chapter  8
16 Pages

Identities in the architecture of Mexico City: memories and histories in La Plaza de la Constitución and the Temple of Santa Teresa la Antigua

Architecture and the city form the stage where our lives unfold; they frame our experience of the world and define our actions collectively and as individuals. They are more than a physical framework destined for human inhabitation; they embody the values and ideologies of the cultures that design, construct and occupy them. Buildings, in particular, are considered cultural artefacts that personify the values and ideologies of the society that produce them. As buildings are conceived, occupied, modified and in some instances abandoned, they become a complex ensemble of meanings, memories and values, which form a distinct sense of identity and place. These fragile elements and processes are constantly redefined and transformed despite having a definite physical presence in the world. By reading the city and its architecture it is possible to examine the meanings, memories and values intertwined in their material form and to understand the role these have in the construction of our sense of identity and belonging.