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Tuesday, March 31 • 10:25am - 10:40am
Taylor L. Crosby: The Politics of Post-Disaster Landscape: Aesthetic Change in Lima After the Earthquake and Tsunami of 1746

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This paper examines the impact of the 1746 earthquake and accompanying tsunami in Lima, Peru on the city’s society, architecture, and cultural and physical landscape. At the time of the natural disaster, Lima, the Spanish viceregal capital of Peru was under the imperial control of the Bourbon monarchy represented locally by Viceroy José Antonio Manso de Velasco who was charged with rebuilding the city. This situation of the post-disaster landscape offered colonial authorities a unique opportunity to reform local infrastructure and rework the city plan. Scholar Isaac D. Sáenz assesses the chosen artistic style of these reforms as belonging to an aesthetic discourse, which casts an older “gothic taste” against a newer buen gusto, or “good taste” that represented the enlightenment ideology of eighteenth-century Spain. The neoclassical style became the referent of taste in its restraint, order, and rationality and was employed by Bourbon reformers in Lima in an attempt to change the physical landscape of the city. In addition to considering the neoclassicism infused into Lima following the earthquake, I explore the idea of landscape in association with these changes. Considering landscape a subjective idea allows us to explore the diverse reception of the Bourbon reforms among the Limeño people. This approach draws attention to how the rigorous imposition of capitalist principles of reform in a particular American context coexisted and competed with local ideals and aesthetics leading to a complex negotiation and experience of reform.

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Tuesday March 31, 2015 10:25am - 10:40am EDT
Civic Center - Meeting Room A-1 - Ground Floor 505 West Pensacola Street, Tallahassee, FL 32301

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