Relentless Persistence: Nonviolent Action in Latin America

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9781597520355: Relentless Persistence: Nonviolent Action in Latin America
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In the face of enormous disparities of wealth and despite brutal repression, Latin America is alive with movements for change. Struggles for human rights, community organization and political participation have enabled Latin Americans to assume their role as authors of their own history. 'Relentless Persistence' illustrates in human terms the vitality and diversity of these movements - and their often astonishing results. How did popular pressure in Uruguay drive the military dictatorship into retreat? How are the indigenous people of Peru continuing their 450-year-old tradition of resistance to subjugation and acculturation? What are base community organizers doing to create real democracy in Chile? In answering these questions, 'Relentless Persistence' gives us inspiring examples of human creativity and commitment, explores the rich relationship between faith and politics, and demonstrates the dynamic integration of reflection, strategy and action that can lead to liberation. Here are the stories of cement workers in Brazil who maintained militant nonviolence throughout a successful twelve-year strike; of four women whose hunger strike brought Bolivia to a standstill until tin miners' rights were restored; of Honduran peasants whose land occupations enable them to feed their families; of the Argentinean 'Madres de Plaza de Mayo', whose bold actions awakened the conscience of their nation. Through case studies and personal testimonies, Relentless Persistence offers both the fascination of remarkable success stories and a deeper understanding of how ordinary people can create dramatic change. For North Americans, conditioned to expect quick results, Relentless Persistence provides perspective for the long haul - a healthy antidote to easy discouragement. It is above all a strength-giving book, full of moving examples of people acting with great determination and a profound joy of life.

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In a region where political violence has been the norm, few works have emerged to document what this book calls "active nonviolence." The editors survey ten Latin American countries confronted by various forms of violence, using a case study approach to support their contention that active nonviolence is a viable alternative to violent change. This philosophy shares similarities with, and contributes to, liberation theology. The contributors are practitioners, not academics, resulting in a work that is shy on theoretical and historical roots, but strong on examples and personal experiences. Although tying each case together would strengthen the book considerably, its coverage is unique and readily accessible to the general reader. Recommended for most libraries.
- Roderic A. Camp, Central Coll., Pella, Ia.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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