The Vice Guide to Travel: Takanakuy

May 11, 2024 | Environmental, Videos

Visiting the remote mountains of Peru, one might be surprised by a scene of intense physical conflict. Each year on Christmas day, the residents of Santo Tomas partake in an old-fashioned battle to settle their personal grudges. This is a stark contrast to the typically peaceful attitude found in Lima, Peru’s capital city.

This unique practice is documented in a captivating documentary which offers an inside look into this hypermasculine culture and its traditions. In the film, viewers can witness the excitement and tension as opponents face off on the town square, often surrounded by cheering crowds and dejected relatives. The fight itself may last for hours or even days, with each participant receiving multiple blows before a vict

or is declared.

The documentary sheds light on how these battles are actually part of a larger cycle of life – it’s not just an exchange of violence but rather of emotions that have been bottled up all year long. It also sheds light on how this tradition bridges generations; some families have been fighting each other for centuries, passing down their honor code from father to son like a precious heirloom.

Peru’s mountain culture is complex and fascinating – not just because it offers insight into traditional customs and rituals but also because it shows us that there’s more than one way to settle differences between people. By watching this extraordinary documentary, you can gain a deeper understanding of Peruvian society while gaining appreciation for its diverse ways of life.

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David B