Titel: The Memoirs of Fray Servando Teresa de Mier ...
Verlag: Oxford University Press, US
Zustand: Very Good
Zustand des Schutzumschlags: Dust Jacket Included
Auflage: 1st Edition
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On December 12, 1794, Fray Servando preached a sermon in Mexico City claiming that the Indies had been converted by St. Thomas long before the Spaniards arrived. Because the Spanish cited the "conversion of the heathen" as the justification of their conquest of the New World, Servandos words were deemed subversive. As a result, he was arrested by the Inquisition and exiled to Spainonly to escape and spend 10 years traveling throughout Europe, as none other than a French priest.
So began the grand adventure of Fray Servandos life, and of this gripping memoir. Here is an invitation hard for any reader to resist: a glimpse of the European "Age of Enlightenment" through the eyes of a fugitive Mexican friar. Fray Servandos account of Europe is clear-sighted, hilarious--and certainly not included in the travel literature of that era. In this memoir, one sees a portrait of manners and morals that is a far cry from the "civilized" spirit that the Empire wanted to impose on its Colonies. This book takes a look at history from an upside-down perspective, asking this question: who were the real savages, the colonizers themselves, or the supposed "savages" they were struggling to convert?
After ten years, Fray Servando finally returned home to an independent Mexico, where he served the new government before his death. Heretic and rebel, fugitive and visionary, character in a novel and father of his country--Fray Servando Teresa de Mier was all of these things. This memoir truly captures the passionate spirit of a fantastic man.
In 1794 Dominican friar Sevando Teresa de Mier proposed to a notable crowd in Mexico City that the image of their beloved Virgin of Guadalupe was brought to Mexico by Apostle Thomas. St Thomas's supposed arrival in the New World, though, would have been well before 1531--the date at which the Virgin was generally believed to have appeared before the Indian Juan Diego. Offended and threatened by this revision of such a significant moment in Mexican religious and social history, church authorities defrocked the friar and sentenced him to 10 years in prison in Spain. So began 25 years of political activism, action, adventure, and life on the lam.
Helen Lane translates a large part of Mier's autobiographical writings, most significantly his adventures in Napoleonic Europe between 1800 and 1805, in The Memoirs of the Fray Servando Teresa de Mier. While Mier's political works have secured him a place in the history of Mexican independence, the jailbreaks, capture, and world travel are the compelling components of this man's life. No simpering, suffering, exiled existentialist here; Mier was a man of strategy. Tales of travels take the reader through the countries of Europe, meeting famous and not-so-famous characters at each fork in the road. His opinions are strong (if not always founded in truth), his mood cheerful, and his nature robust. Mier's interpretations of the world as he saw it are often heavily distorted by his own purposes--but such is life on a wing and a prayer.
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