Between gods and men : analyzing the Aztec deification of the Spanish Conquistadores and reassessing its significance
Author(s)Hall, Alexandria C. (Alexandria Caitlin)
Analyzing the Aztec deification of the Spanish Conquistadores and reassessing its significance
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences. History Section.
Anne E.C. McCants.
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Immediately following the Spanish Conquest of Mexico in 1521, accounts arose claiming the Aztecs believed the Spaniards to be gods. This tale of Spanish deification has sparked heated debate among scholars for centuries as they have been asking, "Did the Aztecs truly believe the Spaniards to be gods?" This question naturally results in two lines of argument, those who think the Aztecs did believe the Spaniards to be gods and those that do not. The scholars arguing for the Aztec deification of the Spaniards rely on known Aztec beliefs, the importance of time to the Aztecs, and the historical works that clearly state the Aztecs though the Spaniards to be divine. The scholars against this argument instead argue the Spaniards created this account of European apotheosis, based on historical precedents and strikingly similar accounts of European apotheosis after the Spanish Conquest of Mexico. Both of these arguments are not, however, free of criticism, revealing the inability to ever answer this question decisively. Instead, this intriguing narrative of the conquest should be reassessed using new questions that could provide new insight on the relations of Spaniards and their conquered subjects, on cultural clashes more generally, and on historical work and interests over time.
Thesis (S.B. in History)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Humanities, 2012.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (p. 55-58).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences. History Section.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences. History Section.