Season 2, Episode 3: Envisioning Eternity: Women and Purgatory in the Seventeenth-Century Spanish World
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- Season 1, Episode 1: Street Harassment, Then and Now
- Season 1, Episode 2: Recording the Family: In Search of the Sonic Archive
- Season 1, Episode 3: Evidence of Absence: Lilli Segal, the KGB, and the AIDS Crisis
- Season 1, Episode 4: Archive Magic: Assembling History, One Clue at a Time
- Season 1, Episode 5: Capacity Matters: Immigrant Prisons in the United States
- Season 1, Episode 6: Policing Gold: Law Enforcement in the Shadow of the LA Olympics
- Season 1, Episode 7: Archie Bunker for President!
- Season 2, Episode 1: Revival and Reckoning: A Colonial Museum in Postcolonial Italy
- Season 2, Episode 2: The Unnatural Vice: King Henri III, Sodomy, and Modern Masculinity
- Season 2, Episode 3: Envisioning Eternity: Women and Purgatory in the Seventeenth-Century Spanish World
- Alumni Connections
- Innovative Pedagogy Blog
In the seventeenth century, Spaniards understood Purgatory to be as much of a place—indeed one capable of being seen and even visited—as its newly established colonies in the New World. Otherworldly spaces like hell, purgatory, and limbo became part of a “colonizing imaginary,” a worldview that included the cartographic project of mapping and claiming places and peoples far beyond Iberian shores.
Yet such projects have traditionally and historically been interpreted as the purview of men—missionaries, colonizers, and conquistadors who traveled across the Atlantic to participate in the entangled projects of conversion, colonization, and conquest. Hayley Bowman explores the ways in which women, too, contributed to this system of knowledge production. Female mystics envisioned and visited such places by spiritual means, wielding their own authority and contributing to how early modern Spaniards understood not just the afterlife, but their own position in the wider world and cosmos.
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Hayley Bowman is a PhD candidate in the History Department at the University of Michigan. She studies early modern Spain and colonial Latin America. Her dissertation, “Visualizing Physical and Spiritual Landscapes: A Seventeenth-Century Nun in the Spanish World,” explores the early modern Spanish world through the eyes of Sor María de Jesús de Ágreda, a Franciscan nun who, while physically enclosed in a convent in Spain, came to influence not only her confessors and her king, but also peoples and places across a trans-oceanic, composite monarquía.
Episode Producer: Hayley Bowman
Episode Contributor: Nancy E. van Deusen (link to full interview transcript)
Voice Actors: Stefania Gonzalez, Victoria Vourkoutiotis, Chris Tamayo, Emilia Vizachero, Kieran Westphal
Host and Season Producer: Hayley Bowman
Executive Producer: Gregory Parker
Editorial Board: Hayley Bowman, Christopher DeCou, Arielle Gordon, Gregory Parker, Taylor Sims, Melanie Tanielian
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