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Recommended Books & Movies
  • The Conquest of the Incas by John Hemming. In 1532, the magnificent Inca empire was the last great civilization still isolated from the rest of humankind. This authoritative, wide-ranging account, grounded in meticulous research and firsthand knowledge, is the definitive history of an entire civilization’s overthrow, from Pizarro's invasion and the Incas’ valiant attempts to expel the invaders to the destruction of the Inca realm, the oppression of its people, and the modern discoveries of Machu Picchu and the lost city of Vilcabamba.  
  • Lost City of the Incas by Hiram Bingham. In 1911, Hiram Bingham's venture into a mostly unexplored Peru brought him to the extraordinary Incan city that would not only make him famous but come to universally represent the forgotten majesty of a bygone civilization: Machu Picchu.  This special illustrated edition of Bingham's classic work captures all the magnificence and the mystery of his most influential discoveries and forays into the then unknown Peru.
  • Inca Land: Explorations in the Highlands of Peru by Hiram Bingham. A stunning first-hand account of Hiram Bingham's discovery of the lost city of Machu Picchu, one of the most revered expeditions of all time.  Bingham's tale is as compelling now as it was a century ago when the book was first written, bringing the readers along to explore an archaeological treasure recalling the might and majesty of an empire lost.  
  • The Incas and Their Ancestors: The Archaeology of Peru by Michael E. Moseley. In 1532, when Pizarro conquered Peru, the Inca realm was one of the largest empires on earth. But this glittering culture only obscured the rich and diverse civilizations that had preceded it: Chavin, Moche, Nazca, Tiwanaku, Huari, and Chimu. The Incas and Their Ancestors quickly established itself as the best general introduction to the cultures and civilizations of ancient Peru - now this classic text has been fully updated for the revised edition, with new discoveries integrated throughout.  
  • Discovering the Inca Ice Maiden : My Adventures on Ampato by Johan Reinhard.  The gripping true tale of Johan Reinhard's climb to the summit of Peru's Ampato, a 20,700 - foot high volcano that yielded the unexpected discovery of a mummified Inca girl. This amazing find, providing new clues to the Incan Empire, electrified scientists and archaeologists around the world. Reinhard's discovery and the adventures that led him to the Inca ice maiden are the basis for this fascinating book, including dozens of his own color photographs as well as an instructional map, timeline, glossary, and index.
  • The Peru Reader: History, Culture, Politics. This volume covers Peru’s history from its extraordinary pre-Columbian civilizations to its citizens’ twenty-first-century struggles in a collection of essays, folklore, historical documents, poetry, songs, short stories, autobiographical accounts, and photographs. Works by contemporary Peruvian intellectuals and politicians appear alongside the accounts of street vendors, maids, Amazonian Indians, and African-Peruvians. Selections of Western journalism provide the traveler and specialist alike with a thorough introduction to the country’s astonishing past and challenging present.
  • Exploring Cusco by Peter Frost. For the visitor with three days or three months to explore the magical world around the Inca capital of Cusco, from the conventional traveler to the intrepid explorer, Peter Frost's Exploring Cusco is the ideal companion, like having a private guide at your side. Includes practical information on hotels, restaurants, transportation, shopping, as well as directions on walks ranging from a few hours to a few days. Plus additional information ranging from new theories on Inca technology and cosmology to a recipe for making quinoa pancakes while camping along the Inca trail. 
  • Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter: A Novel by Mario Vargas Llosa. In Lima, Peru, the young Marito is toiling away in the news department of a local radio station. His life is disrupted by the arrivals of his recently divorced Aunt Julia and a manic radio scriptwriter named Pedro Camacho, whose racy, vituperative soap operas are holding the city's listeners in thrall. Interweaving the story of Marito's life with the ever-more-fevered tales of Pedro Camacho, Vargas Llosa's novel is hilarious, mischievous, and masterful, a classic named one of the best books of the year by the New York Times Book Review.
  • Fire from the Andes: Short Fiction by Women from Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru. This anthology provides an opportunity for English-speaking audiences to read previously untranslated fiction by women from Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru. Much of this work is inspired by an awareness of social injustice--particularly for women, indigenous groups, and other marginalized members of society and by a desire to transcend that injustice through personal revelation. Twenty-four authors have drawn from their experience and imagination to create these compelling, often haunting, stories of life, liberty, love, and loss.
  • With Our Labor and Sweat: Indigenous Women and the Formation of Colonial Society in Peru, 1550-1700. Based upon substantial new research, this book investigates the heterogeneity of experiences of rural and urban indigenous women in Peru during the first two centuries of Spanish colonization.  From their utilization of colonial law to seek redress, to their creation of urban dress styles that reflected their new positions as consumers and as producers under Spanish rule, the early colonial period witnessed a dramatic upheaval in indigenous women's lives. 
  • The Woman in the Violence: Gender, Poverty, and Resistance in Peru. Gender-based violence continues to blight the landscape of South American urban centers, and this book unravels the personal experiences of those impacted.  Focusing on the experiences of women who are predominantly poor, nonwhite, rural-to-urban migrants with little or no formal education, the text addresses a range of serious concerns shared by those who live under a near-constant threat to their very wellbeing.  
  • Initiation: A Woman's Journey into the Nature Mysticism of Peru by Elizabeth Jenkins. One woman's story of her search for self-fulfillment describes her spiritual adventures in the Peruvian Andes mountains and her experiences as she traveled through the actual stages of initiation into one of the oldest sacred traditions in the world.
  • The Dancer Upstairs (2002). The film directorial debut of John Malkovich, this gripping political thriller stars Javier Bardem as a police officer in an unnamed South American country caught up in a bloody war with leftist rebels. As he searches for a terrorist ringleader, the tightly-wound Bardem must deal with corruption within his department and a strained homelife that worsens when he falls for his daughter's dance teacher.
  • The Motorcycle Diaries (2004). Before becoming the global revolutionary icon known as "Che," Ernesto Guevara was a middle-class Argentinean medical student who, in 1952, left his Buenos Aires home with friend Alberto Granado on a rickety motorcycle. Follow their 5,000-mile trek across South America, from the Andes Mountains to the Amazon jungle, and see how the journey opened Guevara's eyes to the world around him, in director Walter Salles' acclaimed biodrama.
  • Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008). Nearly 20 years after riding his last Crusade, Harrison Ford makes a welcome return as archaeologist/relic hunter Indiana Jones, swept into a new adventure set amidst the pursuit of a mystical crystal skull rumored to have powers related to a city of gold.  Indy is coerced to head to Peru at the behest of a young greaser (Shia LaBeouf) whose friend--and Indy's colleague--Professor Oxley (John Hurt) has been captured for his knowledge of the skull's whereabouts.