The Peru Reader: History, Culture, Politics

Duke University Press
2
Free sample

Sixteenth-century Spanish soldiers described Peru as a land filled with gold and silver, a place of untold wealth. Nineteenth-century travelers wrote of soaring Andean peaks plunging into luxuriant Amazonian canyons of orchids, pythons, and jaguars. The early-twentieth-century American adventurer Hiram Bingham told of the raging rivers and the wild jungles he traversed on his way to rediscovering the “Lost City of the Incas,” Machu Picchu. Seventy years later, news crews from ABC and CBS traveled to Peru to report on merciless terrorists, starving peasants, and Colombian drug runners in the “white gold” rush of the coca trade. As often as not, Peru has been portrayed in broad extremes: as the land of the richest treasures, the bloodiest conquest, the most poignant ballads, and the most violent revolutionaries. This revised and updated second edition of the bestselling Peru Reader offers a deeper understanding of the complex country that lies behind these claims.

Unparalleled in scope, the volume covers Peru’s history from its extraordinary pre-Columbian civilizations to its citizens’ twenty-first-century struggles to achieve dignity and justice in a multicultural nation where Andean, African, Amazonian, Asian, and European traditions meet. The collection presents a vast array of essays, folklore, historical documents, poetry, songs, short stories, autobiographical accounts, and photographs. Works by contemporary Peruvian intellectuals and politicians appear alongside accounts of those whose voices are less often heard—peasants, street vendors, maids, Amazonian Indians, and African-Peruvians. Including some of the most insightful pieces of Western journalism and scholarship about Peru, the selections provide the traveler and specialist alike with a thorough introduction to the country’s astonishing past and challenging present.

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About the author

Orin Starn is Professor of Cultural Anthropology at Duke University. He is the author of Ishi’s Brain: In Search of America’s Last “Wild” Indian and Nightwatch: The Politics of Protest in the Andes, also published by Duke University Press.

Carlos Iván Degregori is Professor of Anthropology at the National University of San Marcos in Lima. He served on Peru’s government-appointed Truth and Reconciliation Commission and has written dozens of books and articles about Peru.

Robin Kirk is Co-director of the Human Rights Initiative at Duke University. She is the author of More Terrible Than Death: Massacres, Drugs, and America’s War in Colombia and The Monkey's Paw: New Chronicles from Peru.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Duke University Press
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Published on
Dec 14, 2005
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Pages
597
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ISBN
9780822387503
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Latin America / South America
Travel / South America / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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On October 3, 1968, a military junta led by General Juan Velasco Alvarado took over the government of Peru. In striking contrast to the right-wing, pro–United States/anti-Communist military dictatorships of that era, however, Velasco's "Revolutionary Government of the Armed Forces" set in motion a left-leaning nationalist project aimed at radically transforming Peruvian society by eliminating social injustice, breaking the cycle of foreign domination, redistributing land and wealth, and placing the destiny of Peruvians into their own hands. Although short-lived, the Velasco regime did indeed have a transformative effect on Peru, the meaning and legacy of which are still subjects of intense debate.

The Peculiar Revolution revisits this fascinating and idiosyncratic period of Latin American history. The book is organized into three sections that examine the era's cultural politics, including not just developments directed by the Velasco regime but also those that it engendered but did not necessarily control; its specific policies and key institutions; and the local and regional dimensions of the social reforms it promoted. In a series of innovative chapters written by both prominent and rising historians, this volume illuminates the cultural dimensions of the revolutionary project and its legacies, the impact of structural reforms at the local level (including previously understudied areas of the country such as Piura, Chimbote, and the Amazonia), and the effects of state policies on ordinary citizens and labor and peasant organizations.

The inhabitants of the department of Antioquía in north-central Colombia have played a unique role in that country's economic history. During the colonial period Antioqueño placer miners supplied a substantial portion of New Granada's gold exports. Their nineteenth-century descendants pioneered investments in lode mining, colonization, international commerce, banking, stock raising, tobacco, and coffee. In the twentieth century, Antioqueños initiated the industrialization of the regional capital, Medellín.

Many theories have been set forth to account for the special energy and initiative of Antioqueños. They range from ethnic and psychological interpretations (Antioqueños are descended from Jews or Basques; they are driven to succeed because of status deprivation) to historical explanations that emphasize their geographic isolation, mining heritage, or the coffee-export economy. In Miners, Merchants, and Farmers in Colonial Colombia, Ann Twinam critiques these theories and sets forth her own revisionist interpretation of Antioqueño enterprise. Rather than emphasize the alien or deviant in Antioqueño psychology or culture, Twinam re-creates the region's late colonial economic and social structure and attributes the origins of Antioqueño enterprise to a particular mix of human and natural resources that directed the region's development toward capital accumulation and reinvestment.

Although the existing limitations of their colonial environment may have forced Antioqueños along enterprising pathways initially, the continuation of Antioqueño investments to the present day suggests that their adaptation to a specific economic reality became a way of life transcending the historical conditions that created it.

Encompassing Amazonian rainforests, Andean peaks, coastal lowlands, and the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador’s geography is notably diverse. So too are its history, culture, and politics, all of which are examined from many perspectives in The Ecuador Reader. Spanning the years before the arrival of the Spanish in the early 1500s to the present, this rich anthology addresses colonialism, independence, the nation’s integration into the world economy, and its tumultuous twentieth century. Interspersed among forty-eight written selections are more than three dozen images.

The voices and creations of Ecuadorian politicians, writers, artists, scholars, activists, and journalists fill the Reader, from José María Velasco Ibarra, the nation’s ultimate populist and five-time president, to Pancho Jaime, a political satirist; from Julio Jaramillo, a popular twentieth-century singer, to anonymous indigenous women artists who produced ceramics in the 1500s; and from the poems of Afro-Ecuadorians, to the fiction of the vanguardist Pablo Palacio, to a recipe for traditional Quiteño-style shrimp. The Reader includes an interview with Nina Pacari, the first indigenous woman elected to Ecuador’s national assembly, and a reflection on how to balance tourism with the protection of the Galápagos Islands’ magnificent ecosystem. Complementing selections by Ecuadorians, many never published in English, are samples of some of the best writing on Ecuador by outsiders, including an account of how an indigenous group with non-Inca origins came to see themselves as definitively Incan, an exploration of the fascination with the Andes from the 1700s to the present, chronicles of the less-than-exemplary behavior of U.S. corporations in Ecuador, an examination of Ecuadorians’ overseas migration, and a look at the controversy surrounding the selection of the first black Miss Ecuador.

Rusty Young was backpacking in South America when he heard about Thomas McFadden, a convicted English drug trafficker who ran tours inside Bolivia's notorious San Pedro prison. Intrigued, the young Australian journalist went to La Paz and joined one of Thomas's illegal tours. They formed an instant friendship and then became partners in an attempt to record Thomas's experiences in the jail. Rusty bribed the guards to allow him to stay and for the next three months he lived inside the prison, sharing a cell with Thomas and recording one of the strangest and most compelling prison stories of all time. The result is Marching Powder.

This book establishes that San Pedro is not your average prison. Inmates are expected to buy their cells from real estate agents. Others run shops and restaurants. Women and children live with imprisoned family members. It is a place where corrupt politicians and drug lords live in luxury apartments, while the poorest prisoners are subjected to squalor and deprivation. Violence is a constant threat, and sections of San Pedro that echo with the sound of children by day house some of Bolivia's busiest cocaine laboratories by night. In San Pedro, cocaine--"Bolivian marching powder"--makes life bearable. Even the prison cat is addicted.

Yet Marching Powder is also the tale of friendship, a place where horror is countered by humor and cruelty and compassion can inhabit the same cell. This is cutting-edge travel-writing and a fascinating account of infiltration into the South American drug culture.

Excessively European, refreshingly European, not as European as it looks, struggling to overcome a delusion that it is European. Argentina—in all its complexity—has often been obscured by variations of the "like Europe and not like the rest of Latin America" cliché. The Argentina Reader deliberately breaks from that viewpoint. This essential introduction to Argentina’s history, culture, and society provides a richer, more comprehensive look at one of the most paradoxical of Latin American nations: a nation that used to be among the richest in the world, with the largest middle class in Latin America, yet one that entered the twenty-first century with its economy in shambles and its citizenry seething with frustration.

This diverse collection brings together songs, articles, comic strips, scholarly essays, poems, and short stories. Most pieces are by Argentines. More than forty of the texts have never before appeared in English. The Argentina Reader contains photographs from Argentina’s National Archives and images of artwork by some of the country’s most talented painters and sculptors. Many selections deal with the history of indigenous Argentines, workers, women, blacks, and other groups often ignored in descriptions of the country. At the same time, the book includes excerpts by or about such major political figures as José de San Martín and Juan Perón. Pieces from literary and social figures virtually unknown in the United States appear alongside those by more well-known writers such as Jorge Luis Borges, Ricardo Piglia, and Julio Cortázar.

The Argentina Reader covers the Spanish colonial regime; the years of nation building following Argentina’s independence from Spain in 1810; and the sweeping progress of economic growth and cultural change that made Argentina, by the turn of the twentieth century, the most modern country in Latin America. The bulk of the collection focuses on the twentieth century: on the popular movements that enabled Peronism and the revolutionary dreams of the 1960s and 1970s; on the dictatorship from 1976 to 1983 and the accompanying culture of terror and resistance; and, finally, on the contradictory and disconcerting tendencies unleashed by the principles of neoliberalism and the new global economy. The book also includes a list of suggestions for further reading.

The Argentina Reader is an invaluable resource for those interested in learning about Argentine history and culture, whether in the classroom or in preparation for travel in Argentina.

#1 best-selling guide to South America *

Lonely Planet South America on a Shoestring is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to skip, what hidden discoveries await you, and how to optimize your budget for an extended continental trip. Drift between river towns in the Amazon, shake it in Rio de Janeiro or hustle for traditional crafts in Ecuador all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of South America and begin your journey now!

Inside Lonely Planet's South America on a Shoestring Travel Guide:

Color maps and images throughout Highlights and itineraries help you tailor your trip to your personal needs and interests Insider tips to save time and money and get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spots Essential info at your fingertips - hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, prices Budget-oriented recommendations with honest reviews - eating, sleeping, sight-seeing, going out, shopping, hidden gems that most guidebooks miss Cultural insights give you a richer, more rewarding travel experience - history, lifestyle, arts, religion, outdoor activities, cuisine, sports, environment, politics Over 170 maps Covers Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay, Venezuela and more

eBook Features: (Best viewed on tablet devices and smartphones)

Downloadable PDF and offline maps prevent roaming and data charges Effortlessly navigate and jump between maps and reviews Add notes to personalise your guidebook experience Seamlessly flip between pages Bookmarks and speedy search capabilities get you to key pages in a flash Embedded links to recommendations' websites Zoom-in maps and images Inbuilt dictionary for quick referencing

The Perfect Choice: Lonely Planet South America on a Shoestring is perfect for both exploring top sights and taking roads less traveled.

Looking for just a few of the destinations included in this guide? Check out Lonely Planet Argentina, Brazil or Chile & Easter Island, our most comprehensive guides that cover South America's top sights and offbeat experiences.

Authors: Written and researched by Lonely Planet, Regis St Louis, Sandra Bao, Celeste Brash, Gregor Clark, Alex Egerton, Brian Kluepfel, Tom Masters, Carolyn McCarthy, Kevin Raub, Paul Smith, Phillip Tang, Lucas Vidgen

About Lonely Planet: Since 1973, Lonely Planet has become the world's leading travel media company with guidebooks to every destination, an award-winning website, mobile and digital travel products, and a dedicated traveler community. Lonely Planet covers must-see spots but also enables curious travelers to get off beaten paths to understand more of the culture of the places in which they find themselves.

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Important Notice: The digital edition of this book may not contain all of the images found in the physical edition.

Alaska is home to more than two hundred federally recognized tribes. Yet the long histories and diverse cultures of Alaska’s first peoples are often ignored, while the stories of Russian fur hunters and American gold miners, of salmon canneries and oil pipelines, are praised. Filled with essays, poems, songs, stories, maps, and visual art, this volume foregrounds the perspectives of Alaska Native people, from a Tlingit photographer to Athabascan and Yup’ik linguists, and from an Alutiiq mask carver to a prominent Native politician and member of Alaska’s House of Representatives. The contributors, most of whom are Alaska Natives, include scholars, political leaders, activists, and artists. The majority of the pieces in The Alaska Native Reader were written especially for the volume, while several were translated from Native languages.

The Alaska Native Reader describes indigenous worldviews, languages, arts, and other cultural traditions as well as contemporary efforts to preserve them. Several pieces examine Alaska Natives’ experiences of and resistance to Russian and American colonialism; some of these address land claims, self-determination, and sovereignty. Some essays discuss contemporary Alaska Native literature, indigenous philosophical and spiritual tenets, and the ways that Native peoples are represented in the media. Others take up such diverse topics as the use of digital technologies to document Native cultures, planning systems that have enabled indigenous communities to survive in the Arctic for thousands of years, and a project to accurately represent Dena’ina heritage in and around Anchorage. Fourteen of the volume’s many illustrations appear in color, including work by the contemporary artists Subhankar Banerjee, Perry Eaton, Erica Lord, and Larry McNeil.

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