Good Essay on Latin America’s Leftward Shift


Latin America is such a politically interesting place, because historically it has never been “allowed” to be itself.  From European conquest to a 20th century filled with US interventions, the horrors of neoliberalism, and the Catholic Church’s squashing of liberation theology, the actual people of Latin America haven’t gotten their say.  A few weeks ago I first heard it posited that with the United States’ obsession with the Middle East, Latin America’s political landscape is finally representing the will of the people.  Via Bookforum, Immanuel Wallerstein gives a very succint rundown of the how and why of this shift in the essay “How Far Left Has Latin America Moved?” 

The most fascinating part of this move is that, as Wallerstein says, the shift is not uniform across the continent.  They’re not all moving as far as Chavez, meaning it is genuine and organic change that is occuring in each distinct nation.  And it’s getting a lot of press

Could we in the United States follow suit, and change our definition of “center”?  I, for one, would greatly appreciate it.



1 Response to “Good Essay on Latin America’s Leftward Shift”

  1. 1 J. A. Carizo May 23, 2008 at 11:02 am

    interesting. thanks for sharing.

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