Indigenous Modernities (with Andrew Herscher)

“Indigenous Modernities: The Tocapu and Other American Grids,” by Ana María León and Andrew Herscher, is forthcoming in Spatial Concepts for Decolonizing the Americas, edited by Fernando Luiz Lara and Felipe Hernández. The book will be released in November 2021 and stems from this event organized at UT Texas in February 2020.

This collection of essays presents an innovative and provocative set of concepts to understand the spaces of the Americas through local lenses. The disciplines of architecture, urban design, landscape, and planning share the fundamental belief that space and place matter; however, the overwhelming majority of canonical knowledge in these fields originates in another continent and is external to the lived experience in such regions. The book introduces seven new concepts that have not been sufficiently addressed, and would make a significant contribution to the field: namely, gridded spaces; spaces of agriculture; space as image; watered spaces; spaces as labor; racialized spaces; and gendered spaces. This book, thus, introduces a broader conceptual framework to foster the analysis of the spatial histories of the Americas.