{br} STUCK with your assignment? {br} When is it due? {br} Get FREE assistance. Page Title: {title}{br} Page URL: {url}
UK: +44 748 007-0908, USA: +1 917 810-5386 [email protected]
  1. Diverse, underrepresented group of people in a Spanish-speaking country.  



    Discuss the Diverse, underrepresented group of people in a Spanish-speaking country.  



Subject Cultural Integration Pages 5 Style APA


Quechua: The Peru’s Underrepresented Community


Born in the 1500s as a result of the encounter between the indigenous worlds and the Europeans, Peru is a mestizo community. In dance, dress, music, language and food, Quechua’s influences are yet evidenced everywhere, both across Peru and across the central Andes. Peru’s Quechua-speaking individuals, according to Borba et al. have been depicted by the dominant Spanish-speaking community in various ways across the five centuries from the time of conquest, in response to literary, political, social trends (111). The Quechua have often been seen as “the other” community by Peru’s mainstream society, and have hardly had their own voice in a number of defining aspects of the country. Nonetheless, it may be that during this 21st century, the Quechua people are reclaiming their voice, despite the fact that the ways they use may surprise us. This paper describes the experiences of Quechua in Peru, focusing on the community’s traditions and values and how the community is underrepresented in terms of inequality, privilege and power

Quechua are usually described as direct descendants of the Incas. Nonetheless, this characterization has been shown to be overly simple. The Inca Empire, powerful and large as it was, comprised of a small ethnicity that ruled only for a short time (1438-1534). Sandoval et al. indicate that Quechua people’s history starts several years before the Inca civilization emerged to power, and it continued evolving in multi-faceted methodologies during the period after the arrival of settlers and the Spanish conquerors during the 16th century (243).  Presently, the Quechua people are no longer a single ethnic community, but several indigenous groups who are scattered cross South America, being South America’s largest indigenous community. Though distributed across the entire continent, Quechua are largely located in the Andes Mountains, mainly in Ecuador, Bolivia and Peru. The number of Quechua people inhabiting in South America is currently believed to be about 2.5 million. Nevertheless, the Quechua language’s speakers are believed to be about 10 million (Isoaho 26).

Culturally, the Quechuas are presently the heirs of an indigenous Andean culture, largely because the Quechua language was among the languages that were spoken in the Incas. Quechua is currently the widely spoken language in South America, and for Peru alone, more than 25% of the population speaks in their native languages (Sheposh 162). Notwithstanding their linguistic distinctions and ethnic diversity, the various Quechua communities have several cultural characteristics common to those of others. Jenkins highlights that the Quechua people have a rich culture that is full of traditions: colourful textiles, ponchos, or traditional woolen coats that are very popular and are both used locally and are exported for tourism attraction (132). 

Figure 1: A display of Quechua’s clothing (Waddington 154)

Similarly, the community has an interesting combination of sounds and singing from traditional flutes. Their songs are among the strongest artistic expressions in the Quechua language. Notwithstanding the fact that most Quechuas have adopted Catholicism from the colonial times, Borba et al. (141) note that they practice a mixture of Catholic celebrations and ancient tribal customs and rites. Economically, Quechuas depend on subsistence farming. They are famous for growing crops and raising alpacas and Ilamas. They also produce textiles, pottery and other handcrafts for local marketplace sale.

Despite being a diverse society with a rich culture, the Quechua community is still found at the very bottom of the Peru and other countries’ social strata, and is very oppressed by the mestizos (mixed-blood people) and the “whites” (full-blooded Spanish (Sandoval et al. 172). Borba et al. (141) note that millions of Latin Americans, particularly those of the indigenous descent, peaking other languages apart from Portuguese or Spanish face linguistic exclusion daily. This exclusion, as Waddington (171) adds, extends to other spheres of life, including health, employment, education, and social spheres.

In Peru, inequality is mostly apparent and manifest among racial minorities: the infant mortality rate of the Quechua people is about 4 times higher than that of the whites or mestizos communities. Additionally, of the Peruvians without access to healthcare services, approximately 60% speak Quechua. Discrimination is thus  so overt that many Quechua people or speakers (accounting for 13% of the population in Peru) choose not to teach their offspring the language for fear that the children will be mocked or rejected (Sheposh 162). Some people have said during interviews that from childhood, they believed that speaking Quechua was not something good, adding that their mothers would say that thy were not going to speak the language anywhere and their fathers failed to teach them the language out of vanity since the parents feared rejection (feared being called serrano) in Peru. While the language is still in use by the older generations of the Quechua community, current generations do not speak or write the Quechua language. As a result of language, Quechua people face social pressures, discrimination as well as ignorance from their Quechua non-speaking communities.

Isoaho notes that there has been so great a shame associated with speaking Quechua that UNESCO, at one point, declared the language as vulnerable (27). In some parts of Peru, the language is already endangered notwithstanding the fact that Quechua is one of Peru’s official languages. Similarly, the language is endangered despite being so rich that it has words not existing in other languages to express actions and feelings (Jenkins 37). Waddington mentions that the Quechua people, who are among Peru’s ethnic minorities, are getting little or no benefit both from Peru and regional growth (163). Owing to these kinds of inequalities, the Quechua people have little or no voice in the leadership or power interplay in the governance of Peru.


In conclusion, the Quechua people are highly underrepresented in Peru. As a result, ethnic background, social pressure and discrimination, the people are feeling out of the governance of Peru, and have insufficient access to proper basic services such as healthcare, among other issues. additionally, the community members have very low levels of equality in various aspects in Peru. Despite having endured years of hardship, Peru’s Quechua minority still maintains its pride and its traditions continue to persist.



Borba, M., Rojas, A., Machado, T., Johnson, B., Ross, K., Fennel, M., & Machado, T. “The Quichua Peoples of South America.” (2018). Harding University.

Isoaho, Antti Aki Eemeli, “Natives of Peru and Bolivia: A Comparison of the Political Mobilization of Indigenous Groups” (2009). All-College Writing Contest.https://publications.lakeforest.edu/allcollege_writing_contest/3.

Jenkins, Philip. “Quechua and Catholic – Notes from the Global Church.” Christian Century. April 1, 2020.

Sandoval, J. R., Lacerda, D. R., Acosta, O. , Jota, M. S., Robles‐Ruiz, P. , Salazar‐Granara, A. ,Vieira, P. P., Paz‐y‐Miño, C. , Fujita, R. , Santos, F. R. and , (2016), The Genetic History of Peruvian Quechua‐Lamistas and Chankas: Uniparental DNA Patterns among Autochthonous Amazonian and Andean Populations. Annals of Human Genetics. Accessed April 1, 2020. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/ahg.12145.

Sheposh, Richard. “Quechua people.” Salem Press Encyclopedia. Accessed April 8, 2018.http://eds.a.ebscohost.com.nexus.harding.edu/eds/detail/detail?vid=1&sid=f287618-57e9-4468-af11-07e65fe3403a%40sessionmgr4010&bdata=JkF1dGhUeXBlPWlwJnNjb3BlPXNpdGU%3d#AN=87324555&db=ers.

Waddington, R. “The Quichua People. The Peoples of the World Foundation. The Peoples of the World Foundation.” (2003). Accessed April 1, 2020 018.http://www.peoplesoftheworld.org/text?people=Quichua.


Related Samples

WeCreativez WhatsApp Support
Our customer support team is here to answer your questions. Ask us anything!
👋 Hi, how can I help?