Dialogue with Europe, Dialogue with the Past offers a collection of 35 Hapsburg-era Nahuatl, Spanish, and Quechua documents with English translations and analysis, with the goal of bridging the divide between colonial Mexican and Andean ethnohistory. A lengthy introduction provides a general comparison of colonial Mexican and Andean indigenous elites, of social stratification within the república de indios in both viceroyalties, and of indigenous-language writing and contact-induced change. Emphasis is given to native agency both in the composition of the texts and in the social conflicts and attempts to control resources that these texts articulate. Both indigenous elites and colonial Nahuatl and Quechua have been the object of wide study in the past two decades, and specialists in the field will find little new in this introductory survey.

The real value of such a collection lies in making available relatively mundane manuscript...

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