David L. Frye dfrye at
Mon Jan 17 18:51:49 UTC 2000

Mignolo may have gotten this idea from an article that Klor de Alva wrote,
lo these many years ago -- I think it was his contribution to _The Inca
and Aztec states, 1400-1800_ ("Spiritual conflict and accommodation in New
Spain: toward a typology of Aztec responses to Christianity"). Mignolo
cites some other things by Klor de Alva from the same period, and I am
sure he is familiar with this article. There is also poet Pat Mora's book,
_Nepantla: Essays from the Land in the Middle_ (1993). I'm sure neither of
them claim that the word was coined in the 16th c, but rather that it was
first used then to refer to the betwixt-and-betweenness of Nahuas dealing
with their conquered society.

On Mon, 17 Jan 2000, Galen Brokaw wrote:

> In the preface to _The Darker Side of the Renaissance_, Walter Mignolo
> states that the word "nepantla" was "coined by Nahuatl speakers in New
> Spain during the sixteenth century to designate the inter-space between
> cultures" (xvi).
> I am familiar with the word, but I was not aware that it was coined in
> the sixteenth century. Mignolo doesn't give any source for this claim.
> Does anyone have any information either supporting or negating it?
> Thanks,
> Galen

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