Fictionalising Interpreters: Traitors, Lovers and Liars in the Conquest of America

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Conquistadors’ interpreters in America could be seen as mediators whose effort made possible the communication between Indians and Europeans. Yet, their very names are stigmatised as symbols of betrayal if and when they emerge as fictionalised figures in literature, political move-ments and popular culture. Columbus’ interpreter is an outcast in both the New and the Old World. La Malinche is widely epitomised as Cortés’ mis-tress and traitor of the Aztecs, although her identity has been re-evaluated as mother of the Mexican nation and feminist icon of Chicana writers. Felipillo, Pizarro ’s ill-reputed interpreter, is used in the Andean regions as a metaphor for corrupt politicians.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-60
Number of pages14
JournalLinguistica Antverpiensia
Volume4
Publication statusPublished - 2005

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Liar
Lovers
Interpreter
Conquest
Betrayal
Politicians
Names
Symbol
Icon
Outcast
Aztecs
Conquistadors
Mediator
Political Literature
Communication
Writer
Popular Culture

Keywords

  • Conquest
  • Diego Colón
  • Felipillo
  • Ideology
  • Interpreter
  • La Malinche
  • Literature
  • Popular culture
  • Stereotypes

Cite this

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abstract = "Conquistadors’ interpreters in America could be seen as mediators whose effort made possible the communication between Indians and Europeans. Yet, their very names are stigmatised as symbols of betrayal if and when they emerge as fictionalised figures in literature, political move-ments and popular culture. Columbus’ interpreter is an outcast in both the New and the Old World. La Malinche is widely epitomised as Cort{\'e}s’ mis-tress and traitor of the Aztecs, although her identity has been re-evaluated as mother of the Mexican nation and feminist icon of Chicana writers. Felipillo, Pizarro ’s ill-reputed interpreter, is used in the Andean regions as a metaphor for corrupt politicians.",
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AB - Conquistadors’ interpreters in America could be seen as mediators whose effort made possible the communication between Indians and Europeans. Yet, their very names are stigmatised as symbols of betrayal if and when they emerge as fictionalised figures in literature, political move-ments and popular culture. Columbus’ interpreter is an outcast in both the New and the Old World. La Malinche is widely epitomised as Cortés’ mis-tress and traitor of the Aztecs, although her identity has been re-evaluated as mother of the Mexican nation and feminist icon of Chicana writers. Felipillo, Pizarro ’s ill-reputed interpreter, is used in the Andean regions as a metaphor for corrupt politicians.

KW - Conquest

KW - Diego Colón

KW - Felipillo

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KW - Interpreter

KW - La Malinche

KW - Literature

KW - Popular culture

KW - Stereotypes

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JF - Linguistica Antverpiensia

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