PERU by Grace Halsell


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Peru as a non-union of up-to-date coastal Creole and apathetic mountain Indian, how it came to be, why it is changing. The three distinct regions--the above, plus the jungle--are examined for their bearing on the development of the country, and so, quite selectively, is the history. The considerable attention to the Inca legacy is paralleled by a strong section on Spanish colonial arts and letters, followed by another pairing: the treadmill on a quasi-feudal hacienda and in an Indian village today, the relaxed, cosmopolitan round in Lima. But technical institutes and transistors are showing the Indian alternatives, and a new middle class, industry-based and reform-minded, portends change. Shaky change, perhaps--Miss Halsell notes Peru's long political instability and refers (with no explanation) to the overthrow of Belaunde. The situation may be too volatile for a hard-cover book; at any rate it's scanted here. So, in the chapter on foreign relations, are tensions vis a vis the U.S. Nevertheless, with more than lip service to cultural throb and a trailer on potential tourist attractions to fill out the personal and economic profiles, it's far and away the most relevant (as well as current) study for older children.

Pub Date: April 11th, 1969
Publisher: Macmillan