We cannot verify your location
Browse Book and Journal Content on Project MUSE
OR
title

Colonial Mediascapes

Sensory Worlds of the Early Americas

Matt Cohen

Publication Year: 2014

In colonial North and South America, print was only one way of communicating. Information in various forms flowed across the boundaries between indigenous groups and early imperial settlements. Natives and newcomers made speeches, exchanged gifts, invented gestures, and inscribed their intentions on paper, bark, skins, and many other kinds of surfaces. No one method of conveying meaning was privileged, and written texts often relied on nonwritten modes of communication.
 
Colonial Mediascapes examines how textual and nontextual literatures interacted in colonial North and South America. Extending the textual foundations of early American literary history, the editors bring a wide range of media to the attention of scholars and show how struggles over modes of communication intersected with conflicts over religion, politics, race, and gender. This collection of essays by major historians, anthropologists, and literary scholars demonstrates that the European settlement of the Americas and European interaction with Native peoples were shaped just as much by communication challenges as by traditional concerns such as religion, economics, and resources.
 
 

Published by: University of Nebraska Press

Title Page, Copyright Page

pdf iconDownload PDF (48.8 KB)
pp. i-iv

Contents

pdf iconDownload PDF (47.9 KB)
pp. v-viii

List of Illustrations

pdf iconDownload PDF (46.3 KB)
pp. ix-x

read more

Foreword

pdf iconDownload PDF (46.8 KB)
pp. xi-xii

Colonial Mediascapes is a bold and ambitious project that proposes new ways of thinking about books, technology, and American Indians. When the old ways of thinking are filled with rusted and corroding words, sometimes the new ways require new words. New words....

read more

Acknowledgments

pdf iconDownload PDF (32.1 KB)
pp. xiii-xvi

We are most of all grateful to all of our contributors, for their generosity, care, and patience. For the existence and much of the quality of this book, we owe a debt to our anonymous readers and the editorial staff at the University of Nebraska Press, and to Matt Bokovoy in particular...

read more

Introduction

Matt Cohen and Jeffrey Glover

pdf iconDownload PDF (170.9 KB)
pp. 1-44

New World colonialism catalyzed an extraordinary range of controversies and theories about humanness and history, many of which centered on the question of communication— and writing in particular. Could a people without what Westerners recognized as “writing” know...

Part I. Beyond Textual Media

read more

1. Dead Metaphor or WorkingModel? “The Book” in Native America

Germaine Warkentin

pdf iconDownload PDF (126.1 KB)
pp. 47-75

On July 12, 1562, Diego de Landa (1524– 79), the bishop of Yucatán, ordered the friars at the Franciscan mission in Mani to put to the torch a quantity of Mayan “idols,” calendar scrolls (katuns), and “books.” In his 1566 Relación de las cosas de Yucatán, Landa observed of the katuns...

read more

2. Early Americanist Grammatology

Andrew Newman

pdf iconDownload PDF (111.5 KB)
pp. 76-98

In The Legacies of Literacy: Continuities and Contradictions in Western Culture and Society, Harvey Graff points out that “virtually all” discussions of literacy “founder because they slight efforts to formulate consistent and realistic definitions of literacy, have little appreciation of the...

read more

3. Indigenous Histories and ArchivalMedia in the Early Modern Great Lakes

Heidi Bohaker

pdf iconDownload PDF (5.9 MB)
pp. 99-138

For historians seeking to understand indigenous responses to colonialism in early America, or indigenous histories more broadly, the necessity of relying exclusively on sources authored by colonists has proved a frustrating limitation. In recent decades, scholars have

Part II. Multimedia Texts

read more

4. The Manuscript, the Quipu, and the Early American Book

Birgit Brander Rasmussen

pdf iconDownload PDF (3.6 MB)
pp. 141-165

In 1613, a Native American from the Andes who called himself Don Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala finished a 1,189- page manuscript titled Nueva corónica y buen gobierno.¹ Addressed to King Phillip III of Spain, this text represents an immensely ambitious effort to address...

read more

5. Semiotics, Aesthetics, and the Quechua Concept of Quilca

Galen Brokaw

pdf iconDownload PDF (8.4 MB)
pp. 166-202

European societies have always seen writing as an important indicator of “civilization.” Even today, many scholars seem to feel compelled to pronounce on whether or not the cultures they study possessed a form of writing. One could argue on a number of different grounds...

read more

6. “Take My Scalp, Please!”

Gordon M. Sayre

pdf iconDownload PDF (117.5 KB)
pp. 203-230

Southwestern humor, including the tall tale, emerged into U.S. literary history in the Jacksonian period, as white anglophone backsettlers gained political influence among East Coast metropolitans. It reached canonical status, of course, with Mark Twain, whose pen name came...

Part III. Sensory New Worlds

read more

7. Brave New Worlds

Peter Charles Hoffer

pdf iconDownload PDF (136.5 KB)
pp. 233-265

How do we deal with novelty, the unexpected, the unforeseen? When our senses alert us that we face a new situation, how do we respond? Insofar as senses are tutored by our culture, our reaction to the unfamiliar is scripted. The intonations are our own; the words are those...

read more

8. Howls, Snarls, and Musket Shots

Jon Coleman

pdf iconDownload PDF (109.7 KB)
pp. 266-289

Woath woach ha ha hach woath. The great and hideous cry jerked the landing party awake. “Arm, arm,” yelled a sentinel. Muskets boomed and fell silent. Men traded whispers in the dark. One, a sailor, had heard the cry before. Companies of wolves, he reported, often sung to...

read more

9. Hearing Wampum: The Senses,Mediation, and the Limits of Analogy

Richard Cullen Rath

pdf iconDownload PDF (2.9 MB)
pp. 290-322

In 1756, Virginia citizens were feeling anxious and vulnerable to the threat of the Catawbas and Cherokees joining the French in the war against the English. Relations with the Indians were already strained on a number of fronts. Catawbas had successfully played internal colonial...

Part IV. Transatlantic Mediascapes

read more

10. Writing as “Khipu”

Ralph Bauer

pdf iconDownload PDF (1.6 MB)
pp. 325-356

In 1571 the penultimate ruler of the Inca dynasty, Titu Cusi Yupanqui, collaborated with an Augustinian monk and a mestizo secretary to produce a text unique in the history of early American mediascapes. Instrucción del Inca Don Diego de Castro Titu Cusi Yupanqui al Licenciado...

read more

11. Christian Indians at War

Jeffrey Glover

pdf iconDownload PDF (95.6 KB)
pp. 357-375

In the fall of 1710, the French Jesuit Louis d’Avaugour wrote to his superior Joseph Louis- Germain to report on the town of Lorette, located on the bank of the Saint- Charles River just northwest of Quebec. After briefly describing his evangelical endeavors among the...

read more

12. The Algonquian Word and the Spiritof Divine Truth

Sarah Rivett

pdf iconDownload PDF (4.8 MB)
pp. 376-408

Over the course of the settlement of the New World in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, European missionaries discovered the power and knowledge available to those who learned Indian languages. Spanish missionaries began a massive effort to compile, organize, and...

Contributors

pdf iconDownload PDF (50.7 KB)
pp. 409-412

Index

pdf iconDownload PDF (142.5 KB)
pp. 413-438


E-ISBN-13: 9780803254404
E-ISBN-10: 0803254407
Print-ISBN-13: 9780803232396

Page Count: 464
Illustrations:
Publication Year: 2014

Recommend

UPCC logo

Subject Headings

  • United States -- History -- Colonial period, ca. 1600-1775.
  • Oral tradition -- America x History -- 17th century.
  • Books and reading -- America x History -- 17th century.
  • Literacy -- America x History -- 17th century.
  • Communication -- America -- History -- 17th century.
  • First contact of aboriginal peoples with Westerners -- America x History -- 17th century.
  • Indians of South America -- Communication.
  • Indians of Mexico -- Communication.
  • Indians of North America -- Communcation.
  • Great Britain -- Colonies -- America.
  • Spain -- Colonies -- America.
  • You have access to this content
  • Free sample
  • Open Access
  • Restricted Access