Colonial Evidence, or Language, Race, and History Intertwined is topic of talk by Diego Arispe Bazan, PhD, of Northwestern University.
In 2008, an economic crisis hit Spain that sent the unemployment rate up to 25 percent; almost 50 percent among the 18-45 set. Migrating to the former colonial territory of Lima, Peru, in search for labor opportunities, many Spanish citizens unwittingly reanimated anxieties about colonization, and recirculated discussions about colonial history and its valence to the contemporary moment.
Based on 18 months of ethnographic research between the two countries, this project emphasizes interactions between individuals as sites for the reproduction of ideologies that structure social life. More specifically, it identifies forms of evidence deployed by Peruvian and Spanish migrants to bolster their arguments surrounding historical fact and racial categorization.
The clash between Spanish and Peruvian narratives about the relevance of colonial history is explored through an analysis of the morphosyntactic and discursive poetics of their respective evidentiary claims. Ultimately, this shows that such forms of evidence can be linked back to a colonizing ethos, that explains colonization, while at the same time reproducing colonial discourses themselves.