Birds without a Nest: A Novel: A Story of Indian Life and Priestly Oppression in Peru

Paperback | January 1, 1996

byClorinda Matto de TurnerTranslated byJ. G. H.OtherNaomi Lindstrom

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"I love the native race with a tender love, and so I have observed its customs closely, enchanted by their simplicity, and, as well, the abjection into which this race is plunged by small-town despots, who, while their names may change, never fail to live up to the epithet of tyrants. They are no other than, in general, the priests, governors, caciques, and mayors." So wrote Clorinda Matto de Turner in Aves sin nido, the first major Spanish American novel to protest the plight of native peoples.

First published in 1889, Birds without a Nest drew fiery protests for its unsparing expose of small town officials, judicial authorities, and priests who oppressed the native peoples of Peru. Matto de Turner was excommunicated by the Catholic Church and burned in effigy. Yet her novel was strongly influential; indeed, Peruvian President Andres Avelino Caceres credited it with stimulating him to pursue needed reforms.

In 1904, the novel was published in a bowdlerized English translation with a modified ending. This edition restores the original ending and the translator's omissions. It will be important reading for all students of the indigenous cultures of South America.

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"I love the native race with a tender love, and so I have observed its customs closely, enchanted by their simplicity, and, as well, the abjection into which this race is plunged by small-town despots, who, while their names may change, never fail to live up to the epithet of tyrants. They are no other than, in general, the priests, go...

Format:PaperbackDimensions:205 pages, 8.52 × 5.54 × 0.47 inPublished:January 1, 1996Publisher:University Of Texas Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0292751958

ISBN - 13:9780292751958

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Table of Contents

ForewordAuthor's Preface Part One1. The Town of Killac2. The Yupanqui Family3. Indian Loans, 500 Per Cent4. White House5. Priest and Governor6. Juan's Return Home7. Fernando's Gift to Lucia8. Danger Ahead9. A Stratagem10. Rosalia Restored11. Doña Petronila12. Marcela Pays the Priest13. Sold to Rochino14. The Plot15. The Assault16. Hope Renewed17. Evil Deeds18. The Indian's Gratefulness19. Melitona Gleaning News20. The Burial of Juan21. Manuel and His Mother22. The Instigators Interviewed23. A Secret Revealed24. A Shot That Missed Its Mark25. Marcela Follows Juan26. The Priest's Confession27. Sebastian's Bad ConsciencePart Two28. Fernando and the judge29. Manuel, a Good Teacher30. Colonel Paredes31. Tired of Killac32. No Need of a Warrant33. The Wrong One Imprisoned34. Going to Lima35. Father Pascual's Solitude36. Talking It Over37. Fleecing the Indian38. Margarita and Manuel39. Doubts, Fears, and Hopes40. Teodora's Escape41. The Pursuit42. Manuel's Birth Veiled43. The Hide, Then the Flesh44. A Heroine of Love45. One Against Five Thousand46. Fernando Enlightens Lucia47. Martina Visits Isidro48. Fernando's Proposal49. The Departure and Arrest50. Comments51. To the Station52. Manuel Follows53. The Journey by Rail54. The Prisoners Released55. A Terrible Shock56. Grand Imperial Hotel57. The Agate Cross58. Birds without a Nest

Editorial Reviews

This emended translation of Latin America's first indigenista novel (Aves sin nido, 1889), written by Peruvian feminist Matto de Turner, is welcome for many reasons.... It deserves a reading now more than ever, as Latin American literature reaches its maturity, and as social struggles in the Hispanic new world continue with the intensity and irresolution of two centuries.