Why this book?
This is a really splendid book and an original approach to the history of the Morisco community of Spain as they struggled for survival and sought to gain either recognition as Spaniards or rehabilitation as Muslim. Mercado uses a range of sources in Latin, Spanish, Arabic, Turkish, and Aljamiado, to examine the internal religious life of these forcibly converted Muslims. Her entrée into this world—through the prophecies and predictions, made by Moriscos themselves or as gleaned through the reading of “new” inquisitorial records and through the reaction of the Catholic and royal establishment.
Illuminating a dark corner of sixteenth-century European and Islamic history, Green-Mercado presents both the Old Christians and Moriscos with admirable nuance, while at the same time avoiding both a moralizing or nostalgic approach to the subject.
Why should I read it?
What is this book about?
In Visions of Deliverance, Mayte Green-Mercado traces the circulation of Muslim and crypto-Muslim apocalyptic texts known as joferes through formal and informal networks of merchants, Sufis, and other channels of diffusion among Muslims and Christians across the Mediterranean from Constantinople and Venice to Morisco towns in eastern Spain. The movement of these prophecies from the eastern to the western edges of the Mediterranean illuminates strategies of Morisco cultural and political resistance, reconstructing both productive and oppositional interactions and exchanges between Muslims and Christians in the early modern Mediterranean.
Challenging a historiography that has primarily understood Morisco apocalyptic thought as the…