indian Conquistadors: Indigenous Allies in the Conquest of Mesoamerica (Norman, 2007).
  • Restall, Matthew, 'Black Conquistadors: Armed Africans in Early Spanish America', The Americas, vol. 57:2 (2000).
  • Schroeder, Susan, 'Looking Back at the Conquest', Cambridge History of Latin America, ed. Leslie Bethell (Cambridge, 1984), vol. 1.
  • Terraciano, Kevin, 'Competing Memories of the Conquest of Mexico', Contested Visions in the Spanish Colonial World, ed. Ilona Katzew (New Haven, 2011), pp. 55-77.
  • Townsend, Camilla. Malintzin's Choices: an Indian Woman in the Conquest of Mexico. (New Mexico, 2006).
  • Wachtel, Nathan, ‘The Indian and the Spanish Conquest’, Cambridge History of Latin America, ed. Leslie Bethell (Cambridge, 1984), vol. 1.
  • McClure, Julia, The Franciscan Invention of the New World (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017).

Indigenous Accounts

  • Titu Cusi Yupanqui, An Inca Account of the Conquest of Peru. University Press of Colorado, 2005. [available as e-book at Library]
  • The Broken Spears: An Aztec Account of the Conquest of Mexico, edited and with an introduction by Miguel León-Portilla (Beacon Press, 2006) [e-book at Library]

Additional Resources