Naiara Ardanaz Iñarga, professor of Basque language and culture at the University of Navarre, visits CBS.
What brings you to the Center for Basque Studies Naiara?
The opportunity to use the such an interesting library. The Basque Library has many books related to anthropological and ethnographic topics. Here I have an opportunity to check out French and Spanish publications about Basque topics.
Can you tell us what the goal of the project is?
I am researching religiosity around hermitages on the border between Navarre and Iparralde. I am going to start analyzing the Bortziri region.
Would you say that this research, is quite unique?
There are a striking number of hermitages in Navarre, yet research on these hermitages has been quite general, more related to their artistic aspects or ethnography. My research is focused on combining history, art, tradition, and the beliefs that existed around these sacred spaces, and also the importance of the border.
What have you accomplished since you arrived?
The research is in its initial stages. During these three months that I am going to spend at the CBS I want to finish the theoretical framework in order to start analyzing the materials about these topic (ethnographic inquiries) and my investigation of the ecclesiastical and civil archives of Navarre. I am sure that my research is going to expand during this time because it is very wide, it is very interesting, and it is not such a widely studied topic.
Are you enjoying the U.S.?
A lot. Everyday I am experiencing new and disconcerting situations. There are big cultural differences and I am finding the experience so enriching. On the other hand, being in Nevada is especially significant for me because there is a major Navarrese community in the area. I am experiencing the opportunity to stay with them and learn about their experience as sheepherders, here in Nevada.