A Simultaneous View of History: An Examination into the Landscape of History


Session Title:

  • Global/Local (High & Low)

Presentation Title:

  • A Simultaneous View of History: An Examination into the Landscape of History



  • Abstract

    Much of the information (data) about pre-Columbian and early colonial Latin America which has survived to our days has come to us in the form of reports and narratives created by civil, and scientific agencies under the auspices of the Spanish empire. It is a fact that in many cases the agenda that permeated the gathering of this data, was that one of maximum exploitation of resources in the colonies. Any attempt at understanding the process through which colonial history is encoded should begin with a deconstruction of the hierarchical structure in which the data is contextualized.

    This can be done through the collection of a sample of data into a hypermedia ‘assemblage’ that allows for a network-like configuration of electronic space. The space in such configuration provides the ability to transverse the data in a non-linear, interactive, manner. Because we can forge our own trajectory, we can examine the data in an associative manner which fosters the creations, by the reader, of new relations among the diverse elements. Engagement in such task can enhance our ability to discern historical constructs which deviate from the established (or sanctioned) historical framework. Further investigation into the information-gathering techniques utilized, such as observation and representation via narration and illustration, and its incorporation into the network in a manner in which it can be accessed from any point in the system provides us with the ability to create a dynamic landscape in which the concept of point of view is no longer applicable, except as an identifier of our diverse paths through the data. In addition to these, acknowledgement of the technologies utilized for the production of this information, and their role in the process of hegemony, could lead to a disclosure of the conditions which create (and maintain) intellectual colonialism.