Friday, February 27, 2009

The coast is clear

I decided to get out a Spanish textbook to see if I could find any useful vocabulary lists to busy myself with (yay for not doing textbook buyback), and I was met with this amusing passage, translated for the reader's benefit:

Medieval Minstrels

Imagine that you live in a small town in the north of Spain in the 11th Century. You don't have TV, or radio, newspapers, the internet, and printing doesn't even exist. The few books that there are were written by hand and are the property of a few elites: namely the members of the clergy, some nobles, rabbis and Jewish scholars.

What I find amusing about this passage is that one should specifically envision Northern Spain. And there is direct mention of Jews and indirect mention of Christians ("the church"). So, what about the Muslims? Here's a map of the Iberian peninsula at the time

Notice that the greater part of the peninsula is know, the Muslim part. That's okay spanish textbook, it's cool to quietly leave out an awesome part of Spainish history and keep pretending that Christians were the only people to ever be in charge of Spain (duh, it's spain!). This is especially ironic considering that minstrels are most likely a concept taken from the Andalusian courts.

In conclusion, way to be an ass.

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