From Castro to Chiapas: An Introduction to Contentious Politics in Latin America
NOTE TO CLAS: If readings for each week are too demanding for an undergraduate course, just let me know and I will happily cut!!
This course is intended to serve as an introduction to the major empirical and theoretical themes in the study of contentious politics in contemporary Latin America. While it is impossible to cover every theoretical approach or Latin American case during the quarter, the course should give students the tools begin to think critically about where and why people engage in collective action. We will develop and hone these tools through thinking about Latin American cases, paying specific attention to revolutions, riots and social movements. The course is designed in two parts. It begins by exposing students to the dominant theoretical paradigms in the study of contentious politics as well as some prominent critiques. The course then turns to empirical themes in Latin American contentious politics, challenging students to use and question the theoretical tools to which they have already been exposed. Cases will focus on revolutions, challenges to dictatorships and democracies, urban and rural organizing, identity based movements, and resistance to globalization.
PART I: Theoretical Tools and Regional Overview Week 1: Introduction to the course and to each other
Discussion of course expectations and requirements
Week 2: An Overview of Approaches to Contentious Politics
Ask: What is contentious politics? (and come up with a few answers!).
Understand the dominant paradigms and the context of their development
Relate those paradigms to some of your own experiences or case knowledge
Think critically about why this paradigms might be problematic
Begin to question whether we need different approaches when talking about less developed countries or communities
Gurr, Ted. 1970. Why Men Rebel. Princeton: Princeton University Press, p. 3-21.
Tarrow, Sidney. 1998. Power and Popular Protest. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, Introduction and Chapter 1 (p. 1-28), Part 11 (p. 29-70).
McAdam, McCarthy and Zald. 1996. “Introduction: Opportunities, mobilizing structures, and framing processes—towards a synthetic, comparative perspective on social movements.” In McAdam, McCarthy and Zald, eds. Comparative Perspectives on Social Movements. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 1-22.
McAdam.1996. “Conceptual origins, current problems, future directions.” In McAdam, McCarthy and Zald, eds. Comparative Perspectives on Social Movements. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 23-40.
Gamson and Meyer. 1996. “Framing political opportunity.” In McAdam, McCarthy and Zald, eds. Comparative Perspectives on Social Movements. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
McAdam. 1999. Political Process and the Development of Black Insurgency **SECOND EDITION** Chicago: University of Chicago Press, Introduction to the Second Edition, p. vii-xxxvii.
Week 3: Contemporary Critiques
Understand what the contemporary critiques are of approaches to contentious politics
Explore problems with these critiques (phenomena they still can’t explain? What do they explain?)
Consider whether it is possible to develop theories of contentious politics that apply across space and time
McAdam, Tarrow, and Tilly. 2001. Dynamics of Contention. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 14-18, 38-71).
Goodwin and Jasper. 2004. Rethinking Social Movements. New York: Rowman and Littlefield, Ch 1 (p. 3-30) and Ch. 7 (p. 97-111).
Aminzade and McAdam. 2001. “Emotions and Contentious Politics.” In Silence and Voice in the Study of Contentious Politics. Various, eds. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 14-50.
McAdam and Sewell. 2001. “It’s About Time: Temporality in the Study of Social Movements and Revolutions.” In Silence and Voice in the Study of Contentious Politics. Various, eds. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 89-125.
Goodwin, Jeff. 2001. No other way out : states and revolutionary movements, 1945-1991. Cambridge ; New York: Cambridge University Press. Chs 1-2 (p. 3-64)
Week 4: Introduction to Contentious Politics in Latin America
Think specifically about how the theories we’ve discussed might or might not apply to Latin America
Consider how/why theorizing about contentious politics in Latin America might be different and whether these differences are warranted
Escobar, Arturo, and Sonia E. Alvarez. 1992. The Making of social movements in Latin America : identity, strategy, and democracy. Boulder, Colo.: Westview Press. Chs 1, 4, and 18.
Eckstein, Susan, and Manuel A. Garretón Merino. 2001. Power and popular protest : Latin American social movements. Updated and expanded ed. Berkeley: University of California Press. Ch. 1
Eckstein, Susan, and Timothy P. Wickham-Crowley. 2003. “Struggles for Social Rights in Latin America.” In Eckstein, Susan, and Timothy P. Wickham-Crowley, eds. Struggles for social rights in Latin America. New York: Routledge.
Eckstein, Susan. 1983. "Revolution and Redistribution in Latin America." In Cynthia Mclintock and Abraham Lowenthal, eds., The Peruvian Experiment Reconsidered. Princeton: Princeton University Press. p.347-386.
PART II: Revolutions, Riots, and Social Movements Week 5: Comparative Approaches to Revolution
Compare prominent approaches to Latin American revolutions
Identify strengths/weaknesses in these approaches
Focus explicitly on the role of class and the state
Wickham-Crowley, Timothy P. 1992. Guerrillas and revolution in Latin America: a comparative study of insurgents and regimes since 1956. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. Chapter 1, 3, 4, 5, 9, 12 (the chapters are relatively short)
Goodwin, Jeff. 2001. No other way out : states and revolutionary movements, 1945-1991. Cambridge ; New York: Cambridge University Press. Part III. (p. 137-216)
Week 6: A Closer Look at Success and Failure—Revolutionary Movements in Cuba El Salvador, and Peru
Think about whether which/any theoretical approaches are appropriate for the Cuban, Salvadoran, and Peruvian cases
What were the “political opportunities” in each case? The “resources” available to the movements? What do these help us explain, if anything?
Explore potential explanations for the contrasting outcomes
Ask explicitly: How important is leadership? Class structure? Demonstration effects? International involvement?
Eckstein, Susan Eva. 1994. Back From the Future: Cuba Under Castro. Princeton: Princeton University Press. p. 3-59.
Suchlicki, Jaime. 2002. Cuba: From Columbus to Castro. Fifth Edition; Brassey. pp. 87-133.
Pérez Jr., Luis. 2006. Cuba: Between Reform and Revolution. Third edition; Oxford University Press, pp. xii-xiv, 210-236.
Wood, Elisabeth Jean. 2003. Insurgent collective action and civil war in El Salvador. New York: Cambridge University Press. Chs 1, 4, 8 and Epilogue
McClintock, Cynthia. 1998. Revolutionary Movements in Latin America: El Salvador’s FMLN and Peru’s Shining Path. U.S. Institute of Peace. Selections TBD (another book that is in Chicago while I am not).
Week 7: Resisting Dictatorship and Challenging Democracy
Pay careful attention to what kinds of “political opportunities” democracies and dictatorships create
Contrast movements resisting dictatorships to those challenging democracies. Do we note any particular patterns? Are there more similarities than differences?
Navarro, Marysa. 2001. “The Personal is Political: Las Madres de Plaza de Mayo.” In Eckstein, Susan, and Manuel A. Garretón Merino, eds. Power and popular protest : Latin American social movements. Updated and expanded ed. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Garretón, Manuel Antonio. “Popular Mobilization and the Military Regime in Chile: The Complexities of the Invisible Transition.” In Eckstein, Susan, and Manuel A. Garretón Merino, eds. Power and popular protest : Latin American social movements. Updated and expanded ed. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Moreira Alves, Maria Helena. 2001. “Interclass Alliances in the Opposition to the Military in Brazil: Consequences for the Transition Period.” In Eckstein, Susan, and Manuel A. Garretón Merino, eds. Power and popular protest : Latin American social movements. Updated and expanded ed. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Mainwaring, S., and Viola, E. 1984. "New Social Movements, Political Culture and Democracy," Telos, no. 61. pp. 1752.
Hochstetler, K. 2000. “Democratizing Pressures from Below: Social Movements in the New Brazilian Democracy.” in Democratic Brazil, ed. P. R. Kingstone and T. J. Power. University of Pittsburgh Press. pp. 162-182.
Week 9: Urban and Rural, Labor and Land
Return to concepts of class and consider how well they explain both rural and urban organizing
Consider how the changing dynamics of labor in Latin America affect the possibilities for other kinds of social organizing or collective behavior
Nash, June. “Cultural resistance and Class Consciousness in Bolivian Tin Mining Communities.” 2001. In Eckstein, ed. Power and Popular Protest
Collier, R. B., and Mahoney, J. 1997. “Adding Collective Actors to Collective Outcomes: Labor and Recent Democratization in South America and Southern Europe.” Comparative Politics 29 no. 3, pp. 285-303.
Murillo, Victoria. 2003. “Latin American Labor,” in Domínguez and Shifter, eds., Constructing Democratic Governance in Latin America. Johns Hopkins. p. 100-117.
Murillo, M. V. 2000. “From Populism to Neoliberalism: Labor Unions and Market Reforms in Latin America.” World Politics 52 no. 2, pp. 135-174.
Petras, James. 2005. “The Centrality of Peasant Movements in Latin America: Achievements and Limitations.” Synthesis/Regeneration v. 38. Online at http://www.greens.org/s-r/38/38-10.html Edelman, Marc. 2005. “Bringing the Moral Economy back in . . . to the Study of 21st-Century Transnational Peasant Movements.” American Anthropologist, Vol 7:3.
Navarro, Zander. 2000. “Breaking New Ground: Brazil’s MST,” in NACLA Report on the Americas 33(5): 36-39
Wolford, Wendy. “Families, Fields, and Fighting for Land: The Spatial Dynamic of Contention in Rural Brazil.” Mobilization 8 no. 2, p. 201-215.
Week 8: Organizing Around Identity: Women and Indigenous Movements
Understand patterns (if any) in social movements organized around gender
Understand patterns (if any) in social movements organized around ethnicity
Explore how/if movements organized around identity should be understood/analyzed differently.
Explore contrasts/similarities between movements organized around women and those organized around indigenous politics
Htun, M. 2003. Sex and the State: Abortion, Divorce, and the Family under Latin American Dictatorships and Democracies, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 142-171.
Berger, Susan. 2003. “Guatamaltecas: The Politics of Gender and Democratization.” In Eckstein, Susan, and Timothy P. Wickham-Crowley, eds. Struggles for social rights in Latin America. New York: Routledge.
Lynn Stephen. 1997. Women and Social Movements in Latin America: Power from Below Selections TBD (another book that I do not have with me right now—my apologies).
Yashar, Deborah. 2005. Contesting Citizenship in Latin America: The Rise of Indigenous Movements and the Postliberal Challenge. Cambridge University Press. Ch 1 (pp. 3-27 only), Ch 3, 4, 5, and Ch 7
Brysk, Alison. 2000. From Tribal Village to Global Village: Indian Rights and International Relations in Latin America. Stanford University Press. pp. 246-265.
Week 10: Resistance to Globalization and Marketization
Explore continuities with and differences from cases already discussed
Consider changes created by “transnational networks”
Question whether the tools we have help to explain riots
Think critically about whether we need new critical tools to understand contemporary patterns
Margaret E. Keck and Kathryn Sikkink. 1997. Activists Beyond Borders: Advocacy Networks in International Politics. Cornell University Press. pp.1-29; 79-120.
Womack, John Jr. 1999. “Chiapas, the Bishop of San Cristobal, and the Zapatista Revolt.” In Rebellion in Chiapas. John Womack Jr, ed. New York: The New Press.
Veltmeyer, Henry. 2000. “The Dynamics of Social Change and Mexico’s EZLN” Latin American Perspectices 27, no. 5, p. 88-110
Walton, John. 2001. “Debt, Protest, and the State in Latin America.” in Susan Eckstein, ed., Power and Popular Protest. Auyero, Javier and Moran, Timothy. 2007. "The Dynamics of Collective Violence: Dissecting Food Riots in Contemporary Argentina." Social Forces 85(3): 1341-1367.
Assies, Willem. 2003. "David versus Goliath in Cochabamba: Water Rights, Neoliberalism and the Revival of Social Protest in Bolivia." Latin American Perspectives, 30 (3):22.
Eckstein, Susan Eva. 2001. “Where Have All the Movements Gone?” in Susan Eckstein, ed., Power and Popular Protest, p. 351-401
Brysk, Alison. 1996. “Turning Weakness into Strength: The Internationalization of Indian Rights, Latin American Perspectives 23, No. 2.
Foran, John. 2005. Taking power : on the origins of third world revolutions. Cambridge, UK. ; New York: Cambridge University Press. Ch 1 (p. 5-32)