In Cusco, Peru, one of the most interesting components of this city, is its preservation of the Inca culture even after the Spanish conquistadors. However, with each year the customs, culture, and language fade just a little bit more. The Peruvians know the importance of keeping their traditions alive. That is why Demetrio Tupac Yupanqui was recently awarded the “Noble Gentleman of the Order of the Incas”. He is responsible for translating one of the most important works of all Spanish literature, Don Quixote, into the native language of the Incas, Quechua. His important contribution in 2005 to this indigenous language was recognized by the Council of the Four Incas , made up of Inca Royalty descendants. This award was given in order to honor the preservation, study, and expansion of the Inca´s language.
Tupac Yupanqui is a 90-year-old scholar and professor who has a passion for Quechua, the most widely spoken indigenous language in the Americas. His translation entitled, Yachay Sapa Wiraqucha Dun Qvixote Manchamantan, was presented in Madrid and Paris. Yupanqui was also honored by being given the name Apu Tupac Yupaniqui, which means he is part of the royal line of the Inca Tupac Yupanqui.
Yupanqui´s involvement in the conservation of the Quechua language has greatly impacted the preservation of the Inca culture and history. Yupanqui has said in the past “When people communicate in Quechua, they glow. It is a language that persists five centuries after the conquistadors arrived. We cannot let it die.” He realizes the perseverance the native people have had in keeping their customs and language. Tupac Yupanqui hopes to contribute to keeping this native language alive by his important translation of Don Quixote.