Introduction & Goals
Colonialism, Gender and Materialities (CGM) reunites researchers interested in developing a better understanding of the effects that processes of colonialism and domination have had on sex-gender systems. They all assume that material culture can reveal cultural features unnoticed otherwise.
At the moment, four case studies are under evaluation:
1) Processes of identity, change and continuity that relate to the incorporation of the Mariana Islands by the colonial network of the Spanish empire (17th to 19th century),
2) The consequences that domination by empires and neighbor states until today has had on The Dats’in and the Gumuz, two African ethnic groups living in the frontier between Ethiopia and Sudan.
3) Assess how the informal maritime commerce of ceramics in the 17th- and 18th-century South-eastern Caribbean impacted the everyday life of communities on the Dutch islands of Aruba, Curaçao, and Bonaire (ABC islands) and on the Venezuelan coast, particularly their identity formation processes and gender relations.
4) The study of bodies (and the self) in colonial borderlands by comparing three frontiers at various periods and geographies: the Spanish Empire’s southern borderland in the Americas in the 16th-19th century, the Punic western Mediterranean in the 6th-2nd century BC, and the Islamic-Christian Ethiopian frontier between the 10th and 15th century.
Our final goal is not only to understand the previous (and other) particular case studies, but, in general, to emphasize the importance of the body and material culture both in the construction of gender identity and in the dynamics of cultural contact, colonialism and domination. It is our contention that, in better understanding hidden subordination dynamics (related with the body and not so much with the mind), we will elaborate social theory useful to understand and transform today's present society.
CGM is devoted to knowledge and institutional convergence, and it is thus integrated by researchers in disciplines such as archaeology, ethnoarchaeology, anthropology, modern history, gender studies, ICT and VR.