A Summary Of Coatlicue

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Right after the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire, Coatlicue’s statue was viewed as a representation of the “savagery” of the Native Americans. In part, the vast cultural differences and social relationships attributed to this depiction. As Spain was a Catholic state, Coatlicue’s statue was seen as an idol, which was seen as dangerous to worship. Furthermore, the large amount of serpent imagery, while sacred to the Aztecs, was seen as devilish traits. After all, the snake was the animal that tricked humans to be ousted from Eden in Christian ideology. Compounded with the fact that Coatlicue showed references to human sacrifice, the Spanish saw the statue of the goddess as devil-worship and a sign of paganism, as contrasted to what they…show more content…
Starting in 1910, the Mexican Revolution was a cry for democracy, a trust in all people, including Native Americans, to be able to run the country with the white upper-class. As the dictator of the time, Porfirio Díaz had treated the native population unfairly. In justification of suppressing them, he has said that “they are accustomed to look to those in authority for leadership instead of thinking for themselves” (___133). In the aftermath of the Mexican Revolution, there was a need to see Mexico not as an extension of Spain as a former colony, but as a country that has what Spain has not: the strength of former great empires, including that of the Aztecs. With a changing attitude on pre-Columbian times, the statue of Coatlicue was also re-evaluated. No longer was the goddess seen as a symbol of savagery, but one of strength, strength of the descendants of a powerful society with a rich culture. People began to recognize that Coatlicue could not be compared to a Greek goddess and neither could their statues. Instead of reasoning that this was because Greek culture was superior, the context of the situation compelled people to reason that this was because Aztec culture was superior. For instance, there were justifications that Aztec art represented the true motivations for creating art and others that embraced the sacrificial elements of Coatlicue as part of the statue’s

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