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Architecture since 1400$
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Kathleen James-Chakraborty

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780816673964

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816673964.001.0001

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Spain and Portugal in the Americas

Spain and Portugal in the Americas

(p.141) 10 Spain and Portugal in the Americas
Architecture since 1400

Kathleen James-Chakraborty

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter examines the impact of Spanish and Portuguese colonizers on the architecture of the Americas. By the mid-sixteenth century, the two most important plazas of the Americas—the Zócalo in Mexico City and its counterpart in Cuzco, Peru—were dominated by Christian churches. The success of European conquerors can be attributed to their ability to learn enough about the local societies to determine what aspects of their own culture could best be paired with indigenous ones in order to convince the native inhabitants to become loyal subjects and good Christians. The conquerors also believed that they had to match the scale and splendor of the buildings their new American and Asian subjects had already erected.

Keywords:   architecture, Spain, Portugal, colonizers, Christianity, imperialism, religion, Christian churches

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