673 - Changing Concepts of Time in Colonial Latin American Contact Zones: Interdisciplinary Approaches

20.07.2012 | 08:00 - 13:30

Convener 1: Kroefges, Peter Conrad (Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí , San Luis Potosí, Mexico / Mexiko)
Convener 2: Windus, Astrid (Universität Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany / Deutschland)

This symposium pursues an interdisciplinary framework to study the notion of "time" in the Latin American colonial contact zone from the 15 th to the 18 th century, from etic and emic perspectives. Our goal is to compare the effects of the transmission of colonial European notions of time and its representation among the different indigenous societies in Middle and South America.

Experts from concerning disciplines shall compare their methodologies and periodizations as found in history, art history, anthropology, archaeology, and philology, and shall reflect on how they classify materials and developments of the human past according to chronological systems, such as periods, phases, horizons, epochs etc. On the other hand, participants shall discuss different forms of systematizations, perceptions and representations of time as used by the indigenous and colonizing agents in Latin America:

· How did people from different ethnic, social, spatial or temporal contexts imagine "time"?
· In which way and by which means were these time concepts used to organize human life and thought?
· What kind of representational systems underlie the material and performative expressions of time?
· How can we describe the transformations of time concepts and their representations as effects of colonial and cultural contact?

We examine three key expressions of time:
(1) Representations: Functions and structures of different representational systems, which can vary from one cultural context to another.
(2) Materiality: Different forms of media - texts, images, ethnographic and archaeological objects.
(3) Performance : Time and systems of temporal structuring as expressed in rituals linked to agricultural cycles, the catholic and indigenous calendars, ceremonies of succession or commemorations.

Thus, this symposium on "time" shall contribute to a broader understanding of how a fundamental, life-organizing concept has changed through the colonial encounters in the Americas.

Keywords: History, Archaeology, Indigenous Time Concepts, Middle America, South America.

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