Fervent Faith. Devotion, Aesthetics, and Society in the Cult of Our Lady of Remedios (Mexico, 1520-1811)
Granados Salinas, Rosario
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CitationGranados Salinas, Rosario. 2012. Fervent Faith. Devotion, Aesthetics, and Society in the Cult of Our Lady of Remedios (Mexico, 1520-1811). Doctoral dissertation, Harvard University.
AbstractThis study examines the cult of Our Lady of Remedios from an art-historical perspective. Choosing this specific cult statue as a case study is not arbitrary: Remedios is among the oldest Marian images in the New World and was named first patroness of Mexico City in 1574, when the city council became the patron of her shrine and a confraternity was founded to better disseminate the cult. As a result, the statue was carried fifty-seven times through the streets of New Spain's capital in three hundred years (an average of one procession every five years), thus outnumbering any other religious event that was not part of the liturgical calendar. The fame of Our Lady of Remedios was closely linked to her role as Socia Belli of the Spanish army, as she was believed to have protected Hernán Cortés and his allies during the conquest of Mexico-Tenochtitlán in 1520-21. Her character as protector in times of war was enhanced in the centuries to come, when she was called to the city on every occasion when the Spanish Crown was involved in military campaigns. Her protection, however, was mainly requested in times of drought and epidemics, a reason for which her fame as protectress of the city grew intensively, and all sectors of society (Spanish, Indians, and Castas) followed her with the same fervent faith. This dissertation is a monographic study of a miraculous image that has hitherto been overlooked in the history of colonial religiosity of New Spain despite its symbolic relevance for the society of its time. It considers the sixteenth-century statue and the ways it was displayed to its devotional audiences as documents that inform us about its social role. By placing this cult image in the ritual context to which it belonged, both spatial and spiritual, this study considers the devotional gaze with which her devotees engaged her showing how devotion, aesthetics and politics were intertwined during colonial Mexico.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:9284827
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