From Subaltern To President

Evo Morales, New Social Movements, And Autonomies In Bolivia

Gabriela Ovando Barrero, PhD in Comparative Studies

A reading based on her bilingual dissertation’s central thesis:

The achievements of Bolivian indigenous movements (not only Andean, but also those from the Eastern lowlands) in the struggle to regain their rights and identity, which paved the way for the election of Evo Morales to the Presidency, and the central political role of the new social movements (after the failure of traditional political parties). The necessity to reform Unitarian and vertical State structures, founded in 1825, through the promulgation of regional autonomies, as the most coherent and viable instrument to enact administrative and political descentralization (and to open the space for a real decolonizing revolution) in the near future.

A set of possible solutions to overcome the polarization of Bolivian civil society: the exercise of multiculturalism, cultural relativism, respect for the constitutional and binding referendum of July 2006, the combination of western participative democracy and freedom with indigenous communitarian democracy. The need to reach consensus in the muddled Constituent Assembly, as well as national solidarity between ethnic groups, cultures, social movements, political parties, and productive regions in Bolivia.

Mondays, 4:00 - 5:15 p.m.

Room NU 201
(Nursing Building)

For further information: (561) 297-4225