Nusta Carranza Ko, Ph.D.

University of Baltimore

City: Baltimore, Maryland

Country: United States

About Me:

Ñusta Carranza Ko is an Assistant Professor of Human Security and Global Affairs at the University of Baltimore. She received her PhD from Purdue University and holds Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees from New York University, University of Windsor, and McGill University, respectively. Her research interests include cross-regional research on transitional justice processes in Latin America and East Asia, including policies of memorialization in Peru and South Korea and questions of indigenous peoples' rights in Peru.

Research Interests

Human Rights

Latin American And Caribbean Politics

Asian Politics

Race, Ethnicity and Politics

Transitional Justice

Human Rights Norms

Indigenous Political Representation

Countries of Interest


South Korea


Journal Articles:

(2018) South Korea’s collective memory of past human rights abuses, Memory Studies

Embedded in transitional justice processes is an implicit reference to the production of collective memory and history. This article aims to study how memory initiatives become a crucial component of truth-seeking and reparations processes. The article examines South Korea’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the creation of collective memory through symbolic reparations of history revision in education. The South Korean Truth and Reconciliation Commission recommended a set of symbolic reparations to the state, including history rectification reflective of the truth on human rights violations. Using political discourse analysis, this study compares the South Korean Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Final Report to the 2016 national history textbook. The article finds that the language of human rights in state sponsored history revisions contests the findings of the truth commission. And in doing so, this analysis argues for the need to reevaluate the government-initiated memory politics even in a democratic state that instituted numerous truth commissions and prosecuted former heads of state.

(2018) Truth-Seeking for Cheju and the Debates on Compliance, S N Korean Humanities

The April 3 Incident in the Island of Jeju marked one of the gravest human rights violations in Korean history involving a majority of victims who were non-politically motivated innocent civilians caught in the crossfire between the state, foreign actors, and a leftist political party and its armed affiliates. The violence, which continued from 1947 to 1954, resulted in the highest number of casualties, following that of the Korean War (1950-1953). Despite the gravity of the human rights violations, it was only after South Korea transitioned to a democracy and prosecuted two former heads of states that the state engaged in efforts to address the April 3 Incident. This study examines the Special Act for the Investigation of the Jeju April 3 Incident and Recovering the Honor of Victims (1999) and the National Committee for the Investigation of the Truth about the Jeju April 3 Events, which established the Jeju April 3 Commission (2000). Specifically, the study focuses on the status of state compliance with the list of recommendations and article provisions from the Special Act and the National Committee, which included policies for truth-seeking, reparations, and accountability measures for the state. The article finds that while on truth-seeking and symbolic reparations the state reflected a good record of complying with the recommendations, on financial and medical reparations, and criminal accountability measures, the state was relatively less proactive in compliance. The selective level of compliance from the state provides some insight as to the state’s respect for these policies and the possible conditions that may have resulted in the differences of state behavior. ​​

(2018) Using Game of Thrones to Teach International Relations, Journal of Political Science Education

Despite the known benefits of long-term, game-based simulations they remain underutilized in Political Science classrooms. Simulations used are typically designed to reinforce a concept and are short-lived, lasting one or two class sessions; rarely are entire courses designed around a single simulation. Creating real-world conditions in which students operate often requires the development of distinct cultures and shared experiences that only long-term interactions can generate. These long-term interactions create a community where the past interactions of players matter when making decisions about future action. Long-term role-playing also gives students a forum to fully immerse themselves in the material resulting in deeper content comprehension. This article presents a framework for using a long-term, game-based simulation based on the popular television show Game of Thrones. The simulation uses an active learning approach to help students understand a variety of topics related to International Relations and related fields. The article concludes with a discussion on how the simulation can be modified to fit a variety of non-Political Science courses as well as provides the framework for an experimental design to test the effectiveness of the simulation.

(2017) Comparing the Effect of Chinese and Japanese Migration Experiences on Peruvian National Identity (中日秘鲁移民秘鲁国家认同的比较研究), Journal of Chinese Overseas

Research on migration has often characterized migration and the state as being in conflict. International migration does present some challenges to the state in accommodating migrants that bring with them various cultural and social identities. Nonetheless, not all migration experiences can be generalized in dichotomous terms. In this sense, the case of the first South American country to elect a president of Japanese origin and to regard a Chinese migrant-owned supermarket chain as representative of the state’s business model merits closer examination. The experience of Chinese and Japanese migrants in Peru contributes to the literature on transnational migration that regards migrants as both recipients of change and agents that influence a state’s national identity. Through measures such as common language acquisition and the adoption of new cultural traditions, Chinese and Japanese migrants were integrated into Peru and thus influenced some changes in the state’s national identity in a less conflictive way.

(2014) The Korean wave Hallyu in looking at escapism in Peruvian society, Perspectives on Global Development and Technology

Overcoming geographic, cultural, and linguistic differences, the second phase of the Korean wave Hallyu made its mark in Latin America. From the results of the field research conducted in two Latin American countries Brazil and Peru during the summer of 2012, this study examines the effects of the second wave of Hallyu on Peruvian society. In doing so, it regards the demographics, education level, and socio-economic status of the Hallyu consumer groups that reflects the situation of inequality and escapism embedded in Peruvian society. The continuous access to a different culture, distinct from that of one’s own reality through a virtual environment of cyberspace may be a reflection of the individual’s own awareness of despair in the reality in which they find themselves, characterized by inequality and a cyclical nature of class differences.

(2014) Landing of the wave: Hallyu in Peru and Brazil, Development and Society

What began as the spread of South Korean popular culture in parts of East and Southeast Asia in the late 1990s, Hallyu “the Korean wave,” made its landing and mark in a new cultural context in Latin America years later nearing the end of the first decade of the 21stcentury. But how did Hallyu suddenly emerge in this part of the international system? What factors led to its development? The results of our field research findings in Peru and Brazil brings the argument away from the cultural proximity for both states with high levels of Asian migration (ie Japanese and Chinese) and provides an interesting insight into discussions on socioeconomic grounds that may have influenced individuals’ interests towards Hallyu.

Book Chapters:

(2019) Repairing and Reconciling with the Past: El Ojo que Llora and Peru's Public Monuments, Rowman Littlefield

Public monuments, memorials, and policies of memorialization play a unique role in the process of societal reconciliation in states transitioning from authoritarian pasts to a democracy. They complement transitional justice processes of truth-seeking, reparations, and prosecutions of human rights criminals, with an emblematic production of collective memory and history that provides recognition for victims and their family members. This study builds on the growing interest in memorialization practices by bringing to light the integral and visible role public memorials have played in reparations processes. Drawing from observations of Peru that experienced two decades of internal armed conflict from 1980 to 2000, transitioned to a democracy in 2001, engaged in truth and reconciliation commission work (2001-2003), reparations programs (2005; 2016), and prosecution of a democratically elected head of state for human rights crimes (2009), the chapter examines Peru’s El Ojo que Llora—one of the few national memorials that is not physically confined to the site of conflict and serves as a performance of memory. From the framework that regards public memorials as instruments of reparations that keep the past visible, this study analyzes El Ojo que Llora as an active symbolic reparative tool for victims and their family members and society’s reconciliation efforts. Using interviews from non-governmental human rights organizations and victims’ family members, the chapter finds that El Ojo que Llora represents both a step towards active commemoration and collective memory building involving contested interpretations about Peru’s recent past, and facilitates the healing of Peruvian society in transition, as a public space that binds the narratives of violence from the past with the present through allegorical portrayals of victims and their lives.

(2019) Forcibly Sterilized: Peru’s Indigenous Women and the Battle for Rights, Palgrave Macmillan

In 2003, Peru’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) released its Final Report concluding that 69,000 Peruvians were killed or disappeared during the internal armed conflict (1980-2000). The majority of the victims spoke Quechua or other indigenous languages as their mother tongue and lived in Andean provinces and the Amazon region. These demographic characteristics pointed to deep-rooted racism and inequality within Peruvian society against the indigenous peoples that played a part in the violence. Despite successes in accountability and public recognition of indigenous peoples as core victims of the conflict after truth-seeking, the situation of indigenous peoples’ rights in Peru today continues to be contested politically. This study examines Peru’s current status of indigenous peoples’ rights. Specifically, it assesses the state’s respect towards indigenous rights through a case omitted by the TRC but one that continues to dominate political rhetoric: the forced sterilization of women of indigenous and poor economic backgrounds. Relying on interviews with prominent human rights practitioners and archival sources collected by domestic and international advocacy groups on forced sterilization, this study proposes an intersectional human rights analysis for understanding the case of forced sterilization of indigenous women. The findings, which include an intersectional analysis of ethnicity, gender, and class domestically and also via international human rights agreements, demonstrate how forced sterilization is perpetuated by the intersecting set of domestic oppressive forces of sexism, racism, and class-based discrimination directed at an economically marginalized population, who are also a vulnerable group in Peru’s patriarchal society. This status of indigenous peoples’ rights reflects the structural inequality embedded in historical power relationships between dominant white society and the marginalized indigenous sectors, and the domestic political interests that shape and condition the respect for indigenous peoples’ rights in Peru.​