New Books Network

Gonzalo Lamana

How 'Indians' Think

Colonial Indigenous Intellectuals and the Question of Critical Race Theory

University of Arizona Press 2019

New Books in Critical TheoryNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Intellectual HistoryNew Books in Latin American StudiesNew Books in Native American StudiesNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & Society January 14, 2020 Colin Mustful

In his new book, How “Indians” Think: Colonial Indigenous Intellectuals and the Question of Critical Race Theory (University of Arizona Press, 2019), Dr. Gonzalo...

In his new book, How “Indians” Think: Colonial Indigenous Intellectuals and the Question of Critical Race Theory (University of Arizona Press, 2019), Dr. Gonzalo Lamana carefully investigates the writings of Indigenous intellectuals of the Andean region during Spanish colonialism. By delving into and reinterpreting the work of Guaman Poma de Ayala and Garcilaso de la Vega, Lamana effectively articulates the development of critical race theory from its outset in colonial Latin America. By sharing these centuries old texts, Lamana gives important context to today’s social climate while reinvigorating voices from the past. As Lamana points out, “Indians” lived in an upside down world – a world of lies that Indigenous intellectuals were unable to expose. Through the work of Lamana and others, that lie is finally being exposed.

Gonzalo Lamana is an associate professor in the Department of Hispanic Languages and Literatures at the University of Pittsburgh. His teaching and research explores themes of subalternity and indigeneity, race and theology, and meaning-making in the colonial period through a comparative, cross-area and time study of colonial and postcolonial dynamics. Some of his previous publications include Domination without Dominance. Inca-Spanish Encounters in Early Colonial Peru and Pensamiento colonial crítico.


Colin Mustful is the author of four historical novels about Minnesota’s settlement and Native history. He holds an MA in history and an MFA in creative writing. He is the founder and editor of a small independent press called History Through Fiction. You can learn more about Colin and his work at colinmustful.com.