Print version ISSN 0121-1617
VASCO, Gustavo. REGIO GIGANTUM. hist.crit. [online]. 2004, n.28, pp. 229-244. ISSN 0121-1617.
This article analyzes the evolution of a field of imagination. In exploring the image of the "giant" as the powerful figure in the imaginative scenarios of the West, we find an interesting continuity in the genealogy of the Patagonians (inhabitants of Tierra del Fuego who are identified as "giants" by various travelers following the Conquest), and one that moves from the Ancient World of the Middle East to the Middle Ages in Europe, and from there to the Conquest in America. More concretely, along our line of questioning - the conjuncture of the first voyage around the world of Pigafetta - the image of the "giant" is crystallized as a resource: the giants of Pigafetta are a tool for appropriating the unknown. Thus, in the historie movement that translates the imaginative spheres of the West to the New World, we can decipher an identification game that seeks a specific goal: the reduction of the Other to the Self. Thus it occurs that, in the chain of images linking Europe to America, those gigantic beings of the Ancient World give way to the "Savages" of the New World horizon: the Patagonians, reminding the West of the former, prefigure the latter.
Keywords : Imaginary spheres; Patagonians; travelers; antípodes; construction of the Other; discoveries.