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La letra hereje. Iglesia, fe y religiosidad en la literatura mexicana contemporanea

Gomez-Michel, Gerardo (2010) La letra hereje. Iglesia, fe y religiosidad en la literatura mexicana contemporanea. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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My project deals primarily with connections and conflicts between the three institutions that formed Mexico's model of national identity; these institutions are the State, the Church and literature. Since the processes of the conquest and colony almost cast away the pre-Columbian religious and cultural epistemological worldviews, we can say that the Mexican nation was actually established on an unprecedented foundation of Catholic faith, the Spanish language and imperial power. The later has been historically re-issued with every political regime that has governed Mexico, from the nineteenth century dictatorships to the long-lasting regime of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).The project begins analyzing literary texts from the first half of the twentieth century, in which writers' critique of the State and the Church aims to uncover the homogeneous identity model these institutions were trying to establish in Mexico. However, I argue that the literature of this period, even with its lucid historical review, was a cultural project in which the religious beliefs of the people were condemned to an ignominious place in regard to social and political life in Mexico. The extreme secularization implicit in their discourses made of religiosity a synonym for alienation, ignorance and superstition. In the last decades, popular religion along with reinforced pre-Hispanic rituals have shown how religion, in a wider sense, can be a way to repair the damaged identity of Mexican believers. The second part of the dissertations works with marginal literary representations —from Mayan writers to popular testimonies— where the faith and spiritual beliefs are part of a complex rearticulation of a moral agency formerly dismissed by the hegemonic cultural projects of the State and the Church. My analysis is focused in how these texts confront institutional discourses to create a space at the border of the national identity model, which still try to embrace a dogmatic Catholicism, on the one hand, and the anachronism of the Revolution period on the other.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Gomez-Michel, Gerardogeg8@pitt.eduGEG8
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee CoChairZivin, Erin
Committee CoChairDuchesne-Winter,
Committee MemberLund, Joshua Kjkl7@pitt.eduJKL7
Committee MemberEiss, Paul
Date: 18 June 2010
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 9 April 2010
Approval Date: 18 June 2010
Submission Date: 12 April 2010
Access Restriction: 5 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 5 years.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Hispanic Languages and Literatures
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Catholic Church in Latin America; Mayan literature; National identities; Popular religion; Latin American Literature; Mexican literature
Other ID:, etd-04122010-145515
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:36
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:39


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