Rutgers University faculty and students are innovators in areas as wide-ranging as anthropology, migration, gender studies, geography, human rights, literature, and performance studies in the study of transnational and cross-cultural aspects of contemporary Peru.
Of particular note is the work of faculty and graduate students in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese, who conduct research in three areas relevant to Peru: linguistics, literary and cultural studies, and performance and memory in the Peruvian Andes. In linguistics, their research focuses on the theory and politics of second-language acquisition, bilingualism, and language contact in Peru. Literary and cultural studies in Peru focus on Amazonian literature and its place in the national literary canon. A third area of interest concerns performance and memory in the Peruvian Andes. In connection to this, several academic departments and centers at Rutgers have collaborated recently to bring to campus “Yuyachkani,” a Peruvian human rights performance troupe and one of Latin America's best known theater collectives.
The Department of Spanish and Portuguese also runs a very popular summer study abroad program in Cuzco. Students take classes on Peruvian history, indigenous cultures, literature, and Quechua. The program includes a community service component at the Clínica San Juan de Dios for children with special needs, and at the orphanage Juan Pablo II. Students have the opportunity to volunteer at the hospital and orphanage. The residence is located on these same grounds.
Rutgers’ involvement with Peru extends to other departments and academic centers. In the Department of Anthropology, Ulla D. Berg is a socio-cultural anthropologist who researches communicative practices in the realm of transnational migration between Peru and the United States.
Research also extends to the program in Comparative Literature where a graduate student is focusing on the field of eco-criticism to study performance and environmental justice in an Andean community. The Center for Women's Global Leadership regularly focuses on gender and racial activism in Peru, and invites Peruvian activists to the New Brunswick campus. Occasionally, Peru has also been the focus of research by faculty from the Department of Geography and the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences.
Recruitment of graduate students from the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú has been highly successful in the departments of Spanish and Portuguese, Economics, and Linguistics.