Shining Path and the Emergence of the Human Rights Community in Peru, 1980-2003

Charles Walker

Title Conditional: Shining Path and the Emergence of the Human Rights Community in Peru, 1980-2003
Wednesday, February 26, 2020
Time: 4:00 pm | CLAS Conference Room, 2334 Bowditch Street

The brutal guerrilla war initiated by the Shining Path and the Peruvian government's fierce response led to illegal mass detentions, disappearances, and massacres. Human rights groups emerged quickly to investigate, publicize, and adjudicate. This presentation examines the challenges they faced, both in the difficulty of tracking events in rural areas of the Andean highlands and the necessity of creating new paradigms and language. Those groups confronted a very different situation than their well-known and influential counterparts in Argentina and Chile. Their efforts culminated in Peru’s acclaimed 2003 Truth and Reconciliation Commission Informe Final.

Charles Walker is Professor of History and the Director of the Hemispheric Institute on the Americas at UC Davis and holds the MacArthur Foundation Endowed Chair in International Human Rights. He has published widely on Peruvian history, truth commissions, and historiography, in English and Spanish. 

Professor Charles Walker describes the nature of the Shining Path. (Photo by CLAS Staff.)
Professor Charles Walker describes the nature of the Shining Path. (Photo by CLAS Staff.)

The book Human Rights in an Unequal World provided critical analysis in this subject, according to Professor Walker. (Photo by CLAS Staff.)
The book Human Rights in an Unequal World provided critical analysis in this subject, according to Professor Walker. (Photo by CLAS Staff.)

Professor Walker talks to attendees, including UC Berkeley students, after the presentation. (Photo by CLAS Staff.)
Professor Walker talks to attendees, including UC Berkeley students, after the presentation. (Photo by CLAS Staff.)

Families of the disappeared demonstrate in Ayacucho, Peru, 2003. (Photo by Santiago Stucchi.)
Families of the disappeared demonstrate in Ayacucho, Peru, 2003. (Photo by Santiago Stucchi.)