Tupac Amaru Revolt - History

Tupac Amaru Revolt - History

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Tupac Amaru Revolt
The natives of Peru revolted under the leadership of Tupuc Amaru. Tupuc Amaru declared himself the liberator of his people. The Spanish crushed the revolt and Tupuc Amaru was killed.

PERU: Reflections of Tupac Amaru

A monument to Tupac Amaru in Huancayo, Peru. (Photo by Abner Ballardo.)

PERU: Reflections of Tupac Amaru
By Charles Walker

The Tupac Amaru Rebellion stormed through the Andes from 1780 to 1783. The largest uprising in colonial Spanish-American history, it stretched from its base just south of Cuzco, Peru, into Charcas, in present-day Bolivia, with parallel skirmishes and revolts in what became Chile, Argentina, and Colombia. Rebels sacked haciendas, torched textile mills, and harangued the indigenous peasantry in the Inca language, Quechua, to rise up against the Spanish. The rebels presented a complex platform that included Inca revivalism and the abolition of a series of taxes and impositions on indigenous people.

Tupac Amaru claimed to fight in the name of the Spanish king, protected priests and the Catholic Church, and even recruited some Spaniards. The rebel masses, however, had more radical notions. Colonial authorities worried that they were going to lose control of the vast corridor between Cuzco and the famous mines of Potosí and that the rebels would then besiege Lima and Buenos Aires. Up to 100,000 people died in the brutal struggle, primarily anonymous indigenous people suspected of supporting the insurgents. Although the rebellion ultimately failed, it reshaped colonial Peru and cast a long shadow on post-colonial society as well.

Its leaders, José Gabriel Condorcanqui, who assumed the Inca name Tupac Amaru (II), and his wife, Micaela Bastidas, paid dearly for their subversion. On May 18, 1781, they were dragged behind horses, their hands and feet tied, to Cuzco’s main plaza. There, they witnessed the hanging of their eldest son, other relatives, and members of their inner circle. Executioners then slashed Micaela Bastidas’ tongue before strangling her with the garrote. In one of the most famous scenes in Peruvian history, Condorcanqui was quartered by four horses, his limbs dislocating but not separating, and was then beheaded. Their youngest son, Fernando, had to witness the gruesome spectacle. Too young for capital punishment, he was sent on a harrowing journey to Spain and was imprisoned there for more than a decade. Another son, Mariano, eluded capture and continued the rebellion in the south for two more years. Authorities displayed the leaders’ heads and limbs throughout the rebellion’s base area as a grisly warning.

The Plaza de Armas in Cuzco, Peru, where Tupac Amaru was executed in 1781. (Photo by Guillén Pérez.)

Both Bastidas and Condorcanqui became heroes in Peru and beyond, but their trajectories as revolutionary icons have been sporadic, and their place in revolutionary history remains unclear. Two guerrilla groups (the Tupamaros in Uruguay and the Movimiento Revolucionario Túpac Amaru or MRTA in Peru) as well as the famous rapper, Tupac Amaru Shakur, took the rebel’s name, and in Peru, countless streets, plazas, and markets are named after him. Everyone in Peru has heard of Tupac Amaru (Micaela does not have quite the fame), but not everyone knows who he was. His physical image has varied (unlike Che Guevara, no iconic photo exists, of course), although most portraits cast him as rugged, handsome, and willful. The story of how this couple, made amorphous by the passing years, became global insurgent symbols in the decades and centuries after their uprising is a curious trans-Atlantic tale.

In the aftermath of the uprising, convinced that they had almost lost control of the massive area between Buenos Aires and Lima and that their hold on the Andes remained shaky, colonial authorities censored discussions about the rebellion and the fate of the rebels. They succeeded in the print media — it would take decades before Spanish intellectuals debated the significance of the uprising. Although English newspapers printed articles about the “Indian uprising in Peru,” they lost interest quickly, and the Tupac Amaru rebellion did not become a topic of international discussion. In Cuzco, no one had forgotten the uprising — its human cost and economic impact remained painfully evident — but for decades, people feared any association with the rebellion. Curiously, it was in Argentina where the first wave of interest and veneration arose. In 1821, the play “Tupac Amarú” (sic) opened in Buenos Aires, and the following year, Tupac Amaru’s half-brother, Juan Bautista, was received as a hero there after almost 40 years of imprisonment in Spain and Ceuta. He never returned to Peru.

Twentieth-century historians, poets (with great success), and novelists (with less) lauded Tupac Amaru and Micaela Bastidas, converting them into revolutionary heroes. Illustrations cast Tupac Amaru as a pony-tailed, burly victim of Spanish treachery and Micaela as an obedient second-in-command. No portrait or description of Micaela survived the uprising, although some documents hint that she had black blood. Artists in the 20th century whitened her, converting her into a virtual Andean Barbie Doll. In 1950, the Cuzco City Council, the Universidad Nacional San Antonio Abad, and the Rotary Club installed a plaque honoring Tupac Amaru in Cuzco’s central plaza, near where he, Micaela Bastidas, and key supporters were executed.

In the 1960s and early 1970s, global fascination with third-world political struggles and anti-colonialism sparked a renewed interest in Tupac Amaru. For example, in 1972 Afeni Shakur, a member of the Black Panthers, changed her infant son’s name from Lesane Parish Crooks to Tupac Amaru Shakur. He became one of the world’s most famous rappers, a symbol of resistance and nonconformity who was also brutally murdered.

The unique “Revolutionary Government of the Armed Forces” of General Juan Velasco Alvarado (1968-1975) launched Tupac Amaru as Peru’s national symbol by associating the rebel with all the regime’s activities, particularly the agrarian reform. Streets, plazas, halls, and five-year plans were named after Tupac Amaru, who also adorned Peru’s currency, coins, and stamps. Large statues in Lima and Cuzco honored him while dozens of plaques and smaller monuments celebrated other rebel leaders. Artists such as Jesús Ruiz Durand and Milner Cajahuaringa created portraits and posters that stressed the ties between the 1780-1783 rebellion and the Velasco government. Many of these adopted the colorful symmetry of pop art, with some of the posters now fetching heady prices as art pieces. A supposed Tupac Amaru quote, “Peasant, the master will no longer feed from your hunger” became the government’s leading slogan. Tupac Amaru never said this Velasco’s speechwriters invented it.

A poster claims: “Túpac Amaru made a promise. Velasco fulfilled that promise.”
(Image courtesy of Charles Walker.)

The Velasco Alvarado government stood apart from the brutal military regimes that seized power in Brazil, Uruguay, Chile, and Argentina in the late 1960s and 1970s. It launched an extensive agrarian reform, avowing to do away with the “oligarchy” and to return the land to indigenous people, or campesinos, the term they preferred. Velasco also confronted the United States, expropriating the International Petroleum Company, a subsidiary of Standard Oil, and the Cerro de Pasco Company and staring down multinational corporations. While Velasco espoused a “neither capitalism nor communism” doctrine, Peruvians celebrated or decried him as a leftist who was leading Peru into new, revolutionary terrain.

The regime’s association with Tupac Amaru made sense on several fronts. Velasco knew that his agrarian reform would infuriate the upper classes and sought counter-weight among indigenous peasants. Many of the officers who supported the regime came from humble backgrounds, as was the case with Velasco, and many had seen firsthand Peru’s shocking poverty and inequality in the mid-1960s campaigns against guerrilla groups. They understood that Peru needed to change, particularly in the Andes, in order to modernize and to avoid deep social turmoil. Tupac Amaru was seen as a vital link to campesinos: a Quechua-speaking Indian from Cuzco who had confronted the Spanish and had been marginalized by “official” Peru for centuries.

The wonderfully creative Ruiz Durand and other artists created eye-catching symbols that adorned posters and proclamations, particularly important for those who did not have access to television or radio and could not read and write. Not surprisingly, the Velasco regime paid far less attention to Micaela Bastidas, touting her as an important supporter, a loyal wife. Although Velasco proved to be far different in political terms than his brethren in the southern cone, his views on women did not vary that greatly.

But it wasn’t just marketing that drove the Velasco-Tupac Amaru association. History mattered a great deal to Velasco and his supporters. He cast himself and the government as the continuation of the Tupac Amaru rebellion, pledging to finish what Condorcanqui had begun. The 150th anniversary of Peru’s independence took place in 1971, and Velasco and other nationalists challenged the interpretation that put foreigners such as José de San Martín or Simón Bolívar at the forefront. Instead, Velasco as well as the remarkably diverse committee of specialists that published the 86-volume document collection, the Colección Documental de la Independencia Peruana, emphasized Tupac Amaru as the initiator of the struggle against the Spanish — a battle for social justice that Velasco would culminate — as well as the participation of all Peruvians in the struggle against the Spanish.

Tupac Amaru was one of the few high points in Velasco’s rocky government. He not only faced the wrath of Peru’s powerful and the consistent (yet ultimately restrained, at least compared to what occurred to Peru’s neighbor Chile) opposition of the United States but also failed to gain broader support among the middle class or the left. The economy stagnated by the early 1970s, and struck by an embolism in 1974 that forced the amputation of one leg, Velasco was overthrown by more conservative military officers in August 1975.

In the 1960s and 1970s, and above all during the Velasco period, Tupac Amaru became a leading figure in Peruvian history. The question of his role in the war of independence continues to animate historians and others. Some follow Velasco’s interpretation, placing Tupac Amaru as the precursor, his uprising the bloody and frustrated first step in emancipation from Spain. Critics of this position from the left point out that Tupac Amaru sought a very different venture than did the liberators of the 1810s and 1820s and cannot simply be placed at the beginning of the list. Conservative critics, uncomfortable with indigenous revolutionaries, prefer to highlight the coastal-based revolts beginning in 1815.

Although these debates continue, particularly now that Peru is heading towards its bicentennial in 2021, what is clear is that Tupac Amaru has become a national and international icon. In some regards, the ambiguity about what the rebellion sought and Tupac Amaru’s role in Peruvian history has added to his mystique and allowed different groups to support him. Since the 1970s, Tupac Amaru has become a hero, while meaning very different things to different groups.

Charles Walker is a professor of History and the director of the Hemispheric Institute on the Americas at UC Davis. His most recent book is The Tupac Amaru Rebellion (Harvard University Press, 2014). He spoke for CLAS on October 2, 2014.

An image of Tupac Amaru on Peruvian currency. (Photo by Abner Ballardo.)

The Politics of a Second Gilded Age

Tension spread throughout the Andes in the eighteenth century. Colonial authorities increased taxes, demanded more free labor from rural people, and chipped away at indigenous communities’ autonomy. Dozens of revolts erupted. None, however, approached the scale, violence, or impact of the Túpac Amaru rebellion, which took place between 1780 and 1783.

On November 4, 1780, José Gabriel Condorcanqui Noguera, who increasingly used his Inca royal name Túpac Amaru, had lunch with Antonio Arriaga, a local Spanish authority. They met in Yanaoca, a largely indigenous (Quechua) town fifty miles south of Cusco, the ancient capital of the Incas. Túpac Amaru was the kuraka or cacique, the ethnic authority in charge of collecting the head tax and keeping order in three nearby towns. As corregidor, Arriaga collected tax revenues, organized the hated Potosí labor draft (mita), and oversaw the region. The two men knew each other well, and even if they discussed debts and other disagreeable topics, they probably shared a nice meal and conversation. They began the journey home together, but Túpac Amaru split off along the way.

Túpac Amaru and his allies rushed ahead to a hiding place in Arriaga’s route. They leaped into the corregidor’s path and, after much confusion and an escape attempt, took them in chains to Tungasuca. Túpac Amaru forced Arriaga to request money and weapons from his treasurer and expropriated muskets, bullets, gunpowder, gold, silver, mules, and other goods. Túpac Amaru invited regional property owners and military figures to Tungasuca and instructed kurakas to send their Indians.

By November 9, large crowds had congregated in Tungasuca. Túpac Amaru and his deputies had imprisoned some of the Spaniards but instructed Europeans, mestizos, and Indians to line up in a military column. He was dressed elegantly, combining velvety European fashion with Inca flourishes such as the tunic, an uncu, and a gold chain with the Inca sun or inti. The following day, he congregated the crowd again, estimated in the thousands.

In these days of high drama when no one was quite certain what was happening, Túpac Amaru’s wife, Micaela Bastidas, accompanied him. Many noted that they made decisions together. In a choreographed performance, Túpac Amaru and his retinue brought Arriaga to hastily created gallows. Túpac Amaru claimed that the king had abolished the alcabala or sales tax and accused Arriaga of unjustly enforcing this and other despised taxes and demands on indigenous people. He repeatedly said he was acting in the name of the king and abolished not only the sales tax but also custom houses, the forced sale of goods (reparto), and the mita. He spoke in Quechua, the language of the Incas and that of the vast majority of the region’s inhabitants. Executioners forced Arriaga to change from his military uniform into a simple Franciscan habit. Arriaga’s own black slave, Antonio Oblitas, carried out the hanging. The flabbergasted crowd witnessed an indigenous authority execute a Spaniard and promise a more just world.

The Túpac Amaru rebellion had begun.

Túpac Amaru Ascends the Throne

The Inca lords in Vilcabamba asked Friar Ortiz to ask his God to save Titu Cusi. When Titu Cusi died, they held the friar accountable and killed him by tying a rope through his lower jaw and dragging him through town. Pedro Pando was also killed. Next in line was Túpac Amaru, Titu Cusi’s brother, who had been living in semi-seclusion in a temple. About the time Túpac Amaru was made leader, a Spanish diplomat returning to Vilcabamba from Cusco was killed. Although it is unlikely that Túpac Amaru had anything to do with it, he was blamed and the Spanish prepared for war.


Shakur was born on June 16, 1971, in the East Harlem section of Manhattan (New York City). [13] While born Lesane Parish Crooks, [14] [15] [16] he was renamed, at age one, after Túpac Amaru II [17] (the descendant of the last Incan ruler, Túpac Amaru), who was executed in Peru in 1781 after his failed revolt against Spanish rule. [18] Shakur's mother explained, "I wanted him to have the name of revolutionary, indigenous people in the world. I wanted him to know he was part of a world culture and not just from a neighborhood." [17]

Shakur had an older stepbrother, Mopreme "Komani" Shakur, and a half-sister, Sekyiwa, two years his junior. [19] His parents, Afeni Shakur—born Alice Faye Williams in North Carolina—and his birth father, Billy Garland, had been active Black Panther Party members in New York in the late 1960s and early 1970s. [20]

Panther heritage

A month before Shakur's birth, his mother Afeni was tried in New York City as part of the Panther 21 criminal trial. She was acquitted of over 150 charges. [21] [22]

Other family members who were involved in the Black Panthers' Black Liberation Army were convicted of serious crimes and imprisoned, including Shakur's stepfather, Mutulu Shakur, who spent four years among the FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives. Mutulu Shakur was apprehended in 1986 and subsequently convicted for a 1981 robbery of a Brinks armored truck, during which police officers and a guard were killed. [23]

Shakur's godfather, Elmer "Geronimo" Pratt, a high-ranking Black Panther, was convicted of murdering a school teacher during a 1968 robbery. His sentence was overturned when it was revealed that the prosecution had hidden evidence that he was in a meeting 400 mi (640 km) away at the time of the murders. [24] [25]

School years

In 1984, Shakur's family moved from New York City to Baltimore, Maryland. [26] He attended eighth grade at Roland Park Middle School, then two years at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School. On transfer to the Baltimore School for the Arts, he studied acting, poetry, jazz, and ballet. [27] [28] He performed in Shakespeare's plays—depicting timeless themes, now seen in gang warfare, he would recall [29] —and as the Mouse King role in The Nutcracker ballet. [23] With his friend Dana "Mouse" Smith as beatbox, he won competitions as reputedly the school's best rapper. [30] Also known for his humor, he could mix with all crowds. [31] As a teen, he listened to musicians including Kate Bush, Culture Club, Sinéad O'Connor, and U2. [32]

At Baltimore's arts high school, Shakur befriended Jada Pinkett, who would become a subject of some of his poems. [33] After his death, she would call him "one of my best friends. He was like a brother. It was beyond friendship for us. The type of relationship we had, you only get that once in a lifetime." [34] [35] Upon connecting with the Baltimore Young Communist League USA, [36] [37] [38] Shakur dated the daughter of the director of the local chapter of the Communist Party USA. [39] In 1988, Shakur moved to Marin City, California, a small, impoverished community, [40] about 5 miles (8.0 km) north of San Francisco. [41] In nearby Mill Valley, he attended Tamalpais High School, [42] where he performed in several theater productions. [43]

Later relations

In Shakur's adulthood he continued befriending individuals of diverse backgrounds. His friends would range from Mike Tyson [44] and Chuck D [45] to Jim Carrey [46] and Alanis Morissette, who in April 1996 said that she and Shakur were planning to open a restaurant together. [47] [48]

Shakur briefly dated Madonna in 1994. [49] [50] On April 29, 1995, Shakur married his then girlfriend Keisha Morris, a pre-law student. [51] [52] The marriage was annulled ten months later. [53] In a 1993 interview published in The Source, Shakur berated record producer Quincy Jones for his interracial marriage to actress Peggy Lipton. [54] Their daughter Rashida Jones responded with an irate open letter. [55] Years later, Shakur apologized to her sister Kidada Jones, who he was dating at the time of his death in 1996. [56]

In January 1991, Shakur debuted under the stage name 2Pac on rap group Digital Underground's single "Same Song." The song was featured on the soundtrack of the 1991 film Nothing but Trouble. His first two solo albums, 2Pacalypse Now (1991) and Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z. (1993), preceded Thug Life: Volume 1 (1994), the only album with his side group Thug Life. [57] Rapper/producer Stretch guests on the three albums.

2Pac's third solo album, Me Against the World (1995), features rap clique Dramacydal, reshaping as Outlawz on 2Pac's fourth solo album, and last in his lifetime, All Eyez on Me (1996). At the time of his death, another solo album was already finished. The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory (1996), under the stage name Makaveli, was recorded in one week in August 1996, whereas later posthumous albums are archival productions. Later posthumous albums are R U Still Down? (1997), Greatest Hits (1998), Still I Rise (1999), Until the End of Time (2001), Better Dayz (2002), Loyal to the Game (2004), Pac's Life (2006). [58]

Beginnings: 1989–1991

Shakur began recording using the stage name MC New York in 1989. That year, he began attending the poetry classes of Leila Steinberg, and she soon became his manager. [59] [40] Steinberg organized a concert for Shakur and his rap group Strictly Dope. Steinberg managed to get Shakur signed by Atron Gregory, manager of the rap group Digital Underground. [40] In 1990, Gregory placed him with the Underground as a roadie and backup dancer. [40] [60] Under the stage name 2Pac, he debuted on the group's January 1991 single "Same Song," leading the group's January 1991 EP titled This Is an EP Release, [40] while 2Pac appeared in the music video. It also went on the soundtrack of the February 1991 movie Nothing but Trouble, starring Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Chevy Chase, and Demi Moore. [40]

Rising star: 1992–1993

2Pac's debut album, 2Pacalypse Now—alluding to the 1979 film Apocalypse Now—arriving in November 1991, would bear three singles. Some prominent rappers—like Nas, Eminem, Game, and Talib Kweli—cite it as an inspiration. [61] Aside from "If My Homie Calls," the singles "Trapped" and "Brenda's Got a Baby" poetically depict individual struggles under socioeconomic disadvantage. [62]

US Vice President Dan Quayle partially reacted, "There's no reason for a record like this to be released. It has no place in our society." Tupac, finding himself misunderstood, [29] explained, in part, "I just wanted to rap about things that affected young Black males. When I said that, I didn't know that I was gonna tie myself down to just take all the blunts and hits for all the young Black males, to be the media's kicking post for young Black males." [63] [64] In any case, 2Pacalypse Now was certified Gold, half a million copies sold. Altogether, the album sits well within the context of the socially conscious rap, addressing urban Black concerns still prevalent in rap to this day. [40]

2Pac's second album, Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z. , arrived in February 1993. A critical and commercial advance, it debuted at No. 24 on the pop albums chart, the Billboard 200. [65] An overall more hardcore album, it emphasizes Tupac's sociopolitical views, and has a metallic production quality. It features Ice Cube, the famed primary creator of N.W.A's "Fuck tha Police," who, in his own solo albums, had newly gone militantly political, along with L.A.'s original gangsta rapper, Ice-T, who in June 1992 had sparked controversy with his band Body Count's track "Cop Killer".

In fact, in its vinyl release, side A, tracks 1 to 8, is labeled the "Black Side," while side B, tracks 9 to 16, is the "Dark Side." Nonetheless, the album carries the single "I Get Around," a party anthem featuring Digital Underground's Shock G and Money-B, which would render 2Pac's popular breakthrough, reaching No. 11 on the pop singles chart, the Billboard Hot 100. And it carries the optimistic compassion of another hit, "Keep Ya Head Up," an anthem for women empowerment. This album would be Certified platinum, with a million copies sold. As of 2004, among 2Pac albums, including of posthumous and compilation albums, the Strictly album would be 10th in sales, about 1 366 000 copies. [66]

Stardom: 1994–1995

In late 1993, Shakur formed the group Thug Life with Tyrus "Big Syke" Himes, Diron "Macadoshis" Rivers, his stepbrother Mopreme Shakur, and Walter "Rated R" Burns. Thug Life released its only album, Thug Life: Volume 1, on October 11, 1994, which is certified Gold. It carries the single "Pour Out a Little Liquor", produced by Johnny "J" Jackson, who would also produce much of Shakur's album All Eyez on Me. Usually, Thug Life performed live without Tupac. [67] The track also appears on the 1994 film Above the Rim's soundtrack. But due to gangsta rap being under heavy criticism at the time, the album's original version was scrapped, and the album redone with mostly new tracks. Still, along with Stretch, Tupac would perform the first planned single, "Out on Bail," which was never released, at the 1994 Source Awards. [68]

2Pac's third album, arriving in March 1995 as Me Against the World, is now hailed as his magnum opus, and commonly ranks among the greatest, most influential rap albums. The album sold 240,000 copies in its first week, setting a then record for highest first-week sales for a solo male rapper. [69] The lead single, "Dear Mama," arrived in February with the B side "Old School." [70] The album's most successful single, it topping the Hot Rap Singles chart, and peaked at No. 9 on the pop singles chart, the Billboard Hot 100. [71] In July, it was certified Platinum. [72] It ranked No. 51 on the year-end charts. The second single, "So Many Tears," released in June, [73] reached No. 6 on the Hot Rap Singles chart and No. 44 on Hot 100. [71] August brought the final single, "Temptations," [74] reaching No. 68 on the Hot 100, No. 35 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks, and No. 13 on the Hot Rap Singles. [71] At the 1996 Soul Train Music Awards, Tupac won for best rap album. [75] In 2001, it ranked 4th among his total albums in sales, with about 3 million copies sold in the US. [76]

Superstardom: 1995–1996

While imprisoned February to October 1995, Tupac wrote only one song, he would say. [77] Rather, he took to political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli's treatise The Prince and military strategist Sun Tzu's treatise The Art of War. [78] And on Tupac's behalf, his wife Keisha Morris communicated to Suge Knight of Death Row Records that Tupac, in dire straits financially, needed help, his mother about to lose her house. [79] In August, after sending $15,000 for her, Suge began visiting Tupac in prison. [79] In one of his letters to Nina Bhadreshwar, recently hired to edit a planned magazine, Death Row Uncut, [80] Tupac discusses plans to start a "new chapter." [81] Eventually, music journalist Kevin Powell would say that Shakur, once released, became more aggressive, and "seemed like a completely transformed person." [82]

2Pac's fourth album, All Eyez on Me, arrived on February 13, 1996. Of two discs, it basically was rap's first double album – meeting two of the three albums due in Tupac's contract with Death Row – and bore five singles while perhaps marking the peak of 1990s rap. [83] With standout production, [71] the album has more party tracks and often a triumphant tone. [71] As 2Pac's second album to hit No. 1 on both the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and the pop albums chart, the Billboard 200, [71] it sold 566,000 copies in its first week and was it was certified 5× Multi-Platinum in April. [84] "How Do U Want It" as well as "California Love" reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. At the 1997 Soul Train Awards, it won in R&B/Soul or Rap Album of the Year. [85] At the 24th American Music Awards, Tupac won Favorite Rap/Hip-Hop Artist. [86] The album was certified 9× Multi-Platinum in June 1998, [87] and 10× in July 2014. [88]

Tupac's fifth and final studio album, The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory, commonly called simply The 7 Day Theory, was released under a newer stage name, Makaveli. [89] The album had been created in seven days total during August 1996. [90] The lyrics were written and recorded in three days, and mixing took another four days. In 2005, ranked The 7 Day Theory at No. 9 among hip hop's greatest albums ever, [91] and by 2006 a classic album. [92] Its singular poignance, through hurt and rage, contemplation and vendetta, resonate with many fans. [93] But according to George "Papa G" Pryce, Death Row Records' then director of public relations, the album was meant to be "underground," and "was not really to come out," but, "after Tupac was murdered, it did come out." [94] It peaked at No. 1 on Billboard's Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and on the Billboard 200, [95] with the second-highest debut-week sales total of any album that year. [96] On June 15, 1999, it was certified 4× Multi-Platinum. [97]

Tupac's first film appearance was in the 1991 film Nothing but Trouble, a cameo by the Digital Underground. In 1992, he starred in Juice, where he plays the fictional Roland Bishop, a militant and haunting individual. Rolling Stone ' s Peter Travers calls him "the film's most magnetic figure." [98]

Then, in 1993, Tupac starred alongside Janet Jackson in John Singleton's romance film, Poetic Justice. Tupac then played another gangster, the fictional Birdie, in Above the Rim. Soon after Tupac's death, three more films starring him were released, Bullet (1996), Gridlock'd (1997), and Gang Related (1997). [99] [100]

Director Allen Hughes had cast Tupac as Sharif in the 1993 film Menace II Society, but replaced him once Tupac assaulted him on set due to a discrepancy with the script. Nonetheless, in 2013, Hughes appraises that Tupac would have outshone the other actors, "because he was bigger than the movie." [101] [102] For the lead role in the eventual 2001 film Baby Boy, a role played by Tyrese Gibson, director John Singleton originally had Tupac in mind. [103] Ultimately, the set design includes in the protagonist's bedroom a Tupac mural, and the film's score includes the 2Pac song "Hail Mary." [104]

1991 Oakland Police Department lawsuit

In October 1991, Shakur filed a $10 million lawsuit against the Oakland Police Department for allegedly brutalizing him over jaywalking. The case was settled for about $43,000. [105]

Shooting of Qa'id Walker-Teal

On August 22, 1992, in Marin City, Shakur performed outdoors at a festival. For about an hour after the performance, he signed autographs and posed for photos. A conflict broke out and Shakur allegedly drew a legally carried Colt Mustang but dropped it on the ground. Shakur claimed that someone with him then picked it up when it accidentally discharged. About 100 yards (90 meters) away in a schoolyard, Qa'id Walker-Teal, a boy aged 6 on his bicycle, was fatally shot in the forehead. Police matched the bullet to a .38-caliber pistol registered to Shakur. His stepbrother Maurice Harding was arrested, but no charges were filed. Lack of witnesses stymied prosecution. In 1995, Qa'id's mother filed a wrongful death suit against Shakur, settled for about $300,000 to $500,000. [106] [107]

Shooting two policemen

In October 1993, in Atlanta, Mark Whitwell and Scott Whitwell, two brothers who were both off-duty police officers, were out celebrating with their wives after one of them had passed the state's bar examination. Drunk, the officers were crossing the street when a passing car carrying Shakur allegedly almost struck them. The Whitwells, later found to have stolen guns, argued with the car's occupants. When a second car arrived, the Whitwells ran away, as Shakur shot one officer in the buttocks and the other in the leg, back, or abdomen. Shakur was charged in the shooting. Mark Whitwell was charged with firing at Shakur's car and later with making false statements to investigators. Prosecutors ultimately dropped all charges against both parties. Both brothers filed civil suits against Shakur Mark Whitwell's was settled out of court, while Scott Whitwell's $2 million lawsuit resulted in a default judgment entered against the rapper's estate. [108] [109]

Assault convictions

On April 5, 1993, charged with felonious assault, Shakur allegedly threw a microphone and swung a baseball bat at rapper Chauncey Wynn, of the group M.A.D., at a concert at Michigan State University. On September 14, 1994, Shakur pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor, and was sentenced to 30 days in jail, twenty of them suspended, and ordered to 35 hours of community service. [110] [111]

Slated to star as Sharif in the 1993 Hughes Brothers' film Menace II Society, Shakur was replaced by actor Vonte Sweet after allegedly assaulting one of the film's directors, Allen Hughes. In early 1994, Shakur served 15 days in jail after being found guilty of the assault. [112] [113] The prosecution's evidence included a Yo! MTV Raps interview where Shakur boasts that he had "beat up the director of Menace II Society." [114]

Sexual assault conviction

In November 1993, Shakur and three other men were charged in New York with sexually assaulting a woman in his hotel room. The woman, Ayanna Jackson, alleged that after consensual oral sex in his hotel room, she returned a later day, but then was raped by him and other men there. Interviewed on The Arsenio Hall Show, Shakur said he was hurt that "a woman would accuse me of taking something from her." [115]

On December 1, 1994, Shakur was convicted of first-degree sexual abuse, but acquitted of associated sodomy and gun charges. In February 1995, he was sentenced to 18 months to 4 + 1 ⁄ 2 years in prison by a judge who decried "an act of brutal violence against a helpless woman." [116] [117] On October 12, 1995, pending judicial appeal, Shakur was released from Clinton Correctional Facility, [29] once Suge Knight, CEO of Death Row Records, arranged for posting of his $1.4 million bond. [105] On April 5, 1996, Shakur was sentenced to 120 days in jail for violating his release terms by failing to appear for a road cleanup job, [118] but on June 8, his sentence was deferred via appeals pending in other cases. [119]

In 1991, 2Pac debuted on a new record label, Interscope Records, that knew little about rap music. Until that year, Ruthless Records, formed during 1986 in Los Angeles county's Compton city, had prioritized rap, and its group N.W.A had led gangsta rap to platinum sales, but N.W.A's lyrics, outrageously violent and misogynist, precluded mainstream breakthrough. On the other hand, also specializing in rap, Profile Records, in New York City, had a mainstream, pop breakthrough, Run-DMC's "Walk This Way", in 1986. In April 1991, N.W.A disbanded via Dr. Dre's departure to, with Suge Knight, launch Death Row Records, in Los Angeles city. [120] With its very first two albums, Death Row became the first record label both to prioritize rap and to regularly release mainstream, pop hits with it. [120]

Released by Death Row in late 1992, Dre's The Chronic—its "Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang" ubiquitous on pop radio and "Let Me Ride" winning a Grammy—was trailed in late 1993 by Snoop's Doggystyle. [120] Gangsta rap, no less, these albums and more propelled the West Coast, for the first time, ahead of New York to rap's center stage. [120] But meanwhile, in 1993, Andre Harrell of Uptown Records, in New York, fired his star A&R man, Sean "Puff Daddy" Combs, later "P. Diddy." [120] Puffy, while leaving behind his standout projects Jodeci and Mary J. Blige—two R&B acts—took to his own, new record label, Bad Boy Records, the promising gangsta rapper Biggie Smalls, soon also known as The Notorious B.I.G. [120] His debut album, released in late 1994 as Ready to Die, promptly returned rap's spotlight to New York. [120]

Rap world

Stretch and Live squad

In 1988, Randy "Stretch" Walker, along with his brother, dubbed Majesty, and a friend debuted with an EP as rap group and production team, Live Squad, in the Queens borough of New York City. [121] Tupac's early days with Digital Underground made his acquaintance with Stretch, who featured on a track of the Digital Underground's 1991 album Sons of the P. Becoming fast friends, Tupac and Stretch recorded and performed together often. [121] Stretch as well as Live Squad contributed tracks on 2Pac's first two albums, first November 1991, then February 1993, and on 2Pac's side group Thug Life's only album of September 1994.

The end of Tupac's and Stretch's friendship in late 1994 surprised the New York rap scene. [121] The next 2Pac album, released in March 1995, lacks Stretch, and 2Pac's album after that, released in February 1996, has lines suggesting Stretch's impending death for betrayal. No objective evidence would publicly emerge to tangibly incriminate Stretch in the gun attack on Tupac, while with Stretch and two others, at about 12:30 am on November 30, 1994. In any case, after a Live Squad production session for the second album of Queens rapper Nas, Stretch's vehicle was chased while receiving fatal gunfire at about 12:30 am on November 30, 1995. [121]

Biggie and Junior M.A.F.I.A.

During 1993 and 1994, the Biggie Smalls guest verses on several singles, often R&B, like Mary J. Blige's "What's the 411? Remix," set high expectations for his debut album. The perfectionism of Puffy, still forming his Bad Boy label, extended its recording to 18 months. In 1993, visiting Los Angeles, Biggie asked a local drug dealer for an introduction to Tupac, who then welcomed Biggie and Biggie's friends to Tupac's house and treated them to recreational activities. [79] On later visits to Los Angeles, Biggie would stay at Tupac's place. [79] And when in New York, Tupac would go to Brooklyn and hang out with Biggie and his circle. [79]

During this period, at his own live shows, Tupac would call Biggie onto stage to rap with him and Stretch. [79] Together, they recorded the songs "Runnin' from the Police" and "House of Pain." Reportedly, Biggie asked Tupac to manage him, whereupon Tupac advised him that Puffy would make him a star. [79] Yet in the meantime, Tupac's lifestyle was comparatively lavish, whereas Biggie appeared to continue wearing the same pair of boots for perhaps a year. [79] Tupac welcomed Biggie to join his side group Thug Life. [79] Biggie would instead form his own side group, the Junior M.A.F.I.A., with his Brooklyn friends Lil' Cease and Lil' Kim, on Bad Boy.


Despite the "weird" timing of Stretch's shooting death, [121] a theory implicates gunman Ronald "Tenad" Washington both here and in the 2002 murder of Run-DMC's Jam Master Jay via, as the unverified theory speculates, Kenneth "Supreme" McGriff punishing the rap mentor for recording 50 Cent despite Supreme's prohibition after this young rapper's 1999 song "Ghetto Qu'ran" had mentioned activities of the Queens drug gang Supreme Team. [122] Supreme was a friend, rather, of Irv Gotti, cofounder of Murder Inc Records, [122] whose rapper Ja Rule would vie among New York rappers after the March 1997 shooting death of Biggie, visiting Los Angeles.

Haitian Jack

By some accounts, the role Birdie, played by Shakur in the 1994 film Above the Rim, had been modeled on a New York underworld tough, Jacques "Haitian Jack" Agnant, [123] a manager and promoter of rappers. [124] Reportedly, Shakur met him at a Queens nightclub, where, noticing him amid women and champagne, Shakur asked for an introduction. [79] Reportedly, Biggie advised Tupac to avoid him, but Tupac disregarded the warning. [79]

In November 1993, in his Manhattan hotel room, Shakur received a woman's return visit. Soon, she alleged sexual assault by him and three other men there: his road manager Charles Fuller, aged 24, one Ricardo Brown, aged 30, [125] and a "Nigel," later understood as Haitian Jack. [79] In November 1994, Jack's case was split off and closed via misdemeanor plea without incarceration. [79] In 2007, for shooting at someone, he would be deported. [126] Yet in November 1994, A. J. Benza, in the New York Daily News, reported Tupac's new disdain for Jack. [79] [123]

Jimmy Henchman

Through Haitian Jack, Tupac had met James "Jimmy Henchman" Rosemond. [79] Another underworld figure formidable, Jimmy Henchman doubled as music manager. [123] Bryce Wilson's Groove Theory was an early client. [123] The Game as well as Gucci Mane were later clients. [123] In 1994, a client lesser known, and signed to Uptown Records, was rapper Little Shawn, friend of Biggie and Lil' Cease. [123] Eventually, Jack and Henchman would reportedly fall out, allegedly shooting at each other in Miami. [123] And for his major drug trafficking, Henchman would be sent to prison on a life sentence. [123] But in the early 1990s, Jack and Henchman reputedly shared interests, including a specialty of robbing and extorting music artists. [123]

November 1994

On November 30, 1994, while in New York recording verses for a mixtape of Ron G, Shakur was repeatedly distracted by his beeper. [123] Music manager James "Jimmy Henchman" Rosemond, reportedly offered Shakur $7,000 to stop by Quad Studios, in Times Square, that night to record a verse for his client Little Shawn. [79] [123] Shakur was unsure, but agreed to the session as he needed the cash to offset legal costs. He arrived with Stretch and one or two others. In the lobby, three men robbed and beat him at gunpoint Shakur resisted and was shot. [63] [127] Shakur speculated that the shooting had been a set-up. [63] [127] [128]

Three hours after surgery, against doctor's advice, Shakur checked out of Bellevue Hospital Center. The next day, in a Manhattan courtroom bandaged in a wheelchair, he received the jury's verdict in his ongoing criminal trial for a November 1993 sexual assault in his hotel room. Convicted of three counts of sexual assault, he was acquitted of six other charges, including sodomy and gun charges. [129]

In a 1995 interview with Vibe magazine, Shakur accused Sean Combs, [130] Jimmy Henchman, [127] and Biggie, among others, of setting up or being privy to the November 1994 robbery and shooting. Vibe alerted the names of the accused. [131] The accusations were significant to the East-West Coast rivalry in hip-hop, the accusation was because Sean Combs and Christopher Wallace were at Quad Studios at the time and in 1995, months later, Combs and Wallace releasing song "Who Shot Ya?", whereas the song made no direct reference or naming of Shakur, Shakur took it as a mockery of his shooting and thought they could be responsible, so he released a (direct) diss song called "Hit 'Em Up", where he targeted Wallace, Combs, their record label, Junior M.A.F.I.A., and at the end of "Hit 'Em Up", he mentions rivals Mobb Deep and Chino XL. [132] [133] [134] [135] [136]

In March 2008, Chuck Philips, in the Los Angeles Times, reported on the 1994 ambush and shooting. [137] The newspaper later retracted the article since it relied partially on FBI documents later discovered forged, supplied by a man convicted of fraud. [138] In June 2011, convicted murderer Dexter Isaac, incarcerated in Brookyn, issued a confession that he had been one of the gunmen who had robbed and shot Shakur at Henchman's order. [139] [140] [141] Philips then named Isaac as one of his own, retracted article's unnamed sources. [142]

Death Row signs Shakur

During 1995, imprisoned, impoverished, and his mother about to lose her house, Shakur had his wife Keisha Morris get word to Marion "Suge" Knight, in Los Angeles, boss of Death Row Records. [79] Reportedly, Shakur's mother promptly received $15,000. [79] After an August visit to Clinton Correctional Facility in northern New York state, Suge traveled southward to New York City to join Death Row's entourage to the 2nd Annual Source Awards ceremony. [79] Already reputed for strongarm tactics on the Los Angeles rap scene, Suge used his brief stage time mainly to belittle Sean "Puff Daddy" Combs, boss of Bad Boy Entertainment, the label then leading New York rap scene, who routinely performed with his own artists. [120] [143] Before closing with a brief comment of support for Shakur, [144] Suge invited artists seeking the spotlight for themselves to join Death Row. [120] [143] Eventually, Puff recalled that to preempt severe retaliation from his Bad Boy orbit, he had promptly confronted Suge, whose reply – that he had meant Jermaine Dupri, of So So Def Recordings, in Atlanta – was politic enough to deescalate the conflict. [145]

Still, among the fans, the previously diffuse rivalry between America's two mainstream rap scenes had instantly flared already. [120] [144] [143] And while in New York, Suge visited Uptown Records, where Puff, under its founder Andre Harrell, had started in the music business through an internship. [146] Apparently without paying Uptown, Suge obtained the releases of Puff's prime Uptown recruits Jodeci, its producer DeVante Swing, and Mary J. Blige, all then signing with Suge's management company. [146] On September 24, 1995, at a party for Dupri in Atlanta at the Platinum House nightclub, a Bad Boy circle entered a heated dispute with Suge and Suge's friend Jai Hassan-Jamal "Big Jake" Robles, a Bloods gang member and Death Row bodyguard. [120] [147] According to eyewitnesses, including a Fulton County sheriff, working there as a nightclub bouncer, Puff had heatedly disputed with Suge inside the club, [120] whereas several minutes later, outside the club, it was Puff's childhood friend and own bodyguard, Anthony "Wolf" Jones, who had aimed a gun at Big Jake, fatally shot while entering Suge's car. [120] [148] [149]

The attorneys of Puff and his bodyguard both denied any involvement by their clients, while Puff's added that Puff had not even been with his bodyguard that night. [150] Over 20 years later, the case remains officially unresolved. Yet immediately and persistently, Suge blamed Puff, cementing the enmity between the two bosses, whose two record labels dominated the rap genre's two mainstream centers. [120] [151] In the late 1990s, Southern rap's growth into the mainstream would dispel the East–West paradigm. [144] But in the meantime, in October 1995, violating his probation, Suge visited Shakur in prison again. [120] Suge posted $1.4 million bond. And with appeal of his December 1994 conviction pending, Shakur returned to Los Angeles and joined Death Row. [120] On June 4, 1996, it released the 2Pac B side "Hit 'Em Up." In this venonmous tirade, the proclaimed "Bad Boy killer" threatens violent payback on all things Bad Boy—Biggie, Puffy, Junior M.A.F.I.A., the company—and on any in New York's rap scene, like rap duo Mobb Deep and obscure rapper Chino XL, who allegedly had commented against Shakur about the dispute.


On the night of September 7, 1996, Shakur was in Las Vegas, Nevada, to celebrate his business partner Tracy Danielle Robinson's birthday [152] and attended the Bruce Seldon vs. Mike Tyson boxing match with Suge Knight at the MGM Grand. Afterward in the lobby, someone in their group spotted Orlando "Baby Lane" Anderson, an alleged Southside Compton Crip, whom the individual accused of having recently in a shopping mall tried to snatch his neck chain with a Death Row Records medallion. The hotel's surveillance footage shows the ensuing assault on Anderson. Shakur soon stopped by his hotel room and then headed with Knight to his Death Row nightclub, Club 662, in a black BMW 750iL sedan, part of a larger convoy. [153]

At about 11 pm on Las Vegas Boulevard, bicycle-mounted police stopped the car for its loud music and lack of license plates. The plates were found in the trunk and the car was released without a ticket. [154] At about 11:15 pm at a stop light, a white, four-door, late-model Cadillac sedan pulled up to the passenger side and an occupant rapidly fired into the car. Shakur was struck four times: once in the arm, once in the thigh, and twice in the chest [155] with one bullet entering his right lung. [156] Shards hit Knight's head. Frank Alexander, Shakur's bodyguard, was not in the car at the time. He would say he had been tasked to drive the car of Shakur's girlfriend, Kidada Jones. [157]

Shakur was taken to the University Medical Center of Southern Nevada where he was heavily sedated and put on life support. [9] In the intensive-care unit on the afternoon of September 13, 1996, Shakur died from internal bleeding. [9] He was pronounced dead at 4:03 pm. [9] The official causes of death are respiratory failure and cardiopulmonary arrest associated with multiple gunshot wounds. [9] Shakur's body was cremated the next day. Members of the Outlawz, recalling a line in his song "Black Jesus," (although uncertain of the artist's attempt at a literal meaning chose to interpret the request seriously) smoked some of his body's ashes after mixing them with marijuana. [158] [159]

In 2002, investigative journalist Chuck Philips, [160] [161] after a year of work, reported in the Los Angeles Times that Anderson, a Southside Compton Crip, having been attacked by Suge and Shakur's entourage at the MGM Hotel after the boxing match, had fired the fatal gunshots, but that Las Vegas police had interviewed him only once, briefly, before his death in an unrelated shooting. Philips's 2002 article also alleges the involvement of Christopher "Notorious B.I.G." Wallace and several within New York City's criminal underworld. Both Anderson and Wallace denied involvement, while Wallace offered a confirmed alibi. [162] Music journalist John Leland, in the New York Times, called the evidence "inconclusive." [163]

In 2011, via the Freedom of Information Act, the FBI released documents related to its investigation which described an extortion scheme by the Jewish Defense League that included making death threats against Shakur and other rappers, but did not indicate a direct connection to his murder. [164] [165]

The online, rap magazine AllHipHop held a 2007 roundtable where, among fellow New York rappers, Cormega, citing tour experience with New York rap duo Mobb Deep, imparted a broad assessment: "Biggie ran New York. 'Pac ran America." [166] In 2010, writing Rolling Stone magazine's entry on Tupac Shakur at No. 86 among the "100 greatest artists," New York rapper 50 Cent appraised, "Every rapper who grew up in the Nineties owes something to Tupac. He didn't sound like anyone who came before him." [167] Dotdash, formerly, while ranking him fifth among the greatest rappers, nonetheless notes, "Tupac Shakur is the most influential hip-hop artist of all time. Even in death, 2Pac remains a transcendental rap figure." [168] Yet to some, he was a "father figure" who, said rapper YG, "makes you want to be better—at every level." [169]

According to music journalist Chuck Philips, 2Pac "had helped elevate rap from a crude street fad to a complex art form, setting the stage for the current global hip-hop phenomenon." [170] Philips writes, "The slaying silenced one of modern music's most eloquent voices—a ghetto poet whose tales of urban alienation captivated young people of all races and backgrounds." [170] Via numerous fans perceiving him, despite the questionable of his conduct, as a martyr, "the downsizing of martyrdom cheapens its use," Michael Eric Dyson concedes. [171] But Dyson adds, "Some, or even most, of that criticism can be conceded without doing damage to Tupac's martyrdom in the eyes of those disappointed by more traditional martyrs." [171] More simply, his writings, published after his death, inspired rapper YG to return to school and get his GED. [169] In 2020, California Senator and Democratic vice-presidential nominee Kamala Harris called Shakur the "best rapper alive", a mistake that she explained because "West Coast girls think 2Pac lives on". [172] [173]

In 2006, Shakur's close friend and classmate Jada Pinkett Smith donated $1 million to their high school alma mater, the Baltimore School for the Arts, and named the new theater in his honor. [174] [175] In 2021, Pinkett Smith honored Shakur's 50th birthday by releasing a never before seen poem she had received from the late rapper. [176]

Afeni Shakur

In 1997, Shakur's mother founded the Shakur Family Foundation. Later renamed the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation, or TASF, it launched with a stated mission to "provide training and support for students who aspire to enhance their creative talents." The TASF sponsors essay contests, charity events, a performing arts day camp for teenagers, and undergraduate scholarships. In June 2005, the TASF opened the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts, or TASCA, in Stone Mountain, Georgia. Afeni also narrates the documentary Tupac: Resurrection, released in November 2003, and nominated for Best Documentary at the 2005 Academy Awards. Meanwhile, with Forbes ranking Tupac Shakur at 10th among top-earning dead celebrities in 2002, [177] Afeni Shakur launched Makaveli Branded Clothing in 2003.

Academic appraisal

In 1997, the University of California, Berkeley, offered a course led by a student titled "History 98: Poetry and History of Tupac Shakur". [178] In April 2003, Harvard University cosponsored the symposium "All Eyez on Me: Tupac Shakur and the Search for the Modern Folk Hero." [179] The papers presented cover his ranging influence from entertainment to sociology. [179] Calling him a "Thug Nigga Intellectual," an "organic intellectual," [180] English scholar Mark Anthony Neal assessed his death as leaving a "leadership void amongst hip-hop artists," [181] as this "walking contradiction" helps, Neal explained, "make being an intellectual accessible to ordinary people." [182] Tracing Tupac's mythical status, Murray Forman discussed him as "O.G.," or "Ostensibly Gone," with fans, using digital mediums, "resurrecting Tupac as an ethereal life force." [183] Music scholar Emmett Price, calling him a "Black folk hero," traced his persona to Black American folklore's tricksters, which, after abolition, evolved into the urban "bad-man." Yet in Tupac's "terrible sense of urgency," Price identified instead a quest to "unify mind, body, and spirit." [184]

Multimedia releases

In 2005, Death Row released on DVD, Tupac: Live at the House of Blues, his final recorded live performance, an event on July 4, 1996. In August 2006, Tupac Shakur Legacy, an "interactive biography" by Jamal Joseph, arrived with previously unpublished family photographs, intimate stories, and over 20 detachable copies of his handwritten song lyrics, contracts, scripts, poetry, and other papers. In 2006, the 2Pac album Pac's Life was released and, like the previous, was among the recording industry's most popular releases. [185] In 2008, his estate made about $15 million. [186]

In 2014, BET explains that "his confounding mixture of ladies' man, thug, revolutionary and poet has forever altered our perception of what a rapper should look like, sound like and act like. In 50 Cent, Ja Rule, Lil Wayne, newcomers like Freddie Gibbs and even his friend-turned-rival Biggie, it's easy to see that Pac is the most copied MC of all time. There are murals bearing his likeness in New York, Brazil, Sierra Leone, Bulgaria and countless other places he even has statues in Atlanta and Germany. Quite simply, no other rapper has captured the world's attention the way Tupac did and still does." [187]

On April 15, 2012, at the Coachella Music Festival, rappers Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre joined a 2Pac hologram, [188] and, as a partly virtual trio, performed the 2Pac songs "Hail Mary" and "2 of Amerikaz Most Wanted." [189] [190] There were talks of a tour, [191] but Dre refused. [192] Meanwhile, the Greatest Hits album, released in 1998, and which in 2000 had left the pop albums chart, the Billboard 200, returned to the chart and reached No. 129, while also other 2Pac albums and singles drew sales gains. [193] And in early 2015, the Grammy Museum opened an exhibition dedicated to Tupac Shakur. [194]

Film and stage

In 2014, the play Holler If Ya Hear Me, based on Tupac's lyrics, played on Broadway, but, among Broadway's worst-selling musicals in recent years, ran only six weeks. [195] In development since 2013, a Tupac biopic, All Eyez on Me, began filming in Atlanta in December 2015, [196] and was released on June 16, 2017, in concept Tupac Shakur's 46th birthday, [197] albeit to generally negative reviews. In August 2019, a docuseries directed by Allen Hughes, Outlaw: The Saga of Afeni and Tupac Shakur, was announced. [198]

Awards and honors

In 2003, MTV's viewers voted 2Pac the greatest MC. [199] In 2005, on Vibe magazine's online message boards, a user asked others for the "Top 10 Best of All Time." [200] Vibe staff, then, "sorting out, averaging and spending a lot of energy," found, "Tupac coming in at first". [200] In 2006, MTV staff placed him second. [92] In 2012, The Source magazine ranked him fifth among all-time lyricists. [201] In 2010, Rolling Stone placed him at No. 86 among the "100 Greatest Artists." [167]

In 2007, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's "Definitive 200" albums—choices irking some otherwise [202] —placed All Eyez on Me at No. 90 and Me Against the World at No. 170. [203] In 2009, drawing praise, the Vatican added "Changes," a 1998 posthumous track, to its online playlist. [204] On June 23, 2010, the Library of Congress sent "Dear Mama" to the National Recording Registry, [205] the third rap song, after a Grandmaster Flash and a Public Enemy, ever to arrive there. [206]

In 2002, Tupac Shakur was inducted into the Hip-Hop Hall of Fame. Two years later, cable television's music network VH1 held its first ever Hip Hop Honors, where the honorees were "2Pac, Run-DMC, DJ Hollywood, Kool Herc, KRS-One, Public Enemy, Rock Steady Crew, Sugarhill Gang." [207] On December 30, 2016, in his first year of eligibility, Tupac was nominated, [208] and on the following April 7 was among five inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. [11] [209]

Studio albums

Posthumous studio albums

  • The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory (1996) (as Makaveli)
  • R U Still Down? (Remember Me) (1997)
  • Until the End of Time (2001)
  • Better Dayz (2002)
  • Loyal to the Game (2004)
  • Pac's Life (2006)

Collaboration albums

Posthumous collaboration albums

Year Title Role Notes
1991 Nothing but Trouble Himself (in a fictional context) Brief appearance as part of the group Digital Underground
1992 Juice Roland Bishop First starring role
1993 Poetic Justice Lucky Co-starred with Janet Jackson
1993 A Different World Piccolo Episode: Homie Don't Ya Know Me?
1993 In Living Color Himself Season 5, Episode: 3
1994 Above the Rim Birdie Co-starred with Duane Martin
1995 Murder Was the Case: The Movie Sniper Uncredited segment: "Natural Born Killaz"
1996 Saturday Night Special Himself (guest host) 1 episode
1996 Saturday Night Live Himself (musical guest) Episode: "Tom Arnold/Tupac Shakur"
1996 Bullet Tank Released one month after Shakur's death
1997 Gridlock'd Ezekiel "Spoon" Whitmore Released four months after Shakur's death
1997 Gang Related Detective Jake Rodriguez Shakur's last performance in a film
2001 Baby Boy Himself Archive footage
2003 Tupac: Resurrection Himself Archive footage
2009 Notorious Himself Archive footage
2015 Straight Outta Compton Himself Archive footage
2017 All Eyez on Me Himself Archive footage

Biographical portrayals in film

Year Title Portrayed by Notes
2001 Too Legit: The MC Hammer Story Lamont Bentley Biographical film about MC Hammer
2009 Notorious Anthony Mackie Biographical film about The Notorious B.I.G.
2015 Straight Outta Compton Marcc Rose [210] Biographical film about N.W.A
2016 Surviving Compton: Dre, Suge & Michel'le Adrian Arthur Biographical film about Michel'le
2017 All Eyez on Me Demetrius Shipp, Jr. [211] Biographical film about Tupac Shakur [212]


Shakur's life has been explored in several documentaries, each trying to capture the many different events during his short lifetime, most notably the Academy Award-nominated Tupac: Resurrection, released in 2003.

The Túpac Amaru Rebellion. By Charles F. Walker (Cambridge, Mass., Harvard University Press, 2014) 347 pp. $29.95

David T. Garrett The Túpac Amaru Rebellion. By Charles F. Walker (Cambridge, Mass., Harvard University Press, 2014) 347 pp. $29.95. The Journal of Interdisciplinary History 2015 46 (1): 141–142. doi:

From late 1780 to 1782, indigenous uprisings convulsed Andean society from Cusco to Potosí, presenting the most significant challenge to Spanish rule in America between the conquest and independence. During the past half-century, the “Great Rebellion” of the Túpac Amarus in southern Peru and the Kataris in Bolivia has morphed from footnote to central narrative in Andean history, generating a substantial scholarship it is now treated as a major anticolonial revolt in the Atlantic world’s age of revolution. Sergio Serulnikov’s recent Revolution in the Andes: The Age of Túpac Amaru (Durham, 2013) offers a strong synthetic summary of this violent assault on the colonial order, but no English language narrative of Josef Gabriel Túpac Amaru’s attempts to establish a colonial, neo-Inca order in Cusco has appeared since Lillian Fisher’s dated The Last Inca Revolt (Norman, 1966). Drawing primarily from correspondence and official colonial records during and just after the rebellion, Walker’s book meets that need with a careful, engaging account of the leaders, military campaigns, and chaotic violence that captures the excitement and dread of the time.

Focusing on the Túpac Amaru family, this book is a top-down story of the uprising and its organization. From Josef Gabriel’s unsuccessful efforts to win recognition of his Inca ancestry and his claims to a vacant mayorazgo to the carefully planned revolt and unsuccessful siege of Cusco, the capture and savage execution of him and his wife, Micaela Bastidas, in the city’s plaza through the continuation of the rebellion by their nephew, The Túpac Amaru Rebellion makes excellent use of primary documents to represent the principal actors’ views and provide a detailed account of the conflict. Since the events and trajectory of the rebellion are well known, the book’s contribution to the scholarly literature does not involve novel findings so much as its strong representation of Bastidas’ central role in the planning and execution of the rebellion and its discussion of the Church’s stance and actions in the crisis. Similarly welcome is the attention to Diego Christobal Túpac Amaru’s continuation of the rebellion around Titicaca from 1781 into 1782, and to its spiraling violence. A solid chapter discusses the Katarista campaigns and sieges that moved northward from Potosí to Titicaca in 1781, but, particularly with its emphasis on the Túpac Amarus, this account, too, encounters the central challenge of “Great Rebellion” studies—how to explain the simultaneity, similarity, but lack of clear integration between the neighboring revolts.

A strong narrative account written with the non-specialist in mind, the book raises the issue of how necessary to a broad and accessible history of this crucial moment in Andean history are the leading questions and theoretical frameworks—of political and moral economy, subaltern agency, indigenous identity and social hierarchy, and cultural geography—that have dominated the specialized study of these rebellions for the past two decades. Walker’s general portrayal of colonial society resembles that by colonial officials, compressing the ethnic complexity of the viceregal Andes into a Spanish/Indian dichotomy that minimizes the intra-Andean aspects of the rebellion. The increasingly common editorial decision to forego a bibliography and offer thin historiographical notes limits the usefulness for those wanting an introduction to that scholarship.

With its focus on leadership, broad characterizations of the structural and legal injustices of the colonial order, a generally sympathetic stance to rebels and critical view of loyalists, and its focus on the Peruvian half of the rebellions, this book follows in the protonationalist and anticolonial reading that emerged in the mid-twentieth century to dominate the popular history. To this foundation Walker adds rich new detail from extensive research, while bringing attention to neglected and important episodes and characters. The Túpac Amaru Rebellion is a comprehensive, useful account that serves as an excellent introduction to the Túpac Amaru rebellion and a substantial contribution to the study of Túpac Amaru’s central role in Peru’s national history and historiography.

The Army of Peru and the Túpac Amaru Revolt, 1780-1783

During the wars for Spanish American independence, the Viceroyalty of Peru was considered a bulwark of royalism because of the presence there of an army which had been greatly strengthened by Viceroy José Fernando de Abascal y Sousa during the period 1808-1816. 1 Abascal’s military measures have been viewed by some historians as the culmination of a program of military reform which began with Viceroy Manuel de Amat y Junient in 1761. Upon receipt of the news of Spain’s entrance into the Seven Year’s War in 1762 Amat had created a large militia in Peru, an action which allegedly enabled Peru to withstand the furious Indian revolts which had erupted during the period 1780-1783. Thereafter, the Army of Peru deferred the coming of independence long after its arrival elsewhere in South America. 2

This paper constitutes an effort to re-examine the military reorganization which occurred in Peru after 1761 and to assess the army’s performance during the revolt headed by José Gabriel Condorcanqui, or Túpac Amaru II. While it is clear that Peru was never militarized prior to 1780, the causes for the failure of the reform are imperfectly understood. A complex set of circumstances conspired to weaken the army during the greatest internal crisis of the late colonial period. Ineffective leadership, both in Lima and Madrid, inefficiency and corruption, lack of adequate financial resources, and particularly the shortcomings of the Caroline reforms promulgated in Peru by Visitor-General José Antonio de Areche, all served to weaken the military.

The visitation to Peru headed by Areche in 1777 sought to reorganize the Peruvian treasury and promote administrative reform. Areche’s instructions from the Crown indicate that his mission was essentially economic, stressing the need to economize resources and develop additional sources of revenue. 3 All reform measures would henceforth be measured in terms of cost reductions. Because manpower was the most expensive item in the military budget, Areche zealously sought to reduce troop strength to its lowest possible level, subordinating the principle of preparedness to that of economy. His harsh fiscal policies also helped foment a series of tax revolts in 1780 and weighed heavily in the Indian rebellions of the same period.

The Crown’s belief that Peruvian creoles had masterminded the revolts of 1780 in an effort to discredit the visitation resulted in a further reform of the army after 1783. The Crown ordered a major demobilization of the militia created by Amat in 1784 and sent Spanish regular troops to garrison the interior. It also denied creole militia officers promotions and subsequently made every effort to transform the army into a more traditionally Hispanic institution. Moreover, the growing tempo of violence which the visitation occasioned required that the army change its primary function—defending the viceroyalty against external attack—in order to provide security against internal rebellion instead. After 1784, the Army of Peru served primarily as an agency of internal security. The Tupac Amaru revolt had indicated that the real enemy were the Peruvians themselves.

The foregoing constitutes a military situation quite different from that elsewhere in Spanish America during the same period. In new Spain, for example, the army remained largely untested by massive internal revolt following the creation of the militia in 1763. Its militia received regular training and with it, considerable privileges. This powerful and privileged militia may have also served as a vehicle for social change as well. 4 While considerable similarities exist within the armies of Spanish America in the waning years of the colony, the Peruvian reform indicates crucial differences also. Further research on these institutions is required to determine whether these differences can help to account for variations in military behavior during and after independence and the subsequent development of praetorianism.

A brief summary of the structure, distribution, and function of the Army of Peru prior to 1780 helps to explain the nature of subsequent changes in the military. It should be recognized first that viceregal power in Peru prior to 1760 had traditionally rested on a civil and religious, rather than a military, base. 5 Prior to the creation of the Viceroyalty of New Granada in 1739, the viceroy in Lima was responsible for the defense of the entire South American continent, excepting Portuguese Brazil, an area ten times the size of Spain itself. In 1615, the fijo, or fixed Battalion of Callao had been established in response to the presence of English and later Dutch pirates. The primary duty of the battalion was to defend the capital of Lima located just east of the harbor. Because Callao was the entrepôt for all shipping along the coast and for the dispatch of silver bullion overseas, its defense was as crucial to Peru as that of Vera Cruz was to New Spain.

Although Peru established the Battalion of Callao on a footing of 500 men, because some were detached to the presidios of Chile and others were at sea with the Royal Navy, Lima was only defended by about 275 soldiers at any given time. In 1771 Peru and Upper Peru, which included the Audiencia of Charcas, an area roughly equivalent to modern Bolivia, had only 1,362 soldiers, one of the smaller contingents in Spanish America. 6

Foreign military observers and Spanish officers alike agreed that Peru was badly-defended during the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. 7 The degree to which Peruvian viceroys depended upon factors of geography—contrary winds, shifting sandbars, the arid coastal desert and the great distance between Peru and Europe—indicates their lack of concern with a proper defense. 8 On the other hand, military service was exceedingly unpopular with most Peruvians, and viceroys spoke frequently of the difficulties encountered in securing a sufficient number of recruits to bring the battalion to full strength. 9 Seventeenth and eighteenth-century commentators indicate that the soldiers were largely drawn from the lowest social elements of Lima: Negroes, transients, and mixed-bloods of all varieties, whose low birth afforded them few other opportunities. 10 Veteran Spanish soldiers assumed the responsibility for training and organizing the units and held the senior ranks in the officer corps.

From the late sixteenth century it had been traditional to supplement the presence of the fixed battalion with militiamen, or citizen-soldiers, to defend Lima during times of emergency. Residents were grouped and organized into companies according to their social status or trade guild affiliation. In Lima, for example, the viceroy in 1760 reported the presence of companies of Spaniards, Indians, mulattoes, free blacks, and merchants. Callao organized its militia companies vocationally: sailors, fitters, caulkers, etc. 11 Since the Crown was unwilling to provide funds to train and equip these units, municipal corporations such as the town council or merchants’ guild sponsored them, but they possessed insufficient resources to provide arms, equipment, uniforms, or regular training to the soldiers. Peru mobilized its militia only twice during the period 1740-1760 and the results were not encouraging. In 1740, British Admiral George Anson attacked and captured the northern port city of Paita. So disorganized and unarmed was the local militia that it resorted to loading their cannon with pesos fuertes in a ludicrous effort to save the city. The revolt led by Juan Santos Atahualpa in 1742 in the Gran Pajonal region near Tarma east of Lima prompted a second mobilization. Panic and disarray ensued, including the desertion of many members of the fixed battalion. These military measures were so expensive and fruitless that no military call-up occurred for another two decades until the declaration of war against England in 1762. 12

The early Bourbon viceroys’ failure to provide a proper defense for Peru created fear and alarm among limeños upon receiving the news of Spain’s entrance into the Seven Year’s War in May, 1762. 13 This may, however, have simply reflected the energetic measures taken by Viceroy Manuel de Amat y Junient, who had taken command in Peru in 1761. A career military officer with distinguished service throughout Europe, Amat was the finest example of the Bourbons’ efforts to place the American viceroyalties in capable military hands. In short order, Amat completed work on the fortress “Royal Phillip” at Callao, which had been destroyed during the earthquake of 1746, and placed the port city under new leadership. In addition, he built an artillery factory, powder magazines, and a school of mathematics. Amat was uncompromising in his demand that military virtues and discipline be manifested throughout the viceroyalty and sought to impose the idea of service to the King on every Peruvian. 14

Amat’s primary achievement, however, was in securing the support of the creole nobility of Lima to raise, arm, and outfit a vastly expanded militia. As Table I indicates, between 1760 and 1776, the strength of the Army of Peru increased dramatically largely owing to the creation of numerous companies of militia, both in Lima and the other provinces. Within a two-year period, the militia build-up had resulted in a tenfold increase in the size of the Army of Peru to 50,000 men. Provincial militia formation continued after 1763 because of the continuing English presence in the Malvinas (Falkland) Islands off southern Patagonia in the South Atlantic. Even with the creation of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, the Crown accepted the need for a large militia in the interior of Lower Peru to protect Upper Peru from attacks originating along the eastern seaboard. By 1776, the viceroy estimated the presence of nearly 100,000 soldiers, a number he believed capable of defending the viceroyalty from attack.

It seems clear from a review of the service records of the militia units that Peruvian creoles were the primary financiers and supporters of the reform. 15 By providing wealthy creoles with militia officer-ships, memberships in the military orders, and other privileges, Amat secured the creation of a militia at virtually no cost to the royal treasury. Not indicative of Amat’s true estimation of Americans, creole incorporation reflected the wishes of King Charles III and the Committee for Imperial Defense that the militia assume a larger share of defensive responsibility and that it be formed as cheaply as possible. 16

Although the buildup of the militia was impressive, it can hardly be said to have militarized Peru. A variety of reasons help to explain the failure of the militia to develop into an effective tactical force prior to 1780. First, the Spanish Crown does not seem to have been particularly concerned with the Peruvian military situation after 1763. José de Gálvez, who assumed the Ministry of the Indies in 1776, correctly believed that the outbreak of the North American Revolution reduced the dangers of a seaborne invasion. Rather than concentrating on Peruvian defenses, Gálvez concerned himself primarily with securing Spanish America’s eastern flank (which he did with the creation in 1776 of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata) and with elevating Chile to a separate captaincy-general in 1778. 17

Secondly, the Crown had failed to oversee effectively the military activities of Viceroy Amat. Upon his arrival in Peru in 1776, Viceroy Manuel de Guirior, Amat’s successor, informed Gálvez that only a fraction of the militia had been properly trained and organized. 18 Nor did the weak Guirior have the opportunity to rectify the situation. The arrival shortly thereafter of Areche and the members of the visitation placed the new viceroy in an untenable situation, especially after the visitor was granted the superintendency of the royal treasury, which assured him virtual control of Peru’s economic life. 19

Third, the efforts made after 1776 to reorganize the militia took place within a deepening financial crisis in Peru. The Peruvian economy had in fact been deteriorating since midcentury, causing Spanish officials to resort to extortion to locate every available source of revenue from their subordinates. 20 This economic crisis was accentuated by the transfer of the audiencia of Charcas from the control of Peru to the Viceroy of the Río de la Plata in 1776. By granting to Buenos Aires control over the rich silver mining districts of Oruro and Potosí, the Crown provoked an intense rivalry between Lima and its former territory. Trade between the two areas was paralyzed and the immediate drop in Peruvian revenues led to the speculation that Platine prosperity was being purchased at Peruvian expense. 21 To make matters worse, Buenos Aires’ lack of financial resources caused the Crown to require Peru to provide an annual situado, or military subsidy, for the defense of the new region. 22 The economic exigencies forced a drastic reduction in Peru’s military expenditures, further retarding the military reform program. 23

Finally, the military reform took place in an increasingly turbulent society after 1777. The creation of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata had, by removing Peruvian control over Charcas, reduced the possibility of military cooperation between the two areas, accentuated their natural rivalry, and assured that the Upper Peruvian militia would receive no training or inspection. The continuing rivalry between the creolist Guirior and the anti-American Areche took the viceroy’s mind off policy matters and demanded that he exercise restraint in all areas of government. At the same time, Areche launched an attack on the creole majority in the audiencia of Lima, a reflection of Gálvez’ desire to reduce American influence in the civil bureaucracy of Spanish America. 24

Although Areche had no mandate to reform the militia, his suspicion of the creole “Men of Affairs—rich landowners and merchants who wear the braid and epaulets of soldiers—without possessing military virtues,” led him to attack this group in reports to the Crown. 25 Since the proliferation of militia units had the economic impact of exempting the soldiers and officers from the tax rolls, Areche quite naturally viewed the group as a threat to the success of the visitation. He thus complained to Gálvez that Peru possessed an officer corps larger than that of Spain itself, creole residents of Lima who officered imaginary provincial companies and exercised full military privileges. In order to prevent this situation from deteriorating further, Areche continually used his vote on Guirior’s War Council to defeat proposals to further train the militia. 26 Spanish enlisted men from the fixed Battalion of Callao were given acting officerships and attached to the militia providing whatever training the militia received. Creoles were obviously aware of the discrimination against them and may have responded by avoiding militia service. Some even used the militia to redress their own grievances against the Crown.

Opposition to the visitation surfaced several times during the period 1777-1780, especially following Spains entrance into the North American Revolution in 1779. Areche suspected local militia of complicity or at least thought them to be sufficiently sympathetic to the revolts which broke out during these years to question their loyalty. Because Areche collected census data as part of his tax measures, and these also served as the basis for militia recruitment, opponents of the visitation normally were hostile towards military service as well. As early as 1779 Areche’s efforts to impose a “military contribution” on mulattoes had produced a revolt by mulatto militiamen in Lam-bayeque, which served as a model for later tax revolts in Cuzco and Arequipa. 27 That same year, when Guirior attempted to assemble the limeño militia for the war with Britain, only a fraction appeared, leading the viceroy to believe that they were forbidden to muster by their white employers. 28 So understrength was the fixed battalion that Guirior complained it was “incapable of defending its own barracks,” and forced levies were re-instituted after “all gentle means” of securing recruits had failed. 29

By 1780 several veteran officers had noticed the rising tempo of violence in Peru and had requested that strong military measures be taken to insure public saftey. 30 Yet these proposals were rejected by Guirior on the grounds of expense, probably out of the belief that Areche would exploit the situation for his personal benefit if any expenditures were made. Nor was leadership on the issue forthcoming from Madrid. Gálvez constantly sought information concerning the militia but was unwilling to authorize funds to insure adequate training and inspection. The massive amounts of information forwarded by the audiencias to the Crown seemingly convinced Gálvez that there was no military solution for Indian violence. Since prior to 1780 Indian recalcitrance had been largely restricted to frontier areas of Peru and did not directly threaten Lima or the mining regions the Crown felt little cause for alarm. 31

The events of 1780 are well-known and need only be briefly recounted here. Tax revolts in Cuzco and Arequipa, inspired by Areche’s increase in the alcabala, or sales tax, from four to six per cent, produced attacks on the customshouses of the cities and their directors. Guirior’s passive response, refusing to dispatch units from the fixed battalion, led Areche to convince Gálvez that the viceroy was indeed an enemy of the visitation, actively conspiring with the creole land owners. A Royal Order of July 21, 1780 ordered him replaced by Colonel Agustín de Jáuregui, the Captain General of Chile. 32

On November 4, 1780, José Gabriel Condorcanqui, the cacique of Tinta, a small town in the Vilcamayu Valley about eighty miles south of Cuzco, the former imperial capital of the Inca Empire in the central sierra, captured the corregidor de indios, Colonel Antonio de Arriaga. Taking the name of Túpac Amaru II, in honor of his lineal descendant Tupac Amaru I, the last Inca ruler of Peru, Condorcanqui accused Arriaga of numerous extortions against the Indians of the district. He spoke passionately against the repartimiento and of the abuses of mita, or labor service which the Indians were forced to make in the silver mines of Upper Peru. These practices, he asserted, reduced the Indians to a condition of indentured servitude. They also disrupted the Indian family by increasing migrancy and forcing Indian women into prostitution to support their families during their husbands’ absences. On November 10, Arriaga was publicly executed as an example to the King, who was asked to abolish the corrupt corregidor system and its abuses. 33

At least three elements set the Túpac Amaru revolt apart from the numerous Indian revolts which punctuated Peru during the late colonial period, causing it to develop into the most severe threat to Spanish authority in Peru prior to independence. First, Túpac Amaru was a leader of uncommon stature, a masterful recruiter, and a charismatic personality. 34 Secondly, he chose a vulnerable opponent in the person of Arriaga, continually asserted the legitimacy of his movement, and secured the support of important creoles such as the Bishop of Cuzco Juan Manuel de Moscoso, and other non-Indians producing a popular uprising which would force the viceroy to accept his demands. 35 Finally, the revolt took place in an area which was heavily populated by Indians and mestizos whose hostility to Spanish authority had been assured by the overbearing Areche. As later events would clearly demonstrate, Cuzco was militarily helpless to defend itself against attack. 36

Reports emanating from Cuzco confirm the panic which gripped the defenseless city. Following the receipt of the news of Arriaga’s capture, the corregidor Fernando Inclán Valdés assembled the War Council which dispatched a courier to Lima at 3:45 a.m. on the morning of November 13 with a petition. The petition requested that fixed troops from Lima be sent to aid Cuzco since the militia was too weak to resist an attack. 37 Apparently the War Council was deeply divided internally regarding the actions to be taken and certain officers had even fled the city to save their own lives. Recruitment for the militia proved impossible even when full military privileges were promised. Several observers felt that a majority of cuzqueños openly favored the rebels and believed therefore that at least 2,000 trained soldiers would be required to garrison the city adequately. 38

On November 17 two provincial corregidors whose districts had been overrun by the rebels assembled a militia of 604 men and 700 loyal Indian auxiliaries and set out for Tinta. In the evening they reached the small village of Sangarara and camped near the main square, planning to attack the rebel stronghold the following day. Their approach, however, had been observed by the rebels who attacked at dawn. Túpac Amaru, at the head of an army of 6,000 men, forced the militia to take refuge in the local church. After refusing an offer of safe passage for all Americans, the Spaniards suffered heavy casualties when the church was fired and a powder magazine exploded. In all, 576 persons died in the battle, 390 of whom were militiamen. By demolishing the myth of the invincibility of Spanish arms, the rebel victory at Sangarara gave renewed strength to the revolt. 39

Suspicions that many cuzqueños may have been sympathetic to the revolt hampered Inclán Valdés’ efforts to defend the city. In order to hold the loyalties of the Indians of the immediate region, the corregidor commissioned several of the caciques, and employed the urban militia Company of Merchants as a civic guard. Much of the military leadership seems to have been provided by the clergy. Bishop Moscoso, who may have turned away from Túpac Amaru following the Sangarara massacre, placed the moral authority of the Church on the Spanish side by excommunicating the rebel leader and collecting 110,881 pesos with which to raise troops and construct fortifications. The clergy even raised their own militia under the command of Manuel de Mendieta, the dean of the cathedral chapter. The arrival of several provincial corregidors in Cuzco by mid-December made available an estimated 3,000 men for the defense of the city. 40

Upon receiving news of the revolt on November 24, Jáuregui dispatched veteran Colonel Gabriel de Avilés to Cuzco with 200 soldiers from the militia Regiment of Mulattoes, the most loyal and well-trained of the limeño units. On reaching the city on January 1, 1781, Avilés reported that defenses were in a shambles, directed by a small group of corregidors and untrained Indian irregulars. He characterized the cuzqueño militia as insolent and unwilling to take orders from anyone but the corregidors, which forced the colonel and his staff to jail 200 of them and spend an excessive amount of time on disciplinary matters. 41 Prior to this, Valdés had utilized the militia Company of Merchants and Indian auxiliaries to dislodge the rebel Indians from the heights of Picchu surrounding the city. Túpac Amaru, because he disliked fighting Indians, whom the Spanish employed as frontline troops, and because negotiations with Cuzco had broken down, lifted the seige of the city and returned to Tinta to regroup his forces. This proved to be a turning point in the struggle. The arrival of Areche and del Valle allowed the Spaniards to mount an offensive from Cuzco in March, 1781. They captured the Inca the following month. 42

Upon receipt of the news of the Sangarara slaughter Areche complained to Gálvez that the creole town council of Cuzco had mismanaged the war and informed him that he was leaving immediately as the viceroy’s personal representative. He noted that the officers of the limeño militia had, with a single exception, refused to volunteer their companies for service in Cuzco. 43 In subsequent letters Areche warned Gálvez that the Peruvian militia were nothing but “unarmed gangs lacking any knowledge of tactics or discipline.” He called the creoles “cowards who fled to the cities and the coast to avoid service.” Jáuregui, Moscoso, and del Valle were characterized as weaklings who should be immediately replaced. 44

With the news of the Sangarara bloodshed in hand, and fearful of the fall of Cuzco, Jáuregui on December 12 issued an edict offering a pardon to all who would agree to desert the rebel cause and announced the abolition of the repartimiento. 45 While this edict was intended to defuse the revolt, it revived it instead as Indians defiantly claimed the order as a victory over the corregidors. In retaliation, the corregidors registered their displeasure by refusing to release supplies or soldiers for the expedition marching to Cuzco, claiming that they were needed for local defense. En route to Cuzco at the head of 200 fixed soldiers and a contingent of mulatto militia, Royalist officers complained that corregidors would rather see the King’s soldiers defeated than lose to the army a single Indian who might owe them a bolt of cloth. In Cuzco, Commissar of War José del Lagos reported that cuzqueños hid their mules and refused to sell the army provisions. 46

Incensed at the turn of events, Areche moved swiftly to assume control of the war effort. In January Jáuregui had issued a circular order allowing corregidors to call up two militia companies for defense of their districts. Areche, using his control over the royal treasury, subsequently notified these officials that he would not release funds to cover the payment of the militiamen. In a letter to Gálvez he stated that the militia were all employees, retainers, and dependents of the corregidors who used them for their own corrupt purposes. He estimated that he had saved the Crown 2.26 million pesos annually by refusing to support these units and urged that in the future militiamen be paid by the Commissariat of War in Cuzco rather than individual corregidors in order to further reduce their power. 47

While Cuzco was under military administration, Areche and the other Spanish members of the visitation imposed their will on the general public, which they suspected of disloyalty. The visitor’s mania for reducing costs dictated that the war be financed through voluntary means but cuzqueños were slow to respond to the hated visitor’s overtures. In retaliation, Areche brushed aside their claims for reimbursement for prior service. He refused, for example, to pay the men who had defended the Bridge which connected Cuzco and Lima, allowing the Spanish expedition to enter the city. Areche’s unwillingness to excuse faithful Indian caciques from tribute payments proved to be a serious deterrent to recruitment. Army officials hotly criticized the practice, noting that the provincianos would rather suffer punishment than enlist. Del Valle told Jáuregui that forced levies provoked terrible violence. He also painted a sordid picture of profiteering among the soldiers who had cornered scarce foodstuffs and were selling them to the people at highly inflated prices. 48

Aware of the cuzqueños’ hatred of the military, Areche chose to by-pass all but a few existing militia units in mounting an expedition to attack the rebel stronghold in Tinta. Instead, he utilized fixed soldiers from Lima and the loyal corregidors, the latter primarily because of their control over the caciques and loyal Indians of the region. Taking advantage of longstanding rivalries among ayllus, or clans, and between Indian villages, and using a variety of false promises, the visitor raised an army of 15,000 men, 14,000 of whom were loyal Indian conscripts. Placing them and their caciques and corregidors under the command of regular Spanish officers, Areche put a formidable army into the field (see Table II). Although the army wreaked havoc in the countryside, its loyalty, ability to fight the rebels on their own terms, and the advantage of forestalling the need to recruit among other social groups, combined to bring about the capture of Túpac Amaru, his family, and lieutenants in April, 1781. Areche triumphantly conducted the captured rebel chief through the streets of Cuzco. Túpac Amaru was tried and found guilty of sedition and on May 18, Areche commanded that he and his followers be executed. 49

Far from ending the revolt, Túpac Amaru’s death seemed to further fan the flames of rebellion. Other supporters and allies of the Inca took the revolt into Upper Peru and other parts of South America during 1781 and 1782. This extension of the war further taxed the logistical capacities of the Army of Peru and indicated its inability to quell internal insurrections of this magnitude. Following the capture of Túpac Amaru, an Indian siege of Puno, located on the northwest bank of Lake Titicaca, forced the army to march into Upper Peru. Because Puno controlled the overland route between Cuzco and La Paz, Areche referred to it as “the Sagunto of America” and considered its retention crucial to avert the spread of revolt throughout the highlands. 50 Yet massive desertion among the loyal Indian troops recruited in Cuzco following Túpac Amaru’s capture forced the recruitment of new auxiliaries in Tinta. These also deserted en route to Puno due to the frigid winter weather and the broken promises of Spanish recruiters. In September, del Valle abandoned Puno and returned to Cuzco with only 1,100 men from an expedition which had left with 15,000. The fall of Puno, by allowing the rebellion to spread to La Paz and beyond, stimulated Areche’s efforts to oust del Valle and Jáuregui. The mutual recriminations which resulted within the viceregal administration also fully exposed the weaknesses of the Army of Peru. 51

The termination of the revolts in Upper Peru was accomplished by veteran detachments sent out from Buenos Aires at Jáuregui’s request. These seasoned troops lifted the sieges of La Paz and broke the back of the Indian offensive. The strain of constant warfare on both parties allowed negotiations to begin in late 1781. Jáuregui’s offer of a negotiated settlement and a general pardon to the rebel leaders, coupled with the persuasion of the clergy, convinced Diego Túpac Amaru and his 30,000 supporters to surrender in January, 1782. On August 23, Jáuregui felt confident enough to notify Gálvez that the revolts had been crushed and that Peru was once again at peace. 52 To insure its preservation, Areche tried the surviving rebel leaders and had them executed by July, 1783.

The close of the last Inca revolts forced the introduction of several administrative and personnel changes in Peru. The Crown replaced the discredited Viceroy Jáuregui in 1783 with Teodoro de Croix, the governor of New Spain’s Interior Provinces, a man well-versed in Indian affairs. Upon del Valle’s death the same year the King named Brigadier General Manuel de Pineda as Inspector-General of Troops, and replaced Areche with Jorge de Escobedo y Alarcón, who became visitor-general and intendant of Lima when that system supplanted the corregimientos in 1784. 53 Although the intendancy system completed the program of administrative centralization begun with the creation of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, the intendants had primarily economic and administrative functions and did not solve the problems of providing an internal defense. By 1784 the Spanish Crown had decided to end the militia experiment in Peru and to transform the army into an agency of internal control whose mission would be primarily to defend the viceroyalty from its lower classes rather than from a seaborne enemy. In so doing, the Caroline administration functionally altered the primary mission of the army after 1784.

The rationale for these changes stemmed from the Crown’s belief that the creoles had been the guiding force behind the revolts of 1780. Since the militia was largely a creole institution, financed and officered by limeños, suspicions of creole involvement in the revolts besmirched the militia’s reputation. In February, 1781, Colonel Demetrio Egan, a senior Royalist officer, reported to Gálvez that the creoles had initiated the Túpac Amaru revolt with the hope of seeming independence for Peru as the British colonists in North America had done. Since the creole militia was disloyal, he asked that 5,000 regular troops be sent from Spain to reestablish Royal authority. 54

It is clear that the Crown accepted these allegations at face value. In 1782 Gálvez notified Escobedo of his fears and secretly ordered Jáuregui to immediately train as many Europeans as possible in order to protect Lima from an attack. 55 His instructions to Viceroy Croix also assumed that the creoles had masterminded the revolt but admitted that definite proof was lacking. Characterizing the militia as useless, Gálvez announced the dispatch of two complete Spanish infantry regiments to Peru to dispel any illusion that Royal arms there were weak. 56

Local Spanish officials in Peru shared Gálvez’ apprehensions. Jáuregui believed, as did many others, that it was foolhardy to maintain a militia in the interior regions where nearly all the inhabitants were untrained and disloyal mestizos or Indians, especially when Cuzco was filled with “unfaithful subjects of high dignity and character” who might lead them. 57 A variety of private citizens called the militia “untrained libertines” whose depredations, condoned in wartime, were inexcusable in time of peace. 58 Lagos reiterated these opinions and asked the Crown to expand opportunities for members of the castas, in order to separate them from their Creole masters. 59

The decision to demobilize the militia in 1784 also reflected the Crown’s continuing desire to reduce fixed costs. Although it had permitted the temporary expansion of the fixed Battalion of Callao to regimental strength during the revolts, the arrival of the regular regiments in 1784 allowed a reduction in the strength of this unit. 60 Military commanders in Cuzco favored the deactivation of the militia there since the economy was in a shambles and the cuzqueños could no longer afford to support it. Captain Simón Gutiérrez urged Areche to station a large regular force in the city to allow militiamen to return their farms to production and thereby stimulate the economy. 61 Areche agreed to do this and estimated that an annual savings of one-half million pesos might be made if the militia was drastically reduced in size. 62

The reduction of the militia was not accomplished without some opposition. Inspector-General Pineda delivered a long report to Croix following an inspection of the militia and placed much of the blame for its miserable situation on Areche, whose efforts to keep expenses to a minimum had reduced the militia’s training cadres to the point where they were ineffective. Pineda recognized that Peru was both geographically and sociologically different from other areas of Spanish America and warned that militia regulations devised in Havana or Madrid had little applicability there. Less men were available for service, and those who were, either transients or residents of large haciendas, could not be easily assembled for training. Because an untrained militia produced disasters such as that which had occurred in Sangarara, Pineda recommended that they either be adequately trained or abolished. 63 Earlier, Escobedo had presented Gálvez with the unpleasant casualty figures and economic results of the revolts: 100,000 persons had died during the fighting, which had cost the Crown 2.5 million pesos to crush. Still military expenditures remained at 1.5 million pesos annually, 730,000 pesos of which were used to train a discredited and inept militia. Arguing that militia rolls in Peru were even larger than census rolls, Escobedo asked Gálvez to authorize the reforms proposed earlier by Areche. 64

In order to implement the militia reduction, Gálvez began by denying promotions to prominent creoles who had served during the revolts. Promotion lists drawn up by Avilés and del Valle, who were more sympathetic than most to creole aspirations, contained promotion and reward recommendations for an almost equal number of Spaniards and Creoles. Since these promotions were crucial to the military career, Gálvez’ selection of certain individuals for honors offers evidence of a continuing pattern of discrimination against Americans, a design also evident in the civil bureaucracy. In his recommendations, Gálvez pointedly denied the requests of several worthy creoles while rewarding Spaniards, corregidors, and faithful caciques. 65 In September, 1784, the War Council in Lima voted to dramatically reduce the army by nearly 2,500 men, most of whom were serving as militia trainers, at an annual savings of nearly 580,000 pesos (see Table III). A series of orders also drastically reduced the number of militia units. Shortly thereafter, regular infantry units were dispatched to garrison the cities of Cuzco, Arequipa, La Paz, Oruro, Salta, Potosí, and Chuquisaca. 66

This brief examination of the Army of Peru suggests that the Caroline efforts failed to form a large and capable militia which could shoulder a major share of defensive responsibilities in the aftermath of the Seven Year’s War. Unlike other areas of Spanish America, the reform was tested by a massive internal revolt led by the charismatic Túpac Amaru. Yet the evidence indicates that Túpac Amaru’s movement lacked both force and organization when compared with Spanish military resources. That a highly unequal struggle persisted far longer than was necessary resulted from ineffective leadership, most notably the conflicts between Viceroys Guirior and Jáuregui and Visitor Areche, whose overwhelming desire to economize subordinated the principle of preparedness to that of economy.

The ineptitude and suspected disloyalty of the creole militia had the net effect of convincing Gálvez and his successors that a militia was untrustworthy in heavily Indian areas such as Peru. In a 1786 guideline to Charles III, the Conde de Floridabianca, Charles’ Minister of State, held that the traditional Hapsburg system of defense, based on fixed or veteran garrisons, was proper for Peru. Although he conceded that militiamen on the coast might be used successfully to combat a foreign invasion, domestic insurrection posed quite different problems. “Militiamen,” he noted, “as natives bom and educated with [a] dislike and jealousy of Spaniards, are likely to develop alliances with castas, or mixed-bloods, peoples of color, and others seeking to disrupt the peace.” Because creoles and mestizos served in the officer corps, he felt it necessary to always maintain a sufficient number of fixed units, officered by Spaniards, to defend the principal areas of Peru against foreigners and Royal subjects alike. Only the signing of the Peace of Paris in 1783, by allowing Spanish troops to be sent to Peru, had saved the viceroyalty from being overwhelmed. 67

The reforms made in the Army of Peru constituted an essential return to the Hapsburg defensive system which had been employed in Peru for the two centuries prior to the Seven Year’s War. After 1784 the Crown restricted the militia component of the army primarily to the coastal intendancies, which were divided into three military commandancies and placed under the control of Spanish command and staff groups. In 1787 the fixed Battalion of Callao was again returned to regimental strength, with preference in the officer corps being given to Spaniards. Viceroy Croix’s contention that Americans were weak, unaccustomed to the rigors of war, and competent as officers only when properly supervised by Spaniards, was reflected in the social composition of the new unit. Of the 157 officers serving in the fixed regiment in 1788, Spaniards outnumbered Creoles ninety-two to sixty-five and, with one exception, held every major rank in the command structure. 68

Creoles were aware of the discrimination inherent in the reform measures and reacted accordingly. Some warned the Crown of the consequences of its actions others may have even actively turned against it. The three Ugarte brothers, for example, members of the cuzqueño nobility who held a mayorazgo and high civil offices, served as militia officers during the revolt, probably to secure information for the rebels. Although the Spanish judges could not elicit a confession of their complicity from Túpac Amaru, the trio was banished from Peru and taken to Spain as prisoners following the revolts. Later the brothers petitioned the Crown for their just deserts, which they claimed were denied them on the basis of their birth. While theirs was an unusual case, creole members of the Town Council and War Council of Cuzco were also uniformly denied any honors. At least one creole militia officer reported that the expense of maintaining his company had so weakened his estate that he was forced to leave the service. 69

In general, however, the violence of the Indian revolts increased the social conservatism of Peruvian creoles. In 1814 they served loyally in putting down the revolt of Mateo García Pumacahua in Cuzco. Nevertheless, creoles undertook these ventures only out of self-interest and not to serve the King. 70 Peru remained a bulwark of Royalism by virtue of an army of occupation, an alien and increasingly hostile force whose garrisons remained vigilant towards Peruvians and patriots alike. 71

John Lynch, The Spanish-American Revolutions, 1808-1826 (New York, 1973), p. 162, Vicente Rodríguez Casado and José A. Calderón Quijano, eds., Memoria de Gobierno del Virrey José F. de Abascal y Sousa (Seville, 1944), plates 8 and 10, following pp. 336 and 352.

This opinion is held by Vicente Rodríguez Casado and Florentino Pérez Embid, eds., Memoria de gobierno del Virrey Amat (Seville, 1947), p. liii Alfredo Sáenz-Rico Urbina, El virrey Amat. 2 vols. (Barcelona, 1967), I, 238-239 Luis Martín, The Kingdom of the Sun. A Short History of Peru (New York, 1974), p. 144. It has been rejected, however, by Rubén Vargas Ugarte, Historia del Perú. Virreinato. (Siglo XVIII), 1700-1790, (Lima, 1956), p. 324, note 6.

Instrucción que debe observar don José Antonio de Areche en la Visita y arreglo de los Tribunales de Cuenta, Cajas, y Ramos de Real Hacienda en los Reinos del Perú, Chile y Provincias de la Plata, accompanying the Instrucción reservada para interior gobierno del Visitador General del Perú. El Pardo, March 11, 1776. Archivo General de las Indias, Seville, Audiencia de Lima (hereafter cited as AGI, Lima), leg. 1082.

L. N. McAlister, The “Fuero Militar” in New Spain, 1764-1800 (Gainesville, Florida, 1957), and the same author’s “Social Structure and Social Change in New Spain,” HAHR, 43 (Aug., 1963), 349-370, deal with the militia as a vehicle for social change. The work of Christon I. Archer, “To Serve the King: Military Recruitment in Late Colonial Mexico,” HAHR, 55 (May, 1975), 226-250, focuses largely upon the army’s impact on common people in an effort to expand the social history of late colonial Mexico.

Richard Konetzke, Süd und Mittelamerika I: Die Indianerkulturen Altamerikas und die Spanisch-Portugiesche Kolonialherrschaft (Frankfurt, 1965), pp. 157-164 James Lockhart, Spanish Peru, 1532-1560: A Colonial Society (Madison, 1968), pp. 138-140.

Extracto de la revista del Batallon del Callao, December 1, 1758. AGI, Lima, leg. 1490. Estado que manifiesta el actual destino y fuerza de la Tropa que hay en América, Madrid, Jan. 8, 1771, AGI, Indiferente General (hereafter IG), leg. 74. Most of the nearly 45,000 fixed troops in America were situated in the circum-Caribbean region where the threat of an English attack was the most pronounced: Puerto Rico had 2,884 soldiers while New Spain had 6,196. The presence of eleven Portuguese regiments in Brazil required that 4,682 soldiers be stationed in the Río de la Plata.

See the comments of the French military engineer Amadée Frezier, A Voyage to the South-Sea and along the coasts of Chili and Peru, in the years 1712, 1713, and 1714 (London, 1717), p. 103, and of the Spanish naval lieutenants Jorge Juan and Antonio de Ulloa, Noticias secretas de América sobre el estado naval, militar y político de los reynos del Peru y provincias de Quito, costas de Nueva Granada y Chile. 2 vols. in one (London, 1826), I, 43-49, 122-123, 164-166, 178, 204-205.

Lawrence A. Clayton, “Local Initiative and Finance in the Viceroyalty of Peru: The Development of Self-Reliance,” HAHR, 54 (May, 1974), 284-304, indicates that the Crown relied upon the private sector of the economy to furnish defenses for Peru during the seventeenth century.

Manuel Fuentes, ed. Memorias de los virreyes que han gobernado el Perú durante el tiempo del coloniaje español, 6 vols. (Lima, 1859), IV, 110-112, 267-272 Viceroy José Antonio Manso de Velasco to Fray Julián de Arriaga, Minister of the Indies, Lima, Feb. 2, 1759, AGI, Lima, leg. 1490, ff. 1-3.

Seventeenth century descriptions of the soldiery include Boleslao Lewin, ed., Descripción del virreinato del Perú. Crónica inédita del comienzos del siglo xvii (Rosario, Argentina, 1958), pp. 41-42, 69, and Robert Ryal Miller, ed., Chronicle of Colonial Lima. The Diary of Josephe and Francisco Mugaburu, 1640—1697 (Norman, 1975), pp. 216, 235. An example of eighteenth century commentary is in Fuentes, Memorias de los virreyes, IV, 262-263.

Fuentes, Memorias de los virreyes, IV, 283-284. Viceroy Manso speaks of a militia located in Lima and its environs which he estimated at between 4,000 and 6,000 men. No militia is mentioned outside of the capital, although presumably some informal companies existed in the larger cities.

Military activities prior to 1760 are covered in Chapter I of my unpublished doctoral dissertation, “The Military Reform in the Viceroyalty of Peru, 1762-1800,” (The University of Florida, 1970), pp. 9-24, and in my related article, “The Changing Racial and Administrative Structure of the Peruvian Military Under the Later Bourbons,” The Americas, 32 (July, 1975), 117-133. Anson’s capture of Paita is covered in Vargas Ugarte, Historia del Perú, pp, 189-193 the Juan Santos revolt is described by Francisco Loayza, Juan Santos, el invencible (Lima, 1942).

Alfonso Santa, Assessor of the Royal Tobacco Monopoly, to Fray Juan de Yecla, the Royal Confessor, Lima, Mar. 10, 1766, cited in Sáenz-Rico Urbina, El virrey Amat, I, 215-216.

Amat’s reforms are fully treated in Sáenz-Rico Urbina, El virrey Amat, I, 213-278. His fortification program is described in Vicente Rodríguez Casado and Florentino Pérez Embid, Construcciones militares del Virrey Amat (Seville, 1949).

Lista de los oficiales que con mayor esmero y sobre saliente ferbor en la Guerra proxima pasada, se dedicaron al arreglo egercicio y ensenañza de los soldados de su cargo, Lima, Feb. 23, 1765. AGI, Lima 1491. A complete listing of the creole officers, who came from the most illustrious houses of Lima, is made in Sáenz-Rico Urbina, El virrey Amat, I, 227-232. The militia Regiment of Cavalry of the Nobility, which Amat himself commanded, was so exclusive that the first company was composed exclusively of persons holding titles of Castile. This example caused status-conscious members of the lower social groups to join the militia also.

McAlister, “Fuero Militar,” p. 3.

This lack of concern with Peru was manifested by the dispatch of Brigadier General Francisco Javiér de Morales as inspector-general of troops to Peru to train the militia. Upon the death of the president of the Audiencia of Chile in 1770, he was ordered by Gálvez to remain in Chile as president, which further delayed the training of the Peruvian militia. This lack of training for the militia contrasts with the situation in New Spain described by McAlister, “The Reorganization of the Army of New Spain, 1763-1766,” HAHR, 33 (Feb., 1953), 1-32.

Viceroy Manuel de Guirior to José de Gálvez, Lima, Oct. 20, 1776, ff. 1-2, Archivo General de Simancas: Guerra Moderna (hereafter AGS, GM) leg. 7128. Guirior estimated that only 7,139 infantry and 8,054 cavalry militia were effectively capable of defending Peru from attack. Amat’s Reglamento sobre las milicias del Virreynato del Peru, Lima, Aug. 31, 1766, AGI, Lima, leg. 654, was adapted from the Plan de Milicias, which accompanied a Royal Order to Amat, Madrid, May 16, 1763, AGS, GM, leg. 7128. Not until 1793 was the Cuban Militia Regulation finally re-published in Peru. This regulation provided for regular training but its organizational format, designed for application is a smaller geographic area, made it unsuitable for Peru.

Vicente Palacio Atard, Areche y Guirior observaciones sobre el fracaso de una visita al Perú (Seville, 1946).

John TePaske, “La crisis del siglo XVIII en el virreinato del Perú,” in Bernardo García Martínez, ed., Historia y sociedad en el mundo de habla española (Mexico, 1970), pp. 263-279. The economic crisis may well have affected the relationship between local corregidors and their Indian subjects. All of the Indian rebellions were in opposition to this official.

The economic effects of the creation of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata are described in Céspedes del Castillo, Lima y Buenos Aires, pp. 97-130. Note the drop in Peruvian revenues between 1774 and 1777, set out in the tables on pp. 81, 145-146.

Figures from the Caja de Lima, furnished me by Professor TePaske, indicate that half, or 1.174 million of the 2.2 million pesos spent for defense, were sent in the form of subsidies to other areas of South America to help bolster their developing economies and provide for their defense. Céspedes del Castillo, Lima y Buenos Aires, pp. 86-88, 103-104, notes that over four million pesos went to Buenos Aires alone during the period 1776-1780.

The later Hapsburg and early Bourbon viceroys to Peru spent an average of thirty per cent of governmental revenues on war and defense items. This figure rose to 89.5 per cent during the Seven Year’s War but by 1777 had dropped to 36.52 per cent, an absolute decrease of fifty-three per cent. All of this reflects the desire of policymakers in Madrid and Lima to subordinate preparedness to economy.

Leon G. Campbell, “A Creole Establishment: Creole Domination of the Audiencia of Lima During the Late Eighteenth Century,” HAHR, 52 (Feb., 1972), 1-25 Mark A. Burkholder, “From Creole to Peninsular: The Transformation of the Audiencia of Lima,” HAHR, 52 (Aug., 1972), 395-415.

Areche to Gálvez, Lima, Apr. 12, 1780, ff. 1-28, AGI, Lima, leg. 1084 Areche to Gálvez, no. 462, Lima, Aug. 18, 1782, ff. 1-3, AGI, Lima, leg. 1087.

Guirior to Gálvez, Lima, July 20, 1778, ff. 1-2, AGI, Lima, leg. 1493. Later Inspector-General José del Valle accused Areche of crippling the militia so that it was ineffective against the forces of Túpac Amaru, del Valle to Gálvez Cuzco, July 17, 1781, ff. 1-10, AGI, Cuzco, leg. 63.

Leon Campbell, “Black Power in Colonial Peru: The 1779 Tax Rebellion of Lambayeque,” Phylon, 33 (Summer, 1972), 140-152.

Guirior to Pedro de Ureta, Secretary to José de Gálvez, Lima, Sept. 28, 1779, ff. 1-2, AGI, Lima, leg. 659.

Guirior to Gálvez, Lima, Oct. 5, 1779, ff. 1-3, AGI, Lima, leg. 1483.

Proyecto del Coronel D. Demetrio Egaña, Caballero de la Orden de Santiago, para la seguridad interior de las provincias del Reyno del Peru y resguardo de sus puertos principales, Lima, Oct. 11, 1779. Biblioteca del Palacio Real, Madrid, Manuscritos de América (hereafter BPR, MA), vol. 2855, 212-254.

An idea of the volume of information reaching the Crown from the Audiencias of Lima, Cuzco, Charcas, and Buenos Aires, concerning Indian revolts in Peru and elsewhere, is given by Francisco Morales Padrón, comp. “Documentos en el Archivo General de Indias referentes a sublevaciones indígenas en el siglo XVIII,” V Congreso Internacional de Historia de América, 5 vols. (Lima, 1971), I, 3-428.

The tax revolts are described in Boleslao Lewin, La rebelión de Túpac Amaru y los orígines de la independencia de Hispano-América, 3rd ed., revised (Buenos Aires, 1967), pp. 131-189. Luís A. Eguiguren, ed., Guerra separatista. Rebeliones de Indios en Sur América. Crónica de Melchor de Paz, 2 vols. (Lima, 1952), I, 84-166. Report from Areche to the Crown, Dec., 1780, ff. 1-4. AGI, Lima, leg. 1039 Royal Officer of Cuzco to Areche, Cuzco, Apr. 12, 1780, ff. 1-3, AGI, Lima, leg. 1039. Gálvez’ annotations in the margin of the Secret Report from Areche, AGI, Lima, leg. 645b (incomplete) states that Guirior was being removed as an enemy of the visitation.

The revolt is treated as separatist by Lewin, La rebelión de Túpac Amaru, and by Carlos Daniel Valcárcel, Túpac Amaru, el revolucionario (Lima, 1970). Lillian Estelle Fisher’s The Last Inca Revolt, 1780-1783 (Norman, 1966), more properly sees it as a reformist movement. Anthropologist John Rowe views the revolt as the culmination of an Inca nationalist movement which appeared early in the eighteenth century. “El movimiento nacional inca del siglo XVIII,” Revista Universitaria, 43:107 (2nd. trimestre, Cuzco, 1954), 17-47.

The charisma of Túpac Amaru is attested to by the Royalist commander José del Valle, who told Gálvez that the rebel leader had had no trouble recruiting an army estimated at 70,000 men. Cuzco, Mar. 1, 1781, ff. 1-4, AGI, Lima, leg. 1044. Oscar Comblit’s interesting article, “Society and Mass Rebellion in Eighteenth Century Peru and Bolivia,” in Raymond Carr, ed., Latin American Affairs, St. Antony’s Papers, no. 22 (Oxford, 1970), pp. 24-27, observes that many Indians moved south to avoid mita service during this period. As forasteros, or foreigners, they were most susceptible to joining a charismatic leader of Tupac Amaru’s type. The whole subject of recruitment during the rebellion remains totally unstudied.

Arriaga had been excommunicated by the Creole Bishop of Cuzco Juan Manuel de Moscoso, who may have been an accomplice in the revolt. In addition, he had distributed 300,000 pesos worth of merchandise in the province when the limit had been established at 112,000 pesos. Fisher, The Last Inca Revolt, pp. 39-43. Moscoso’s exact role in the revolt is unclear. Following the revolt, however, he was exonerated by the Crown and appointed Archbishop of Granada.

Fisher, The Last Inca Revolt, pp. 49-51, and Valcárcel, Túpac Amaru, pp. 204—215, both demonstrate strong Creole support for Túpac Amaru at least in the early stages of the revolt. The clandestine nature of this support makes it very difficult to determine the true social composition of the revolt, but the number of non-Indians placed on trial with Túpac Amaru following the rebellion indicates a broad social backing. Colección documental de la Independencia del Perú, 30 vols. (Lima, 1974), II, part 2, 778-779. This support served to convince Areche that the militia might turn their weapons against the Crown if employed against the rebels. Areche to Agustín de Jáuregui, Cuzco, Mar. 16, 1781, f. 3, AGI, Lima, leg. 1085.

Report of the War Council of Cuzco to Jáuregui, Colección documental, II, part 2, 266-268.

Reports of Bishop Moscoso to the War Council, Cuzco, November 14, 1780, and to Viceroy Jáuregui, Nov. 16, 1780, in Francisco Loayza, ed., Estado del Perú. (Lima, 1944), pp. 134-137 Moscoso to Areche, Nov. 16, 1780, and to Jáuregui, Nov. 21, 1780, in Colección documental, II, part 2, 275-284, 296-301. Moscoso’s views are confirmed by Francisco Laesquilla, the Creole corregidor of Chumbivilcas. Relación de los pasajes acaecidos en esta Ciudad del Cuzco con motivo de la revelion causada por el indio José Gabriel Túpac Amaru, Cuzco, Dec. 3, 1780, ff. 10-20. Bancroft Library, Documentos sobre Túpac Amaru (hereafter BL, TA).

Colección documental, II, part 1, 97-148 part 2, 266-268, 287-289. The exact size of Túpac Amaru’s army at any given time is uncertain but the victory apparently aided recruitment. Lewin, La rebelión de Túpac Amaru, p. 431, estimates that at least 100,000 Indians were mobilized within a 1,500-kilometer radius of Cuzco.

The activities of the clergy in Cuzco are described by Jáuregui in the Relaciones de los virreyes y audiencias que han gobernado el Perú. 3 vols. (Madrid, 1867-1872), III, 320-326.

Avilés to Gálvez, Cuzco, Jan. 28, 1783, ff. 1-3, AGI, Lima, leg. 1483 Relaciones de los virreyes, III, 144-145.

Túpac Amaru’s decision to besiege rather than attack Cuzco in December, 1780 indicates the lack of adequate force and organization of the rebel army. George Kubier, “The Quechua in the Colonial World,” in Juhan Steward, ed., Handbook of South American Indians (Washington, D.C., 1946), p. 386 Julio César Chaves, Túpac Amaru (Asunción, 1973), pp. 153-154.

Areche to Gálvez, no. 249, Lima, Dec. 22, 1780, ff. 1-7, AGI, Lima, leg. 1084. The only militia commander to volunteer for service was Colonel José Antonio Borda of the Regiment of Cavalry of Carabaillo, who was given command of the military treasury.

Areche to the Crown, no. 111, Lima, June 25, 1781, f. 1, AGI, Lima, leg. 1044 Ibid., no. 150, Lima, Apr. 24, 1782, f. 1.

The edict, published in Lima on Dec. 19, 1780, is reproduced in the Colección documental, II, part 2, 289-291, 333-340. Royal approval of the action is granted in the Royal order to Jáuregui, no. 164, El Pardo, July 12, 1781, AGI, Lima, leg. 1040.

Areche to the Crown, Lima, Jan. 26, 1782, f. 1, AGI, Lima, leg. 1041 del Valle to Jáuregui, no. 2, Cuzco, Sept. 16, 1781, ff. 1-2, AGI, Lima, leg. 1044 del Valle to a friend, cited in Clements R. Markham, Travels in Peru and India (London, 1862), p. 128. Lagos to del Valle, no. 16, Cuzco, Sept. 17, 1781, ff. 1-2, AGI, Lima, leg. 1044.

Circular order to corregidors from Viceroy Jáuregui, Lima, Jan. 15, 1781, AGI, Lima, leg. 1085 Relaciones de los virreyes, III, 150-152 Areche to Gálvez, Cuzco, Mar. 20, 1781, ff. 1-17, AGS, GM, leg. 7128.

Areche’s actions are described in the Colección documental, II, part 1, 567-594 part 4, 58-69, 72—74. Manuel de Villalta to del Valle, no. 5, General Barracks (Cuzco), Sept. 14, 1781, f. 1, AGI, Lima, leg. 1044 Ibid., del Valle to Jáuregui, no. 10, Sept. 17, 1781, f. 1 Ibid., no. 11, Sept. 18, 1781, f. 1.

The capture and execution of Túpac Amaru is described in Melchor de Paz, Guerra separatista, I, 349-359.

Areche to Joaquín Antonio Orellano, Corregidor of Puno, no. 93, Cuzco, June 26, 1781, f. 1, AGI, Lima, leg. 1040. Saguntum was an Iberian fortress which held out for eight months against Hannibal and the Carthaginians in 219 b.c.

Spanish commanders noticed immediately that Indian intransigence against the army and support for the rebels was stronger in Upper Peru than it had been in Cuzco. Del Valle to Areche, Campo de Yaechata, May 18, 1781, ff. 1-4, Biblioteca Nacional Lima, Documentos sobre la Rebelión de Túpac Amaru (hereafter BNL, TA), leg. C45550. This led to a policy of harsh reprisals against suspected rebel sympathizers which further alienated the army from the people. On July 17, 1781, Areche wrote to Jáuregui from Cuzco, despairing of the chance for a military victory, and giving notice that hereafter he would try to starve the rebels into submission by firing the countryside. AGI, Lima, leg. 1044. del Valle responded to Areche’s criticisms with a long and bitter indictment of Areche and Lagos, whom he accused of sabotaging the expedition. The inspector bitterly concluded tirat his soldiers were better-prepared for the rebels than they were against the officers of the visitation in Cuzco. Del Valle to Gálvez, Cuzco, Sept. 28, 1781, ff. 1-10, AGI, Cuzco, leg. 63.

Jáuregui to Gálvez, Lima, Aug. 23, 1782, f. 1, AGI, Lima, leg. 1082 Colección documental, II, part 3, 99-101 Fisher, The Last Inca Revolt, pp. 348-383.

These changes are covered in J. R. Fisher, Government and Society in Cobnial Peru. The Intendant System, 1784-1814 (London, 1970), pp. 25-28 ff.

Relacion del Coronel D. Demetrio Egan de los alborotos del Peru al Sr, José de Gálvez, Lima, Feb. 20, 1781, ff. 1-11, AGI, Lima, leg. 1493.

Gálvez to Escobedo, no. 21, Apr. 5, 1782, f. 1, AGI, Cuzco, leg. 29 Ibid., no. 151, n.d., AGI, Lima, leg. 1044 Reserved Letter to Jáuregui, Madrid, Oct. 23, 1782, ff. 1-2, AGI, Cuzco, leg. 29.

Informe del Rey a dn. Teodoro de Croix, instruendole de los principales acaecimientos en el Reyno del Peru con el fin de que le sirvan de goviemo estas noticias. El Pardo, Mar. 28, 1783, AGI, Lima, leg. 640.

Jáuregui to Gálvez, no. 7, May 16, 1783, ff. 1-2, AGI, Cuzco, leg. 74 Relaciones de los vireyes, III, 171.

See for example, Decada 4 o de la escena en la revelion de José Gabriel Tupac-Amaru, Cuzco, May 22, 1781, ff. 14-15, BL, TA.

Reflexiones a favor de los Reinos del Peru, Madrid, July 10, 1787, 26 ff, AGI, Lima, leg. 1029.

The expansion was to allow the training of militia in Arequipa, Trujillo, and Huamanga during the war with Britain, and to permit the detachment of troops to Cuzco. Relaciones de los virreyes, III, 190-194. In April, 1784, the 2,561 soldiers from the Spanish Infantry Regiments of Soria and Extremadura arrived in Lima.

Colección documental, II, part 3, 25-30 Francisco Loayza, ed., La verdad desnuda. Las dos faces de un obispo. Escrita en 1780 por un imparcial religioso (Lima, 1943), pp. 200-203.

El Visitador y Superintendente general de la Real Hazienda del Peru informa a S.M. con varios planes y documentos el numero y clase de tropas que juzga necesarias para cubrir las atenciones de aquella América y poner en una justa subordinazion a sus vasallos, No. 331. Lima, Nov. 14, 1782, ff. 1-15, AGI, Lima, leg. 1086.

Report from Pineda to Croix, Lima, Aug. 12, 1784, ff. 1—11, AGI, Lima, leg. 667.

Escobedo to Gálvez, Lima, Jan. 16, 1784, ff. 1-2, AGI, Lima, leg. 1100 Escobedo to Jáuregui, Lima, June 2, 1784, ff. 1-2, AGI, Lima, leg. 667. Escobedo’s figures were substantiated by Diego Sáenz de Ayala, superintendent of the royal treasury, who reported to Croix, Lima, June 29, 1784, that a total of 1.26 million pesos was spent on the revolts in 1783, resulting in a deficit to the treasury of over one-half million pesos. AGI, Lima, leg. 667.

List of soldiers recommended for honors, appended to letter from Jáuregui to Gálvez, no. 201, Lima, Mar. 16, 1783, AGI, Lima, leg. 664. Gálvez’ recommendations are included in the Relación cierta de los sugetos que han servido en este obispado del Cuzco. 65 ff., AGI, Lima, leg. 1494.

Relaciones de los virreyes, III, 442 Memorias de los virreyes, V, 235-238.

Cited in William Coxe, Memoirs of the Kings of Spain of the House of Bourbon from the Accession of Phillip the Fifth to the Death of Charles the Third: 1700 to 1788, 3 vols. (London, 1813), I, 484—486 Gobierno del Señor Rey Don Carlos III, o instrucción reservada para dirección de la junta del estado que creó esta monarca dada a luz por don Andrés Muriel (Madrid, 1839), pp. 261-262.

Croix to Gálvez, Lima, Mar. 16, 1787, ff. 1-3, AGI, Lima, leg. 673. The service records of the Royal Regiment of Lima are located in AGS, GM, leg. 7283. The exception was the aged creole judge Manuel Mansilla, who served as adjutant-general. Campbell, “A Creole Establishment,” p. 24.

Information on the Ugartes is provided in the Relacion cierta, ff. 8, 9, 12, AGI, Lima, leg. 1494 Colección documental, II, part 3, 469-175, 484-488, 529-531 and Fisher, The Last Inca Revolt, pp. 51, 202, 226, 390. The representación of the Creole officers of the Royal Regiment of Lima warned the Crown that if this discrimination continued Americans might fail to respond to future calls to arms. Lima, Aug. 31, 1784, ff. 1—4, AGI, Lima, leg. 667.

In 1816, the Spanish president of the Audiencia of Cuzco told the Crown that the defeat of Pumacahua did not signify support for the army or for Spain. Fisher, Government and Society, p. 232.

Viceroy General Joaquín de la Pezuela y Sánchez Muñoz de Velasco noted in 1816 that “The soldiers of the King have no friends outside of the barracks.” Accounts sympathetic to the patriot side described the army as a virtual prison in which white officers kept nonwhite soldiers under a form of house arrest. W. B. Stevenson, Historical and Descriptive Narrative of a Twenty Year’s Residence in South America, 3 vols. (London, 1829), III, 48-49.

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The Tupac Amaru Rebellion

The largest rebellion in the history of Spain&rsquos American empire&mdasha conflict greater in territory and costlier in lives than the contemporaneous American Revolution&mdashbegan as a local revolt against colonial authorities in 1780. As an official collector of tribute for the imperial crown, José Gabriel Condorcanqui had seen firsthand what oppressive Spanish rule meant for Peru&rsquos Indian population. Adopting the Inca royal name Tupac Amaru, he set events in motion that would transform him into Latin America&rsquos most iconic revolutionary figure.

Tupac Amaru&rsquos political aims were modest at first. He claimed to act on the Spanish king&rsquos behalf, expelling corrupt Spaniards and abolishing onerous taxes. But the rebellion became increasingly bloody as it spread throughout Peru and into parts of modern-day Bolivia, Chile, and Argentina. By late 1780, Tupac Amaru, his wife Micaela Bastidas, and their followers had defeated the Spanish in numerous battles and gained control over a vast territory. As the rebellion swept through Indian villages to gain recruits and overthrow the Spanish corregidors, rumors spread that the Incas had returned to reclaim their kingdom.

Charles Walker immerses readers in the rebellion&rsquos guerrilla campaigns, propaganda war, and brutal acts of retribution. He highlights the importance of Bastidas&mdashthe key strategist&mdashand reassesses the role of the Catholic Church in the uprising&rsquos demise. The Tupac Amaru Rebellion examines why a revolt that began as a multiclass alliance against European-born usurpers degenerated into a vicious caste war&mdashand left a legacy that continues to influence South American politics today.

Aftermath and Legacy

The ultimate death toll is estimated at 100,000 Indians and 10,000-40,000 non-Indians.

Viceroy Jáuregui lessened mita obligations in an attempt to ameliorate some of the Indians’ complaints. In 1784, his successor, Teodoro de Croix, abolished the corregidors and reorganised the colonial administration around eight intendants. In 1787, an audiencia was established in Cuzco.

Areche’s decrees following the execution of Túpac Amaru II included the banning of the Quechua language, the wearing of indigenous clothing, and virtually any mention or commemoration of Inca culture and history. Areche’s attempts to destroy Inca culture after the execution of Túpac Amaru II were confirmed by royal decree in April 1782, however colonial authorities lacked the resources to enforce these laws and they were soon largely forgotten.

Watch the video: La gran rebelión de Túpac Amaru (November 2022).

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