"Sexual Sirens: Mayan and Andean Goddesses in Renaissance Latin American Literature”

Presented by visiting scholar Sharonah Fredrick

PhD Candidate, Department of Hispanic Language & Literature, State University of New York, Stony Brook

August 30, 2012 at 7:00 PM, Changing Hands Bookstore

Co-sponsored by the Hispanic Research Center and Women and Gender Studies in the School of Social Transformation at Arizona State University

Click here to view the extensive bibliography for this program: Sexual Sirens Bibliography


About Sharonah Fredrick
Sharonah Fredrick is an educator who has lectured and published on Judeo-Spanish history, Native American civilization in Latin America, and folklore in Spanish, English, Hebrew and Portuguese. Her BA in anthropology and literature is from SUNY Buffalo, an MA in Latin American Renaissance history from the University of Tel Aviv, and is writing her PhD thesis at SUNY Stony Brook on Latin American Indian literature.

About the Program
The topic of her talk in August will be “Sexual Sirens: Mayan and Incan Sorceresses in Renaissance Latin American Literature” where she will discuss two amazing goddesses: Xtabay, the Mayan sex goddess who also tends to orphans and hurt animals and bewitches vain men who have betrayed their sweethearts by hexing them with her voice at the jungle crossroads of Yucatan. And Chaupinamca, a PRE-Incan (from the Yunca lowland culture) sex goddess in Peru who seduces men and rewards them (or punishes them) based on their sexual performance, and has 5 arms. After an introduction of the goddesses, she will look at them in 16th century Spanish-language texts from Mexico and Peru, (in English translation too).

Her base texts are Native American: Antonio Mediz Bolio's Land of the Pheasant and the Deer (he was one of the first major modern Mayan Indian writers to collect the beliefs of his native Yucatan, in Yucatec Maya and Spanish back in the early part of the 20th century) and the 17th century Huarochiri Manuscript, written in Quechua in Peru by Indians of Yunca and Yauyo origin who were themselves colonized by the Incas.