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Dossier: Goa: 1510-2010

Discourses of Incorruptibility: Of Blood, Smell and Skin in Portuguese India

Discursos de incorruptibilidade: sangue, cheiro e pele na Índia Portuguesa
Discours de l’incorruptibilité: sang, odeur et peau en Inde portugaise
Pamila Gupta
p. 81-97

Resumos

Em 1553, o corpo do missionário jesuíta Francisco Xavier foi declarado miraculosamente preservado e enviado para Goa. Como surgiu e se manteve ao longo do tempo a ideia da sua incorruptibilidade material no Estado da Índia? Este estudo analisa um conjunto de exames médicos realizados para sancionar as aparições públicas deste santo ou Exposições como os funcionários coloniais lhes chamavam. O discurso destes relatórios de autópsia encontra-se entre a hagiografia católica e a medicina ocidental, tornando-os interessantes para a compreensão da mudança anatómica das relações entre a Igreja e o Estado na Índia portuguesa.

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Prelude

  • 1 I begin this paper with an extended quote by Michel Foucault precisely because this paper is very m (...)

1Modern medicine has fixed its own date of birth as being in the last years of the eighteenth century. Reflecting on its situation, it identifies the origin of its positivity with a return – over and above all theory – to the modest but effecting level of the perceived… At the beginning of the nineteenth century, doctors described what for centuries had remained below the threshold of the visible and the expressible, but this did not mean that, after over-indulging in speculation, they had begun to perceive once again, or that they listened to reason rather than to imagination; it meant that the relation between the visible and the invisible – which is necessary to all concrete knowledge – changed its structure, revealing through gaze and language what had previously been below and beyond their domain. A new alliance was forged between words and things, enabling one to see and to say1.

Introduction

  • 2 Mary Douglas, «The Two Bodies», in Natural Symbols: Explorations in Cosmology, Routledge: New York, (...)

2The social body constrains the way the physical body is perceived. The physical experience of the body, always modified by the social categories through which it is known, sustains a particular view of society. There is a continual exchange of meanings between the two kinds of bodily experience so that each reinforces the categories of the other. As a result of this interaction the body itself is a highly restricted medium of expression. The forms it adopts in movement and repose express social pressures in manifold ways. The care that is given to it, in grooming, feeding and therapy, the theories about what it needs in the way of sleep and exercise, about the stages it should go through, the pains it can stand, its span of life, all the cultural categories in which it is perceived, must correlate closely with the categories in which society is seen in so far as these also draw upon the same culturally processed idea of the body2.

  • 3 For a more nuanced (and historically detailed) reading of Xavier’s untimely death on December 3,155 (...)
  • 4 Display concerns what is hidden as much as what is revealed, and is fraught with transgressive pote (...)
  • 5 Ibid, p. 216. The notion of display has a huge potential for understanding medicine over long perio (...)

3In 1552, the corpse of a would be saint was declared «incorrupt» by his religious brothers approximately three months after his hasty burial on the island of Sancian(off the coast of China), and shipped to Goa, the centre of the Portuguese Catholic empire in Asia3. This holy figure would be venerated for the next four hundred and fifty years, not only for the Jesuit missionary zeal he represented in life but also for his body’s enduring miraculous preservation and corporeal integrity in death. How (and why) did the idea of São Francisco Xavier’s material incorruptness (through signifiers such as blood, smell, and skin) get sustained over the longue durée of Portuguese colonialism in Goa, India (1552-1961)? The following paper examines «bits and pieces» from a series of medical reports(1556, 1614, 1782, 1859, 1951) that were issued to sanction his intermittent public displays or Exposições as they were eventually called by the Estado da Índia4. That these remarkable autopsy reports lie discursively somewhere between Catholic hagiography and medical history makes them that much more compelling for understanding the changing anatomy of state and church relations in a Portuguese colonial setting, including the role of corporeal display as not only in the service of politics, religion, culture, and science but also as potentially transgressive, as revealing as much as concealing5.

  • 6 Katherine Verdery, The Political Lives of Dead Bodies: Reburial and Post Socialist Change, New York (...)
  • 7 In regard to Goan historiography, these medical reports are largely discounted as hagiography. Nor (...)
  • 8 Here I am referring to the works of Bruno Latour, The Pasteurization of France, Cambridge: Harvard (...)
  • 9 In a similar vein to Raffles, the grotesque, the exaggerated, the organic(the crude, the natural th (...)
  • 10 Kathleen Stewart writes: «They[ordinary affects] work not through meanings per se, but rather in th (...)
  • 11 Friction inflects historical trajectories, enabling, excluding, and particularizing. That these aut (...)

4In viewing Xavier’s corpse as a site for exploring «dead body politics», I employ a phrase coined by anthropologist Katherine Verdery6, only in a more literal sense. Thus, instead of looking strictly at the metaphorics of dead corpses in relation to political lives, it is the changing metonymic signifiers of this saint’s decomposition over time that I am interested in tracing, however briefly, in this paper7. Here the language of autopsy and medical expertise functions in the service of a colonial state even as it is never fully contained by medical discourse, instead the lingering residues of the theologically religious or holy constantly persist, and rely on shifting signifiers to counterpoise science. Documented material signs of blood, smell, and skin and corporeal wholeness act not simply as proof or evidence of Xavier’s continuing incorruptness or miraculous-ness in death; more importantly, and for the purposes of this paper, they function as organic agents of colonial governance8. Thus, at one level, these signifiers situate European Catholic saint veneration in a colonial context at the same time that they extend the role of church and state into the realm of public material display9. At another level, they function through «embodied affect»10, that is, in the way their presence or absence picks up «densities and textures» over time in the face of Xavier’s very real physical decay, and allow for a range of deep attachments, to both saint and state. Moreover, it is in the face of their increasing organic decay that other corporeal materialities (specifically hair, teeth, and nails) as well as the integrity of body parts («sacred relics») over the wholeness (the «venerable» corpse) take over as generative categories of both agents of colonialism and affect. Finally that these moments of power, knowledge and display take place at particular points of «friction», momentary fragments of both unexpected conjuncture and disjuncture11 in the shifting political economy of Goa(1556, 1614, 1782, 1859, 1951) only confirms the resonance of Xavier’s corporeality as a potential mode of knowing, relating, and attending to the particularities of dead body politics in Portuguese India.

Bits and Pieces in a History of Frictions and Fragments

1556

  • 12 The Royal Hospital of the Holy Spirit was formed by Albuquerque in 1510, to cater for Portuguese so (...)
  • 13 See Appendix 1556 (A). Hereafter any words in the text marked within quotation marks come directly (...)
  • 14 See Appendix 1556 (B).
  • 15 See Manuel Teixeira, S.J. «Vita S. Francisci», Monumenta Xaveriana, Tomus Secundus, Matriti: Typis (...)

5In November 1556, Cosmos de Saraiva, a Portuguese medical doctor attached to Goa’s prestigious Royal Hospital as well as the personal physician to its Viceroy12, was put in charge of the daunting task of performing a medical examination on the newly arrived corpse of Francisco Xavier, a Spanish Basque Jesuit who had died four years earlier on the island of Sancian, off the coast of China, awaiting permission to start a Catholic mission there13. Two weeks later, in December 1556 Xavier’s corpse was subjected to yet another autopsy14. While the circumstances are unclear as to why this second examination took place, it was performed by Goa’s Vicar General, also a trained medical doctor by the name of Ambrósio Ribeiro. Xavier himself had spent the last ten years missionizing throughout South and Southeast Asia before his untimely death at the age of forty-seven. It had reportedly been two traveling Jesuit priests who had found his corpse «whole», «fresh-like», and «perfume smelling» two months after his initial burial, and had made the decision to return his venerable corpse to the Jesuit center of the Portuguese empire in Asia15.

  • 16 It was not unusual to examine a potential saint’s corpse for its state of decomposition, but this p (...)
  • 17 Caroline W. Bynum, Fragmentation and Redemption: Essays on Gender and the Human Body in Medieval Re (...)
  • 18 D. Howes writes: «Exhuming his body about a year after burial, people discovered…that a sweet fragr (...)
  • 19 Caroline W. Bynum, Fragmentation and Redemption, p. 295.
  • 20 For a fascinating extended discussion of signs of miracles (as related to saints, shrines and relic (...)

6The language of anatomy in the reports of both Saraiva and Ribeiro is one of secular truth, laws, oaths, and authenticity. Neither is there evidence of embalming «of any kind» nor evidence of the use of «artificial preservative agents.» Instead, there is «flesh that is entire with its natural skin,» and limbs «entire» and «clothed in their flesh.» Moreover, there is evidence of «fresh blood» that is «untainted» in smell and «stains of blood» on the Chinese damask pillow wherein Xavier’s head is found to be resting. On the one hand, the language of his medical report is scientific in its descriptive value even as its focus is unusual, the corpse of a missionary and would-be saint four years after death16. On the other, it is caught up in the language of early modern Catholic sainthood17, not only through such added details as the presence of two Jesuit priests at his first autopsy, and the role of a religious figurehead as taking charge of his second autopsy, but also through its attention to its lack of a foul or «corrupting» smell emanating from Xavier’s corpse. Specifically, the «odour of sanctity»18 as it is referred to in Catholic theology and the redemptive wholeness (vs. fragmentation)19 of his corpse function as two signs of his potential sainthood. In 1556 then, we witness the beginnings of a set of affective ties with Xavier and the beginnings of a colonial discourse of incorruptness that relies on blood, smell, skin, and corporeal wholeness as its key evidentiary signifiers20, and that balances the medical with the miraculous by relying on organic materialities that simultaneously act as agents of both church and state and for an initiating public.

1614

  • 21 John Castets, «The Miracle of the Body of St. Francis Xavier», Indian Catholic Truth Society, n. 13 (...)
  • 22 Ibid.
  • 23 Ibid. The four chosen Jesuits were Fr. Antonio Vieira, Jesuit Provincial, Father Manuel Gonçalves, (...)
  • 24 Vieira quoted in Rocha Martins, O Apostolo das Índias, S. Francisco Xavier, Lisboa: Agência Geral d (...)
  • 25 Patrick Geary, Furta Sacra, pp. 24-28.

7The next time that Xavier’s corpse was returned to the autopsy table was in the year 1614, as part of his formal canonization proceedings (1610-1622). Only this time the purpose was to amputate his right arm – the right one being the one that had been used by Xavier in conferring baptisms, hence its holiness. This operation was performed with the express purpose of authenticating his incorruptibility one last time and sanctioning the final approval of Pope Paul V for he had requested that Xavier’s arm be sent as a sacred relic to be held in the Vatican21. Interestingly, this amputation took place under the sole charge of the «Society of Jesus» and «at night» and in relative «secrecy» on November 3, 1614. It was Jesuit Reverend General Claude Aquaviva who performed the medical procedure22. Evidence of «blood flowing in abundance» and the «wholeness of the corpse» were attested to by the three additional Jesuit eyewitnesses who attended the event23. One brother by the name of Antonio Vieira even went to so far as to attest to the blood that «stained the iron blade» that was used to cut his arm off24. On the one hand, we see how the removal of Xavier’s right arm is couched in the language of dissection through the idea of procedure and in the attention paid to the iron blade used to perform the amputation. On the other hand, it is very much caught up in the language of Catholic saint veneration, through the fact that the surgical operation took place at night and in secrecy, both typical traits of relic «translations»25. Thus, in the year 1614, we see not only continuing proof of Xavier’s miraculous-ness through emissions of blood and corporeal integrity, but also how the Jesuits and a globalized Catholic church created their own set of embodied affective ties to Xavier, both separate from the colonial state, and in conjunction with.

1782

  • 26 See Appendix 1782.

8Two hundred and twenty-six years after this missionary’s corpse was first placed on a dissection table, Xavier’s corpse was examined once again. Only this time, it was neither for the purpose of proving his initial incorruptibility (1556), nor authenticating his potential sainthood (1614) – his canonization now a reality in 1782 –, but rather for the purpose of proving his corporeal «fitness» for what the state labels for the first time as a «Solemn Exposition»26. Instead of a medical practitioner or several Jesuits performing the anatomical procedure – as had been the case in 1556 and 1614, respectively –, it is interestingly, a state official, the Governor General of Portuguese India, who now not only observes and records the condition of his corpse, but concludes that his body is in such a state as to be «exposed to the public to excite and increase the devotion of the faithful». The language of autopsy is rather simplistic in this report (perhaps due to the fact that there is no medical doctor on hand), and is clearly in the service of a colonial state bent on using Xavier’s corpse for more explicit reasons of faith(and in the absence of the Jesuits who had been expelled from Goa in 1759). Interestingly, the potency of blood, smell, skin, and corporeal integrity as signifiers of Xavier’s incorruptibility has all but disappeared. Instead, there is documented evidence of blood («colour and bruising») and skin («on his face, left arm, and hand») remaining on his corpse, which in turn, suggests the lingering residues of the theological in the medical. Moreover, the narrative attention given in this report to one of Xavier’s missing toes is just as revealing; the fact that it had reportedly been «snatched away in an act of devotion in 1554» also serves to authenticate the corpse on the dissection table as that of Xavier(and not of somebody else). Lastly, it reifies the miraculous-ness of Xavier’s corpse by creating a history to his embodied affective ties, and with a member of Portuguese India’s Catholic public, nonetheless. Here the scientific and theological constantly make themselves visible through the language of autopsy.

9We also find additional and new signifiers in this medical report of 1782: those of hair («a small quantity still visible on his skull»), teeth («all visible excepting one»), nails («all the toes that remained had their nails»), and the integrity of body parts («the head is well preserved, the intestines are wanting», etc) over his entire corpse. The language of anatomy has shifted dramatically in the intervening years (between 1556 and 1782), from medical description based on whole bodies to one focused on body parts (hence the focus on his toe), and from corporeal signifiers of blood, skin, and smell to ones of hair, teeth, and nails. Upon closer examination, the shift in kind from one set of residues to another tells us much about shifting politics in 1782, particularly the ossification of the colonial state and the role of the church more directly in its service, instead of as an agent in its own right. Both organs, with already established and overlapping histories of ties to Xavier, are now working together to develop attachments between Goa’s expanding Indo-Portuguese public and their patron saint. Specifically, the role of corporeal display in 1782 is crucial for not only developing a new set of organic agents of colonialism, but also for creating a new set of embodied affects between church, state, and its much needed public via Goa’s patron saint, Xavier.

1859

  • 27 See Appendix 1859.
  • 28 Interestingly, in 1842, the prestigious Goa Medical School had been established as part of the larg (...)

10Just had been the case for 1782, Xavier’s corpse was put onto the dissecting table once again to prove his «fitness» for public display in 1859. However, this medical report reads very differently from its predecessor27. Not only is the examination performed by three medical experts, two specializing in Surgery, but on hand are also members of Goa’s Board of Health (José António de Oliveira and António Jose da Gama), as well as a host of legal, financial, judicial, and religious officials, including Goa’s Governor General, Visconde de Torres Nova. Moreover, this time around, the description of Xavier’s corpse is more explicitly couched in the language of medical «expertise» and «specialization.» Descriptions of the «cranium», «maxillary sinus», «incisors», «integument» and «phalanges» are all in evidence in the autopsy report28. Also, there is an increasingly tendency to poke and prod at the corpse, to ensure Goa’s public of the integrity of specific body parts (the «cranium», the «face», the «feet», the «abdominal walls,» etc.) as it is now his «Body and Relics» (and not his «venerable corpse» that are deemed worthy of display). In addition, certain markers («a bruise», and «his left hand») are noted as appearing in the same condition as had been the case during his prior medical examination in 1782; they are now relied on once again to authenticate this very corpse as that of Xavier as well as affirm his continued preservation. Finally, all of these anatomical assessments serve as justification to renew affective ties between saint and state through staging a second Solemn Exposition, and very much following the pattern set in 1782.

11Interestingly, remnants of blood, skin, and smell and corporeal integrity are wholly absent in this report, excepting some evidence of «withered skin dark in colour» found on Xavier’s corpse. Instead, there is an increasing reliance on and an expanding interest in documenting continuing evidence of a different set of corporeal signifiers that made a first appearance in Xavier’s medical examination of 1782: hair («the scalp still with hair but rare»), nails («the left hand, including nails, is entire»), and teeth («of the front teeth, only one of the incisors is wanting»). In other words, this new set of evidentiary signifiers increasingly acts as a replacement to the former set as organic agents of a colonial state attempting to resurrect itself in 1859. The lingering remnants of the theological are still visible in 1859, but less explicitly so by the very nature of the kinds of materialities present. At the same time, these corporeal residues suggest a very different kind of state operating in 1859. The church continues to function in the service of a form of colonialism that is increasingly more expansive in its outlook, one that still relies on Xavier’s corpse to «excite devotion,» only now directed at multiple religiosities (Catholicism and Hinduism) to enhance state power. Moreover, the embodied affective ties of church, state and public to Xavier so hard won in 1782 are now being renewed through this saint’s ever more elaborate ritualized display.

1951

  • 29 See Appendix 1951.
  • 30 By 1945, the Health Services of Goa had been organized separately from the Medical and Surgical Sch (...)

12Xavier’s corpse was subjected to yet another medical examination on June 23, 1951 in preparation for his tenth «Solemn Exposition» of 1952, which was staged to commemorate the four hundred year anniversary of his death29. Its purpose was the same: to endorse his «fitness» for public display. By all medical standards, the report on Xavier’s corpse in 1951 is by far the most comprehensive and couched in the language of medical expertise (terms like «tibia» and «fíbula», alongside the «sacrum», the «ilialic bones», «lumbar vertebra» are included). It is interesting that this report is kept confidential (as compared to previous ones that were published for Goa’s public) even as it is used for the same purpose of earlier reports: to sanction Xavier’s public display and veneration. Present on this occasion are not only a balance of church and state figures (the Governor General Manuel Marques de Abrantes Amarale alongside the Reverend Patriarch D. Jose da Costa Nunes) but the Directors of Goa’s Services of Health and Hygiene (Dr. Antonio Luis de Sousa Sobrinho) and Medical and Surgical School (Dr. João Manuel Pacheco de Figueiredo) are put in charge of the autopsy performed on Xavier30. Interestingly, there is also much attention made to specific body parts in this report, wherein each («Head», «Left Hand», «Left Foot», «Right Foot», remember that the right hand had been removed in 1614) is given a fully exhaustive assessment. For example, the section entitled «Left Hand» reads as the following: «Resting with palm side on the chest, with the fingers half-flexed, muscular substances and conserved skin. Dorsal side: some flexible tendons are distinguishable, being most clear and prominent at the extension of the index finger. Only the thumb finger has a nail. Palm Side: some flexible tendons are clearly distinguishable, with little flexibility of the veins». This focus on body parts over the integrity of his whole corpse continues a practice witnessed in earlier medical reports, only with much more of an emphasis now.

13Whereas organic signifiers of blood and bodily integrity have now completely disappeared from the language of autopsy, there is still lingering evidence of skin on Xavier’s corpse («dry withered skin» and «musculature and skin in the direction of destruction,» «conserved skin» the «tibia and fibula covered in skin»). In other words, medical expertise keeps open the potentiality of Xavier’s corpse for continuing affective ties of saint and state. At the same time, hair, nails and teeth continue to function as organic agents of colonialism; however, increasingly less so at this time («a few rare hairs on the head», «only the thumb finger has a nail», «the distinctiveness of the incisors, small and regular», «the second left one dislocated backwards»). Interestingly, smell or the sacred «odour of sanctity» gets revived in 1951, but only through negation: «We declare that the Body doesn’t present any signs of putrefaction, nor of a bad smell.» Thus, given the historical conditions of globalized decolonization and British India’s independence in 1947, this last attempt at resuscitation (of both saint and state) through recourse to the directly theological (as opposed to the medically scientific) proves to be increasingly value-less.

  • 31 This distinction between «covered» and «uncovered» body parts first appears in this examination, th (...)
  • 32 In the past, Xavier’s coffin was typically cleaned at the end of an exposition, and his corpse was (...)
  • 33 Francisco Xavier da Costa, Resumo Historico da Exposição das Sagradas Reliquias de S. Francisco Xav (...)
  • 34 Interestingly, or perhaps not surprisingly given the argument developed in this paper, the affectiv (...)

14Included in this autopsy is also an assessment – for the first time – of those body parts of Xavier not covered by his priestly vestments31. It is only upon removal of his clothes that it is discovered that his head «was disarticulated, completely free resting on a pillow cushion and the cranial cavity empty». That his head is now separated from the rest of his body parts, alongside a language of anatomy that includes categories like «skeleton» and «bones» suggests a very different set of increasingly (dis)embodied attachments of church, state, and public to Xavier in 1952. Perhaps in one last attempt or impulse to renew affective ties of saint and state, in order to fix up both32, the skeleton of Xavier is reconstructed on the operating table: «all the existing portions and those already mentioned were collected in order on a table, being for this end to arrange a wire in the vertebrae cavities to connect them». However, these organic agents of colonialism can neither hide the increasing hollowness of saint and state, nor the reality of their diminishing affective ties. Instead, they signify and in some sense foresee the end of Portuguese colonialism in India, an end that only came eight years later in 1961 when the state was perhaps more ready to dissect its own anatomy. The words of Goa’s Archbishop Nunes, made on the occasion of the last medical examination performed on Xavier’s corpse of 1951, «the miracle is over, it could not be eternal»33 are a fitting end to a colonial state completely corrupted by the vicissitudes of time, air, and humidity34.

APPENDIX : Medical Reports

1556 (A)

  • 35 Cosmos Saraiva’s medical findings included in Monumenta Xaveriana, Tomus Secundus, Matriti: Typis G (...)

15I, Doctor Cosmas Saraiva, physician to the Viceroy, have been to examine the body of Father Master, brought to the city of Goa. I felt and pressed all the members of the body with my finger, but paid special attention to the abdominal region and made certain that the intestines were in their natural position. There had been no embalming of any kind nor had any artificial preservative agents been used. I observed a wound in the left side near the heart and asked two of the [Jesuit] Society who were with me to put their fingers into it. When they withdrew them they were covered with blood that I smelt and found to be absolutely untainted. The limbs and other parts of the body were entire and clothed in their flesh in such a way that, according to the laws of medicine, they could not possibly have been so preserved by any natural or artificial means, seeing that Father Francis had been dead for a year and a half and buried for a year. I affirm on oath that what I have written above is the truth. Doctor Cosmas de Saraiva. At Goa, 18 November 155635.

1556 (B)

  • 36 Ibid. Ambrósio Ribeiro’s testimony was also included in Xavier’s canonization proceedings, and is i (...)

16I, Dr. Ambrósio Ribeiro...certify under oath of my office... that we went to inspect the body. At 9 or 10 o’clock we opened the coffin which was in the main chapel of St. Paul’s and saw the body at leisure; I felt it with my own hands from the feet up the knees and almost all the other parts of the body. I certify that in all these parts the flesh was entire, covered with its natural skin and humidity without any corruption. On the left leg a little above the knee on the exterior there is a little cut or wound, a finger in length, which looked like a hit[all in one stroke]. All round the wound there oozed out a streak of blood gone black. And much above on the left side near the heart there is a small hole which looked like a hit[wound]. Through it I inserted my fingers as deep as I could and found it hollow. Only inside I felt some small bits which seemed to me like pieces of intestines dried up due to the long time the body lay in the grave. But I smelt no corruption although I put my face quite close to the body. The head rested on a small Chinese damask pillow, leaving on it below the neck something like a stain of blood similar to that on the leg, faded in colour and turned black. I direct the notary to draw up a report stating the way I had examined the body. He did so and I sign it with my own hand on 1 December 1556. (And I, Jorge Gomez, the notary, made it.). Doctor Ambrósio Ribeiro36.

1782

  • 37 John Castets, «The Miracle of the Body», 24-25. Secretary of State, Ramos recorded the minutes of t (...)

17The Governor General, in obedience to orders received from Her Majesty to examine the sacred body and see in what state it is, has caused the coffin in which the sacred body is deposited to be opened, and the body was found vested in sacerdotal vestments. The head is well preserved, with a small quantity of hair on the skull. The face with all its features was a sufficiently good colour, and covered with skin, except the right side, which has a small bruise. It had both the ears and all the visible teeth except one. The left arm and the hand were entirely covered with skin and of satisfactory colour, but the right arm was wanting, and tradition said it had been taken to Rome, at the time of the Jesuit Fathers. For the rest of the body, the intestines were wanting, as it was discovered by His Excellency by palpating the body under the vestments. The thighs were covered with a withered skin, the feet were equally covered with skin, through which the veins could be seen, and all the toes that remained had also their nails. One toe of the right foot was wanting, as it had been snatched away through devotion, by a devout person and was now in the house of the Intendente General, as that official attested it. Finally, all the undersigned have come to the conclusion that the body and the relics of the Saint are in such a state that they may be exposed to the public, to excite and increase the devotion of the faithful37.

1859

  • 38 Boletim do Governor (No. 80, dated October 14, 1859) reprinted in Memoria Historico-Eclesiastico da (...)

18Following in the year of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ in 1859 on the 12th of October, at 10:00 am in the Church of Bom Jesus that was in Professed House of the Fathers of the Jesuits, situated in the ancient city of Old Goa, where the Tomb with the body of St. Francis Xavier is found, has appeared the Illustrious His Excellency Sr. Visconde de Torres Novas, Governor General of the Estado da Índia, the Interim Governor of the Archbishop of Goa, the Senate of the State, Municipal Chamber of the Advisory of the Islands, and other Corporations, Authorities, and Chiefs of Public Distributions of this State under which they are assigned, who all were invited to attend the opening of the said Tomb in order to know the state in which is found the Body of the same Saint, by virtue of the authority connected by his Majesty by decree of the Ministry of Overseas Business, (No. 100 of July of the past year). And then with the keys that exist in the hands of the Secretariat, at which in this act were presented to open the coffin, in which is located the body of the said Saint and which was found dressed in sacerdotal vestments and with the doctors proceeding, of which it is composed of the Board of Health, the Physician in Residence, Eduardo de Freitas e Almeida, the Surgical Resident, José Antonio de Oliviera, and the Surgeon of 1st Class, Antonio José da Gama to examine the same Body. They found the cranium with its scalp, still with hair but rare, and completely bare on the left side. The face, all covered with withered skin and dark in colour, had an opening on the right side, communicating with the maxillary sinus on the same side, which appeared to correspond with the bruise referred to in the report of 1st January 1782. Of the front teeth only one of the lower incisors is wanting. Both the ears exist, but the right arm is wanting. The left hand, including the nails, is entire, just as it is described in the abovementioned report of 1782. The abdominal walls are covered with an integument dried up and somewhat dark in color, the abdominal cavity not containing any intestines. The feet are covered with an integument equally dried up and dark in color, the prominence of the tendons being distinctly marked. The fourth and fifth toes of the right foot are wanting. Some remnants of the integument and phalanges of one of these toes are in a spongy condition in view of which they agreed that the Body and Relics of the same Saint were in a state of being able to be exposed to the public for veneration in order to excite and augment the devotion of the people and of all that is referred, I, Christovão Sebastião Xavier, Official Major of the Secretariat of this State, did this Auto, in which is signed all the Corporations and above mentioned authorities. And I Joaquim Heliodoro da Cunha Rivara, Secretariat wrote this. Visconde de Torres Novas – the Governor General, Caetano João Peres – Interim Archbishop, José de Vasconcellos Guedes de Carvalho, Interim President of the Senate of Goa. Eduardo de Freitas e Almeida, Doctor in Residence and Member of the Advisory to the Government, José Antonio de Oliveira, Surgical Resident of this State, Antonio José de Gama, Surgeon of the First Class, Agostinho Ferreira de Brito, Head Chief of the Military Distribution, Antonio Luiz Lobato de Faria, Coronel of the Supreme Council, Fernando Luiz Leite de Souza e Noronha, Coronel of the Supreme Council, Francisco da Costa Mendes, Secretary of the Board of Treasury and Effective Member of the Advisory Council, Antonio José Pereira, Cannon of the See Cathedral, and Vicar General of the Archbishop, Antonio Faustino dos Santos Crespo, Justice of the Right of the Chamber of the Islands, serving the Senate, Candido José Mourão Garcez Palha, Chief Engineer and Inspector of Public Works, etc.38

1951

  • 39 Unpublished copy of Pacheco de Figueiredo’s medical report of 1951 (Xavier Centre of Historical Res (...)

19Document of the Exam of the Venerable Body of St. Francis Xavier. (Confidential)39. On the 23rd of June 1951, at 8:30, upon the invitation of His Excellency Reverend Patriarch of the Indies, D. José da Costa Nunes, in the Sacristy of the Basilica of the Bom Jesus, the doctors Antonio Luis de Sousa Sobrinho, Director of the Services of Health and Hygiene of the Estado da Índia, and João Manuel Pacheco de Figuereido, Director of the Medical and Surgical School of Goa, met in order to proceed to examine the venerable Body of St. Francis Xavier that was closed inside the coffin of wood arranged on a table. The seals were broken and the coffin was opened by His Excellency Reverend the Patriarch, His Excellency in Charge of General Government, Dr. Manuel Marques de Abrantes Amaral and His Excellency the Reverend Archbishop Coadjutor (Assistant) D. José Vieira Alvernaz, Archbishop of Anazartha, being present also the Reverend Canon Aires Franklin de Sa, Administrator of the Basilica, who observed that the Body of the Saint was found dressed in his sacerdotal vestments with the head flexed towards the thorax and the left forearm and hand with its fingers half flexed, resting transversally across the chest. The objective of the exam was directed in first place to those accessible regions, that is, those not covered by the vestments, like the head, left hand, and the feet.

20HEAD: The occipital and parietal left sides are denuded [bare] but
perfectly conserved. The parietal and frontal sides present themselves dressed in dry withered skin with some signs of destruction on them and there are seen a few rare hairs attached to the body by skin, where they appear to be encrusted. The side presents a perforation underneath the right arch. The prominence of the molar regions and that of the ocular globes is conserved, being able to distinguish the eyelids of the right eye. The small nose is well conserved, being the right nasal bone dislocated backwards and the earlobe of the same side a little worn out. The orifices of the nasal passages are visible. The relief of the mouth is conserved, the lips half open, with the musculature and skin in the direction of destruction, leaving to see the distinctiveness of the inferior incisors, small and regular, being the second left one dislocated backwards. Rare hairs of the beard on the left side being, like on the head, attached with skin to the body. The right ear is conserved. The outer lobe of the right ear doesn’t exist, noting in the temporal maximillary region, of the same side, in consequence of the destruction of skin, three large orifices, one of which the major one, corresponds to the location of the implantation of the outer lobe. Across these orifices are clearly visible the bones.

21LEFT HAND: Resting with palm side on the chest, with the fingers half-flexed, muscular substances and conserved skin. Dorsal side: some flexible tendons are distinguishable, being most clear and prominent at the extension of the index finger. Only the thumb finger has a nail.

22Palm Side: some flexible tendons are clearly distinguishable, with little flexibility of the veins.

23LEFT FOOT: Dorsal side. Conserved masses of muscles, the tendons distinctive and the skin withered. The first and fifth toes are complete and with nails; absent are the digital bones on the second toe; the third toe is reduced to a plain morsel of cutaneous (pertaining to the skin) place; it is missing the bones and the fourth toe doesn’t have skin on the dorsal side. The sole of the foot is very well conserved, as well as the muscular masses that cover the heel that is on the path of destruction.

24RIGHT FOOT: Of reformed aspect and in forced extension . The heel is dislocated inside. It does not have the last four toes. By the opening, the result is that they don’t exist, the insteps are visible, the muscle masses conserved, minus the posterior part which is destroyed in part and with faded skin. Some tendons are distinguishable, the big toe is prominent and without a nail. The major part of the skin of the sole is conserved.

25Accordingly, by determination of His Excellency, the Reverend Patriarch, the vestments that covered the anterior part of the body were removed and he observed:

  1. The head was disarticulated, completely free resting on a pillow cushion and the cranial cavity empty.

  2. The left hand is articulated (joined) with the two bones of the forearm, maintaining the wholeness and articulation of the wrist. The bones of the forearm are losing their covered skin, of which was noted the third inferior, with small pieces of destruction.

  3. Maintained whole is the tibia joint of both sides of the inferior members, like on the forearm, the bones – tibia and fibula – on both sides, are covered in skin, with zones of destruction, only on the third inferior.

  4. The left tibia and fibula, in the superior extremity, are still conserved.

  5. The two femurs, have regressed to some small pieces of skin, and the kneecaps are jointed with the bones of the leg for half the length.

  6. Deposited in the central part of the coffin we found the following bones: a bone of the sternum, two clavical bones, the left omoplate, the humer, 2 fragments of the ribs, 21 vertebrae (4 cervical, 12 dorsal, and 5 lombar) the sacrum, and the two ilialic bones with only 5 lumbar vertebra and the last dorsal jointed.

  7. Various discolored pieces of skin, of which 5 were large, seeing clearly that the major was of the buttocks region. In order to reconstitute the skeleton, all the existing portions and those already mentioned were collected in order on a table, being for this end to arrange a wire in the vertebrae cavities to connect them. Reconstituting the skeleton by juxtaposing the bones, it was observed that the Body of the Saint, measured from the extremity of the first toe of the left foot to the top of the head, was 171 centimeters in length, and 162 centimeters when measured from head to the heel. Finally, all the parts of the Body, in appropriate order, but not jointed, and the 5 pieces of skin, were placed in the coffin and covered by the vestments that had been removed by reason of the exam. We declare that the Body doesn’t present any sign of putrefaction, nor of a bad smell. In the duration of the exam, several photographs were taken by J.P. Guerra.

  • 40 Pacheco de Figueiredo, the official examiner, refers to this same confidential report in later arti (...)

26From this exam, the minutes of this present act are drawn that is signed by us. Old Goa, Basilica of Bom Jesus, on the 23rd of June 1951. Signed: Antonio Luis de Souza Sobrinho, João Manuel Pacheco de Figueireido and José Vieira Alvernaz, Archbishop of Anarta40.

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Notas

1 I begin this paper with an extended quote by Michel Foucault precisely because this paper is very much inspired by his oeuvre, stylistically with regard to his discussion of genealogies and ruptures in social practices and discourses more generally, and topically with regard to his discussion of the history of modern medicine in The Birth of the Clinic. For Foucault, anatomy(inclusive of autopsy) is a historical site essential for understanding the development of modern thought as power and knowledge, wherein for example, the source of illness inside a body is increasingly mapped out into cause and effect, enabling one to «see» and «say» with increased authority. See his, The Birth of the Clinic, tr. A.M. Sheridan Smith (New York: Vintage Books, 1994), xii (emphasis author’s). In the case study presented here, the series of autopsies sanctioned for Xavier’s corpse compels the colonial state to describe the saint’s (and by implication, its own) changing anatomy in relation to the history of medical science, and thus is a potent site for mapping the history of Portuguese colonial governmentality and its decay. I thank the anonymous reviewer from Ler História for his/her insightful comments on this piece, and which were extremely helpful for the revision process.

2 Mary Douglas, «The Two Bodies», in Natural Symbols: Explorations in Cosmology, Routledge: New York, 1996, p. 69. The physical body is of course is one of the most natural symbols in culture.

3 For a more nuanced (and historically detailed) reading of Xavier’s untimely death on December 3,1552 on the island of Sancian wherein he was awaiting permission to missionize in China, and the remarkable journey of his miraculously preserved corpse, arriving in Goa in March 1554, see my «‘Signs of Wonder’: The Postmortem Travels of Francis Xavier in the Indian Ocean World», in A. Jamal and S. Moorthy, (eds.) Indian Ocean Studies: Cultural, Social and Political Perspectives, Routledge Press, 2010.

4 Display concerns what is hidden as much as what is revealed, and is fraught with transgressive potential. In other words, display requires that the abstract and processual be translated into a visible and frozen form, easily seen and apprehended. See Ludmilla Jordanova, «Medicine and Genres of Display», in Visual Display: Culture Beyond Appearances, Eds. Lynne Cooke and Peter Wollen, Seattle: Bay Press, 1995, pp. 210-211.

5 Ibid, p. 216. The notion of display has a huge potential for understanding medicine over long periods of time. Jordanova writes: «[There are] three principal ranges of meaning for the word display: the first is how things look or appear; the second is exhibition, demonstration; and the third is ostentation, showing off. We can see all of these at work in the history of medicine, as well as the strategic blurring between them».

6 Katherine Verdery, The Political Lives of Dead Bodies: Reburial and Post Socialist Change, New York: Columbia University Press, 1999.

7 In regard to Goan historiography, these medical reports are largely discounted as hagiography. Nor have then been subjected to the kind of diachronic analysis I am interested in for the purposes of this paper. When put together in one analytical field, instead of being viewed each separately and synchronically, much can be said about «embodied affects» of the colonial state, and how they change over time.

8 Here I am referring to the works of Bruno Latour, The Pasteurization of France, Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1988; and Hugh Raffles, in Amazonia: A Natural History, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003. The idea of «organic agents» for Raffles implies a direct relationship with Latour’s (and Donna Haraway’s) development of non-human actors who are part of larger social networks in which we as humans are engaged. For Raffles, the history of the Amazon is the outcome of the «intimately intertwined histories» of human and non-human. Following directly from their writings, my larger argument is structured around recognizing the agentive powers of these seemingly innocuous organic materialities, as acting in relation to human actors, and directly in the service of colonialism; here blood, smell, and skin(and later hair, teeth, and nails) act as evidentiary signifiers of colonial power, knowledge, and governance at work. See also David Scott on «Colonial Governmentality», Social Text, n. 43, Autumn, 1995, pp. 191-220. Specifically, it is his call to look at the early modern 16th to the late modern 19th centuries as an «arena of profound alterations in the languages of the political,» 214.

9 In a similar vein to Raffles, the grotesque, the exaggerated, the organic(the crude, the natural the whole, untreated) act not just as moral categories but as modalities of power in the colony. See Achille Mbembe. «The Aesthetics of Vulgarity», Chapter 3 in On the Postcolony, Berkeley: University of California Press, 2001.

10 In a similar vein to Raffles, the grotesque, the exaggerated, the organic(the crude, the natural the whole, untreated) act not just as moral categories but as modalities of power in the colony. See Achille Mbembe. «The Aesthetics of Vulgarity», Chapter 3 in On the Postcolony, Berkeley: University of California Press, 2001.

10 Kathleen Stewart writes: «They[ordinary affects] work not through meanings per se, but rather in the way that they pick up density and texture as they move through bodies, dreams, dramas, and social worldings of all kinds. Their significance lies in the intensities they build and in what thoughts and feelings they make possible. The question they beg is…where they might go and what potential modes of knowing, relating, and attending to things are already somehow present in them in a state of potentiality and resonance». See her Ordinary Affects, Durham: Duke University Press, 2007, p. 3.

11 Friction inflects historical trajectories, enabling, excluding, and particularizing. That these autopsies were produced at particular historical moments or «ruptures» I argue suggests their freight; they are full of «friction». In other words, I make use of Tsing’s idea of «friction» precisely because of their production out of historical conjunctures of friction. Additional autopsies and private viewings did indeed take place, for example in 1744 and 1751, for which there is extant documentation. See Francisco Rodrigues, «St. Francis Xavier: Duas Exposições de Seu Corpo em 1744 e 1751», Revista de Historia, n. 47-48 (Julho-Dez, 1923). However, I have not included them here precisely because they are less charged with friction. See Anna Tsing, Friction: An Ethnography of Global Connection, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2005. For an extended discussion as to why these particular dates are seen as moments of rupture in the longue duree of Portuguese colonial history in Goa, see Pamila Gupta, The Relic State: St. Francis Xavier and the Politics of Ritual in Portuguese India, Unpublished PhD, Columbia University, 2004. However, one must keep in mind the larger backdrop of historiography as limiting history such that additional autopsies of Xavier’s corpse possibly took place, wherein no documents were produced and/or preserved.

12 The Royal Hospital of the Holy Spirit was formed by Albuquerque in 1510, to cater for Portuguese soldiers, and run by the factor of the city with a state subsidy. In 1542 it was handed over to the charitable organization of the Misericórdia. The Society of Jesus ran it from 1579 onwards, though they later gave it up, only to resume its charge in 1591. For an extended history of the hospital see Michael Pearson, «The Portuguese State and Medicine in Sixteenth Century Goa», in K.S. Mathew, Teotonio de Souza and Pius Malekandathil, eds. The Portuguese and Socio-Cultural Changes in India, 1500-1800, Lisbon: Fundação Oriente, 2001. Pearson also writes of the close ties between doctors appointed to the Royal Hospital and their Viceregal patrons, which was no doubt the case with Saraiva. I thank the author for providing a copy last minute. Vincent Le Blanc, who was a patient there during the mid 16th century, described it in wealth, cleanliness and usefulness as rivaling the Holy Ghost Hospital in Rome and the Infirmary in Malta. See José Fonseca, An Historical and Archaeological Sketch of the City of Goa, New Delhi: Asian Educational Services, 1986 [1878], pp. 228-231.

13 See Appendix 1556 (A). Hereafter any words in the text marked within quotation marks come directly from the original source material under analysis. All translations from the Portuguese are mine.

14 See Appendix 1556 (B).

15 See Manuel Teixeira, S.J. «Vita S. Francisci», Monumenta Xaveriana, Tomus Secundus, Matriti: Typis Gabrielis Lopez del Horno, 1912; Sebastiam Gonçalves, S.J. Primeira Parte da Historia Dos Religiosos da Companhia de Jesus e do que fizeram com a divina graça no conversão dos infieis a nossa sancta fee Catholica nos reynos e provincias da Índia Oriental (1616). Volume I. Joseph Wicki, S.J. (ed.), Coimbra: Atlantida, 1957.

16 It was not unusual to examine a potential saint’s corpse for its state of decomposition, but this practice was increasingly uncommon after the 15th century in Europe. See Patrick Geary, Furta Sacra: Thefts of Relics in the Central Middle Ages, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1978. Interestingly, here it is getting resurrected in colonial context.

17 Caroline W. Bynum, Fragmentation and Redemption: Essays on Gender and the Human Body in Medieval Religion, New York: Columbia University Press, p. 252, 280. For a discussion of the role of anatomy in determining saintly corpses, see Katherine Park, «The Criminal and the Saintly Body: Autopsy and Dissection in Renaissance Italy», Renaissance Quarterly, Volume 47, n. 1, Spring 1994, pp. 1-33.

18 D. Howes writes: «Exhuming his body about a year after burial, people discovered…that a sweet fragrance arose from the saint’s tomb. The flesh had largely vanished from the bones; and the redolence that remained indicated the absence of putrefaction. The pleasing aroma, called the odor of sanctity, proved that the saint had miraculously exuviated his flesh. Possessed therefore of an excarnate form rendering him impervious both to desires and to the sins of the flesh, the saint received divine power». Howes quoted in Paul Stoller, «Introduction», The Taste of Ethnographic Things: The Senses in Anthropology , Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1989, p. 7.

19 Caroline W. Bynum, Fragmentation and Redemption, p. 295.

20 For a fascinating extended discussion of signs of miracles (as related to saints, shrines and relics) in the early modern period as evidence, see Lorraine Daston, «Marvelous Facts and Miraculous Evidence in Early Modern Europe», in James Chandler, A. Davidson, H. Haroutunian, eds. Questions of Evidence: Proof, Practice and Persuasion Across the Disciplines, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994, pp. 243-274.

21 John Castets, «The Miracle of the Body of St. Francis Xavier», Indian Catholic Truth Society, n. 13, 1925, p. 14. His is the closest to a summary of the autopsy and amputation that occurred in 1614 on Xavier’s corpse.

22 Ibid.

23 Ibid. The four chosen Jesuits were Fr. Antonio Vieira, Jesuit Provincial, Father Manuel Gonçalves, Father Simon Figueiredo and Father Sebastiam Gonçalves. The amputator was Thomas Diax.

24 Vieira quoted in Rocha Martins, O Apostolo das Índias, S. Francisco Xavier, Lisboa: Agência Geral das Colonias, 1949, pp. 383-384.

25 Patrick Geary, Furta Sacra, pp. 24-28.

26 See Appendix 1782.

27 See Appendix 1859.

28 Interestingly, in 1842, the prestigious Goa Medical School had been established as part of the larger expansive Portuguese imperial project. Despite its success in training Portuguese India’s future doctors, it sometimes did lack in resources, including books equipment, even corpses for anatomical dissection. See Cristiana Bastos, «Race, Medicine and the late Portuguese Empire: The Role of Goan Colonial Physicians», Journal of Romance Studies 5 (1), pp. 26-27. The development of this school fits with the increased medical «expertise» of the doctors who performed Xavier’s autopsy in 1859. It is evidenced in their attention to detail in their report, in their increased ability to describe Xavier’s various body parts, relying on the language of anatomy to do so. This shift from previous autopsy reports, I argue also makes sense in relation to what was taking place in Europe and Michel Foucault’s discussion of the emergence of modern medicine as occurring in the late 18th C. See his, The Birth of the Clinic, xii.

29 See Appendix 1951.

30 By 1945, the Health Services of Goa had been organized separately from the Medical and Surgical School of Goa which explains the presence of both Sobrinho and Figueiredo at Xavier’s autopsy, and suggests the continuing modernization of medicine and medical techniques in Goa. See Fatima Gracias, «Quality of Life in Colonial Goa, its Hygienic Expression (19th-20th Centuries)», in Essays in Goan History, ed. Teotonio de Souza, New Delhi: Concept Publishing, 1989, p. 199.

31 This distinction between «covered» and «uncovered» body parts first appears in this examination, the uncovered parts being in a better preserved state than those that are covered according to Pacheco de Figueiredo. See his, «A Medical and Historical Study: The Sacred Relics of St. Francis Xavier», Navhind Times, May 2, 1976, p. 5.

32 In the past, Xavier’s coffin was typically cleaned at the end of an exposition, and his corpse was assessed for any further damages. This was the first time that wires were put through his hollow cavities to reconstitute his skeleton, the details of which were included in his report for a limited public. According to a rumor that was passed onto me, the practice of fixing up Xavier’s corpse was typically handed down through the generations to the eldest son of one prominent Goan family. Conversation with Pedro, Porvorim, Goa (September 8, 1999).

33 Francisco Xavier da Costa, Resumo Historico da Exposição das Sagradas Reliquias de S. Francisco Xavier em 1952, Bastora, Goa: Tipografia Rangel, 1954, p. 149.

34 Interestingly, or perhaps not surprisingly given the argument developed in this paper, the affective ties of church, state, and public to Xavier would be resurrected once again in postcolonial Goa (1964, 74, 84, 94, and most recently in 2004).

35 Cosmos Saraiva’s medical findings included in Monumenta Xaveriana, Tomus Secundus, Matriti: Typis Gabrielis Lopez del Horno, 1912, p. 911. This sworn testimony would be delivered in front of the committee as part of Xavier’s canonization proceedings that were initiated on the basis of his miraculous-ness in death.

36 Ibid. Ambrósio Ribeiro’s testimony was also included in Xavier’s canonization proceedings, and is included in Monumenta Xaveriana, Tomus Secundus. The testimonies of both doctors are also reproduced in Rayanna, P. S.J., St. Francis Xavier and His Shrine, Panjim, Goa: Imprimatur, 1982, pp. 150-151.

37 John Castets, «The Miracle of the Body», 24-25. Secretary of State, Ramos recorded the minutes of the meeting: «Summary of the opening of the tomb of St. Francis Xavier that took place on January 1, 1782», Boletim do Governo, n. 80, December 14, 1859. The officials present included: Governor de Souza, the Bishop of Cochin and Administrator of the Archdiocese, Fr. Manuel de Santa Catharina, Admiral and General of the Navy, Dom. Lopo José de Almeida. The report is signed by the Vicar General, Rector of the Royal Seminary of Chorão, Canon Administrator Abreu, the Secretary of State and two others.

38 Boletim do Governor (No. 80, dated October 14, 1859) reprinted in Memoria Historico-Eclesiastico da Arquidiocese de Goa, 1533-1933, (ed.) Pe. Amaro Pinto Lobo, Nova Goa: Tip. A Voz de S. Francisco Xavier, 1933, pp. 380-384. There are forty-six additional signatures, including that of Neri who was also present during Xavier’s medical examination.

39 Unpublished copy of Pacheco de Figueiredo’s medical report of 1951 (Xavier Centre of Historical Research, Porvorim, Goa). It was kept confidential due to the nature of the doctor’s findings. Da Costa only references the fact that a medical exam took place and that Xavier’s relics were deemed fit for public veneration. See his, Resumo Historico da Exposição das Sagradas Reliquias de S. Francisco Xavier em 1952, 149-152. A summary of the findings of Xavier’s exam by N. Fernandes are based on this same report. See his, «The Body of St. Francis Xavier», Renovação, n. 22, November 16-30, 1994, 421-426.

40 Pacheco de Figueiredo, the official examiner, refers to this same confidential report in later articles. See his, «A Medical and Historical Study: The Sacred Relics of St. Francis Xavier», Navhind Times, May 2, 1976, 5; «Tentativa de um Estudo Medico-Historico», Memorias da Academia das Ciencias de Lisboa, Tomo XXI, Lisboa: Academia das Ciencias de Lisboa, 1977. The controversial report had been sent to Pope Pius XII for approval who added that such a scientific explanation for the conservation of Xavier’s corpse was unnecessary. See Boletim Geral do Ultramar, Ano XXVIII, n. 330, Dezembro, 1952, pp. 29-31.

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Pamila Gupta, « Discourses of Incorruptibility: Of Blood, Smell and Skin in Portuguese India », Ler História, 58 | 2010, 81-97.

Referência eletrónica

Pamila Gupta, « Discourses of Incorruptibility: Of Blood, Smell and Skin in Portuguese India », Ler História [Online], 58 | 2010, posto online no dia 03 dezembro 2015, consultado no dia 07 dezembro 2019. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/lerhistoria/1171 ; DOI : 10.4000/lerhistoria.1171

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Pamila Gupta

WISER – Universidade de Witwatersrand (Joanesburgo)

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