In xochitl, in cuicatl (the flower, the song) : analysis of colonial cultural-social transformations through Nahuatl metaphor
MetadataShow full item record
I pursue a study of the semantic couplet in xochitl, in cuicatl (the flower, the song) grounded in the examination of Nahuatl written sources in order to explore its cultural and historical trajectory as it was produced and reproduced from the pre-colonial to the colonial period. I begin my analysis by examining Nahuatl songs of pre-colonial origin to demonstrate how in xochitl, in cuicatl was an epistemological practice embedded in a Nahuatl ontology conceived of philosophical, religious, and social practices that were interwoven in the cultural habitus of Nahua warriors. I argue that the semantic couplet and the Nahuatl ontology associated with warriors are reflected and play a central role in songs from the Xochicuicatl (Flowery Songs) genre. Then, I explore colonial practices for religious conversion in order to discuss the colonial habitus or pre-dispositions influencing the indigenous scholar Antonio Valeriano to utilize the Nahuatl epistemology of in xochitl, in cuicatl and the Nahuatl ontology associated with warriors as an interpretive frame of reference in the Nican Mopohua, the apparition story of the Virgin of Guadalupe. With this organization, I identify pre-colonial Nahuatl practices in their original context and then I reveal why and how they became accommodated in a colonial and Christian context. Therefore, I utilize in xochitl, in cuicatl as a vehicle for exploring a major cultural-social transformation among the Nahua people of central Mexico.