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Community and Architecture

The reductions survive to this day

The Jesuit reductions have survived for over 300 years with the Chiquitos in the Bolivian lowlands. Partly because the reductions were too remote to be of interest to the colonial powers. In addition, the indigenous communities have taken care of them for a long time. It isn’t until the 1940s and 50s that Jesuit Felix Plattner rediscovers the reductions on his trip to South America. Later, architect and theologist Hans Roth from Zug restores the churches in the Jesuit missions at Plattner’s behest. In 1990, the UNESCO declares six of the Chiquito’s Jesuit reductions in East Bolivia to be World Heritage Sites. Even today, the Jesuit reductions’ buildings are being used. Regardless, the maintenance of the reductions as heritage sites remains a “Western dream” from today’s point of view.

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