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El proceso migratorio hacia América en Navarra (siglos XVI y XVII)

Aranburu Zudaire, José Miguel (1997) El proceso migratorio hacia América en Navarra (siglos XVI y XVII). Other thesis, Universidad de Navarra.

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This thesis studies the migratory process to the Indies as experienced by the Navarrans in the first centuries of the Modern Age, basing itself mainly on sources found in archives and employing a qualitative approach closer to social history and attitudes than to strict demography. The process in itself has been analysed, with an almost prosopographic vision of the emigrants, to discover the nature of Navarran participation in the American venture and the repercussions of the migratory phenomenon in the Old Kingdom on the emigrant"s return and/or his contributions to the land of origin. The study is structured into three sections following the biographical progression of the average emigrant of the age: prior to departure, his life and death in America, and his return, made a wealthy man (indiano), and/or the return of his assets in the form of remittance, inheritance or Assets of the Deceased.

As far as the scientific bibliography in existence prior to the present thesis centring strictly on the same subject matter is concerned, this can be said to have been scarce. It would first be necessary to quote the pioneering works of Caro Baroja, Otazu and Bilbao/Douglas in the 70s, in addition to the biographic works of Eulogio Zudaire, which highlighted different aspects of the Navarran presence in colonial America and underlined its qualitative significance. The more recent research boom has been caused by the "92 anniversary, several seminars and congresses with their relevant publications having been held in the years running up to the date. Among others, it is worth noting the I Basque Country History Congress (1987), part of the II World Basque Congress, with a section on "The Basques and America"; the I Scientific Reunion of the Spanish Modern History Association (1989) on "Spanish overseas emigration, 1492-1914", and the II General Congress of Navarran History (1990) with a specific volume containing the conferences and papers concerning Navarre and America, all of which helped define what was the state of the matter up to that point in time. Shortly afterwards a monograph entitled nothing other than "Navarra y América" (Ed. MAPFRE, 1992) was published, which summarised the history of the relationship between the Old Kingdom and the New World from the beginning of the process to the present day. This work remains one of the strongest contributions on the subject to date.

As for the methodology employed in writing up the thesis, the kind of sources consulted should be taken into account, its being a work essentially based on archive material. The main source used was procedural legal documentation from the Diocesan Archive of Pamplona (Episcopal Court section) and the General Archive of Navarre (Royal Courts section), complemented by the notary"s protocols from the same General Archive and the "Assets of the deceased" orders from the General Indies Archive in Seville (Contratación section). The worth and wealth of these sources is already fully recognised, particularly so that of the judicial proceedings, which directly reflect the life and times of a society whose customs, structures, conflicts and values all play their part in that attempt at laying down and defining reality which is a lawsuit. The lawsuits bring together a host of different types of documentation, many of which are of a notarial nature (testimonies, proxies, contracts of marriage, etc.). Particular mention should be made of the autographic letters written by emigrants found in amongst these proceedings and protocols, a great many of which are original. They provide us with a unique insight into the mentality of both a person and a society, as well as offering direct and assorted information as to social and cultural aspects of day-to-day life at the time (the most important of these letters have been reproduced in the appendix at the end of the thesis).

Finally, encapsulating some of the thesis" conclusions, it can be said that the Navarran process shares many things in common with that from other Iberian regions and a few, nonexclusive but significant particularities. Therefore, the process cannot be said to have been improvised, but rather based on family strategies and relationships between countrymen, founded on an awareness of native identity either created or strengthened by emigration, all of which enabled the movement of persons and properties, throughout the so-called Carrera de Indias, in one direction or another. Emigration to America gradually began to form part of the culture of many places and areas in Navarre, and remained so until recently.

Published by the Government of Navarre"s Príncipe de Viana Institution in the series Historia (nº90, 1999) under the title of "Vida y fortuna del emigrante navarro a Indias. (Siglos XVI y XVII)"

Item Type: Thesis (Other)
Subjects: History > History by epochs > Historia contemporánea
History > Sciences auxiliary to history > Heráldica
Divisions: UN > Filosofía y Letras > Historia
DirectorValentín Vázquez de Prada Vallejo,
Date Deposited: 24 May 2010 16:59
Last Modified: 24 Aug 2010 13:16
URI: http://edtb.euskomedia.org/id/eprint/5682

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¹ Data hau katalogazio datuei dagokie, ez dokumentuari berari.