Monuments and ephemera: The Biblioteca Ayacucho

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Abstract

The Biblioteca Ayacucho, spearheaded by the Uruguayan intellectual Ángel Rama, among other prominent Latin American critics, was a book collection of Latin American classics forged in theory by sensibilities traceable to the revolutionary dusk of the 1960s. Yet, instituted by presidential decree in 1974 during the first presidency of Carlos Andrés Pérez (1974-1979), the collection itself came into being in a period marked by vast educational reform colored not by the ebullience associated with the Cuban revolution and other revolutionary struggles, rather by the sobering developmentalist policies of guerrilla pacification and neutralization of an armed left. This essay explores how the Biblioteca Ayacucho, producing objects for an intellectual elite, albeit an expanding university population, in the last decade paradoxically became a condition of possibility for a subsequent —and polemical— democratization and symbolic redistribution.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)90-118
JournalA Contracorriente
Volume11
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 29 Apr 2014

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