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Europe and Latin America in the 1820s
Ordinary Argentinians in the Dirty War
Under violent military dictatorship, Operation Condor and the Dirty War scarred Argentina from the mid-1970s to the early 1980s, leaving behind a legacy of repression, state terror, and political murder. Even today, the now-democratic Argentine government attempts to repair the damage of these atrocities by making human rights a policy priority.
But what about the other Dirty War, during which Argentine civilians--including indigenous populations--and foreign powers ignored and even abetted the state's vicious crimes against humanity? In this groundbreaking new work, David Sheinin draws on previously classified Argentine government documents, human rights lawsuits, and archived propaganda to illustrate the military-constructed fantasy of bloodshed as a public defense of human rights.
Exploring the reactions of civilians and the international community to the daily carnage, Sheinin unearths how compliance with the dictatorship perpetuated the violence that defined a nation. This new approach to the history of human rights in Argentina will change how we understand dictatorship, democracy, and state terror.
Cinema and the Archive
With a cast ranging from Pancho Villa to Dolores del Río and Tina Modotti, Constructing the Image of the Mexican Revolution demonstrates the crucial role played by Mexican and foreign visual artists in revolutionizing Mexico’s twentieth-century national iconography. Investigating the convergence of cinema, photography, painting, and other graphic arts in this process, Zuzana Pick illuminates how the Mexican Revolution’s timeline (1910–1917) corresponds with the emergence of media culture and modernity. Drawing on twelve foundational films from Que Viva Mexico! (1931–1932) to And Starring Pancho Villa as Himself (2003), Pick proposes that cinematic images reflect the image repertoire produced during the revolution, often playing on existing nationalist themes or on folkloric motifs designed for export. Ultimately illustrating the ways in which modernism reinvented existing signifiers of national identity, Constructing the Image of the Mexican Revolution unites historicity, aesthetics, and narrative to enrich our understanding of Mexicanidad.
Technologies of Mixing in a Brazilian Music Scene
Brazilian popular music is widely celebrated for its inventive amalgams of styles and sounds. Cariocas, native residents of Rio de Janeiro, think of their city as particularly conducive to musical mixture, given its history as a hub of Brazilian media and culture. In Contemporary Carioca, the ethnomusicologist Frederick Moehn introduces a generation of Rio-based musicians who collaboratively have reinvigorated Brazilian genres, such as samba and maracatu, through juxtaposition with international influences, including rock, techno, and funk. Moehn highlights the creativity of individual artists including Marcos Suzano, Lenine, Pedro Luís, Fernanda Abreu, and Paulinho Moska. He describes how these artists manage their careers, having reclaimed some control from record labels. Examining the specific meanings that their fusions have in the Carioca scene, he explains that musical mixture is not only intertwined with nationalist discourses of miscegenation, but also with the experience of being middle-class in a country confronting neoliberal models of globalization. At the same time, he illuminates the inseparability of race, gender, class, place, national identity, technology, and expressive practice in Carioca music and its making. Moehn offers vivid depictions of Rio musicians as they creatively combine and reconcile local realities with global trends and exigencies.
For decades, a succession of military regimes and democratic governments in Brazil sought to shape the future of their society through the manipulation of urban spaces. Planned cities were built that reflected the ideals of high modernism, and urban designers and planners created clean-cut minimalist spaces that reflected the hope for an idyllic future in a still-developing nation. But these cities were criticized as "utopian dreams" in a country plagued with the urban realities of rampant sprawl and the infamous slums known as favelas.
In this international collection of essays, architects, urban planners, and scholars assess the legacy of Brazilian urbanism to date. They evaluate the country's experiments with modernism and examine how Brazilian cities are regenerating themselves within a democratic political framework that meets market and social demands, and respects place, culture, and history.
American Abolitionists in Post-Emancipation Jamaica, 1834-1866
The Oberlin College mission to Jamaica, begun in the 1830s, was an ambitious, and ultimately troubled, effort to use the example of emancipation in the British West Indies to advance the domestic agenda of American abolitionists. White Americans hoped to argue that American slaves, once freed, could be absorbed productively into the society that had previously enslaved them, but their “civilizing mission” did not go as anticipated. Gale L. Kenny’s illuminating study examines the differing ideas of freedom held by white evangelical abolitionists and freed people in Jamaica and explores the consequences of their encounter for both American and Jamaican history.
Kenny finds that white Americans—who went to Jamaica intending to assist with the transition from slavery to Christian practice and solid citizenship—were frustrated by liberated blacks’ unwillingness to conform to Victorian norms of gender, family, and religion. In tracing the history of the thirty-year mission, Kenny makes creative use of available sources to unpack assumptions on both sides of this American-Jamaican interaction, showing how liberated slaves in many cases were able not just to resist the imposition of white mores but to redefine the terms of the encounter.
Mapping Peru in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries
Landscape is never static, but changes continuously when seen in relation to human occupation, movement, labor, and discourse. Contested Territory explores the ways in which Peru’s early colonial landscapes were experienced and portrayed, especially by the Spanish conquerors but also by their conquered subjects. It focuses on the role played by indigenous groups in shaping the Spanish experiences of landscapes, the diverse geographical images of Peru and ways in which these were constructed and contested, and what this can tell us about the nature of colonial relations in post-conquest Peru. This exceptional study, which draws from archival records and sources such as cartographies, offers a richly nuanced view of the complexity of colonial relations. It will be read with appreciation by those interested in Spanish history, geography, and colonialism.
Ayacucho on the Eve of the Shining Path Insurgency
Interest remains high in the story of the Shining Path, the Maoist guerilla insurgency founded in Peru in the late 1960s. Miguel La Serna’s history of key roles played by Peru’s indigenous peoples in the conflict adds a major new dimension to our understanding of Peru's war, especially with La Serna's fresh, unique emphasis on the years leading up to the peak years of violence from 1980-1992. On a broader level, La Serna's work drives home how localized, culturally particular perspectives contributed to the internationally significant political events in Peru that shaped much of the world during the Cold War era, and it also illuminates the stark realities of life for the rural poor everywhere and just how and why they may or may not choose to mobilize around a revolutionary cause.
Corruption has blurred, and in some cases blinded, the vision of democracy in many Latin American nations. Weakened institutions and policies have facilitated the rise of corrupt leadership, election fraud, bribery, and clientelism. This book presents a groundbreaking national and regional study that provides policy analysis and prescription through a wide-ranging methodological, empirical, and theoretical survey. The contributors offer analysis of key topics, including: factors that differentiate Latin American corruption from that of other regions; the relationship of public policy to corruption in regional perspective; patterns and types of corruption; public opinion and its impact; and corruption's critical links to democracy and governance. Additional chapters present case studies on specific instances of corruption: diverted funds from a social program in Peru; Chilean citizens' attitudes toward corruption; the effects of interparty competition on vote buying in local Brazilian elections; and the determinants of state-level corruption in Mexico under Vicente Fox.The volume concludes with a comparison of the lessons drawn from these essays to the evolution of anticorruption policy in Latin America over the past two decades. It also applies these lessons to the broader study of corruption globally to provide a framework for future research in this crucial area.
In Gabriel García Márquez’s novel One Hundred Years of Solitude, a character articulates the fascination goods, technology, and modernity held for many Latin Americans in the early twentieth century when he declares that “incredible things are happening in this world.” The modernity he marvels over is the new availability of cheap and useful goods. Steven Bunker’s study shows how goods and consumption embodied modernity in the time of Porfirio Díaz, how they provided proof to Mexicans that “incredible things are happening in this world.”
In urban areas, and especially Mexico City, being a consumer increasingly defined what it meant to be Mexican. In an effort to reconstruct everyday life in Porfirian Mexico, Bunker surveys the institutions and discourses of consumption and explores how individuals and groups used the goods, practices, and spaces of urban consumer culture to construct meaning and identities in the rapidly evolving social and physical landscape of the capital city and beyond. Through case studies of tobacco marketing, department stores, advertising, shoplifting, and a famous jewelry robbery and homicide, he provides a colorful walking tour of daily life in Porfirian Mexico City. Emphasizing the widespread participation in this consumer culture, Bunker’s work overturns conventional wisdom that only the middle and upper classes participated in this culture.