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date: 24 March 2023

The Chinese in Perulocked

The Chinese in Perulocked

  • Patricia PalmaPatricia PalmaUniversity of Tarapaca - Campus Saucache, Ciencias Históricas y Geográficas


The Chinese Peruvian community is one of the largest in the Americas. It was part of a more significant diasporic movement that started in the mid-19th century and involved millions of Chinese immigrants. Between 1847 and 1874, thousands of Chinese workers migrated to Peru under semi-slavery conditions (the coolie trade). After the 1874 Treaty of Peace, Peru and the Qing dynasty signed the Friendship, Commerce, and Navigation treaty. The coolie trade ended and thus started a stage of free migration, which became restricted in 1909 and ultimately prohibited in 1930. During the early 20th century, the Chinese faced xenophobia, violence, and restrictive immigration policies, much like they did in other Latin American and Caribbean countries. This large immigrant group sparked discussions about race, migration, and interracial families in the country. Despite their questioned role in society, the Chinese in Peru made significant contributions to Peruvian society and commerce: providing entertainment, medical services, food, and imported goods to Peruvian families. Thanks to interracial marriages and mestizaje, the Chinese community strengthened and expanded. Children born to Chinese fathers and mothers were known as Tusans, an active community that would bridge trade in the 21st century between Peru and the People’s Republic of China.


  • History of Northern and Andean Spanish America
  • 1910–1945
  • 1945–1991
  • Social History

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