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Andean Lives: Gregorio Condori Mamani and Asunta Quispe Huaman Hardcover – April, 1996

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--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 199 pages
  • Publisher: Univ of Texas Pr; 1st edition (April 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0292724918
  • ISBN-13: 978-0292724914
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,743,915 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


It brings to life the words, worldview, and historical consciousness of Gregorio and Asunta, who impart their accounts with stoicism, humor, and anger. Their descriptions of life in rural villages, isolated mines, semifuedal haciendas, and the houses of their powerful Misti masters in Cuzco are eloquent testimonies to the beauty and brutality of everyday life in the Andean highlands. (Translation Review 1996-12-01)

A highly readable book. The testimonies are vivid and intimate accounts of the brutality and exploitation experienced by landless Indians in the Andes. They also reflect the patience, humour, determination and defiance of these people. . . . As they tell their stories, we see the complexity of Andean culture, ethnic and gender relations and Peruvian history. Our understanding of the significance of Gregorio's and Asunta's testimonies are aided by the annotation and glossary provided by Gelles and Martínez. The annotation, which makes reference to many recent works, is particularly useful and would make this book a good starting point for teaching students about the Andes. This book will also be of use to those interested in the writing of ethnography and oral history. (Bulletin of Latin American Research)

Andean Lives is a superb book, highly recommended for readers of all levels of expertise and interest in South America. . . . [It] will serve as a wonderful introduction on the undergraduate level to Andean history and culture, and could also be used in a general Latin American Studies course. The book is completely appropriate for advanced courses such as history or anthropology graduate seminars focused on the modern Andean region, as well as literature or culture classes concerned with problems of translation, cross-cultural relations, or oral history. The work is also entirely suitable for general readers. The smooth and open quality of the translation and its ability to draw the reader into the world and life experiences of the speakers deserves the highest accolades. (Latin American Indian Literatures Journal 1997-03-01) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


One of the most beautiful and moving books that I have read on Andean life. (R. Tom Zuidema, author of Inca Civilization in Cuzco) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was a Peace Corps volunteer in Peru 50 years ago, and I so strongly wish that I had the knowledge, insight and understandings revealed in this book's recorded and translated narratives. Language is such a barrier in relating to these precious Andean people, and this book breaks through that barrier to some extent, giving anyone who cares access into the lives, minds and hearts of these indigenous people. One of the shocking revelations to me from this book was that a lovely handwoven poncho that I might have purchased in the Cusco or Pisac market might have been sold out of desperation to an intermediary by a "strapper" in order to pay the funeral expense for his life partner!!! Shame on me! Anyway, I highly recommend this book to all having an interest in South American indigenous populations for academic purposes or human and community development assistance. Missionaries, teachers, and social welfare advocates called to work with these populations should read this book.
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By A Customer on July 14, 2004
Format: Paperback
This is a testimony written by native peruvians. The innocence and candor is truly revealed throughout their works. Its easier to read than some other indigenous testimonies. The title, Andean Life is a bit misleading though. Maybe it would have been better to call it Peruvian Andean life, or something more specific. Although Peruvian andean life isn't different to let's say ecuadorian andean life by a lot, there are major differences in cultures throughout the andes. Suerte!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A great book for anyone interested in testimonial literature from indigenous/underepresented populations. It contains interesting complementary information about the fate of the protagonists and the story of this book, the most translated piece of modern Quechua literature. It is to be desired that some day this becomes a bilingual Quechua-English edition for those interested in studying Quechua (Cuzco variety).
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