In Search of El Dorado: Liborio Zerda and Colombia's Pre-Hispanic Past

Project: Research project

Project Details


This project is about the Colombian doctor and scientist Liborio Zerda (1830-1919) and his contributions to the study of the pre-Hypanic cultures of Colombia. We will show how, in what context and within what networks Zerda managed to generate knowledge in the fields of archaeology, anthropology and ethnography. We understand that there were multiple intellectual influences, both national and global, that made possible the elaboration of her work (especially El Dorado), but we would also like to show the place of knowledge, the possible asymmetries in the process of its circulation, as well as its creative appropriation between the local and global spheres. In this sense, the project will not only shed new light on one of the most emblematic academic works of the Colombian 19th century, but will also contribute to the current debate on the contributions of "peripheral sciences", their circulation and appropriation.


Liborio Zerda, Colombia, 19th century, pre-Columbian cultures, intellectual networks, global history
Effective start/end date2/1/216/30/21

Main Funding Source

  • Internal