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Biography of a Mexican CrucifixLived Religion and Local Faith from the Conquest to the Present$
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Jennifer Scheper Hughes

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195367065

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195367065.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use.date: 16 May 2022

Performance and Penance

Performance and Penance

The Cristo and Christian Evangelization in New Spain

(p.47) 3 Performance and Penance
Biography of a Mexican Crucifix

Jennifer Scheper Hughes

Oxford University Press

In the sixteenth century, the Spanish missionary friar, Antonio Roa, employed the Cristo Aparecido as an instrument for the conversion and evangelization of the indigenous Christians of Morelos, Mexico. Like other friars of his day, Roa used penitential practices, physical self-disciplines, to illustrate for the Indians the suffering of Christ. The local indigenous community struggled with Roa to negotiate these religious meanings. Suffering, flayed, and dismembered deities had a place in Aztec religious symbolism and imagery, but these may have done little to help the Indians conceptualize the Christian god.

Keywords:   penance, performance, conversion, ritual, emotion, Aztecs, Franciscans, saints and sainthood, relics, sacrifice, mimesis

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