Moyano, María Elena (1958–1992)

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Moyano, María Elena (1958–1992)

María Elena Moyano, a community leader and activist of Afro-Peruvian descent, was murdered by Shining Path guerrillas on February 15, 1992. Moyano's activism was forged in her youth in the shantytown of Villa El Salvador (VES), renowned for its community organization. A founding member of the Popular Federation of Women of Villa El Salvador (FEPOMUVES), Moyano helped organize hundreds of communal soup kitchens and women's groups in VES. An active member of the United Left, Moyano was elected deputy mayor of VES in 1989 and became a vocal opponent of both Shining Path violence and government repression. Moyano's murder epitomizes the terrorist violence of Shining Path; her life exemplifies the struggles of poor Peruvians to improve their circumstances amid a brutal and degrading internal conflict.

See alsoPeru, Revolutionary Movements: Shining Path; Villa El Salvador; Women.


Moyano, María Elena. The Autobiography of María Elena Moyano: The Life and Death of a Peruvian Activist, edited and annotated by Diana Miloslavich Túpac, translated by Patricia S. Taylor Edmisten. Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2000.

Burt, Jo-Marie. "Shining Path and the 'Decisive Battle.' In Lima's Barriadas: The Case of Villa El Salvador." In Shining and Other Paths: War and Society in Peru, 1980–1995, edited by Steve J. Stern, pp. 267-306. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1998.

                              Jo-Marie Burt