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The Cuban American novelist García tries her hand at political fiction, with only partial success.
Frank produces a remarkably rich, gritty account of daily life today in the twilight of Caribbean socialism.
Lynch narrates the 500-year history of the Catholic Church in Latin America with fluidity and intelligence, concluding that although “tradition confronts modernity, authority and liberty in the Church have remained indivisible, each a restraint on excess in the other.”
The veteran human rights advocates whose writings are collected here celebrate the forward march of Latin Americans in securing political freedoms, even as the book calls for more attention to economic, social, and cultural rights.
Bustos extols Guevara’s sacrificial utopianism and historical fatalism, yet his stories constitute a less flattering profile of the man’s leadership style and analytic grasp.
The daughter of a prominent revolutionary family, Piñeiro Harnecker has emerged as an influential advocate for cooperatives and worker self-management in a changing Cuba.
It is surely too soon to issue a definitive verdict on the reign of Fidel Castro, but this preliminary effort well sums up the current assessment of most centrist Cuba observers.
Stuart interweaves the journeys of the author’s ancestors with the turbulent history of the English-speaking Caribbean islands and their role in the making of the Atlantic world.
O’Neil sketches a persuasively optimistic portrait of Mexico, one at odds with the crime-drenched media reports and alarmist warnings of nativists in the United States.
This marvelous volume by Mikoyan’s late son, appearing only now in English, recounts the tough negotiations that followed between his father, the Cuban leadership, and the Kennedy administration over the weapons, the presence of which Washington had at one point been utterly unaware of and which risked making Cuba a nuclear power.
The author’s father, a distinguished physician and prominent human rights activist, was gunned down in 1987 in Medellín, Colombia, by one of the right-wing death squads that operated with impunity in the country at that time. This poetic memoir is many things at once: a sensitive son’s recollections of growing up in a loving family; a proud homage to his generous father, who was devoted to his relatives, his many medical students, and his wider community and whom Abad describes as “Christian in religion, Marxist in economics, and liberal in politics”; and a moving contemplation of human tragedy and memory (“an opaque, cracked mirror”).
The veteran Haiti observer Wilentz returned to Haiti after the devastating earthquake that struck the country in January 2010 to further ponder the causes of Haiti’s deep poverty and dysfunctional governments and to witness the massive reconstruction. Wilentz is at her best when describing the more exotic aspects of Haitian culture: its pagan religions, zombies, and werewolves.
In this important, encouraging study, a group of World Bank economists smashes the long-standing image of Latin America as a stagnant region marred by a yawning rich-poor divide.
The rapper and hip-hop producer Jean recounts vivid, laugh-out-loud stories of his boyhood growing up poor in rural Haiti, then immigrating to the mean streets of Brooklyn’s public-housing projects. In many ways, the book is a get-even shot at his former lover and musical collaborator Lauryn Hill, who related her thoughts about their relationship on her acclaimed 1998 album, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.
Carpenter bases his sharp criticism of current U.S. counternarcotics policies not on libertarian principles relating to consumer choice (as one might anticipate from a senior fellow at the Cato Institute) but rather on pragmatic grounds. Shirk’s report shares many of Carpenter’s critical assessments, although his policy recommendations are not quite as bold.
This compendium of sophisticated essays probes the rapidly evolving economic, diplomatic, and ideological links between China and Latin American countries. There is no single takeaway, but the thoughtful commentaries collected here note a number of opportunities to be seized and potential dangers to be averted.
In The Sandinistas and Nicaragua Since 1979, scholars sympathetic to the Nicaraguan revolution of the 1980s grapple with the transformation of the Sandinistas from youthful idealists into powerful elites enjoying unprincipled privileges. The Education of a Radical attributes this familiar transition to the limitations of political ideology and the inherent imperfections of human nature.
According to these four IMF experts, the small economies of Central America deserve praise for their prudent fiscal and monetary policies, which helped them weather the recent global economic crisis with relatively little pain. Nevertheless, their per capita growth rates remain too sluggish to close the wide income gaps between them and the developed nations.
In this collection, scholars with the influential Chinese Academy of Sciences offer some interesting but dryly presented perspectives on the surge of Chinese activities in Latin America. Their analyses range from pleasantly realistic, to contradictory, to naive.
Teixeira, a rising Brazilian scholar, forcefully makes the case that the United States has employed radically different policies in Mexico and the Caribbean basin than in more distant South America.
An eclectic anthology of critical cultural studies, Tijuana Dreaming brings to life the tumultuous history of the border town’s shifting identity. Pilcher’s Planet Taco, meanwhile, tackles one of the central debates in Tijuana Dreaming: Can there be an “authentic” Mexico in the context of mass migrations and rapid global economic and cultural change?
As Blofield incisively chronicles, until recently, household servants and nannies, who compose 15 percent of the economically active female population in Latin America, were systematically denied basic labor protections. But in country after country, their advocates have improved their lot by making good use of democratic processes.
The traditional pessimism regarding Latin American economies is rapidly fading, and this high-quality collection of 11 success stories helps explain why.
This timely collaboration among regional development institutions details recent trends in trade, investment, and development cooperation between Asia and Latin America, a historic transformation of the global economy that is still in its early stages.
In the ongoing debate over who was responsible for the failed U.S. invasion of Cuba in 1961, Rasenberger rejects accusations that the CIA acted as an independent rogue power and instead blames Presidents Dwight Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy. Rasenberger’s real culprit is American political culture, with its paradoxical combination of hubris and insecurity, which simply could not tolerate sharing a hemisphere with an insubordinate Cuba.
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