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Making the Revolution

Making the Revolution
Histories of the Latin American Left

$30.99 (P)

Kevin A. Young, Forrest Hylton, Barry Carr, Marc Becker, Margaret Power, Michelle Chase, Aldo Marchesi, O'Neill Blacker-Hanson, Betsy Konefal, Diana Carolina Sierra Becerra
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  • Date Published: August 2019
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108439251

$ 30.99 (P)

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About the Authors
  • Many treatments of the twentieth-century Latin American left assume a movement populated mainly by affluent urban youth whose naïve dreams of revolution collapsed under the weight of their own elitism, racism, sexism, and sectarian dogmas. However, this book demonstrates that the history of the left was much more diverse. Many leftists struggled against capitalism and empire while also confronting racism, patriarchy, and authoritarianism. The left's ideology and practice were often shaped by leftists from marginalized populations, from Bolivian indigenous communities in the 1920s to the revolutionary women of El Salvador's guerrilla movements in the 1980s. Through ten historical case studies of ten different countries, Making the Revolution highlights some of the most important research on the Latin American left by leading senior and up-and-coming scholars, offering a needed corrective and valuable contribution to modern Latin American history, politics, and sociology.

    • Views revolutionary struggles, and the left more generally, as internally contested processes in which rank-and-file leftists, not just top leaders, shaped outcomes
    • Offers new historical perspectives on the progressive social movements that emerged in Latin America in the 1990s and 2000s
    • Highlights the historical contributions of Latin American women, Indians, Afro-Latin people, peasants, and other marginalized groups to the formation of the left
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This powerful collection of essays compels us to rethink the relationship of the Latin American Left to indigenous and African descendant communities. For decades, scholars have sharply criticized the Left’s unconscious and conscious racism and sexism. These finely wrought and well-researched essays reveal the grassroots dynamics that pushed back against the ideological rigidity that promoted such tendencies. From Bolivian anarchists to peasant insurrecionists in Guerrero to Cuban feminists, this volume presents a variegated, often anti-authoritarian Left that cannot be pigeonholed into the inherited categories of sectarian Stalinists and middle-class guerrilleros.' Jeffrey Gould, Rudy Professor of History, Indiana University and author of Solidarity Under Siege: The Salvadoran Class Struggle, 1970–1990

    'A fascinating collection of essays that challenge conventional interpretations of the Left in Latin America. Spanning the period from the Russian Revolution to the rise of Neoliberalism, the authors dispute the view that Latin American Left movements did not grapple with overlapping forms of oppression such as racism against the indigenous and people of African descent, or patriarchal domination of women. Grounded in rich examples of popular struggles throughout the hemisphere, the authors provide new insights on the history of radicalism in Latin America.' Miguel R. Tinker Salas, Leslie Farmer Professor of Latin American Studies, Pomona College, California

    'Making the Revolution succeeds in correcting misconceptions surrounding the inclusiveness of twentieth-century leftist movements … But the essays in Making the Revolution resist this temptation, creating a rich mosaic of histories that make an essential contribution to the scholarship on Latin American radicalism.' Jeffrey Mazo, Survival

    ‘As the turn-of-the-century wave of Leftist governments gives way to a more conservative climate, this significant contribution offers a powerful antidote to contemporary political cynicism … Highly recommended.’ B. A. Lucero, Choice

    ‘an uncommonly cohesive volume … especially useful in the classroom in advanced undergraduate classes in history, political science, and Latin American Studies … I am looking forward to the reasoned debates it will provoke among my students.’ Amelia M. Kiddle, Histoire sociale / Social History

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2019
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108439251
    • length: 318 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 x 19 mm
    • weight: 0.47kg
    • contains: 7 b/w illus. 5 maps
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    List of figures
    List of contributors
    List of abbreviations
    Introduction: revolutionary actors, encounters, and transformations Kevin A. Young
    1. Common ground: Caciques, artisans, and radical intellectuals in the Chayanta rebellion of 1927 Forrest Hylton
    2. Identity, class, and nation: Black immigrant workers, Cuban communism, and the sugar insurgency, 1925–34 Barry Carr
    3. Indigenous movements in the eye of the hurricane Marc Becker
    4. Friends and comrades: political and personal relationships between members of the Communist Party USA and the Puerto Rican Nationalist Party, 1930s–40s Margaret Power
    5. Total subversion: interethnic radicalism in La Paz, Bolivia, 1946–7 Kevin A. Young
    6. 'Sisters in exploitation': the 1959 Congress of Latin American women and the transnational origins of Cuban state feminism Michelle Chase
    7. Revolutionaries without revolution: regional experiences in the forging of a radical political culture in the Southern Cone of South America (1966–76) Aldo Marchesi
    8. Nationalism and Marxism in rural Cold War Mexico: Guerrero, 1959–74 O'Neill Blacker-Hanson
    9. The ethnic question in Guatemala's armed conflict: insights from the detention and 'rescue' of Emeterio Toj Medrano Betsy Konefal
    10. 'For our total emancipation': the making of revolutionary feminism in insurgent El Salvador, 1977–87 Diana Carolina Sierra Becerra

  • Editor

    Kevin A. Young, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
    Kevin A. Young is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He is the author of Blood of the Earth: Resource Nationalism, Revolution, and Empire in Bolivia (2017).


    Kevin A. Young, Forrest Hylton, Barry Carr, Marc Becker, Margaret Power, Michelle Chase, Aldo Marchesi, O'Neill Blacker-Hanson, Betsy Konefal, Diana Carolina Sierra Becerra

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