Spain’s Long Shadow: The Black Legend, Off-Whiteness, and by Maria DeGuzman

By Maria DeGuzman

England and the Netherlands, Spain's imperial competitors of the 16th and 17th centuries, imagined Spain as merciless and degenerate barbarians of l. a. leyenda negra (the Black Legend), in league with the powers of "blackest darkness" and pushed by way of "dark motives." In Spain's lengthy Shadow, Maria DeGuzman explores how this handy demonization made its approach into American tradition - and proved necessary to the development of whiteness. DeGuzman's paintings reaches from the past due eighteenth century - within the wake of the yank Revolution - to the current. Surveying a wide variety of texts and pictures from Poe's "William Wilson" and John Singer Sargent's "El Jaleo" to Richard Wright's "Pagan Spain" and Kathy Acker's Don Quixote, Spain's lengthy Shadow exhibits how the construction of Anglo-American ethnicity as particularly American has trusted the casting of Spain as a colonial regulate ego. The symbolic strength of Spain within the American mind's eye, DeGuzman argues, isn't just a legacy of that nation's colonial presence within the Americas; it lives on to boot within the "blackness" of Spain and Spainards - within the assigning of individuals of Spanish foundation to an "off-white" racial type that reserves the designation of white for Anglo-Americans. by way of demonstrating how the Anglo-American mind's eye wishes Spain and Spainards as figures of charm and repulsion, DeGuzman makes a compelling and illuminating case for treating Spain because the imperial regulate ego of the U.S.. Cross-cultural and interdisciplinary, bold in its chronological sweep, and stylish in its interpretation of literary and visible works, DeGuzman's booklet leads us to a robust new realizing of the character - and heritage - American ethnicity.

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Extra resources for Spain’s Long Shadow: The Black Legend, Off-Whiteness, and Anglo-American Empire

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In other respects, the society of Theo, Clara, Catharine, and Henry conforms to neither Jeffersonian nor Federalist ideals. Mere signs or appearances prevail over actual referents or substance. For example, although “it was determined” that Theo’s profession should be that of agriculture (), seemingly in keeping with the Jeffersonian ideal of the yeoman farmer, it becomes apparent that “[t]he task to be performed by him was nothing more than superintendence. ). Similarly, as much as each of the foursome exemplifies some of the major attributes that the Federalists desired in civic leaders (wealth, breeding, education, and talent), none of the four gives much thought to her or his individual or collective security, to protecting herself or himself from “danger,” a theme at the center of the rhetoric of the Federalists ever apprehensive about national security and property.

Carwin, perhaps, . . prompted the murderer; but Carwin is unknown. The actual performer has long since been called to judgment and convicted” (). The only explanation of Carwin’s identity that is not put into question is Clara’s more preliminary one: “Carwin was an adherent to the Romanish faith, yet was an Englishman by birth, and perhaps, a Protestant by education” (). The “dangerous” power of Carwin’s oratory is represented as transforming this hybridity—a not necessarily unAmerican union of “Romanish,” Spanish, English, and Protestant—into a counterrevolutionary alliance.

On topics of religion and of his own history, previous to his transformation into a Spaniard, he was invariably silent. (–) It becomes difficult to dismiss this figure as an uncircumscribed sign of the devil or sinister temptations if one reads the following passage alongside        the characterization of Carwin as Spanish, Catholic, and having a penchant for grand ruins: His cheeks were pallid and lank, his eyes [“lustrously black”] sunken . . his teeth large and irregular, though sound and brilliantly white, and his chin discoloured by a tetter.

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