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date: 25 March 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explores narratives about the past of the Jesuit missions in the context of the restoration of the Society of Jesus in the Iberian world in the nineteenth century. The first narrative is that of the Jesuits themselves, who try to connect their missionary past and present, by building a continuity based on the texts of the Ignatian spirituality (Constitutions, Spiritual Exercises, letters, hagiographies, etc.). The second narrative is that of the independent states that emerged from the collapse of the Iberian monarchies. Independent states expected from the restored Jesuit order to contribute to the construction of the new nations and the foundation of a new secular regime based on education. The third narrative is that of the local Christian communities, which had continued with devotional practices learned in the earlier Jesuit period. Religious practices of these communities would gradually become an object of condemnation by the returned Jesuits and ecclesiastical authorities for their autonomy and heterodoxy.

Keywords: Jesuits, missions, ruins, restoration, suppression, expulsion, Ibero-American world, colonial borderlands, secular states, exiled Jesuits

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