University of Pittsburgh Press

Pitt Latin American Series

John Charles Chasteen and Catherine M. Conaghan, Editors

Published by: University of Pittsburgh Press

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Pitt Latin American Series

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Resource Extraction and Protest in Peru

by Moises Arce

In this groundbreaking study, Moisés Arce exposes a long-standing climate of popular contention in Peru. Looking beneath the surface to the subnational, regional, and local level as inception points, he rigorously dissects the political conditions that set the stage for protest. Focusing on natural resource extraction and its key role in the political economy of Peru and other developing countries, Arce reveals a wide disparity in the incidence, forms, and consequences of collective action.

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Salt and the Colombian State

Local Society and Regional Monopoly in Boyacá, 1821-1900

In republican Colombia, salt became an important source of revenue not just to individuals, but to the state, which levied taxes on it and in some cases controlled and profited from its production. Focusing his study on the town of La Salina, Joshua M. Rosenthal presents a fascinating glimpse into the workings of the early Colombian state, its institutions, and their interactions with local citizens during this formative period.

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Slave Emancipation and Transformations in Brazilian Political Citizenship

Celso Thomas Castilho

Celso Thomas Castilho offers original perspectives on the political upheaval surrounding the process of slave emancipation in postcolonial Brazil. He shows how the abolition debates in Pernambuco transformed the practices of political citizenship and marked the first instance of a mass national political mobilization. In addition, he presents new findings on the scope and scale of the opposing abolitionist and sugar planters’ mobilizations in the Brazilian northeast. The book highlights the extensive interactions between enslaved and free people in the construction of abolitionism, and reveals how Brazil’s first social movement reinvented discourses about race and nation, leading to the passage of the abolition law in 1888. It also documents the previously ignored counter-mobilizations led by the landed elite, who saw the rise of abolitionism as a political contestation and threat to their livelihood. Overall, this study illuminates how disputes over control of emancipation also entailed disputes over the boundaries of the political arena, and connects the history of abolition to the history of Brazilian democracy. It offers fresh perspectives on Brazilian political history and on Brazil’s place within comparative discussions on slavery and emancipation.

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Sports Culture in Latin American History

Edited by David M.K. Sheinin

Perhaps no other activity is more synonymous with passion, identity, bodily ideals, and the power of place than sport. As the essays in this volume show, the function of sport as a historical and cultural marker is particularly relevant in Latin America. From the late nineteenth century to the present, the contributors reveal how sport opens a wide window into local, regional, and national histories. The essays examine the role of sport as a political vehicle, in claims to citizenship, as a source of community and ethnic pride, as a symbol of masculinity or feminism, as allegorical performance, and in many other purposes. Sports Culture in Latin American History juxtaposes analyses of better-known activities such as boxing and soccer with first peoples’ athletics in Argentina, Cholita wrestling in Bolivia, the African-influenced martial art of capoeira, Japanese Brazilian gateball, the “Art Deco” body ideal for post-revolutionary Mexican women, Jewish soccer fans in Argentina and transgressive behavior at matches, and other topics. The contributors view the local origins and adaptations of these athletic activities and their significance as insightful narrators of history and culture.

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Transformations and Crisis of Liberalism in Argentina, 1930–1955

Transformations and Crisis of Liberalism in Argentina, 1930–1955

Jorge Nallim

In this original study, Jorge A. Nállim chronicles the decline of liberalism in Argentina during the volatile period between two military coups—the 1930 overthrow of Hipólito Yrigoyen and the deposing of Juan Perón in 1955. While historians have primarily focused on liberalism in economic or political contexts, Nállim instead documents a wide range of locations where liberalism was claimed and ultimately marginalized in the pursuit of individual agendas. Nállim shows how concepts of liberalism were espoused by various groups who “invented traditions” to legitimatize their methods of political, religious, class, intellectual, or cultural hegemony. In these deeply fractured and corrupt processes, liberalism lost political favor and alienated the public. These events also set the table for Peronism and stifled the future of progressive liberalism in Argentina. Nállim describes the main political parties of the period and deconstructs their liberal discourses. He also examines major cultural institutions and shows how each attached liberalism to their cause.Nállim compares and contrasts the events in Argentina to those in other Latin American nations and reveals their links to international developments. While critics have positioned the rhetoric of liberalism during this period as one of decadence or irrelevance, Nállim instead shows it to be a vital and complex factor in the metamorphosis of modern history in Argentina and Latin America as well.

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Unequal Partners

The United States and Mexico

Sidney Weintraub

In Unequal Partners, Sidney Weintraub examines the current relationship of Mexico and the United States as one of sustained dependence and dominance. The chapters examine the consequences of this imbalance in six major policy areas: trade; investment and finance; narcotics; energy; migration; and the border. The book begins in 1954 when the Mexican “growth miracle” was at its apex, and proceeds to the present. Special attention is paid to the post-1982 debt crisis era, when Mexico began a more outward-looking trade policy. As this study reveals, Mexico has often been its own worst enemy in foreign relations. Over the past thirty years, the country has been plagued by debt, currency fluctuations, tax collection problems, political corruption, and state-controlled business monopolies that block foreign investment and importation. These factors have created an environment of instability, damaged outside perceptions, and weakened Mexico's bargaining position. Weintraub considers future policy changes that would help Mexico to level the playing field. Improving the education system, he argues, will benefit nearly every other activity and institution, and opening the oil market to private investment and technology will help develop deep-water drilling and revitalize this significant export commodity. In foreign relations, Mexico must be assertive-as it has been in easing U.S. restrictions on goods traded through NAFTA, and demanding U.S. aid to fight drug cartels-not passive, as it currently is on U.S. anti-immigration policy and the proposed border wall. Perhaps most importantly, the study points to the deeper development of policies that are proactive and outward looking.

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The Vigorous Core of Our Nationality

Race and Regional Identity in Northeastern Brazil

Stanley E. Blake

This book explores conceptualizations of regional identity and a distinct population group known as nordestinos in northeastern Brazil during a crucial historical period. Beginning with the abolition of slavery and ending with the demise of the Estado Novo under Getúlio Vargas, Stanley E. Blake examines the paradoxical concept of the nordestino and the importance of these debates to the process of state and nation building. Since colonial times, the Northeast has been an agricultural region based primarily on sugar production. The area’s population was composed of former slaves and free men of African descent, indigenous Indians, European whites, and mulattos. The image of the nordestino was, for many years, linked with the predominant ethnic group in the region, the Afro-Brazilian. For political reasons, however, the conception of the nordestino later changed to more closely resemble white Europeans. Blake delves deeply into local archives and determines that politicians, intellectuals, and other urban professionals formulated identities based on theories of science, biomedicine, race, and social Darwinism. While these ideas served political, social, and economic agendas, they also inspired debates over social justice and led to reforms for both the region and the people. Additionally, Blake shows how debates over northeastern identity and the concept of the nordestino shaped similar arguments about Brazilian national identity and “true” Brazilian people.

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Workers and Welfare

Comparative Institutional Change in Twentieth-Century Mexico

Michelle L. Dion

After the revolutionary period of 1910-1920, Mexico developed a number of social protection programs to support workers in public and private sectors and to establish safeguards for the poor and the aged. These included pensions, healthcare, and worker's compensation. The new welfare programs were the product of a complex interrelationship of corporate, labor, and political actors. In this unique dynamic, cross-class coalitions maintained both an authoritarian regime and social protection system for some seventy years, despite the ebb and flow of political and economic tides. By focusing on organized labor, and its powerful role in effecting institutional change, Workers and Welfare chronicles the development and evolution of Mexican social insurance institutions in the twentieth century. Beginning with the antecedents of social insurance and the adoption of pension programs for central government workers in 1925, Dion's analysis shows how the labor movement, up until the 1990s, was instrumental in expanding welfare programs, but has since become largely ineffective. Despite stepped-up efforts, labor has seen the retrenchment of many benefits. Meanwhile, Dion cites the debt crisis, neoliberal reform, and resulting changes in the labor market as all contributing to a rise in poverty. Today, Mexican welfare programs emphasize poverty alleviation, in a marked shift away from social insurance benefits for the working class.

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