Social Movements and the Left
Publisher: Against the Current
Date Written: 01/05/2015
Year Published: 2015
Resource Type: Article
Cx Number: CX20962
Book review of 'Social Movements and Leftist Government in Latin America: Confrontation or Cooptation,' edited by Gary Prevost, Carlos Oliva Campos, Harry E. Vanden.
In this collection of essays, Social Movements and Leftist Governments in Latin America, the editors right the balance by turning their attention to the movements. They had asked the contributors to examine the relationship between progressive social movements and progressive governments in the 2000s.
The movements considered here are often called "new" social movements for the following reasons: They are made up of previously marginalized groups, like the Indigenous and environmentalists; the movements usually seek autonomy from political parties and governments; and they use nonviolent direct action instead of the armed struggle of the historic left.
As the essays in this book relate, these movements faced some combination of cooptation, confrontation, and cooperation from the governments they helped to bring to power.