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Pure Peru

My Scholarship entry - Pure Peru

The inscription below this crucifix implores the passerby to venerate this ancient symbol. What is going on in the life of the man who walks by it? Is the book in his hand a bible or a journal? Is he a believer in God? Where is he going, and why does he wear that expression of contentment? What songs play in his ears as he walks the streets of the city? Is it his, or is he one of the many who come to Lima seeking fortune? Despite widespread poverty, pollution and social inequality, the city continues to attract many from the countryside seeking a better life, another passerby in this sprawling metropolis. Another bookcover to a story I'll only have read a line of.

Catholicism, brought by the Spanish Conquistadors, left a deep mark on Peruvian society. The city center of Lima, home to almost a 3rd of Peru's 30 million inhabitants, radiates outwards from the Plaza De Armas, the central square from which all points in Peru are measured. Catholicism played a major role in Peruvian culture and society since conquest and  in some respects it's introduction wiped clean thousands of years of knowledge and belief, leading to the death and persecution of many, and as a justification for the Spanish conquest (

PERU | Friday, 11 January 2013 | Views [937] | View Larger Image

The inscription below this crucifix implores the passerby to venerate this ancient symbol. What is going on in the life of the man who walks by it? Is the book in his hand a bible or a journal? Is he a believer in God? Where is he going, and why does he wear that expression of contentment? What songs play in his ears as he walks the streets of the city? Is it his, or is he one of the many who come to Lima seeking fortune? Despite widespread poverty, pollution and social inequality, the city continues to attract many from the countryside seeking a better life, another passerby in this sprawling metropolis. Another bookcover to a story I'll only have read a line of. Catholicism, brought by the Spanish Conquistadors, left a deep mark on Peruvian society. The city center of Lima, home to almost a 3rd of Peru's 30 million inhabitants, radiates outwards from the Plaza De Armas, the central square from which all points in Peru are measured. Catholicism played a major role in Peruvian culture and society since conquest and in some respects it's introduction wiped clean thousands of years of knowledge and belief, leading to the death and persecution of many, and as a justification for the Spanish conquest ("In the name of God"). By sword or by virtue, it continues to play a role in the formation of Peru, and over time has integrated local beliefs into it's roster of saints and feast days, such as Santa Rosa de Lima (Saint Rose of Lima). In more rural communities where animist beliefs hold sway, a more syncretic approach has been taken by church authorities.

Tags: man, cross, catholic, catholicism, conquistador, urban, wall, church

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