Images of Modernity: Latin American Culture and Nineteenth-century Universal Exhibitions
My dissertation, "Images of Modernity: Latin American Culture and Nineteenth Century Universal Exhibitions" examines the visual and literary representations of the process of cultural modernization in Argentina, Brazil and Mexico through a critical analysis of the writings, chronicles, images and cultural artifacts presented at three Universal Exhibitions: Philadelphia 1876, Paris 1889 and Paris 1900. As the development of a modern visual culture made available new technologies for the visual construction of the social determining how modernity was depicted, deployed, dramatized and articulated, each of these expositions presented an occasion for the exhibition of a distinctive historical understanding of Latin American modernity through national displays, photographic exhibits, architectural manifestations, and literary renditions. My aim is to analyze the cultural and historical conditions in which these images came to figure a modern experience, demonstrating the significant role these forms of visualization had in actively shaping politics and culture, and particularly, the debates on national and cultural identity. I argue that these images were instrumental in the construction of a particular modern cultural imaginary and, therefore, their critical historization reveals how the relationships between Sousandrade, Marti, and the modernistas Dario, Gomez Carillo, Ugarte; Nervo and Quiroga - in order to examine their modernizing and cosmopolitan discourse characterized by an elusive new language of ideas about globalizing modernity, urban culture and unprecedented flows of capital, people and ideas. My claim is that these discourses are not merely informed by their understanding of the global expansion of culture as the universal exhibitions presented it, but more significantly, they come to participate in the definition of the differential character of Latin American modernity.
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Marc F errez Torre Maaéoﬂ 1875 Comision Geologica 1875
LouisEmile Durandelle The Etfel Toner Septernber 79 7887
N GA Washington DC Photographic Archives
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