Isidora Urrutia Steinert

PhD student, Department of Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies

Isidora’s research focuses on the relationships between material cultures and identities in Chile and Latin America. She studies the relations between materiality, everyday aesthetics and identities in public space using mixed and interdisciplinary methods based upon a mobility paradigm. Her work has explored neighbourhood identities and street art, popular religiosity and materiality, and everyday aesthetics in school settings, among others, applying mobile methods where movement through space is used as an elicitation technique.

Her doctoral thesis explores the identity discourses and disputes attached to Chile’s Route 5 – the Chilean section of the Pan-American highway. It studies the ways in which Route 5 has been used since the 1920s by the Chilean governing elites to perform imaginaries of national integration based upon notions of modernity and development, mestizaje and multiculturalism, common culture and popular religion, alongside local articulations, challenges, and reinterpretations of these ideas in the road and its roadside’s materiality. It thus analyses the motorway’s construction, redevelopments, and current materiality (including murals, sculptures, monuments, and shrines built on its roadside) as locales where identities are created, resisted, and/or reproduced.

Recent publications:

  • Urrutia, I. (2020, 19 October). Baquedano, el ejército, y la disputa por la memoria. CIPER Chile Académico. Disponible en
  • Urrutia, I. & Valenzuela, E. (2019). Religiosity on the Roadside: Memorials, Animitas and Shrines in a Chilean Highway. Journal of Contemporary Religion, 34:3, pp. 447-468, doi: 10.1080/13537903.2019.1658434
  • Errázuriz, L.H., Marini, G. & Urrutia, I. (2018). Reconsidering the Purposes of Art Education: Insights from a 2014 Questionnaire in Chile. International Journal of Education Through Art, 14:3, pp. 339-352, doi: 10.1386/eta.14.3.339_1

University of Bristol profile.