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Peru: Hispanic Division Country Guide

Digital Collections and Services

The Library of Congress has over 20 centers that provide research space and guidance for users to interact with collection items based on subject or format. The Hispanic Division curates materials from 61 countries and/or regions in 26 different languages and in varying formats such as books, maps, photographs, manuscripts, and digital objects. The Hispanic Reading Room staff provides access to materials from the General Collections and helps point researchers to relevant items in other reading rooms. Selected digitized primary source materials from the Library’s collections are highlighted below along with links for further exploration.

Folklife, Ethnographic Materials

The Library's American Folklife Center houses one of the largest archives of ethnographic materials from the United States and around the world, which include extensive audiovisual documentation of traditional arts, cultural expressions, and oral histories offering researchers access to the songs, stories, and other creative expressions of people from diverse communities.

The following webcast is an example of one of the many folklife-sponsored live performances presented at the Library of Congress.

Featured Webcast: Negrura Peruana

On October 12, 2005, Negrura Peruana performed the music and dance of Peru's African and criollo population from the coastal region just to the south of Lima, the nation's capital. Group members emigrated from Lima to Hartford, Connecticut and formed Negrura Peruana in 2002. Group members learned their music, dances and songs in their neighborhoods in Peru, where music was an important part of celebrations, gatherings and informal competitions. Since its founding, Negrura Peruana has become a popular attraction at events held by the growing Peruvian community in Connecticut.

Prints, Photographs, Visual Materials

The Library's Prints and Photographs Division is the repository for a rich collection of prints, photographs, and other visual materials on and about Peru from significant artists and photographers. Many of these items have been digitized and are available to researchers online. Many other visual materials are available to researchers in the Library's Prints and Photographs Reading Room.

Masonry of ancient Incas, Cusco, Perú. [circa 1906]. Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Division.
Toni Frissell, photographer. Fashion model with llamas, Cusco, Peru. 1952. Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Division.

Law, Legal Materials

The Law Library of Congress includes a vast collection on foreign legal materials, such as Constitutions, Codes, Session laws, Commentaries and indexes to laws, rules and regulations, Judicial court decisions and reports, and Legal bibliographies.

Access to legal materials related to Peru are provided by the Law Library, including:

Manuscripts, Archival Materials

The Manuscript Division holds approximately sixty million items in eleven thousand separate collections, including some of the greatest manuscript treasures of American history and culture and support scholarly research in many aspects of political, cultural, and scientific history. The Library's Manuscript Reading Room provides access to archival materials on and about Peru, including primary sources from cultural figures, authors, and politicians.

Selected Finding Aids

The finding aids linked below describe manuscript collections significant in researching the country of Peru. Finding aids can be particularly useful when assessing the full contents of a manuscript collection.

Atlas mexicano. Maps dated 1884 to 1886.
Mariano Felipe Paz Soldán, geographer. Mapa del Perú. [1862]. Library of Congress Geography and Map Division.

Cartographic Materials

The Library's Geography and Map Division has custody of the largest and most comprehensive cartographic collection in the world with collections numbering over 5 million maps, 100,000 atlases, 8,000 reference works, over 5000 globes and globe gores, 3,000 raised relief models, over 130,000 microfiche/film, and a large number of cartographic materials in other formats. Many of these materials have been digitized and are available online. Materials that have not been digitized are available from the Geography and Map Reading Room.

Film, Video, Television

The Library's Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division holds one of the largest collections of motion pictures in the world, spanning the entire history of cinema. Many of these resources have been digitized and are available online. Access to these collection items, if not digitized, research assistance is available through the Moving Image Research Center.

Featured Video

The following is an example of a 20th century moving image resource that captures General Motors operations in different countries around the world, including Peru.

Performing Arts

Leonard and Felicia Bernstein listening to traditional music in Perú. 1958. Library of Congress Music Division.

The Performing Arts Reading Room (part of the Library's Music Division) provides access to classified music and book collections, music and literary manuscripts, iconography, microforms, periodicals, musical instruments, published and unpublished copyright deposits, and close to 500 special collections in music, theater, and dance.

To hear recordings or interact with audio materials in the Library's collections visit the Recorded Sound Research Center which is part of the Library's Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division.

Flute presumably from the Nasca indigenous community in Perú. Library of Congress Music Division.

 

Rare Books, Special Collections

Rare materials about and from Perú in the Library of Congress collections are vast and filled with treasures. Researchers should visit the the Rare Book and Special Collections Reading Room to learn more about rare materials available online as well as special collections that contain significant resources on Peru.