Topics: Indigenous peoples, Colonialism, Indigenous peoples of the Americas Pages: 3 (618 words) Published: April 21, 2014
The Transformation of Andean Peasant Communities
Within the formation of postcolonial Latin America, communal indigenous inhabitants were disrupted through political and economic oppression of liberalization. Brooke Larson lays out the varying historical patterns between governments of Latin American elites down to the peasant communities, in the transgression from colonial corporate forms to the multiple approaches of exploitation in emerging economies in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. Larson correlates the relations of elites and peasants, molded by geographical, demographical, and sociopolitical differences, to depict the struggles of equalization in a newly colonized society. Through the violent uprisings and transitional movements, Andean peasants voiced their political opinions through resistance and scrutinizing the ideological and cultural characteristics of domination, political validity, and rebellion. As liberalism entered Latin America, Andean peasants were seen as a route to capitalistic gains. The rural inhabitants were painted a vivid image of liberalism by the elites, entailing freedom, land and prosperity. However, the elites attempted to marginalize and even eliminate the indigenous populations as a separate and identifiable group. The peasants were not considered equals and weren’t able to play a role in the political life, or so the elites thought. Inhabitants came under economic pressures “creat[ing] an arena of interpreted struggle” that was frequently presented in terms of the liberal agenda but were more often a direct response to the spread of capitalism (Larson 7). Tribute imposed on the peasants became a vital financial entity for the government, revealing the natives responsibility as an economic entity. Andean peasants harvested the land that was used for profit, providing them with a recognizable influence on politics in a land relying on sharecrops. The indigenous acted as agricultural bankers to bring prosperity into...

Bibliography: Larson, Brooke. Trials of Nation Making: Liberalism, Race, and Ethnicity in the Andes, 1810-1910. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004. Print.
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