This  paper  poses  that,  in  order  to  represent  the  first  Spanish  conquests  in  the Antilles, Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo, within his Historia General y Natural de las Indias, takes certain official legal documents as models to guide and structure his account. Such documents are the royal ordinances and Palacios Rubios’ Requerimiento.  Consequently,  the  character’s speech  and  actions  are  marked  with  the  ideals  of  XVIth  century  humanist, Renaissance, and erasmist thought —peace, love-friendship  and the model of the prudent, moderate leaders— while a speech which seeks to legitimize the Spanish rules in the New World —while presenting it in terms of «pacification»— is being simultaneously unfolded. This whole discursive compound results in a plural, diverse and at times contradictory account, influenced and influential, and, above all, founding of some of the Utopian-imperial speech and imagery that were projected over the Americas and that constituted it.

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Published on 01/01/2014

Volume 2, Issue 2, 2014
Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license

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