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History's PeruThe Poetics of Colonial and Postcolonial Historiography$
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Mark Thurner

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780813035383

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813035383.001.0001

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The End of the Peruvian History of Peru

The End of the Peruvian History of Peru

(p.193) 7 The End of the Peruvian History of Peru
History's Peru

Mark Thurner

University Press of Florida

This chapter is a meditation on the philosophical wagers and aporia of the historicist opus of Jorge Basadre Grohmann (1903–1980), perhaps Peru's most brilliant historical thinker. Although many gifted historians graced the stage of twentieth-century Peruvian letters, Jorge Basadre was clearly the dominant figure. Today Basadre is universally celebrated as the country's most sagacious and representative historian and he is commonly referred to as “our historian of the Republic.” This chapter primarily discusses the theoretical implications of Basadre's thought, understood as a postcolonial form of “finalist” historicism. Basadre's historicist call for a proper and reflexive history of, in, and for “Peru” actually announces the aporetic end of the “Peruvian history of Peru,” not its beginning. This is so because Basadre's opus reveals that “Peru” is nothing more than a perpetual or quotidian wager on past wagers on the proper name.

Keywords:   Peruvian history, philosophical wagers, aporia, Jorge Basadre Grohmann, historical thinker, twentieth-century Peruvian letters, finalist

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