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The New Politics of Protest

Indigenous Mobilization in Latin America's Neoliberal Era

By Roberta Rice

Publication Year: 2012

In June 1990, Ecuador saw the first major indigenous rebellion within its borders since the colonial era.  For weeks, indigenous protesters participated in marches, staged demonstrations, seized government offices, and blockaded roads. Since this insurrection, indigenous movements have become increasingly important in the fight against Latin American Neoliberalism.

    Roberta Rice's New Politics of Protest seeks to analyze when, where, and why indigenous protests against free-market reforms have occurred in Latin America. Comparing cases in Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and Chile, this book details the emergence of indigenous movements under and against Neoliberal governments. Rice uses original field research and interviews with indigenous leaders to examine long-term patterns of indigenous political activism and overturn accepted theories on the role of the Indian in democracy. 

  A useful and engaging study, The New Politics of Protest seeks to determine when indigenous movements become viable political parties. It covers the most recent rounds of protest to demonstrate how a weak and unresponsive government is more likely to experience revolts against unpopular reforms. This influential work will be of interest to scholars of Latin American politics and indigenous studies as well as anyone studying oppressed peoples who have organized nationwide strikes and protests, blocked economic reforms, toppled corrupt leaders, and even captured presidencies.

Published by: University of Arizona Press

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 1-6


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pp. 7-8


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p. iv-iv


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pp. xi-xvii

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pp. xix-xxi

A sage professor once said that each book represents the child you could have had. If that is the case, then this book is rapidly becoming a teenager. Its origins are in my doctoral dissertation. The origins of my dissertation can be traced ...

PART ONE The Origins of Protest

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CHAPTER ONE. Introduction: Social Protest in Regional Perspective

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pp. 3-18

In June 1990, a protest of a qualitatively new sort gripped the central- Andean nation of Ecuador. For more than a week, indigenous groups in the highlands participated in marches, demonstrations, government-office take overs, and road ...

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CHAPTER TWO. Theoretical Considerations: Explaining Protest

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pp. 19-33

The reasons why social actors engage in protest or rebellion have been a matter of considerable concern and debate among social scientists. The literature on collective action and social movements remains divided ...

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CHAPTER THREE. Collective Action in the Neoliberal Era

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pp. 34-47

This chapter is tasked with examining the changing basis of collective action in Latin America’s neoliberal period. The imposition of neoliberalinspired policies of stabilization and adjustment has had dramatic social, political, and ...

PART TWO. The Dynamics of Protest

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CHAPTER FOUR. Ecuador: Ethnicity and Elections

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pp. 51-67

Ecuador’s indigenous movement was once widely regarded as one of Latin America’s strongest social movements. Under the direction of CONAIE (the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador), the movement managed to ...

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CHAPTER FIVE. Bolivia: Protests and Proposals

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pp. 68-86

Evo Morales of the MAS made history on January 22, 2006, when he became Bolivia’s first indigenous head of state. The MAS captured 54 per-cent of the total national vote, the only party to win an absolute majority since the country’s democratic transition. In December 2009, ...

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CHAPTER SIX. Peru: Crisis and Contention

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pp. 87-101

Peru is an anomalous case of indigenous and popular mobilization. It has the largest absolute number of indigenous peoples of any country in Latin America.1 The country was the seat of power of the vast Inca Empire. Yet it does not have a ...

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CHAPTER SEVEN. Chile: Repression and Restructuring

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pp. 102-114

The Chilean political panorama, at least until quite recently, has been devoid of major popular protests. This scenario is all the more puzzling when one considers the high degree of ideological polarization, the powerful labor ...

PART THREE. The Implications of Protest

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pp. 117-127

The political importance of Latin America’s indigenous and popular movements lies in their capacity for collective action and their ability to link disparate claims into a powerful moral critique of neoliberalism (Jung 2008). The demands ...


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pp. 129-134


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pp. 135-156


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pp. 157-160


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pp. 183-184

E-ISBN-13: 9780816599592
E-ISBN-10: 0816599599
Print-ISBN-13: 9780816528752
Print-ISBN-10: 0816528756

Page Count: 168
Illustrations: 5 line, 6 tables
Publication Year: 2012