The Myth of Santa Fe by Chris Wilson
Creating a Modern Regional Tradition

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Synopsis

A wave of publicity during the 1980s projected Santa Fe to the world as an exotic tourist destination--America's own Tahiti in the desert. The Myth of Santa Fe goes behind the romantic adobe facades and mass marketing stereotypes to tell the fascinating but little known story of how the city's alluring image was quite consciously created early in this century, primarily by Anglo-American newcomers.

By investigating the city's trademark architectural style, public ceremonies, the historic preservation movement, and cultural traditions, Wilson unravels the complex interactions of ethnic identity and tourist image-making. Santa Fe's is a distinctly modern success story--the story of a community that transformed itself from a declining provincial capital of 5,000 in 1912 into an internationally recognized tourist destination. But it is also a cautionary tale about the commodification of Native American and Hispanic cultures, and the social displacement and ethnic animosities that can accompany a tourist boom.

 

About Chris Wilson

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Wilson is J.B. Jackson Professor of Cultural Landscape Studies in the School of Architecture and Planning at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque.
 
Published March 1, 1997 by Univ of New Mexico Pr. 410 pages
Genres: History, Arts & Photography, Professional & Technical, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Myth of Santa Fe

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Contrary to popular belief, the term Santa Fe style was not coined in the mid-1980s. It was first used after New Mexico achieved statehood in 1912 as a conscious effort by Santa Fe's civic leaders t

Mar 03 1997 | Read Full Review of The Myth of Santa Fe: Creatin...

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It was first used after New Mexico achieved statehood in 1912 as a conscious effort by Santa Fe's civic leaders ""to make the city itself into a tourist attraction."" Wilson, who teaches in the architecture department at the University of New Mexico, deftly describes the process by which Santa Fe...

| Read Full Review of The Myth of Santa Fe: Creatin...

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