The Conflicting Identities research group is a section of the larger project The Hispanic Baroque: Complexity in the First Atlantic Culture, a Major Collaborative Research Initiative (MCRI) funded by the Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).
Is the process of permanent, and sometimes violent, negotiation among groups, so characteristic of the Baroque, the result of the existence of many conflicting identities across the Hispanic Monarchy? Is this conflict of identities produced by the continuous redrawing of the lines that separate social and religious groups, or by the interactions among groups that try to keep their identity in spite of mixing and criollization? What role do artistic expressions play in the configuration of these identities, and in the very process of negotiation through the creation of new ways of representing different groups? The Conflicting Identities Research Group will deal with this and other questions from a literary, cultural, anthropological, and political perspective. It will pay special attention to identity processes involving indigenous communities and Afro-American groups, the role of the Catholic Church, and the changing identity models of peninsular and Creole elites throughout the Baroque and independence periods. It will also look into how the encounter between Europeans and Amerindians initiated a process of blending and hybridization which lead to the development of the multicultural and multiracial communities typical of many Latin American societies.
In temporal terms, this line of research will focus on the period from 1600 to 1825. That is, from the birth of the most representative baroque dramatist, Pedro Calderón de la Barca, and the establishment of the new baroque drama in Spanish theaters, to the end of the wars of the independence in most Latin American countries, the end of the “long 18th Century”, and the dismantling of the political system of the Hispanic Monarchy. In this sense, work on the historical baroque will take into consideration that, in the Iberoamerican world, baroque phenomena closely coexists with phenomena that derives from the Enlightenment. This coexistence creates a unique cultural space in which new layers of culture are added to previous ones in a process that adds complexity to the cultural spectrum. The main question that we will ask is, to what degree is the baroque system able, through its special characteristics, to accommodate pre-European phenomena, European cultural transfers, and criollo experience? Is the Latin-American Baroque a means by which the different levels of historic reality are articulated through a process of negotiation and continuous adjustment?
terms, the project will focus
specifically on the Viceroyalty of New Spain or