By Beatriz Rivera-Barnes, Jerry Hoeg (auth.)
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Extra info for Reading and Writing the Latin American Landscape
Even the gospels told the conqueror that every kingdom divided is brought to desolation. “So I maneuvered one against the other . . and told each that I held his friendship to be of more worth than the other’s” (70). Always convinced that God is more powerful than nature, Cortés does not hesitate to join the natives and to commit to war: in other words, to catapult himself into the heart of the action. Nearly three centuries later, Pedro Sarmiento will also act, react, and gain confidence with the certitude that God is more powerful than nature, this time in the form of audaces fortuna juvat, timidosque repellit (2: 512) and Deus providebit (2: 513).
A perico is a parakeet or a small parrot, and were the “e” to be an “a,” perico could easily be a scrambled pícaro, for the two words are as close as Pedro’s last name, Sarmiento, is to the adjective sarniento, mangy. Nancy Vogeley affirms that the diminutive periquillo further ridicules the main character (83). The result is a character likened to a parrot who mimics the sounds of his biome. But this aptitude at mimicking makes the parrot a picaresque character. In the jungle, it adapts and survives by reproducing sounds.
Because the Gulf Stream runs in a northwest to southeast direction as it exits the Gulf of Mexico, Narvaez’s ships would have run almost perfectly against it” (81). This is far from following the water! But Dallas Murphy points out that following the water is easier said than done (1). After having traveled for nearly two months, Reséndez is of the opinion that the Narvaez and Miruelo could only be certain of direction and distance, the two most important elements of dead reckoning navigation.
Reading and Writing the Latin American Landscape by Beatriz Rivera-Barnes, Jerry Hoeg (auth.)