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February 16, 2017 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

Throughout the 1980s and into the 1990s, two guerrilla groups, the Shining Path and the MRTA, took up arms against the Peruvian state, thrusting the Andean heartland into a bloody civil war that would claim the lives of nearly 70,000 people. While studies of Peru’s political violence abound, few have examined the complicated and often contradictory role that gender played at the highest levels of its guerrilla organizations. This lecture offers a rare portrait of the highest-ranking women in each armed group, Augusta La Torre (Shining Path) and Lucero Cumpa (MRTA). In discussing these women’s extraordinary rise within their respective organizations, as well as the personal and gendered challenges they faced in obtaining and maintaining positions of power within them, this lecture highlight the internal contradictions that would come to define Peru’s late-20th century revolutionary experience.

Miguel La Serna is an Associate Professor of History at UNC-Chapel Hill. He has written numerous works on Peruvian political violence, including The Corner of the Living: Ayacucho on the Eve of the Shining Path Insurgency (2012). He is currently working on two projects, a character-driven history of the Shining Path war and a narrative history of the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement (MRTA).

In cooperation with the UNC Institute for the Study of the Americas

CONVENERS: Carolina Seminars • Triangle Institute for Security Studies • UNC-Chapel Hill (Center for European Studies • Curriculum in Peace, War and Defense • Dept. of History • Center for European Studies • Dept. of Women’s and Gender Studies) • Duke University (Dept. of History • Program in American Grand Strategy) • ORGANIZER: Karen Hagemann (UNC-Chapel Hill, Dept. of History)

Acknowledgement of Support:
This event has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The contents of this event are the sole responsibility of The UNC Center for European Studies and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.

See the event flyer here: La Serna event flyer


February 16, 2017
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm
Event Category:


Dr. Karen Hagemann


569 Hamilton Hall
102 Emerson Drive
Chapel Hill, NC 27514 United States
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