For her Masters thesis González-Castenada conducted field research in a southern
coastal area of Peru with people displaced by political violence. She examined the
challenging social and cultural dynamics facing Perus war refugees as they constructed
new communities and negotiated new identities. Subsequently she did extensive
ethnographic fieldwork in the Quechua-speaking highland community of Sarhua (Ayacucho,
Peru). From that research she wrote her doctoral dissertation which examined the
relationship between memory and secrecy through an analysis of oral histories and
indigenous paintings depicting the events of political violence during the armed conflict
between the Shining Path and the Peruvian government. 

That dissertation is the basis of a book manuscript titled Unveiling Secrets of War in
the Peruvian Highlands which is currently under review. 

Her interest in the cultural politics surrounding indigenous and vernacular art and the
positioning of these forms of art in the wider, national and transnational arenas, led
her to become the adviser and collaborator for two traveling art exhibits in the United
States: Weaving of War and Tradition and Crisis in Peruvian Popular Arts. She has
published two articles on a Peruvian artist, whose work appeared in the Weavings of War
exhibit, titled Experience of a Peruvian Arpillera Artist in New York City: Weaving and
Unraveling War Memories and Juana Huaytalla-Méndez: Peruvian Arpillerista. 

Prior to becoming an anthropologist, González completed her B.A. in psychology and
Licenciatura in clinical psychology. She taught at the Pontificia Universidad Católica in
the Department of Psychology and served as the executive director of the non-governmental
organization CEDAPP (Center for Psychosocial Development and Assessment). At CEDAPP she
worked with grass-root communities of Andean origin and children from economically poor
inner city neighborhoods, conducting seminars and supervising psychology students
completing their internships. 

EDUCATION: B.A., Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú; M.A., M.Phil, Ph.D., Columbia



Memorias pintadas de la violencia y el secreto público en Sarhua, Retablo – Revista de Análisis Político Regional (2010)


Popular Press


Roundtable: New Shining Path Studies at the Intersection of Anthropology and History, Andean Studies Committee, The Conference on Latin American History (CLAH) Events and the American Historical Association (AHA) Convention (2011)

Laughter, Silence and Roar in the Andes, Latin American Studies Association, LASA International Congress (2010)

Memorias pintadas y secretos públicos [Picturing Memories and Public Secrets], Course of Anthropology and History, organized by the Centro de Estudios Históricos Regionales Ayacucho (CEHRA) and the Social Sciences Department of the Universidad Nacional San Cristóbal de Huamanga (2010)

Memory, Exaggerated Truths and Secrecy in Visual Representations of Violence in Peru, American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA) Annual Meeting (2010)