Voices of Latin America: Social Movements and the New Activism

NONVIOLENCE, ACTIVISM, LATIN AMERICA & THE CARIBBEAN, REVIEWS, 8 Apr 2019

Tom Gatehouse | Monthly Review – TRANSCEND Media Service

3 Apr 2019 – These are uncertain times in Latin America. Popular faith in democracy has been shaken; traditional political parties and institutions are stagnating, and there is a growing right-wing extremism overtaking some governments. Yet, in recent years, autonomous social movements have multiplied and thrived. This book presents voices of these movement protagonists themselves, as they describe the major issues, conflicts, and campaigns for social justice in Latin America today. Latin America Bureau, a London-based, independent organization providing news and analysis on the region, spoke to people from fourteen countries, from Mexico to the Southern Cone.

The book captures the voices indigenous activists, fighting oil drilling in their homelands; mothers from favelas seeking justice for their children killed by police; opponents of large-scale mining projects; independent journalists working, at great personal risk, to expose corruption and human rights violations; women and LGBT people confronting violence and discrimination; and students demanding their right to a free, universal and high-quality education system. Though their locations and causes are disparate, these people and their movements share learning and activism, and their cooperation helps to link the movements across national borders. Voices of Latin America is essential reading for students, travelers, journalists—anyone with an interest in social justice movements in Latin America.

This is a wonderful X-ray of modern Latin America, a vision of the continent’s struggles and potential futures through the eyes of its social movement leaders and intellectuals.
—Duncan Green, Senior Strategic Adviser, Oxfam; coauthor, Faces of Latin America

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Tom Gatehouse has a Master of Philosophy degree in Latin American Studies from Cambridge University. A writer who has lived and worked in Argentina and Brazil, Tom heads Latin America Bureau’s Voices Team.

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