Weaving Subjects at the Obraje de Chincheros: Indigenous Contributions to the Colonial Aesthetic
Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
This dissertation highlights the contributions that colonial textile producers at the colonial textile mill, the Obraje de Chincheros (c. 1570-1820), influenced the colonial Peruvian aesthetic. Peruvian weavers were seen as superior weavers at the time of the Spanish invasion and obrajes were established to salvage this skill while they were simultaneously subjected to colonial control strategies. At the Obraje, rural indigenous and mestizo textile producers were disciplined into the colonial hierarchy via their labor and conversion to Catholicism. At the same time, the Obraje workforce, largely women and children, shaped the colonial aesthetic via their labor. It was their laborial decisions that ultimately determined the sensorial characteristics of the textiles they produced. Global fashion trends, colonial sumptuary laws, trade routes, and local preferences combined to ascribe textile characteristics with meanings. These meanings often related to identity, and it was through their dress that colonists embodied their position within colonial society. Based on findings drawn from archaeological research undertaken between 2016-2020, I demonstrate that indigenous weaving techniques and traditions became embedded into indicators of Spanish colonialism.
Smith, Maria, "Weaving Subjects at the Obraje de Chincheros: Indigenous Contributions to the Colonial Aesthetic" (2022). Dissertations - ALL. 1584.
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