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The Fall of Tenochtitlan, 500 Years On: Challenging Narratives of European Conquest and Commemoration

The Fall of Tenochtitlan

This online conference, hosted by the Centre for the Study of Religion and Conflict at Nottingham Trent University on 12th-13th August 2021, will use the 500-year anniversary of the Fall of Tenochtitlan as a launchpad to discuss and deconstruct other Eurocentric and triumphalist narratives of conquest in a global context: how they have been presented, remembered, commemorated and why. The conference will also challenge established narratives and ideas of Indigenous peoples as passive, monolithic groups of 'the conquered'. By thinking critically about Indigenous action, power, and ongoing trauma, we seek to upend stories of encounters and demonstrate the pervasive influence of conquest narratives in the present day. We are delighted to confirm as keynote speakers Professor Camilla Townsend, author of The Fifth Sun: A New History of the Aztecs (2019), and Professor Robbie Richardson author of The Savage and Modern Self (2018).

Past event

Event details

The Fall of Tenochtitlan, 500 Years On: Challenging Narratives of European Conquest and Commemoration

12th and 13th August (3pm - 8:30pm GMT)


The Fall of Tenochtitlan, 500 Years On: Challenging Narratives of European Conquest and Commemoration

Conference Programme

Thursday 12th August 2021

15:00 – 15:15 Natasha Hodgson (NTU) Introduction and Welcome to CSRC

15.15 – 16:00 Caroline Dodds Pennock (University of Sheffield) Opening Address

16:00 – 16:45 Session 1: First Exchanges (Chair tbc)

Malay Bera (Ashoka University) ‘Toxcatl in Retrospect: Recontextualizing Ritual Performance as Resistance in Mesoamerica’

Elena Mazzetto (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México) ‘Tell me what you eat and I'll tell you who you are. Food as a dynamic identity framework in the first exchanges between Nahuas and Spaniards’

16:45-17:00 Comfort Break

17:00 – 17:45 Session 2: Cultural Persistence and Syncretism (Chair tbc)

Fidel Camacho Ibarra (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México) ‘The ‘road of flowers’: inter-ethnic conflict and cultural persistence in the Warejma of the Mayos of Sonora, Mexico’

Diego Ballesteros (Escuela Nacional de Antropología, México) ‘"Pilato-Santiago”: an analytical outline of a macro-regional theme based on a Cahita variant’

17:45-18:00 Comfort Break

18:00 – 18:45 Session 3: Abuse of Indigenous Peoples (Chair tbc)

Leila K. Blackbird (University of Chicago) ‘“It Has Always Been Customary to Make Slaves of Savages”: The Problem of Indian Slavery in Spanish Louisiana Revisited, 1769-1803’

Kelly L. Watson (West Virginia University) ‘The Colonial Scientist as Pied Piper: The Appetites of D. Carleton Gajdusek in Papua New Guinea’

18:45-19:00 Comfort Break

19:00 – 20:30 Keynote Lecture (Chair tbc)

Robbie Richardson (Princeton University) ‘Komqwejwi'kasikl: North American Indigenous Memory and Survivance in the Eighteenth Century’

Friday 13th August 2021

15:00-16:30 Session 4: Negotiation and Asserting Rights (Chair tbc)

Alan V. Murray (University of Leeds) ‘From Foes of the Aztecs to Subjects of the Habsburgs: Political Alignment and Ideology of the Tlaxcalan Community after the Conquest of Mexico’

Scott Cave (Independent) ‘Looking North to Indian Country: Tlatelolca, Great Plains, and Appalachian Indigenous Visions of North American Riches’

Natasha Bailey (University of Leicester) ‘“Such Abundance That We Could Not Forbid It”: Nahua Cultural Resilience and the Failure of the 1570 Pulque Ban’

16:30-16:45 Comfort Break

16:45-18:15 Session 5: Re-Shaping Narratives of ‘Discovery’ and ‘Conquest’ (Chair tbc)

Caitlin Ellis (Durham University) ‘Going ‘Global’ and Amplifying America: The Vikings in Vinland and Beyond’

Amy Fuller (NTU) ‘Cruel to be Kind: Creating the “White Saviour” and “Grateful Convert” in Colonial Narratives of the Conquest of Mexico’

Daniel Salinas Córdova (Independent) ‘Tourist narratives and representations of the Conquest in 20th century tourist guidebooks of Mexico’

18:15-18:30 Comfort Break

18:30-20:00 Keynote Lecture (Chair tbc)

Camilla Townsend (Rutgers University) ‘Are We Ready to Talk about That Kind of Sex? Looking Back on Women in the Conquest’

20:00-20:30 Roundtable Discussion and Closing Remarks

Virtual Event,-500-years-on-challenging-narratives-of-european-conquest-and-commemoration

Past event

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