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ARQ (Santiago)

versión On-line ISSN 0717-6996


ROZAS-KRAUSE, Valentina. Should Monuments Resist? Sinking Monuments: Notes on our Current Statuophobia. ARQ (Santiago) [online]. 2020, n.105, pp.150-152. ISSN 0717-6996.

The social outbreak of October 2019 defined a new role for monuments in Chile. During the demonstrations, not only the statues that paid tribute to Spanish conquistadors - namely, those who built a country to the detriment of the native peoples - were torn down, but the historical (therefore constructed) backing of certain buildings’ patrimonial status was also questioned. Even the Baquedano monument, located in the middle of a roundabout of the same name, at the focal center of the demonstrations in Santiago, was completely covered with new meanings during the protests.

In late May 2020, the death of African American citizen George Floyd - at the hands of the Minneapolis police, in the Us - reactivated the Black Lives Matter movement, which resists and opposes racism against African American people. In the context of this movement, a series of statues that paid tribute to slave-traders and owners were attacked, generating a surprising parallel (just months away), between what happened in Chile and in other parts of the world. Considering both events, in the debate on this issue of ARQ we asked: should monuments resist in place? Or is it preferable to protect them by removing them from the public space? What happens if their meaning changes? Are they still considered monuments? What is it that resists in them? After all, if monuments materialize the intersection between history, architecture, and the city, what can resist the most, their meaning or their material?

Palabras clave : resistance; monuments; history; protests; debate.

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