By Jim Handy
Even if so much discussions of the Guatemalan "revolution" of 1944-54 concentrate on foreign and nationwide politics, Revolution within the nation-state provides a extra advanced and built-in photograph of this decade. Jim convenient examines the agricultural bad, either Maya and Ladino, as key gamers who had a decisive influence at the nature of switch in Guatemala. He seems on the ways that ethnic and sophistication family affected govt coverage and identifies the clash generated within the nation-state by way of new monetary and social policies.Handy offers the main precise dialogue but of the Guatemalan agrarian reform, and he indicates how peasant enterprises prolonged its impression through the use of it to put declare to land, regardless of makes an attempt by way of agrarian officers and the president to use the legislation strictly. by means of targeting alterations in rural groups, and through detailing the coercive measures used to opposite the "revolution within the nation-state" following the overthrow of President Jacobo Arbenz Guzm‡n, convenient presents a framework for analyzing more moderen occasions in Guatemala, specially the continued fight for land and democracy.
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Extra info for Revolution in the Countryside: Rural Conflict and Agrarian Reform in Guatemala, 1944-1954
Recent research has suggested that Liberal land measures did not lead to immediate and widespread expropriation of Indian land, at least not to the extent previously believed in those areas where coffee was not profitably cultivated. Nonetheless, Liberal governments did pass laws that discouraged communal ownership and made it easier for individuals to gain access to land formerly controlled by Indian communities. 14 Liberal labor and land measures decapitalized highland communities. 15 But the demands of the Liberal governments and the negative aspects of coffee production had varying effects on different communities and on different sectors within the communities.
24 However, these communities were marked by a significant degree of social and economic differentiation and were pitted against each other in an increasingly violent competition for land. Page 15 Liberal policies also effectively stunted the growth of the state. While the Liberal state of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries was infinitely more powerful than its predecessors, this power was almost totally the result of the growing strength of the coercive apparatus of the state: the military, the Guardia Civil, and rural militias, all firmly in the hands of Ladinos.
The cheerful staff at the Centro de Investigaciones Regionales de Mesoamérica in Antigua were very helpful in preparing the final manuscript. I owe particular thanks to Steve Elliott and Guisela Asensio Lueg. The editorial staff at the University of North Carolina have been patient, helpful, and careful. I especially thank David Perry for his enthusiasm and support. Over the last decade I have enjoyed an ongoing dialogue, primarily through panels at learned conferences, with some excellent scholars.
Revolution in the Countryside: Rural Conflict and Agrarian Reform in Guatemala, 1944-1954 by Jim Handy