The Andes Imagined: Indigenismo, Society, and Modernity

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In The Andes Imagined, Jorge Coronado not only examines but also recasts the indigenismo movement of the early 1900s.  Coronado departs from the common critical conception of indigenismo as rooted in novels and short stories, and instead analyzes an expansive range of work in poetry, essays, letters, newspaper writing, and photography.  He uses this evidence to show how the movement's artists and intellectuals mobilize the figure of the Indian to address larger questions about becoming modern, and he focuses on the contradictions at the heart of indigenismo as a cultural, social, and political movement. 

By breaking down these different perspectives, Coronado reveals an underlying current in which intellectuals and artists frequently deployed their indigenous subject in order to imagine new forms of political inclusion.  He suggests that these deployments rendered particular variants of modernity and make indigenismo representational practices a privileged site for the examination of the region's cultural negotiation of modernization.  His analysis reveals a paradox whereby the un-modern indio becomes the symbol for the modern itself.

The Andes Imagined offers an original and broadly based engagement with indigenismo and its intellectual contributions, both in relation to early twentieth-century Andean thought and to larger questions of theorizing modernity.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“A much-needed work on the cultural, aesthetic, and political dimensions of Peruvian indigenismo, arguably one of the most important and influential trends to have emerged in Latin America during the first half of the twentieth century. The analysis is solid, thorough, and convincing.”
—Carlos Aguirre, University of Oregon

“The Andes Imagined offers a fresh perspective on how Andean intellectuals responded to modernization in the early twentieth century. Relying on substantial research and engaged analysis, Coronado's insightful study provides a needed reaffirmation of the vitality and diversity of Peruvian thought during this period.”
—Estelle Tarica, University of California, Berkeley

“I would recommend this book for those who want to know about the most important Latin American intellectual movement of the early twentieth century.”
Journal of Social History

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822960249
  • Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press
  • Publication date: 5/31/2009
  • Series: Pitt Illuminations Series
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 1,153,528
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Jorge Coronado is associate professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at Northwestern University.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations ix

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction Indigenismo, Modernity, Indigenismos, Modernities 1

Chapter 1 The Revolutionary Indio: Jose Carlos Mariátegui's Indigenismo 25

Chapter 2 A Modern Andean Culture? Jose Angel Escalante and Indigenismo at Odds 52

Chapter 3 (Un)Happy Endings: Film, Modernity, and Tradition in Carlos Oquendo de Amat 75

Chapter 4 An Assembly of Voices: Labor and the Publics of Print 102

Chapter 5 Photographs at the Edge: Martin Chambi and the Limits of Lettered Culture 134

Conclusion Reading Indigenismo, Writing the Indio 163

Notes 169

Works Cited 185

Index 195

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