Being in control of writing means having the power todetermine what is said and what is omitted. Inaccuracy inrecording indigenous records can in part be blamed on theselectiveness of Spanish chroniclers, who were unable todetermine what was important or relevant information. Even themost rigorous attempts at documentation and transcription ofIndian knowledge were subject to this fallacy.
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One of the most effective ways the Spanish usedlanguage to consolidate their empire was through controllinghistory, what was written, what was omitted, and what waspublished and circulated. The Spanish were successful to acertain extent in imparting their vision, as opposed to theIndians' vision, of the history of the conquest and of theconquered people. The Spanish had control of writing and themeans of production of texts, and could effectively controlwritten history. Mignolo speaks of this as the "colonizationof memory," implying that the Spanish accounts took theplace of those the Indians had in their own minds. > But Spanish language policies, however, didnot erase the indigenous memories which were maintained through astrong oral tradition which is still alive.
Pedophilia in clergy - crisis in the Church
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Representing Australia's sex industry, the Eros Foundation has approached church clergy on a number of occasions in the past with the aim of initiating dialogue on sex and censorship issues. From the Roman Catholic church there has been silence and arrogance on the issues. On the 11th October 1996, the Rev Mark Coleridge, a regular anti-sex campaigner in the church, wrote in reply to an Eros request by stating, ' In my capacity as Church spokesman, I have received many invitations but yours ranks among the more exotic. I am not sure what you have in mind when you suggest a debate, but I cannot imagine anything that would be of mutual benefit. I am afraid therefore that I shall have to decline.'
Roman Catholic Church | Conger | Page 3
The notion of a "New World" was just as erroneous asthat of "America." The words "New World"imply that it did not exist before. Mignolo points out that the"European observer showed once again his unconsciousarrogance. . in that what for him was not known had to be, ofnecessity, new." >
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Because the Spanish denied the accuracy and historical natureof native writings, they took upon themselves the task of writingthe Indians' history for them. Mignolo explains that "thisconclusion was a sufficient condition for the missionaries andmen of letters to become the self-appointed chroniclers theAmerindians apparently did not have." >As a result, most accounts of native history have been mediatedin some way through Spanish or European eyes.
I was expecting something from the 13th Century
Part of las Casas' argument that the Indians were incompetentto "express what they mean" was based on the oralnature of Indian writing. Aztec writing was dependent on an oralsystem which interpreted the characters; a single text, then,could be interpreted in many different ways, depending on the"reader." Pictograms could not be equated with exactwords, but were subject to interpretation. Mignolo summarizes theSpanish view of the necessity of alphabetic writing for recordinghistory in "Misunderstanding and Colonization: TheReconfiguration of Memory and Space:"