Re-imagining Democracy in Latin America and the Caribbean

In 2016 the Re-imagining Democracy Project moved to a new phase as we were completing the book on the Mediterranean.

The new phase moved our attention to the experience of Latin America and the Caribbean.

We began with a series of reading groups, that started with the late colonial period and focused on the Bourbon reforms introduced in the administration of the colonies, and the two main rebellions that they seem to have provoked (in Peru and New Granada/Colombia), before moving to the region as a whole.

We had meetings on 14 June and 11 October 2016, and on 10 January (all held at the Latin American Centre) and 24 February 2017 (held at the Oxford Maison Française). These were followed by a full conference on 23-24 March 2017, followed by a series of smaller meetings.

The initial four sessions focused on independence and the rise of nation states, looking at the following topics:
1. Bourbon reforms and late colonial rebellions in Spanish America (reading list on Late Colonial Rebellions) (Downloadable minutes)
2. Transatlantic connections: Enlightenment, the US independence, the French Revolution (reading list) (Downloadable minutes)
3. The Impact of the Napoleonic Empire in Latin America and the Caribbean, 1803-1815 (2017-ht-reading-list) (Downloadable minutes)
4. Independence wars and the emergence of new nation states, 1815-1830 (2017 Feb 24 Reading list) (Downloadable minutes)
On 23-24 March we organised the conference ‘Re-imagining Democracy in Latin America and the Caribbean, 1770s-1880s’ sponsored by the Oxford History Faculty through the Fell and Sanderson Funds, held at the Latin American Centre.
Re-imagining democracy in Latin America and the Caribbean, 1770s-1880s.    (Programme March 2017).

On 30th October 2017, 12.30-2.30 pm a meeting was held with Jeremy Adelman, Professor of History at Princeton University and Astor Visiting Lecturer at Oxford this term.  He discussed with the group the topic ‘Re-Imagining Democracy in Latin America and the Caribbean, 1770s-1870s: Perspectives from Global History’? 2017 Astor Visit Revised Minutes Democracy Meeting

At the congress of the Latin American Studies Association (LASA, Barcelona, 26-28 May 2018) we organised two double panels related to our project.

2018 Full Proposal Congress.

2018 Democracy Panels

The Edited collection of essays will be published in the year 2023 by Oxford University Press, New York.


I Introduction

  1. The Project and the Setting    Joanna Innes
  2. The Language of Democracy  Eduardo Posada-Carbó

II Themes

  • Iberian Legacies Anthony McFarlane
  • Foundations, Ruptures and Fissures in British and French Caribbean Political Culture  Dexnell Peters
  • Emerging States  Natalia Sobrevilla Perea
  • From Caste to Race: Re-imagining Diversity in Spanish America  Nancy P. Appelbaum
  • José Antonio Aguilar Rivera and Eduardo Zimmermann
  • Political Cultures and Practices in Spanish South American Cities Paula Alonso and Marcela Ternavasio
  • Education, Citizenship and Contesting the Future Nicola Miller
  • Democracy in Latin America and the Caribbean: The View from Elsewhere Carsten-Andreas Schulz and Mark Petersen

III Language in Local Contexts

  1. Articulating Democracy in Hispaniola: Haiti and the Dominican Republic  Emmanuel Lachaud
  2. An Empire between Republics: “Democracy” in the Constitutional Monarchy of Brazil Andréa Slemian
  3. Democracy in Mexico Guy Thomson
  4. Luis Daniel Perrone
  5. Eduardo Posada-Carbó
  1. Moderating the Democratic Impetus: Trajectories of Democracy in Chile Juan Luis Ossa