The Epic Mirror
Title Details

240 Pages

23.4 x 15.6 cm

Series: Monografías A

Series Vol. Number: 398

Imprint: Tamesis Books

The Epic Mirror

Poetry, Conflict Ethics and Political Community in Colonial Peru

by Imogen Choi

  • Description
  • Contents
  • Author
  • Reviews
  • BLOG POST
How did Spanish-American writers and veterans in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth century use epic poetry to search for ethical solutions to the violent conflicts of their age?

Winner of the 2017-18 AHGBI-Spanish Embassy Publication Prize

The Epic Mirror studies how Spanish-American writers and veterans in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth century used epic poetry to search for ethical solutions to the violent conflicts of their age. The wars about which they wrote took place at the frontiers of the Spanish empire, where new political communities were emerging: fiercely independent Amerindian republics, rebellious Spanish settlers, maroon kingdoms of fugitive African slaves. This colonial reality generated a distinctive vision of just warfare and political community.

Working across the fields of Hispanic literature, the history of political thought, and studies of empire, colonialism and globalisation, Choi reinterprets three major works of colonial Latin American literature: Alonso de Ercilla's La Araucana (1569-90), Pedro de Oña's Arauco domado (1596), and Juan de Miramontes Zuázola's Armas antárticas (1608-9). She argues that these works provide a rare insight into the development of political thought in Viceregal Peru. Through the imaginative mirrors of epic, the reader is forced to ask the same questions of the unfinished conquests of the Americas as of those in Africa, Asia or Europe: when conflicting forces are divided by irreconcilable world views, even if the war is won, how is it possible to achieve peace?
Introduction
1. Political Community and Just War in the City of Lima
2. Republicanism, Rebellion and Empire in Alonso de Ercilla's La Araucana
3. The Golden Mean of Colonial Governance in Pedro de Oña's Arauco domado
4. Defence, Desire and Community in Juan de Miramontes Zuázola's Armas antárticas
Conclusion

IMOGEN CHOI is Associate Professor of Spanish at the University of Oxford.

"Choi's argument goes beyond traditional interpretations of the relationship between war and peace in colonial epic poetry. Because of its sophisticated analysis and the quality of new ideas, this book is an important contribution to the study of the Hispanic epic. On the other hand, the detailed examination of the works of Ercilla, Oña and Miramontes offers elements that are key to understanding colonial society in the Viceroyalty of Peru during the Spanish conquest and colonization." RAÚL MARRERO-FENTE (University of Minnesota), BULLETIN OF SPANISH STUDIES
"Choi's analysis presents ample information on what the Hispanic epic poetry of the
sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, in particular, who wrote these texts and who their readers were.
Her conclusions on the links between ethics and politics in relation to literature
reveal the cultural value of the works of Ercilla, Oña and Miramontes and help to understand the
cultural complexity of the historical period examined." RAÚL MARRERO-FENTE, BULLETIN OF SPANISH STUDIES

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9781855663473

February 2022

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9781800103573

February 2022

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Title Details

240 Pages

2.34 x 1.56 cm

Series: Monografías A

Series Vol. Number: 398

Imprint: Tamesis Books