Quechua at Princeton: Criollismo and the Writing of Memory in Jerónimo de Oré’s ‘Symbolo Catholico Indiano’ (1598)

Apr 22, 2021, 4:30 pm6:00 pm
via Zoom



Event Description


Theological virtues (faith, hope, charity) and cardinal virtues (prudence, justice, courage and temperance), in Spanish, Quechua and Aymara translation.
The Catholic theological virtues (faith, hope, charity) and cardinal virtues (prudence, justice, courage and temperance) in Spanish, Quechua and Aymara translation. Detail from Luis Jéronimo de Oré, Symbolo Catholico Indiano, 1598.


In 1584, Italian printer Antonio Ricardo began producing the first printed books in South America. At the behest of the Third Council of Lima (1582-1583), Ricardo published Doctrina christiana y catecismo para instrucción de indios (1584), Confessionario para los curas de indios (1585), and Tercero catecismo y exposición de la doctrina christiana por sermones (1585). All these documents were printed not only in Spanish but also in the principal Andean languages of Quechua and Aymara. These three texts became the official documents for conversion and the only ones authorized until 1598, when Ricardo printed Peruvian born Franciscan friar Luis Jéronimo de Oré’s Symbolo Catholico Indiano. Oré’s book, which responded to the need for material to help missionaries communicate more effectively with the natives, is also a response to the books produced by the Third Council of Lima, which lacked an understanding of Andean culture. Working with two different and even opposing concepts of history, Oré took advantage of his classical humanist education to pen the Andean memories found in the quipus, as well as in oral tales in order to explain the native culture to an European audience and at the same time to explain the main concepts of Catholicism to an Andean audience. Furthermore, Oré’s approach to history also aides in the understanding as to how the imperialist discourse of colonial difference regarding the other, including criollos, shaped Symbolo, a writing of a religious nature.

Catalina Andrango-Walker

Catalina Andrango-Walker’s research addresses constructions of race, gender, class, and identity through an examination of 16th through 18th-century texts of the Andean region. Her first book, El Símbolo católico indiano (1598) de Jerónimo de Oré: saberes coloniales y los problemas de la evangelización en la región andina (2018), shows how Oré challenged imperial ideology regarding the construction of the natives, ideology that was based on contemporary Western theories that associated latitude and the natural environment with human nature and intellect.

Andrango-Walker is working on two new book projects in which she studies unpublished eighteenth-century female spiritual biographies written in Quito. Her research has been funded by a number of institutions, such as The Mendel Fellowship at the Lilly Library, Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, and the John Carter Brown Library. Her work appears in several collected volumes and journals, such as Revista Canadiense de Estudios Hispánicos, Latin American Literary Review,Chasqui, Symposium, Revista Iberoamericana, among others.

  • Program in American Studies
  • Program in Latin American Studies
  • Department of Classics
  • Department of Spanish and Portuguese
  • Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies
  • Center for Collaborative History