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Volume 54 / Humanities


South America

NOBLE DAVID COOK, Professor of History, Florida International University

THE QUINCENTENNIAL OF THE ENCOUNTER between peoples of the two hemispheres has resulted in careful reexamination of the nature and impact of European expansion. There has been a subsequent flood of scholarly and popular discourse in which both specialists and novices have engaged in often heated debate over the meaning of contact. The reevaluation has not led to a new synthesis, but it has sharpened our understanding of the uneasy relation between Old and New World peoples in the context of a changing environment.

One consequence has been the appearance of new critical editions of basic texts, such as the English translation of Bernabé Cobo (item bi 92016799), but more important for scholars are the efforts of Laura González and Alicia Alonso, with a new edition of Polo de Ondegardo's Relación (item bi 93022059); María del Carmen Martín Rubio's edition of the narrative of Inca descendant Diego de Castro Tito Cusi Yupanqui (item bi 93000719); Henrique Urbano and Ana Sánchez's version of a chronicle by Juan de Santa Cruz Pachacuti Yanqui Salcamaygua, a south Andean native voice (item bi 93022058); and Urbano and Pierre Duviols text of Cristóbal de Molina (item bi 92016811). Numerous other new multivolume or facsimile editions of the early chronicles have been published in Spain and America, and will serve the public well.

Another result is the publication of volumes of the collected work of seasoned scholars, and the publication of conference results. Waldemar Espinosa Soriano's important but scattered chapters on Ecuadorian ethnohistory (item bi 93022038), Tom Zuidema's focused evaluation of Inca Cusco (item bi 93000732), and the late Thierry Saignes' seminal work on conflict on the Chiriguano frontier (item bi 93022055) are important materials for students and specialists alike. Heraclio Bonilla's conference series on early contact (item bi 93001000) and on the 19th-century Andean world (item bi 93000758), Raquel Thiercelin's massive set covering a broad range of peoples and places (item bi 93022063), and Segundo Moreno and Frank Salomon's collection on the Andes (item bi 92016816) set high standards for edited works.

A third consequence is the appearance of new documentary collections and catalogs that will facilitate continued investigations. Research tools range from Diana Bonnett Vélez's catalog of Quito materials (item bi 93022005) to Thomas Welch's Inca bibliography (item bi 93022068). Some new tribute lists, verging on censuses, have appeared, including John Murra's 1569-70 Valles de Sonqo (item bi 93000718), Cristóbal Landázuri's 1551-59 Chillos (item bi 93002209), and Raimund Schramm's 1560 Cochabamba district report (item bi 93022050). Collections of Amazonian material have also come to light (items bi 93000734 and bi 93000716).

Although we have not yet seen a new synthesis, some work does stand out. Colombia and Ecuador have seen close attention, and good results, including Luis Fernando Calero's excellent overview (item bi 93022008) and Carlos Castaño Uribe's study of the Carib (item bi 92011040). For the central Andes, we have Norman Meiklejohn's excellent evaluation of the Christianization of the Aymara (item bi 93022007), Erik Langer's perceptive studies of 19th-century Bolivia (items bi 91001719, bi 91027522, and bi 92014534), Luis Miguel Glave Testino's work on rural Cusco over a long chronological period (items bi 93022018 and bi 93022034), a similarly broad temporal coverage by Jorge Zevallos Quiñones for north coastal Lambayeque (item bi 93022010), and Tedoro Hampe Martínez's focus on the early central valleys (items bi 92000180 and bi 92000709). In the transitional zone, Xavier Izko has examined inter-ethnic conflict along the southeastern frontier of the Inca empire (items bi 92014821 and bi 93007271). For Paraguay, Branislava Susnik has made a variety of important contributions (items bi 91001902, bi 91006535, bi 92016812, and bi 93000750), while in Argentina, Meinrado Huz prepares biographical surveys of caciques (item bi 93000723, bi 93000725, and bi 93022028), Kristine L. Jones examines a discrete Mapuche example (item bi 91027514), and Tom Dillehay studies societal relations (item bi 92010185). Work continues in Chile on the uneasy frontier relationship and the role of missionaries, with serious contributions by Jorge Pinto Rodríguez (items bi 93000727 and bi 93010226) and others.

Some important contributions have been made in the fields of ethno and archaeoastronomy; they include the work of Edmundo Magaña on northern South America, and Mariusz Ziolkowski and Robert Sadowski on the Andean Highlands (items bi 92016796 and bi 93022013). All regions of South America have seen significant ethnohistorical scrutiny, although the weakest coverage seems to run in a band from the Eastern Llanos of Venezuela into, and including, the Guyana Highlands, and on the north bank of the Amazon as far as its mouth. Nádia Farage's important contribution on the Roraima district is an exception (item bi 93022042).

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