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Yanayaku's Sustainable Precarity

Mauricio Chamorro Osejo

Yanayacu, Ecuador


BA in Architecture


Indigenous, Insurgency

This dissertation presents an ethnographic study of Yanayaku, a Kichwa Indigenous community in the Ecuadorian Amazon, located in the Napo province. Many indigenous communities in the region began a never-ending process of cultural negotiation since the late 20th century. In this text, I take a post-colonial and phenomenological approach to discuss the role that tourism and cultural performativity play in the reconciliation of capitalism and indigeneity, the productive cultural possibilities it unlocks, and the ways in which abstract cultural negotiations materialize architecturally.

I argue that the ability to spend time in the territory is central in the preservation of a Kichwa worldview, which is crucial in the evolution of capitalism and generation of a plan to approach climate change. In the context of the forces of culture and time I present, I contemplate the contributions that an architect can make in the articulation of spaces (and places) for tourism, where Eurocentric-modernity is invited into Indigenous contexts through its embodiment in the tourist.

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