“The fact that history is also produced outside academia has largely been ignored in theories of history.” 
– Michel-Rolph Trouillot. Silencing the Past, Power and the Production of History (1995).

I am a Peruvian historian specialized in the social and political history of the Andean region during the national period, Peru, in particular. After graduating as a licenciada in History at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú (Lima), in 1986, I took a teaching position at the Universidad Nacional  de Huamanga, in Ayacucho. At that time, Ayacucho’s mostly rural and Quechua-speaking hinterland had become the epicenter of the political violence unleashed by Shining Path’s (Sendero Luminoso’s) insurgency in 1980. Deemed the biggest insurrection in the history of Peru, and the bloodiest in modern Latin America, the inner war, which spanned from 1980 to 2000, claimed nearly 70,000 lives, most of them Quechua-speaking peasants. My experience in Ayacucho, which was prior to my pursual of graduate studies in the U.S., turned out to be decisive in my professional choices. Henceforth, the largest part of my research has been devoted to the study of the role of Andean peasant society in Peru’s national life.

My work calls the attention on the importance of late eighteenth-century, and nineteenth-century political developments in shaping modern conceptions nationhood, citizenship, and  “race” in Peru.  I have also investigated the historical relationship between the peasants and the militaries, and the role of war and the army in the construction of the state. I have published widely on these and other subjects concerning contemporary politics (scroll down to see and download some of my publications). My book The Plebeian Republic: The Huanta Rebellion and the Making of the Peruvian State (2005), won the Howard F. Cline Award for “the best book on indigenous history in Latin America.” Its Spanish revised and expanded version, La República Plebeya (2014) was voted  “the best book of History of 2014”  by international survey of historians specialized in Peru. This 2014  interview with anthropologist Javier Torres Seoane, and this other 2021 interview with historian Manuel Burga  director of Peru’s Museum of Memory (LUM), both in Spanish, provide a good sense of the book. 

I am also working on the long term project “The Wars Within: Civil Strife, National Imaginings, and the Rural Basis of the Peruvian State,”  a study of nineteenth-century civil wars, local governance, and state formation, which draws inspiration in Peru’s most recent armed conflict. The project was awarded yearlong fellowships form the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Stanford Humanities Center, and the Center for Historical Studies at UT-Austin. Offsprings of this project include the essays: “La Guerra que no cesa” (Ceaseless War) published in France (2013), “Violencia en clave étnica” (Lima, 2021) (see Publications, below),  and “The Paths of Terrorism in Peru,” in The Cambridge Global History of Terrorism (edited by Richard English),  2021.

I welcome graduate students who are interested in studying any of the subjects related to my specialization and who can surprise me with original questions and projects.

  •  Latin America/ The Andean Region, Peru, 18th-21st centuries.
  • Civil wars,  citizenship, the peasants and the army. 
  • The state, race and ethnicity, nationalism, world history.
  • Historical anthropology, theory of history and historiography.
  • Political violence, historical memory, history of terrorism. 
  • “The Wars Within: Civil Strife, National Imaginings, and the Rural Bases of the Peruvian State, 21st to 19th centuries.” A study on nineteenth-century civil wars, local governance, and state formation which draws inspiration in Peru`s most recent civil war (1980-1999), when peasants banded together with the army to the defeat the Shining Path terrorist insurgency.
  • “The Proscribed Heroe: Historiography and memory of Tupac Amaru II.” This project explores the long term legacies of the insurgency of Tupac Amaru II (1780-1781) in the historiography and in the official and popular memory of Peru, from its aftermath to the present.






  • 2014. La República Plebeya: La rebelión de Huanta y la formación del Estado Peruano (IEP, 2014) selected “the best book of History” in Peru.
  • 2010 Latin American and Iberian Studies Program Faculty Award for Exemplary Mentorship to Graduate and Undergraduate Students.
  • 2007 Howard Cline Memorial Prize for the book “The Plebeian Republic” awarded by the Conference on Latin American History.
  • 1995 Mildred and Herbert Weisinger Dissertation Prize for the Best Doctoral Dissertation in Progress, SUNY at Stony Brook.
  • 1986 B.A. Thesis “Los Trabajadores Guaneros del Perú” approved as “outstanding” with “mention for publication” (published in 1987).


  • University of California Humanities Research Institute (UCHRI), Fall 2020 Residential Fellowship to work on Civil wars and terrorism in Peru. 
  • National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) 2012-2013 Research project “The Wars Within: Civil Strife, National Imaginings, and the Rural Bases of the Peruvian State”
  • Stanford Humanities Center Fellowship 2010-211. Research
    project: “The Wars Within: Civil Strife, National Imaginings, and the Rural Bases of the Peruvian State.”
  • University of Texas-Austin, Institute for Historical Studies Fellowship 2010-2011. “Research project: “The Wars Within: Civil Strife, National Imaginings, and the Rural Bases of the Peruvian State.” (declined)
  • Yale University Program in Agrarian Studies Fellowship 1996-1997
    Research project: “Peasant Justice and State Rule in Huanta 1830-1879”
  • Government of Spain Fellowship for “Foreign Hispanists”, 1994.  Project: “Rebellion without resistance”. Doctoral dissertation research in the Archive of Indies, Seville, Spain.
  • Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation Doctoral Fellow 1993-1994.
    Fellowship to write up dissertation.
  • Social Science Research Council Doctoral Fellow 1991-1992.
    Dissertation: “Rebellion Without Resistance: Huanta’s Monarchist Peasants and the Making of the Peruvian State.”
  • Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research. Doctoral Fellow 1991-1992 Dissertation: “Rebellion Without Resistance: Huanta’s Monarchist Peasants and the Making of the Peruvian State.”

Teaching Abroad

  • Invited Professor at  l’Ecole des hautes études en sciences sociales (EHESS), Paris (May-June, 2019).
  • Invited professor at the Summer course “Visiones de lo Colonial: usos y abusos de un concepto”. Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (September 2018).
  • Instituto de Estudios Peruanos, Lima 
    Workshop on “Alternative Methodologies” for Latin American Doctoral Students, Sponsored by SEPHIS (2009), and various workshops on the militaries and the peasants, civil wars and the state, and the production of silences in historiographical narratives (2010, 2011, 2012).
  • University of the Philippines, Quezon City, 2008.
    Workshop on “Alternative Methodologies” for Doctoral Students of the “Global South”, Sponsored by SEPHIS
  • Universidad Nacional de San Cristobal de Huamanga, Ayacucho, PeruVarious workshops for history students

Videos, and Interviews (Highlights)