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Title:Creating Christian Granada: Religion and community on the old-world frontier, 1492-1570
Author(s):Coleman, David W.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Burkhardt, Richard W.
Department / Program:History
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):History, Church
History, European
Abstract:Located in Spain's southeastern corner, Granada stood as Islam's last bastion on the Iberian peninsula until conquered in 1492 by the armies of Isabella and Ferdinand. For nearly eight decades following the conquest, Granada remained a city divided between its "native" morisco community (formerly Muslim converts to Christianity) and the Christian immigrants who streamed into the city from other areas of Spain. Mounting ethnic tensions culminated in 1568-1569 with the rebellion, defeat, and expulsion of the moriscos from the city.
This dissertation examines the creation of a new local Christian religious culture in the conquered city. Using previously unexploited local archival sources, this dissertation identifies the principal customs and devotions that characterized the religious lives of Granada's residents. By examining the development of these elements of the city's religious culture, this study asserts two arguments, and, through these arguments, suggests new approaches to the understanding of Church-wide Catholic reform movements in the sixteenth century.
First, while previous histories subordinate the Granadan story to grand narratives concerning the rise of Spanish absolutism and Church authority, this dissertation places the primary impetus for the growth of the city's new religious culture within the local Christian immigrant community itself. This study demonstrates that the Christian immigrants' frontier society was subject to little oversight from crown and Church authority for most of the period under study. Granada's new local Christian culture grew instead through lay initiative, and in ways that reflected not only the city's ethnic conflicts, but also cultural exchanges between moriscos and immigrants as well as social tensions within the immigrant community itself.
Second, this dissertation argues that the creation of Christian Granada conditioned the production of Church-wide Catholic reform, particularly through the decrees of the Council of Trent (1545-1563). The construction of a new local Christian culture among Granada's immigrants involved various lay demands for a reformed and more active local clergy. Reform-minded clergymen in Granada responded with programs that not only reshaped local practice, but also prefigured in fundamental ways the Church-wide reforms mandated by the Council of Trent. By tracing the translation of Granadan reforms into Church-wide policy through the council, this dissertation argues that the creation of Christian Granada constitutes a significant example of the cycles of dialogue and negotiation that underlay early modern religious reform. Granada offers, in short, a case-study illustration of a dynamic model of cultural reform programs in general--a model which takes into account the centrality of localized systems of meaning to broader processes of cultural change.
Issue Date:1996
Rights Information:Copyright 1996 Coleman, David W.
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9702485
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9702485

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