• Barry Turner
Part of the The Statesman’s Yearbook book series (SYBK)


The Incas of Peru were conquered by the Spanish in the 16th century and subsequent Spanish colonial settlement made Peru the most important of the Spanish viceroyalties in South America. On 28 July 1821 Peru declared its independence, but it was not until after a war which ended in 1824 that the country gained its freedom. In a war with Chile (1879–83) Peru’s capital, Lima, was captured and she lost some of her southern territory. Tacna, in the far south of the country, remained in Chilean control from 1880 until 1929. In 1924 Dr Victor Raúl Haya de la Torre founded the Alianza Popular Revolucionaria Americana to oppose the dictatorial government then in power. The party was banned between 1931 and 1945 and between 1948 and 1956 its leader failed regularly in the presidential elections but it was at times the largest party in Congress. The closeness of the 1962 elections led Gen. Ricardo Pérez Godoy, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs-of-Staff, to seize power. A coup led by Gen. Nicolás Lindley López deposed him in 1963. There followed, after elections, a period of civilian rule but the military staged yet another coup in 1968. In 1978–79 a constituent assembly drew up a new constitution, after which a civilian government was installed. On 6 April 1992 the President suspended the constitution and dissolved the parliament. A new constitution was promulgated on 29 Dec. 1993. But while Peru has enjoyed stability and economic growth, there is still rule by autocracy which puts the wishes of political chiefs above the law.

República del Perú


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Further Reading

  1. Instituto Nacional de Estadística e Informática.—Anuario Estadístico del Perú.Perú: Compendio Estadístico. Annual.—Boletin de Estadística Peruana. QuarterlyGoogle Scholar
  2. Banco Central de Reserva. Monthly Bulletin.—Renta Nacional del Perú. Annual, LimaGoogle Scholar
  3. Cameron, M. A., Democracy and Authoritarianism in Peru: Political Coalitions and Social Change. London, 1995Google Scholar
  4. Daeschner, J., The War of the End of Democracy: Mario Vargas Llosa vs. Alberto Fujimori. Lima, 1993Google Scholar
  5. Figueroa, A., Capitalist Development and the Peasant Economy of Peru. CUP, 1984CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Fisher, John R., Peru. [Bibliography] ABC-Clio, Oxford and Santa Barbara (CA), 1989Google Scholar
  7. Gorriti, Gustavo, (trans. Robin Kirk) The Shining Path: A history of the millenarian war in Peru. Univ. of North Carolina Press, 1999.Google Scholar
  8. Stokes, S. C., Cultures in Conflict: Social Movements and the State in Peru. California Univ. Press, 1995CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Strong, S., Shining Path. London, 1993Google Scholar
  10. Thorp, R., Economic Management and Economic Development in Peru and Colombia. London, 1991CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Vargas Llosa, A., The Madness of Things Peruvian: Democracy under Siege. Brunswick (NJ), 1994Google Scholar
  12. National statistical office: Instituto Nacional de Estadística e Informática, Avenida 28 de Julio, 1056 LimaGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2000

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  • Barry Turner

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