Irene Silverblatt

Irene Silverblatt

Professor of Cultural Anthropology

External address: 
500 W 111th St, Apt 2B, New York, NY 10025
Internal office address: 
Box 90091, Durham, NC 27708-0091
Phone: 
(919) 641-0319

Irene Silverblatt researches the cultural dimensions of power. She studies how “race-thinking” and gender relations were integral to the making of the modern world as well as how historical memory has shaped feelings of national belonging and demands for universal rights. These interests are both historical and contemporary, and have taken Silverblatt to the Inca Empire, the colonial Andes and contemporary Central/Eastern Europe. Her goal has been to explore the profound transformations in social identities, political sensibilities, and categories of “humanness” spawned by the “modern/civilized” world. With support from the Rockefeller, Guggenheim and Wenner Gren Foundations and Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies, she has explored the Spanish Inquisition as a modern institution as well as the ways that gender construed power relations in Inca and Colonial Peru. These concerns about the cultural expressions of power, combined with an interest in the politics of memory and its relation to art, orient her next project. Research in central and eastern Europe explores the ways in which historical memory, particularly of the holocaust, is playing a role in the transformation of national ideologies as well as in the conceptualization of transnational, human rights. Her initial foray into this new arena was to edit Harvest of Blossoms: Poetry of a Life Cut Short. (with Helene Silverblatt). This volume is a collection of the poetry of our cousin, Selma Meerbaum-Eisinger, who died in an SS labor camp in 1942.

Education

  • Ph.D., University of Michigan at Ann Arbor 1981

Meerbaum-Eisinger, S. Harvest of Blossoms: Poems from a Life Cut Short (Collected Poems of Selma Meerbaum-Eisinger). Edited by I. Silverblatt and H. Silverblatt. Translated by J. Glenn, F. Birkmeyer, H. Silverblatt, and I. Silverblatt. Northwestern University Press, 2008.

Silverblatt, I. Modern Inquisitions: Peru and the Colonial Origins of the Civilized World. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2004.

Silverblatt, I. Japanes translation of Moon, Sun, and Witches. Tokyo, Japan: Iwanami Shoten Publisher, 2001.

Silverblatt, I. Spanish translation of Moon, Sun, and Witches. Lima, Peru: Centro-Las Casas, 1990.

Silverblatt, I. Moon, Sun, and Witches: Gender Ideologies and Class in Inca and Colonial Peru. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1987.

Silverblatt, Irene, Ana Sanchez, and Sabine MacCormack. “Amancebados, hechiceros, y rebeldes. Chancay, siglo XVII..” The Hispanic American Historical Review. JSTOR, February 1993. https://doi.org/10.2307/2517659. Full Text

Silverblatt, I. “Women.” In Encyclopedia of the Incas, edited by G. Urton and A. V. Hagen. Lanhan (MD), Boulder, New York, London: Rowman and Littlefield, 2015.

Silverblatt, I. “Haunting the Modern Andean State: Colonial Legacies of Race and Civilization.” In Off-Centered States: Political Formation and Deformation in the Andes, edited by C. Krupa and D. Nugent. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2015.

Silverblatt, I. “Acllacuna.” In Encyclopedia of the Incas, edited by G. Urton and A. von Hagen. Lanhan (MD), Boulder, New York, London: Rowan and Littlefield, 2015.

Silverblatt, I. “Prologo.” In No Se Puede Descolonizar Sin Despatriarcalizar: Teoria y Propuesta de La Despatriarcalizacion, by Maria Galindo. Mujeres Creando, 2013.

Silverblatt, I. “Forward.” In Imperial Subjects: Race and Identity in Colonial Latin America, edited by M. O. Hara and A. Fisher. Duke University Press, 2009.

Silverblatt, I. “Native Andeans Observe Spanish Colonials.” In Europe Observed, edited by Clement Hawes and KumKum Chaterjee. Bucknell University Press, 2008.

Silverblatt, I. “The Black Legend and Global Conspiracies: The Spanish Inquisition, Race-Thinking and the Emerging Modern World.” In Rereading the Black Legend, edited by M. Greer and W. Mignolo. University of Chicago Press, 2008.

Silverblatt, I. “Modern Inquisitions.” In Empires: Thinking Colonial Studies Beyond Europe, edited by A. Stoler and C. McGranahan, 295–331. School of American Research, 2007.

Silverblatt, I. “Religion and Race in the Emerging Modern World: Indians, Incas, and Conspiracy Stories in Colonial Peru.” In Practicing Catholic: Ritual, Body, and Contestation in Catholic Faith, edited by B. Morrill, J. Ziegler, and S. Rodgers. Palgrave/MacMillan, 2006.

Silverblatt, I. “Religion and Race in the Emerging Modern World: Indians, Incas, and Conspiracy Stories in Colonial Peru.” In Practicing Catholic: Ritual, Body, and Contestation in Catholic Faith, edited by B. T. Morrill, J. Ziegler, and S. Rodgers. Palgrave/MacMillian, 2006.

Pages

Silverblatt, I. “Stained Blood in the Old World and the New: New Christians and the Racial Categories of the Colonial-Modern World.” Edited by A. E. Glauz-Todrank. Critical Research on Religion 2 (2014).

Silverblatt, I. “Heresies and colonial geopolitics.” Romanic Review 103, no. 1–2 (January 1, 2012): 65–80.

Silverblatt, I. “Chasteté et pureté des liens sociaux dans le Pérou du XVIIe siècle.” Cahiers Du Genre 50, no. 1 (December 1, 2011): 17–40. https://doi.org/10.3917/cdge.050.0017. Full Text

Silverblatt, I. “Colonial conspiracies.” Ethnohistory 53, no. 2 (March 1, 2006): 259–80. https://doi.org/10.1215/00141801-53-2-259. Full Text

Silverblatt, I. “New Christians and new world fears in seventeenth-century Peru.” Comparative Studies in Society and History 42, no. 3 (January 1, 2000): 524–46. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0010417500002929. Full Text

Silverblatt, I. “The secret history of gender: Women, men, and power in late Colonial Mexico..” Comparative Studies in Society and History 41, no. 2 (April 1, 1999): 406–406.

Silverblatt, I. “Honor, Sex, and Civilizing in the Making of Seventeenth Century Peru.” Journal of the Steward Anthropological Society 25, no. 1&2 (1997): 181–98.

Silverblatt, Irene. “Lessons of Gender and Ethnohistory in Mesoamerica.” Ethnohistory 42, no. 4 (1995): 639–639. https://doi.org/10.2307/483149. Full Text

Pages

Glauz-Todrank, A. E., J. Boyarin, I. Silverblatt, J. Geller, A. Gross, S. Imhoff, and S. Sippy. “Jewish identification and critical theory: The political significance of conceptual categories.” In Critical Research on Religion, 2:165–94, 2014. https://doi.org/10.1177/2050303214535009. Full Text

Silverblatt, I. “Threads Speak.” Eccentric Archive, 2012.