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The regime of Juan Per-n is one of the most studied topics of Argentina's contemporary history. This new book_an English translation of a highly popular, critically acclaimed Spanish language edition_provides a new perspective on the intriguing Argentinian leader. Mariano Plotkin's cultural approach makes Per-n's popularity understandable because it goes beyond Per-n's charismatic appeal and analyzes the Per-nist mechanisms used to generate political consent and mass mobilization. Ma-ana es San Per-n is the first book to focus on the cultural and symbolic dimensions of Per-nism and populism. Plotkin also presents important material for the study of populism and the modern state in this region.
Ma-ana es San Per-n explores the creation of myths, symbols, and rituals which constituted the Peronist political imagery. This political imagery was not designed to reinforce the legitimacy of a political system defined in abstract terms, but to assure the undisputed loyalty of different sectors of society to the Peronist government and to Per-n himself. The evolution of the institutional framework that made the creation of this symbolic apparatus possible is also discussed.
This well-researched book shows the methods designed by the Per-nist regime to broaden its social base through the incorporation and activation of groups which had traditionally occupied a marginalized position within the political system-non-union workers, women, and the poor. Plotkin investigates how Per-n used the education system to build his popularity. He examines the public assistance programs financed through the Eva Per-n Foundation, and demonstrates how they were used to politicize women for the first time. He explains how Eva Per-n and the Per-nist regime not only tried to gain the support of women as voters but also as potential 'missionaries' who would spread the Per-nist word in the privacy of their homes.
This well-written and engaging account of one of Latin America's most colorful and appealing leaders is an excellent resource on Argentina and Latin American history and politics.
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Mariano Plotkin is a researcher at the Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Cient'ficas y TZcnicas based at the Instituto de Desarrollo Econ~mico y Social in Buenos Aires, and professor at the Universidad Nacional de Tres de Febrero.Review:
No theme in Argentin history has attracted greater scholarly scrutiny than Peronsim. Professor Plotkin's addition to this massive corpus focuses on a topic that, if not exactly understudied, seems less saturated than others: the nature and function of Peronist propaganda in political festivals, primary education, and semiofficial institutions. Plotkin's approach is consistently and scrupulously fair. Manana es San Peròn provides an original perspective. (Hispanic American Historical Review)
Well-written and well-researched. (American Historical Review)
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