Fernando Santos Granero

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14. Carnival Queen, Iquitos, circa 1910.

The emergence of a regional identity in Loreto is tied up with the gradual expansion of the ribereņo mixed-blood social stratum that originated during the rubber era. Members of this group were hailed by early 20th-century authors as “genuine Loretans”, a new breed that would constitute “the population of the future”. In this they were right. With the passage of time, members of this group have become the predominant population of Loreto in both the rural and urban areas. The main traits of their hybrid culture have come to define present-day Loretan identity. The European mores that prevailed at the beginning of the 20th century –as expressed in this photograph of a well-clad queen- gave way to more local expressions, stimulating the development of rich musical, literary and pictorial traditions.