This thesis analyzes the role of animals, specifically llamas, in El primer nueva corónica y buen gobierno, a manuscript that dates to 1615-16, and was hand-written and illustrated by the Andean author Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala. Through the lens of animal studies, I analyze the manner in which Poma represented llamas to convey greater ideas surrounding the nature of colonial life under the Spanish empire, as well as the nostalgic remembrance of Inca practices before the conquest.
My study focuses on three of the Corónica’s drawings: “The second age of the world: Noah,” and how its reinterpretation of the eponymous biblical narrative expanded it to include the Andean world; “One of the many thieves who prosper in this kingdom,” and its representation of early modern anxieties over corruption and mestizaje; and “Feast of the Inkas: wariqsa, dance; arawi, song of the Inka. He sings with his red llama,” and its illustration of the connections between llamas, their environments, and the legacy of the Inca Empire through ritual space. Ultimately, I propose that llamas in the Corónica must be understood as active historical agents and visual representatives of Andeanness.
Art, Art History/Criticism/Conservation, History, Humanities, Humanities, Linguistics
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Varela Mejia, Laura, "Colonialism, Cohabitation, and Charismatic Llamas: Representations of Animals in Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala's El primer nueva corónica y buen gobierno" (2021). Art History Theses and Dissertations. 10.
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