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Grant number like: FA-55873-11

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Sinclair S. Thomson
New York University (New York, NY 10012-1019)

Fellowships for University Teachers
Research Programs

[Grant products]

$50,400 (approved)
$50,400 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2011 – 12/31/2011

Serpentine Memory: Indian Revolution and Historical Imagination in the Andes (18th to 21st Centuries)

This project tracks the sinuous memory of Tupac Amaru and Tupaj Katari, leaders of the Andean insurrection of 1780-1781, the largest anticolonial movement in Latin America prior to independence in the early 19th century. It shows how this Indian insurgency, whose leaders shared the name Resplendent Serpent yet were denounced by Spanish authorities as monsters of humanity, has been invoked in contrasting light and dark tones in subsequent revolutionary and counter-insurgent conflicts in the Andes, Latin America, and the Atlantic world. The historical imagination of the Great Rebellion gives us new insight into elite-subaltern relations and national projects in the independence and republican eras. The rebellion's repercussions around the Atlantic world expand our understanding of the Age of Revolution. In recent decades, the complex and potent politics of memory help explain the rise of contemporary indigenous social movements and their campaigns to decolonize state and society.