Political Violence and the Authoritarian State in Peru Silencing Civil Society

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-01-15
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan

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The Shining Path was one of the most brutal insurgencies ever seen in the Western Hemisphere. Political Violence and the Authoritarian State in Peru explores the devastating effects of insurgent violence and the state's brutal counterinsurgency methods on Peruvian civil society. Drawing on ethnographic research in Lima's vast shantytowns, the author provides original insights into Shining Path's efforts to spread its revolution to the capital city and the evolving responses of the urban poor to the insurgency. The book examines how the growing insurgent threat gave rise to a despotic regime led by Alberto Fujimori and his secret advisor, Vladimiro Montesinos, until it collapsed under the weight of its own corruption and the rebirth of civil society. Burt's analysis provides compelling insights into the way societies sacrifice freedom and democracy in the name of fighting terrorism, but also the way ruling elites manipulate societal fears to perpetuate their power and privilege.

Author Biography

Jo-Marie Burt is Associate Professor of Government and Politics at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. She was a Fulbright Scholar and visiting researcher at the Catholic University of Peru in 2006, and she served as a research consultant for the Peruvian Truth and Justice Commission in 2002-2003. She is co-editor, with Philip Mauceri, of Politics in the Andes: Identity, Conflict, Reform (2004). In 2008, Political Violence and the Authoritarian State in Peru was nominated for the WOLA-Duke book award for the best non-fiction book published in English on human rights, democracy and social justice in contemporary Latin America.

Table of Contents

List of Figuresp. ix
List of Tablesp. xi
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
List of Acronymsp. xvii
Introductionp. 1
State Formation and State Deformation
The Weak Statep. 25
Social Consequences of State Breakdownp. 41
Terror versus Terrorp. 53
The Crisis of Organized Politicsp. 69
Gray Zones and Guerrillas: Shining Path and the Battle of Lima
The Iron Belts of Miseryp. 91
In the Gray Zones: States of Shining Pathp. 103
The Battle of Villa El Salvadorp. 125
State Making against Democracy
The Authoritarian Reconstitution of the Statep. 159
Quien Habla es Terrorista: The Politics of Fearp. 189
The Authoritarian State and the Resurgence of Civil Societyp. 213
Notesp. 243
Bibliographyp. 261
Indexp. 277
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