restricted access Spatial Hegemony and Evangelization: A Network-Based View of an Early Franciscan Doctrinal Settlement in Highland Peru
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PART THREE P+++++++p DESIGN Spatial Hegemony and Evangelization A Network-Based View of an Early Franciscan Doctrinal Settlement in Highland Peru Steven A. Wernke and Lauren E. Kohut P+++++++p How were the spaces of early Catholic evangelization in the Andean region organized? By what manipulations of the built environment were new rhythms of daily life and religious practice among the former subjects of the Inka to be inculcated? Such questions are as important as they have been obscure. In the early years following the Spanish invasion of the Americas, religious proselytization was part of a larger colonial social engineering program that linked urbanism, social order, and domestic and religious propriety.1 The establishment of early doctrinas (doctrinal settlements), usually composed of a chapel and atrium, friary, and associated village, was central to that project. Prior to a massive colonial resettlement project conducted in the 1570s—the reducción (literally, “reduction”) of the Viceroy Francisco de Toledo—most doctrinas were established at extant Andean villages. Yet how the actual built spaces of early evangelization variously articulated with antecedent cultic and ceremonial spaces of these settlements remains almost entirely undocumented, either archaeologically or in written sources. In general, very little is known about the material and spatial dimensions of the period of the “first evangelization” in Peru—the era prior to the reforms of the decrees of the Third Ecclesiastical Council of Lima (1582–83), when church institutions and provincial infrastructure were weak and a formal parish structure had not yet arrived in many highland areas of the viceroyalty. Compared to New Spain, the earliest stratum of ecclesiastical documentation is exceedingly thin in the Peruvian Viceroyalty: no printed breviaries or other catechetical guides (cartillas) from the period exist, and correspondence and reports are extremely rare.2 The documentary corpus is largely limited to high-level prescriptive texts, such as the first two ecclesiastical councils of Lima. Ecclesiastical memorials recount the period of the first evangelization but are framed by triumphalist narratives of spiritual conquest and mass conversion. Such documents shed light on the institutional and ideological context of the early church in Peru 156 Steven A. Wernke and Lauren E. Kohut but say little about how evangelization was actually put into practice or the myriad indigenous responses to it. Archaeological research of early mission settlements in the Andes, though still in its infancy, is thus the key means for illuminating how domestic and ritual practices were transformed during early evangelization. Far from simply “filling the gaps” of the documentary record, analysis of the physical spaces of evangelization provides the only means for exploring the role of the material world in those transformations. Reshaping the built environment of the peoples of the Indies was considered of paramount importance from the earliest years following the Spanish invasion. The Spanish Crown and colonial policymakers considered the replacement or restructuring of indigenous settlements as the key to creating a new social order. Just as urbs was to produce civitas—urban community—so too was civitas to produce policia—social order.3 As Tom Cummins has written, “Bestowing Christian order on the New World was a royal obligation . Its fulfillment was first a philosophical and then a pragmatic problem. It meant, philosophically, the formation of a civilized community of men, the consortium hominium. This was to be achieved, as Anthony Pagden has described, by creating a civilis societas of which the civitas (the city) was the most natural and perfect community; where the practice of virtue and pursuit of happiness were possible and man could achieve his purpose, his telos.”4 Spanish theologians of the sixteenth century, moreover, saw the city as an instrument of God implanted in nature. Beyond logistical or administrative efficiencies , the establishment of cities was necessary to fulfill the spiritual obligations of the Crown.5 In 1549 Charles I first decreed the necessity of settlement consolidation in Peru, largely in response to the prelates of several orders who wrote to him of their difficulties in evangelization among the dispersed hamlets of the rural Andean countryside.6 During the tumultuous times of plunder, Inka revolt, and civil war among the Spanish in the 1550s and 1560s, the colonial church and administrative apparatus in Peru were neither sufficiently developed nor staffed to carry out anything remotely on the scale of a viceroyalty-wide resettlement campaign, but some settlement consolidation had occurred in rural doctrinas. Given the transformative role ascribed to the built environment by the Spanish, understanding how existing settlements were converted to...