A great challenge of postcolonialism has always been the question, “After colonialism, what then?” How does one begin to approach such a vast and fragmented subject? The essays in Interpreting Spanish Colonialism investigate the wide-ranging perceptions of Spanish colonialism that existed in the colonies and externally in Spain and the United States. The editors face the difficult problem of tying together a volume with immense geographical and topical scope: the chapters range from the period immediately prior to the independence of the Philippines and the Antilles, through the independence battles of Colombia and Argentina, to twentieth-century Spanish linguistic diplomacy and historiography and North American borderlands epics. Schmidt-Nowara and Nieto-Phillips take a thematic approach in order to guide the reader through potentially bewildering geographical, topical, and temporal leaps, dividing the book into two parts: “Modernity among the Ruins” and “Colonial Pasts and National Presents.” They reject a...

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