Coloniality, belonging, and indigeneity in Peruvian migration narratives

M. Cristina Alcalde

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Transnational lives include not only the mobility of individuals, but of racialized discourses that reinforce and sustain inequalities and exclusion. Building on the seminal work of migration scholars Grosfoguel, Oso, and Christou, this article brings together Quijano's coloniality of power with cultural critic Aviles’s insights on contemporary forms of discrimination and anthropologist Briones’s conceptualization of ‘internal Others’ to center racialization in approaching contemporary middle-class Peruvian identities across borders. I suggest that similarly to how racialization is key to the processes of creating internal Others in Peru, middle-class Peruvians seek to assert higher status in relation to other migrants in the U.S. and Canada by employing discourses of indigeneity and internal Others. These forms of status-marking through racialization and differentiation are central to contemporary peruanidad within and beyond Peru’s physical borders, and to understanding the role of race, racism, and coloniality of thought among Peruvians outside Peru.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-77
Number of pages20
JournalLatin American and Caribbean Ethnic Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


  • Coloniality
  • Peru
  • middle class
  • migration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Anthropology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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