Abstract: The Jesuit’s missions located in the Chaco are less known than the ones in Paraguay. They are the last step of the Jesuit's missionary device in the Rio de la Plata region. They were dedicated to 'evangelize' and 'civilize' the aboriginal groups considered more hostile: nomadic huntergatherers who adopted the use of horses and were not controlled by the colonial government. These groups were seen by Europeans as a radical otherness. That is why, the Jesuit’s descriptions of Chaco Indians skies are a very interesting example about the European attitudes toward other worldviews. This paper explores the use of different paradigms for interpreting these alternative skies: demonic influence, the deception of sorcerers and an Evemeristic reading of the indigenous worldview. This article also addresses some of the interactions between the aboriginal and Christian skies in the mission context. Keywords: South America, Jesuits, Chaco, Religion, Missions, demons

Introduction During the 18th century, the Jesuits established a series of missions in what nowadays is the Argentine Chaco, such as San Javier in 1743, San Jerónimo del Rey in 1748, San Ignacio de Ledesma 1756, San Pedro in 1764, Jesus of Nazareth Inspín in 1766. This missions are less known that the ones among the Guaraní and also had a shorter duration. However, they were extremely important because they were located at a border area, which was thought by the Europeans and creoles as a wild and unknown region, inhabited by ‘savage’ Indians. In this context, several Jesuits who settled in this region produced texts that described their experiences. In them, they discussed sky conceptions of the aboriginal groups that lived in Chaco region. These reports were made in the context of the evangelization mission. Jesuits’ opinions about the aboriginal celestial space were not only mediated by Christian ideas about heaven but also, by the baroque view of the Greco-Roman conceptions of the sky. Moreover, these texts were mostly written after the Jesuits’ expulsion and for this reason they had an apologetic intention. That is why, they tried to honor the Jesuits missionaries work, which sometimes leaded them to exaggerate the difficulties of the missionary task. Also they tried to present the aboriginal people as beings that, with the right guidance, could be good Christians and loyal individuals. This intent also influenced the ways they used to present the aboriginal conceptions about the sky. Framed by these tensions, the Chaco skies descriptions made by the Jesuits range from the Evemeristic opinion that the aboriginal skies were populated by old and heroic ancestors, to the idea that it was the devil who these groups worshiped in the stars. Halfway between these positions, we can locate the argument of “the sorcerers as deceivers”, which is widely used in the context of the struggle against shamanism. Chaco missions The Great Chaco is located in central South America. Partially covers the south of Bolivia, Paraguay and NW Argentina. It is a sedimentary plain covered with subtropical savannas. The Chaco was constructed by the colonial European discourse as a ‘land of Indians’. Inhospitable and hostile territories dominated by the presence of hunter-gatherers opposed to ‘civilization’. Also, it was thought as a marginal area to be eliminated, a

refuge for those Creole and Europeans who were outside the law and a region where land was wasted. Aboriginal groups which belong to the Guaycurú linguistic group (as for example Mocovíes, Tobas, Abipones, Pilagás, Payaguás, Caduveos and Mbayás) were thought as the prototypical example of the ‘unfaithful’ Indian and an enemy of progress. Following Richard (2006) we can say that during the 17th century the 'Jesuit missionary machinery' was devoted to indigenous farming groups, the 'foot Indians'. Three main regions formed this missionary dispositive: the Guaraní missions in the Paraguay's jungles in the NE of the Chaco region -with 130 000 people and around 30 missions in its splendor-; the missions in Chiquitanía’s plains, in the NW of the Chaco -about 25,000 people in 10 missions-; and the Lules, Vilelas and Matarás missions in the Andean foothills, near the towns and colonial ranches, in the W of the Chaco. The Chaco was located in the middle of these three cores. Its savannas, with equestrian, bellicose, hunter-gatherers Indians were thought as an inaccessible area. Only during the 18th century, when the economic apparatus of the 'agriculture' missions was consolidated, the Jesuits were able to take by assault the Chaco. Over 50 years some 25 missions were founded the total number of reduced Indians are no more than 2300 (Schofield Saeger 1985)-, generally of short duration. The resources of agricultural missions were essential to support the Chaco missions, designed as part of a regional strategic device. The Chaco groups organized in small bands had complex relationships with the colonial society. They were politically independent from the colonial government. However, many types of exchanges between these aboriginal groups and the Creole and European population existed: colonial military actions against Chaco groups; violent capture of aboriginal people for obligatory works in colonial settlements; armed raids of Chaco aboriginal groups against colonial cities; and also commercial exchanges between the colonial frontiers and the aboriginal groups –especially cattle, horses, feathers, animal skins, honey, weapons, iron instruments, etc.-. In this context in the year 1749, two important Jesuit missionaries arrived to South America: Florian Paucke from Silesia -at that time part of Austria- and Martin Dobrizhoffer from Friedberg -Germany-. Paucke worked in missions for Mocoví aboriginal people in the Chaco

etc. 18) pointed out. Cap. In this direction Acosta talked about what now we would call ‘sacred specialists’ in terms of ‘ministers of Satan’ (Acosta 1954[1590]. many of the Jesuits that worked in Chaco were from central Europe. Interestingly Acosta (1954[1588]. these myths were not seen as a real threat to the Christian faith. José de Acosta: Indians. 1-3).that Dobrizhoffer used when he discussed about the Chaco sky are a proof of that. Their international character it is very relevant to analyze the model used by the missionaries to think American societies. the sky is a place of struggles for the meaning. specially in the context of the cultural atmosphere of the Spaniard Baroque (Báez-Jorge 2000. BODIES AND CHANGE IN THE SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF SOUTH AMERICAN SKIES region from 1752 to 1767. Caldean. 19-20). 47). Acosta explicitly mentioned that the idolatry was an invention of the Devil who was trying to take 2 God’s place. Cosmology is frequently in close relationship with politics because its importance in the legitimation of the social order. For this reason. as Sánchez (2002. Prefacio al lector. Volumen I. The Chaco skies are a very good example of this. Dobrizhoffer’s work had a great relevance at that time in the configuration of European imagination about South American people. Guaraní and Abipón aboriginal people from 1750 to 1767. an important tendency to think classical European myths as material for philosophical reflection and artistic creation grew. II. Paucke. In fact. One central point of Acosta’s ideas were the attempts of separation of the “natural” and “supernatural” matters in the treatment of indigenous questions. Vol. Vol. Cap. Dobrizhoffer (1967-69[1783]. Paucke and Dobrizhoffer wrote important works about the Chaco missions (Dobrizhoffer 196769[1783]. In fact. Paucke 1942-44[1749-1767]). Vol. 48). 257). However. The work of the Jesuit José de Acosta on Indian ideas about demons. compared the Chaco Indian not with Greeks or Romans but with the ‘ancient pagan Germans’. Chaco Indians: between Satan and Ignorance In Chaco region we can see the influence of this discussion. Roman. 18). IX. Dobrizhoffer explicitly said : ‘I never had the slightest doubt that they [the Indian shamans] could not know or do anything that exceeded human strength’ (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783]. IX) made an important distinction between two idolatry genres. V. divinity and skies (Acosta 1954[1590]) are central to understand the Jesuit’s opinions about the Chaco skies. 3 and 5-6) is a clue to consider differential uses of the demoniac language. Vol. In many societies the celestial space is link with the notion of power and conceptions about the proper social order. XIV).ALEJANDRO M. She insists in the central role of this element. He argued that as a result it could not be entirely the devil’s work (Sánchez 2002. In fact. The classic ancient European civilizations and the American aboriginal groups were both deceived by the Devil. L. Lucan. One of them was the worship of creatures and `natural´ phenomena. Dobrizhoffer worked in missions for Mocoví. Cicero. the term idolatry was introduce by Bartolomé de las Casas to understand American religions as part of the ancient European religions –Greek. Also he thought that in these first groups the evangelization was more difficult.. Both texts are key sources about life in Chaco missions and the role of the skies in the interaction between missionaries and aboriginal people. V. and from a close Europe region. . Virgil. with roots in the origin of Christian reflection. 247) compared the Indian believes with the popular believes of the Christian Europe. The statements of classic authors -like Ovid. II. In supernatural matters he did not hesitated in qualifying indigenous practices as diabolic. Vitar 2001. specially when he referred to the ‘devil’s cult in the woods’ (Paucke 1942-44[17491767]. we think that the demonization is not the unique model in the Jesuit’s conception about American societies and also it is important to distinguish different levels of use of the demoniac language and metaphors. Before the expulsion. Vitar (2001) talked about the use of the demon figure in the Jesuit’s Chaco evangelization.(Sánchez 2002. Sánchez also mentioned another important matter for our present work: Acosta (1954[1590]. For example. L. as Gruzinski (2004) noted. In fact. Specially. These aboriginal people were viewed alternatively as Satan pupils and atheistic barbarians. For that reason. Cap. Acosta considered that the cult of creatures and `natural´ phenomena was less bad than the other. However. He used this quotations to show that ‘Abipon’s manners and believes were usual in ancient times’ (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783]. In this direction we think that the use of the adjective ‘demoniac’ to qualify any perturbation of the Jesuit’s work (Vitar 2001. II. The assimilation of American believes with the European myths helped to create opportunities for its legitimation. Skies and Gods The Jesuits missioner action occurred at the same time of the Catholic Reform which involved a strengthening of demonology. Dobrizhoffer argued that his use of classical examples in his book about Abipón Indians were not for stylistic questions. Due to the biblical attitudes about idols. 52) and Paucke (1942-44[1749-1767]. when Acosta discussed the indigenous cults he had a different opinion. Also we need to remember that the Society of Jesus it is not a Spanish institution. but we think the situation is more complex. II. The similarities between some indigenous and Christian practices were not viewed as testimonies of God’s presence in America but as a diabolic mimic of God’s work. the use of classical models was a widely used procedure in colonial America to deal with American cosmovisions. Jesuit partner of Dobrizhoffer. especially in the Ancient Testament. LÓPEZ: SHAKING EDEN: VOYAGES. Since Renaissance. This identification had important consequences. About the nature of the American people Acosta supported the idea of the natural goodness of the Indians. In 1767 all Jesuits were expelled from the Spaniard domains. He compared the aboriginal civilization cultures (specially the sedentary Indians) with the classic Greco-roman ones. the other was the cult of idols made by men. 259) pointed out that the ‘less developed’ groups were the ‘less idolaters’.

N. Dobrizhoffer (1967-69[1783].F. And for this reason the ideas about the sky are fundamental in the evangelization process. VI). Capítulo VIII. 42). Capítulo VIII. and this order. CAMPION. 52. from branch to branch gaining more elevation the souls went up to fish in a river’ (Guevara 1969[1764]. XI. RIBEIRO. L. I) tell us about this battle of imaginaries. Cap. XIII. José Guevara. 559). T. The Jesuits insisted on the power of baptism to purify the hearts including the heart of shamans. In this sense we have strange expressions as ‘the Abipones boast of been grandchildren of a demon. L. F. II. 75). it was stressed the use of whistles and gestures by old women sorcerers in order to communicate with demons (Del Techo 1673. V) that they considered superstitions. However. This interesting passage shows us that for the Jesuits the sky’s order is an important natural argument for the Christian god. Vol. The text pointed that the Indians hated the Spaniards because their opposition to idolatry (Del Techo 1673. as another proof of this.talked about the ‘familiarity’ between the Indians and the demons. Other authors (Vitar 2001. Vol. For them. The ‘Holy Spirit’ was matched to a shamanic auxiliary. Paucke 1942-44[1749-1767]. He cited. The Jesuits’ Christian Heaven was close to the not baptized Indians. The Indian saw the Celestial Jerusalem in a The jesuit Nicolás del Techo. XI. The last it is due to the fact that the missionaries did not understand the Indians ideas about body. The analysis of ethnohistorical and ethnological work (López 2009). and this great star party? Who or what would think this is fortuitous? […]It is not strange that so many beauties of the sky exist only by chance? Don't you think it would be very strange too that these racings and revolutions of the Celestial Orb would be rule without the reason of a very wise mind in opposition to the many people’s thought?’ Dobrizhoffer said that Ychoálay affirmed that they only look around to search for resources but not to look for the ruler of the stars. L. which spoke about those ‘barbarous nations […] did not know God intimately’. A testimony of the Jesuits Barcena y Añasco –in the decade of 1590. JOAQUINITO. Another important testimony from this text. The references about atheism points out the fact that the Jesuits did not find words that they could relate to the concept of the Christian god. p. like the primitive Gallus told they were their children’ (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783]. that the Jesuit extensively transcribed (Dobrizhoffer 196769[1783]. II. Paucke described shamans’ attempt to make an alliance with the Holy Spirit to exclude the Jesuit from Heaven. L. 249) also talked about the Indian ‘sorcerers’ as ‘deceivers’ and liars –as other Jesuits like Guevara (Guevara 1969[1764]. Volumen II. L. IV.): STARS AND STONES powerful beings with ‘demons’. II. II. wrote a famous passage about the Mocoví Indians sky and their relationship with the post-mortem life: ‘The mocobíes faked a tree that they called nalliagdigua in their language. TIRAPICOS (EDS. T. wrote a history of the Paracuarian Province (Del Techo 1673). Volumen II. N. PIMENTA. This supposed atheism was also related to the difficulties that the missionaries had to explain the Christian doctrine about the soul’s immortality to this Indians. vegetal and other resources.V. Dobrizhoffer attributed this lack to their ‘limited understanding' and their ‘lazy reasoning’. and to open the gates of the Christian Heaven. He mentioned several testimonies from Portuguese and Spaniard chroniclers about the absence of divine knowledge among the American barbarian people. Cap. II. 12-13) empathize the fact that the Jesuits and also the Indians of the missions identified the shamanic . diabolic practices or tricks of the sorcerers (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783] Vol. Cap. he made mentions about the ‘Indian sorcerers’ view’ about Jesuits. SILVA. I. Vol. A. show as the important links between the structure of Chaco Indian skies and their conceptions about the supernatural owners of animals. In this direction it is very interesting to pay attention to the discussions about the Christian Heaven and the access to this place. Vol. Chaco Skies Descriptions One of the first Jesuit chroniclers about Chaco Indians. self and person. Cap. 71-73) discussed the Abipón Indians atheism. In his work he transcribed testimonies of several Jesuits that worked in the Chaco region. The Indians thought their relationship with missionaries as a battle of supernatural power. The Jesuits banned the traditional mortuary practices (Del Techo 1673. During a trip at night. Dobrizhoffer pointed to Ychoálay the clear sky and said to him: ‘You don’t see heaven’s majesty. In his text we can read about the difficulties in evangelizing the Chaco Indians due to their relationships with demons. T. The narration of a dream from an Indian woman (Del Techo 1673. IV. of height so unlimited that it went from the earth to the sky. vol. T. Paucke (1942-44[1749-1767]. V. In another part of the text. According to both Jesuits the demons were working with the Indians in their spells and the Indians called them whistling. Another important matter is the Jesuits’ blindness about the particular aboriginal forms of sky conceptualization. He said that the Abipón ignored God and named Aharaigichi the bad spirit and Groaperikie their grandparent or ancestor (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783]. T. II. This kind of expressions was very frequent in the Jesuit’s discourses about the Chaco Indian. It is very interesting for our work a conversation between Dobrizhoffer and the Abipon chief Ychoálay. 545) or Dobrizhoffer (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783]. 52). Father Provincial of the Jesuit Order in Paraguay. (Del Techo 1673. XIII. L. Cap. XLIV). the Apostolic Bull issued by Pius V on April 29 of 1568. 252). I) from the year 1634 and attributed to the Jesuits Andrés Valera and Pedro Martínez simultaneously referred to the superstition and satanic sacrifices of the Indians and their atheism. I said. I. 71-73).

the reference to Bootes is very estrange because in another part of the text (Del Techo 1673. 50) talked about the fact that this aboriginal people made noise when a lunar or solar eclipse took place. A very interesting description from the Jesuit Romero – in the decade of 1610. Vol. because he believed in their cultural superiority. XVI). However. could be good Christians and loyal individuals. IV. because he did not find antecedents in the Scriptures. but they did not worship it. constellation that is not visible from Chaco. In fact. also the name cabrillas it was a correct name for the Pleiades in Spain (De León 2001. It is very interesting the fact that Pedro de Angelis accused the Jesuits of lack of astronomic knowledge and simultaneously. The Mocoví’s name for this asterism was –according to GuevaraGroaperikie. II. L. The Jesuit order itself made this kind of predictions (Vitar 2001. III. Cap. The idea of demonic presence and indigenous shamans as ‘ministers of Satan’ as some authors suggested was not only the important matter. in his 1836 index to the work of Ruy Diaz de Guzman (Díaz De Guzmán 1969 [1612]. 47) mentioned the importance of meteorites for the aboriginal Chaco people as signs of changes in weather or the death of important shamans. Libro quinto. He supposed that it would have an Inca origin. In particular. he made several mistakes. Many Jesuits mentioned the Chaco Indian attitudes when extraordinary celestial events occurred. III. In one hand. T. Vol. This is mainly because the aboriginal Chaco groups were thought by the Europeans as the extreme social otherness. The idea that ‘astral cults’ did not correspond to ‘barbarian peoples’ is still very frequent among some archaeologists. wrote about this matter. the mention is also stranger because important Jesuits sources mentioned a different asterism associated with this celebration: the Pleiades or cabrillas. .but she was expelled from that place for not knowing the catholic faith. the missioners banned this practice. For this reason.ALEJANDRO M. In addition. It is important to take into account that these texts were written mostly after the Jesuits’ expulsion and they had an apologetic intent. Pedro de Angelis affirmed that the Pleiades were a “diffuse constellation” only appropriate for the academic astronomer’s curiosity. Other Jesuits talked about warlike demonstrations to intimidate storms (Del Techo 1673. T. Conclusions In this paper we proposed that it is only possible to understand the Jesuit’s vision about Chaco's skies if we put it in the context of the debates of that time about the nature of American societies and the evangelization. Pedro de Angelis. Cap. For example the affirmation that in Chaco the Pleiades never set. 400).said that the moon and the ‘chariot of Bootes’ were the Chaco Indian’s divinities. However. Dobrizhoffer thought that this practice was not properly a ‘cult’. However. L. 544) talked about the noise that the Mocoví Indians made during their celebrations of the first visibility of the Pleiades. II. Guevara referred extensively about the Pleiades. like new forms of shamanic power (Del Techo 1673. T. II. Also they tried to present the aboriginal people as beings that. VIII). 42-43) described the Abipón Indians celebration of the visibility of the Pleiades in similar way as Guevara. Cap. Moreover. lighting with a golden bright –that in shamanic experience is a sign of power. Vol. Also he said that during the Pleiades celebrations. We also showed that the Jesuits used various models to try to understand the Chaco aboriginal groups and their cultural productions. the evidence suggests that we need to understand the first visibility of the moon when the Jesuits sources talked about the ‘new moon’. In the Jesuits description of Chaco Indian believes the sky has a central place. Dobrizhoffer (1967-69[1783]. VII. fotnote 22 ). T. human beings ancestor. many Indians interpreted the power of the Christian rites in other ways. L. XVIII). He was interested in the origin of this practice. Vol. Also he said that voices and jumps at new moon were their most important festivity (Del Techo 1673. shaman’s initiations took place. with the right guidance. II. In particular. Guevara affirmed 4 that the invisibility of the Pleiades was thought as an illness of their ancestor and it first visibility was like a recovery of it. LÓPEZ: SHAKING EDEN: VOYAGES. 52) that the Abipón remembered a very bright star that appeared some time ago and was followed by a very bad year. For example. the ‘new moon’ and the whirlwinds. 53). We need to be very careful with the Jesuit astronomical references. this Jesuit (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783]. Also he mentioned (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783]. they sought to honor the work of the Jesuits’ missionaries that is why sometimes they tended to exaggerate the difficulties during the missionary task. Cap. II. The Pleiades cult among the Chaco Indians was a very intriguing point during the Jesuits time. On the other hand. BODIES AND CHANGE IN THE SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF SOUTH AMERICAN SKIES dream. Cap. V. IX).. Guevara (1969[1764]. He suggested that maybe it was the only ancient hero of the nation. Another reference to this festivities referred to the importance of drinking (Del Techo 1673. many sources used the Chaco Indians societies as a social critique to the European society and their manners. This is a continuation of the ancient image of the ‘homo silvestrys’ with roots in the classical antiquity and the eremitic tradition. Tomo segundo. Notions linked to the ‘noble savage’ conception also had relevance. For example. and certainly it was not inspired by Satan (Dobrizhoffer 1967-69[1783]. VIII) refers that the Indian festivity was associated to the first visibility of Ursa Minor. 391-392). II. the idolatry of ‘natural’ phenomena attributed to the Chaco Indians was mostly centered on celestial manifestations. He said that the Jesuits confused the “cabrillas” and Pleiades because ‘the Pleiades never set’ and because the astral cult did not correspond to these barbarian people. we need to take into account the importance of the predictions based on unusual astronomical phenomena in Europe during that time. Dobrizhoffer (196769[1783]. we have also showed that the Chaco case analysis helped us to understand these debates. II. an important editor of Guevara works. He said that the Mocoví Indians had the cabrillas as creator and father. Certainly. Vol. L. VII.

Also. Buenos Aires. López. in De Angelis. The Hispanic American Historical Review 65. (ed. a central concern for the Jesuits was the potential to Christianize these events. M. S. de León. L. Acosta. Editorial Plus Ultra. Taking into account the great importance of diffuse and dark asterisms in South America's astronomies these is a very important fact. 9-34. 1954[1588]. The celebrations comparable with Christian celebrations will be promoted. Sociedades indígenas y occidentalización en el México Español. Departamento de Historia. On the one hand. Vitar. J. 2009. Leodii. N.). The celebrations had a central political role in Indian and European Baroque societies. Revista Complutense de Historia de América 28. R. 1954[1590]. imitaciones y traducciones. In this direction they empathized that this Indians only had some ‘cult’ of natural phenomena which was a less bad idolatry than the worship of idols in José Acosta’s thought. 1969[1764]. J. P. Universidad de Buenos Aires. Historia de los abipones. Richard. 1942-44[1749-1767]. Another View of the Mission as a Frontier Institution: The Guaycuruan Reductions of Santa Fe. This characteristics makes very difficult think this missions using the Foucault model of 'total institutions'. El Sitio de Babel: La ofensiva jesuíta sobre el Chaco (s. Madrid. Fondo de Cultura Económica. Schofield Saeger. Sánchez. Díaz de Guzmán.): STARS AND STONES some Jesuits’ sources used comparisons with classical paganism. población y conquista de las provincias del Río de La Plata. These preconceived ideas forced these authors to assume foreign sources for certain indigenous practices or to qualify them as erroneous reports of the chroniclers. Ilustrados con Notas y Disertaciones por Pedro De Angelis [1836]. Especially the sources reveal the Jesuit particular interest for indigenous celebrations linked to the sky. Hacia allá y para acá (una estada entre los indios mocovíes). student Agustina Altman for her collaboration in the fieldwork and critical insights on drafts of this paper. Demonología en Indias. Resistencia. 3 493-517. like the Pleiades. Another model observed in the sources is linked to the conception of the Indigenous societies as groups that lived under the lies of tricksters shamans who were the real force that made difficult the evangelization of the Indians. Madrid. In particular we need to pay attention to the very diverse astronomical knowledge of the Jesuits who worked in the Chaco. unstable in time and very 'porous' institutions. 1673. De Promulgando Evangelio apud barbaros sive de Procuranda Indorum Salute. 1985. Universidad Nacional del Nordeste. M.Unpublished PhD thesis. Guevara. let us also note that not only the missionaries made a resignification of ideas and practices of the 'other'. and leadership. The Jesuit interest in these issues is directly related to the relevance they had in Europe in the same period. In this events were generated links between cosmology. Atlas. For this reason. but also the European popular astronomies. Cuevas García. Con prólogo y notas de Andrés M. Acknowledgements: I am grateful to the executive committee of SEAC. Facultad de Humanidades. Tucumán. B.). A. Andes. 2006. 499-830. from Jesuits of the 18 th century to intellectuals in the 19 th century. emphasizing the ignorance of indigenous beliefs rather than on its demonic character. A. TIRAPICOS (EDS. Carretero. Those events linked to shamanism were too discouraged or prohibited. in De Angelis. Río de la Plata y Tucumán. A final remark is that many authors. Historia argentina del descubrimiento. CAMPION. México. the individual characteristics of each of them have great importance. The small size of the Chaco missions and the lack of missionaries have a great importance in the analysis of testimonies about Chaco skies. F. When the Jesuits discussed the sky conceptions by the Chaco Indians we found out that its focus on two main issues. Báez-Jorge. In the other hand. d. La evangelización del Chaco y el combate jesuítico contra el demonio. J. Con prólogo y notas de Andrés M. La satanización de las deidades mesoamericanas (perversiones y fantasías en el imaginario colonial). the attitudes of Indians about the extraordinary celestial events and the presages associated with them. PIMENTA. 2002. Revista Académica para el Estudio de las Religiones Tomo III: Ritos y Creencias del Nuevo Milenio. the celestial phenomena also become a source of concern to the Jesuits as a possible object of worship of the natives. 2004.). 27-488. Madrid. Anales de Desclasificación 1. SILVA. Cristobal (ed. La Vírgen. I am thankful to the Mocoví and to PhD. el Árbol y la Serpiente. 2001. With this small number of missionaries. (ed. in fact many times the natives used the missions only as temporary places of refuge and supply. . siglos XVI-XVIII. We need to consider not only the academic European traditions of their time. RIBEIRO. 2000. Biblioteca de Autores españoles. XVIII). But we must remember that the Chaco missions were small. 2º ed. 2001. Gruzinski. Facultad de Filosofía y Letras. social order. Historia del Paraguay. 12 201-222. 1969 [1612]. Cielos e Identidades en comunidades mocovíes del Chaco. Carretero. N. Idolatría y mímesis diabólica en la obra de José de Acosta. F. Dobrizhoffer. We talk about 'porosity' because the Indians came and went very easily from and to the missions. affectivity. 1743-1810. Editorial Plus Ultra. to Fernando Pimenta and the LOC of SEAC 2011. JOAQUINITO. J. Colección de obras y documentos relativos a la historia antigua y moderna de la Provincias del Río de La Plata. F. 19-40. The sources. Universidad de Tucumán. S. P. Buenos Aires. Poesías completas: propias. del Techo. References Acosta. Castalia. Paucke. Ilustrados con Notas y Disertaciones por Pedro De Angelis [1836]. La colonización de lo imaginario. Historia natural y moral de las Indias. 1967-69[1783]. Historia de la Provincia del Paraguay de la Compañía de Jesús. N. d. L. La derrota del área cultural nº2 831-846. N. Chaco Indians also did a creative process of reinterpretation and appropriation of the Christian heaven from pre-Columbian logics and conceptions. although they were not written by the Indians. Certainly this process is given in a situation of inequality and oppression. Colección de obras y documentos relativos a la historia antigua y moderna de la Provincias del Río de La Plata. saw as something strange the interest of indigenous huntergatherers by the motion of fuzzy groups of stars.F.

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