A Spanish Converso's Quest for Justice: The Life and Dream Fiction of Antonio Enríquez Gómez

Journal Title

Shofar: The Journal of Interdisciplinary Jewish Studies

Publication Date

Spring 2005


Antonio Enríquez Gómez was a seventeenth-century Spanish converso (convert), or New Christian, author whose peripatetic life and multiple identities well represent the perilous and sad reality of Spaniards of Jewish descent compelled to live as Christians. This article will present historical background of the converso experience in Spain as a means of contextualizing the subsequent description of Enríquez Gómez's life during the 1600s both in and out of Spain. Analysis of three narratives written in the form of dreams while the author was living as an exile in France will argue that his criticism of invented inquisitions and those individuals who work for them is not an apology for Judaism. Rather, the author's resistance to fictionalized inquisitions is a call to reform certain practices of the Spanish Inquisition, so that Old Christians (those without Jewish or Muslim lineage) and converts alike can live in a society less judgmental of ancestry and more apt to judge people based on the virtue of their actions.


Conversos; Inquisition--Spain

Publication Information

Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies, 2005, Vol.23, No.3, 99.1-19.

© Purdue University Press

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Document Type

Journal Article

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