Roger Louis Martínez-Dávila
Fundamentally, Dr. Martinez is concerned about and fixated on human interrelations — especially during the Spanish Middle Ages. From the 8th through 15th centuries, Jews, Christians, and Muslims co-existed on the Iberian Peninsula and formed one of the most dynamic civilizations in world history. Their coexistence was tenuous, challenging, and intimate. Blood and family relations were both commingled and jealously kept apart. Conflict, collaboration, and accommodation created new and unexpected political and economic alliances. Shared life on the peninsula generated the conditions for new forms of identity to come to life — in essence — hybridized, fractured identities that often borrowed and blended aspects of multiple faiths, values, and families.
Dr. Martinez’ own extensive research in cathedral, municipal, and national archives has led him to conclude that Jewish, Christian, and Muslim relationships were far more integrated—both positively and negatively—than contemporary scholars and the public realize. To investigate these issues, he blends the traditional approach of the historian (painstaking research and interpretation of medieval manuscripts) with new digital technologies (crowd-sourced analysis by citizen scholars and applied geovisualization). Thus, as a digital humanist his purpose is to share this inter-cultural history with others, via traditional and novel mediums, so that we might learn and appreciate how 21st century human interrelations have been molded by the past.
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