Title: Anti-Indigenous Racism in Peru’s Internal Armed Conflict and Today
Speakers: Carmen Valdivia (Lafayette College) and Renzo Aroni (Universidad Catolica Peruana)
Date: October 23, 2023
Time and Place: 6:00-8:00 pm. King Juan Carlos Center Room 324
Abstract: As in other contexts in the Americas, racism in Peru originated and has been institutionalized since the colonial period. More specifically, anti-Indigenous racism is nowadays a structural and daily practice in every social space, oftentimes reproduced and normalized not only by mainstream media but also by state-sponsored institutions, authorities, and politicians who exert different forms of violence against Indigenous peasantry and their descendants both in rural and urban contexts. Based on ethnographic research as well as the findings of Peru’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (2003), this roundtable will discuss anti-Indigenous racism in three key moments: 1) during the Peruvian Internal Armed Conflict (1980-2000) and how racism aggravated human rights abuses, 2) the “lethal racism” according to Amnesty International (2023) in recent police massacres during massive organized protests against the government, and 3) the ways in which racism intersects with gender as in the case of violence against Quechua and Aymara women during and after the Internal Armed Conflict.
We will end our discussion with a Quechua music performance honoring Indigenous lives and voices.
Carmen Valdivia is Assistant Professor in the Department of Languages and Literary Studies at Lafayette College. She completed her Ph.D. in Spanish with an emphasis in Native American Studies at the University of California, Davis. Her research and pedagogy integrate racial, Indigenous, and feminist critiques to examine contemporary Latin American cultural and visual production, particularly in relation to Indigenous women and populations in Peruvian cinema and alternative media that emerged after the political armed conflict. Previously, she was Visiting Assistant Professor at Macalester College, where she taught “Decoloniality, Race and Gender in the Americas,” “Dictators, Revolutions, and Insurrections,” and “Water Ecologies and the Extractive Zone.” This fall, she will teach Indigenous Philosophies and Cultural Production, and Spanish for Heritage Speakers. She has published articles in Transmodernity Journal, la Revista de Crítica Literaria Latinoamericana, and is currently working on her book manuscript “Mercurial Coloniality: Indigeneity, Extractivism and Cultural Representation.”
Renzo Aroni is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Humanities at the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru (PUCP), where he teaches courses on contemporary history, oral history, and politics of memory. Before joining PUCP, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the Society of Fellows in the Humanities and a lecturer at the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race at Columbia University (2020-2023). He obtained his M.A. in anthropology from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and his Ph.D. in Latin American history from the University of California, Davis, with an emphasis on Indigenous studies and Human Rights. He is currently working on his book manuscript, “Indigenous Peasants at War: Resistance and Massacre in Peru’s Shining Path.” His articles have appeared in academic journals, such as Latin American Perspectives and NACLA Report on the Americas, and has published book chapters in Spanish and English. He is also the creator and co-host of Kuskalla, a podcast about Quechua and Andean knowledge.
About the Working Group on Racisms in Comparative Perspective:
In this new/old political context, discussions about race and racisms have exploded. Postraciality and the multicultural rights frame are being challenged at the core and more intensely than ever before, glimpses of proto-fascist policies and actions are on the rise.
As a working group which is part of the larger Red de Investigacion Accion Antiracista en las Americas (RAIAR), we want to continue contributing to the debate on how best to fight against this emergent racist/classist backlash. Created in 2010 by Pamela Calla (Clinical Associate Professor) and Carmen Medeiros (CLACS Faculty Fellow, 2008-2010), this working group and presenters provide current and forthcoming analyses of race and racism in the Americas. Coordinated by Pamela Calla, the group has now hosted 53 sessions, and it continues challenging itself to put cutting edge research and analysis into creative anti-racist academic and activist use.
Note on Accessibility:
This event is free and open to the public with RSVP. The building has a wheelchair ramp and elevator. For any questions or to notify us of additional accommodation requests, please email clacs@nyu..edu at least a week prior to the event.