Yuste Foundation delves into the study of the humanities during the 16th century

The course “The Worlds of Charles V. Humanism, Education and Transmission of Knowledge in Europe and America” opened today at the Monastery of Yuste with the aim of delving into the education of the Christian prince and into the different pedagogical manifestations within the so-called pedagogical humanism that will take place both in the peninsula and in America and which will have to do with the transmission of technical and scientific knowledge in Europe, America and the peninsula. (06/07/2022)

The director of the European and Ibero-American Academy of Yuste Foundation, Juan Carlos Moreno Piñero, stressed that the celebration of this course, which focuses on education and humanism, makes more sense than ever in these troubled times, because “in times of stupidity, barbarity and irrationality, the promotion of the study of the humanities and history is more important and necessary than ever”. In his opinion, these two fields of knowledge “are necessary, because those who are not familiar with the humanities and history in depth, understood as the study of the accumulation of errors committed by humans throughout history, lack something important in their lives. The director of Yuste Foundation thus asserted the Foundation’s role as a public institution that contributes to “alleviate the deficiencies we have in these fields of knowledge and because by promoting the course of Charles V we will foster the study of the humanities and history and in some way will help this world to be reconducted along more civilised and less absurd paths than we are experiencing”, he concluded.

In turn, the professor of the Complutense University of Madrid and co-director of the course, Rosa Martínez de Codes explained that the programme has been designed based on the idea that in the 16th century the humanist movement of the Renaissance left a huge mark on the sciences and letters, which led to a cultural renewal that encouraged the recovery of all the elements of classical antiquity. In this sense, Martínez de Codes pointed out that “along with philological interest in classical antiquities, humanism cultivated and spread ideas in areas such as theology, pedagogy, philosophy, natural history, law, medicine and politics”, she said.

In her opinion, this intellectual concern will slowly penetrate into the two official branches of knowledge of the time, theology and law, but the place where a plethora of thinkers will be formed driving the juridical theological reasoning is America with Francisco de Vitoria, Domingo de Soto and Luis Molina. “They are going to be the ones who develop a humanist thought on the other side of the Atlantic that will face the challenges of the unknown, which the recipes of the classical world will not work for”, the university professor explained.

Finally, Martínez de Codes highlighted the role of Yuste Foundation as a dynamic centre of ideas and debate, because “what is being done here is also to renew critical thinking and this generates an intellectual baggage that will eventually take on an extraordinary value”. The vice-rector of University Extension of the University of Extremadura, Juan Carlos Iglesias Zoido, in turn, highlighted the celebration of this course during his speech, because humanistic issues are going through a certain misunderstanding and “the thorough and calm analysis of aspects of the emperor’s time offer an unbeatable opportunity for reflection throughout these years”, he said.

Iglesias Zoido recalled that in the first part of the 16th century there was a time of change and globalisation and in his opinion, right now “we also face challenges and really substantial changes”, so the topic of this year focused on the transmission of knowledge between two worlds is very appropriate.

To conclude, the vice-rector wished to highlight the vision of Yuste Foundation during the pandemic, because “it achieved something that was difficult, that is, to hold courses, making this an opportunity to, moreover, increase the number of grants and to offer access to the contents in streaming. This has enriched their dissemination as a large number of people has been reached”. 

The course “The Worlds of Charles V. Humanism, Education and Transmission of Knowledge in Europe and America” is included in the University of Extremadura’s International Summer Courses and counts with the collaboration of the Cooperation Network of the Routes of the Emperor Charles V – Cultural Route of the Council of Europe -, National Heritage and the provincial councils of Cáceres and Badajoz.