Life in the Colonial Convent. in Latin America - Research Paper Example

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Name: Course: Topic: Instructor's Name: Date: University Life in the Colonial Convent in "Latin America" Life in the colonial convent in Latin America revolves around the social and racial classes that were common in that era. Outside the convent society, nuns were less respected as compared to common people…
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Life in the Colonial Convent. in Latin America
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Download file to see previous pages Conquering nations placed value on convents. Monastic life gained respect and power in the society. Distinction of ethnicity, honour, and gender between the nuns increased with the passage of time. Many individuals were being used as slaves and servants in the convents. Convents generated financial resources by getting money from wealthy families; this defined numerous classes of people as per their financial standings (Bethell 56). Factors like demography, spatial variations and economy caused differences in women’s lives. Spanish women were given almost all the rights and protection during the colonial period in Latin America. Education and protection for women was ensured at the convents but other races and classes suffered as there were no rights and convent for them in Latin America (Skidmore & Smith 71). Latin America was male dominated colonial world and women were not allowed to take part in any activity without the permission of male. Male member of the family was only allowed to take all decision in day-to-day social life. Race and class distinction was firmly enforced and people were dealt accordingly. Women used two types of veils for differentiating leaders from servants. Nuns wearing black veils were from wealthy families and brought all the precious items with them. ...
Mestizo women were only employed as servants. These practises at the convents enacted social barriers in the human life in the colonies (Edwards 128). Convents were initially established only in the main cities of Latin America. Walls were built to separate the convents from the cities. That is why convent used to give a deserted look. Keeping of slaves and servants in convents was as normal as in rest of the world. there are numerous examples in Latin America and people also say that between two convents in Cuzco , more than 500 living out of which 50% were nuns (Bethell 61). Influential families lived in separate homes within the convent and kept orphan girls as servants along with other servants. Dona Juana de Maldonado constructed good house for herself. She used dozen of black maids in construction of accommodation in the convent. Juana also spoke about gender double standards in her poems (Skidmore & Smith 75). Convents in Latin America used multiple sources to generate revenues. Nuns took oath of obedience and poverty to their superiors. Wealthy families residing in convents could not manage to give a luxurious life to their daughters because a huge amount of money was paid to church and convent. Nuns were considered “brides of Christ” so all nuns were expected to give their dowry to church. Quantity of dowry presented to church, dictated the amount of luxurious lives that nuns can live. 6000 pesos was entry fee in the convent in Lima. For a luxurious living, convent used to charge double amount (Edwards 132). Demography, spatial variations and economy caused differences in women’s lives in colonial Latin America. Islamic way of social life was fully followed by the Iberian women during the colonial age in old and the new world. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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