Pub Date2020
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Visions of Deliverance: Moriscos and the Politics of Prophecy in the Early Modern Mediterranean

Mayte Green
Cornell University Press

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 expression of a defeated group that was conscious of the loss of their culture and identity, Green-Mercado depicts Moriscos not simply as helpless victims of Christian oppression but as political actors whose use of end-times discourse helped define and construct their society anew. Visions of Deliverance helps us understand the implications of confessionalization, forced conversion, and assimilation in the early modern period and the intellectual and theological networks that shaped politics and identity across the Mediterranean in this era.