Latin American Studies - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Reconciliation in post-transitional Uruguay? A critical look at transitional justice and justice cascade

Date created: 
2013-08-22
Abstract: 

A key controversial issue in Uruguay has been the nation’s inability to achieve a lasting reconciliation regarding human rights violations after a twelve year dictatorship. While other scholars have identified factors that caused the resurgence of the demand for human rights prosecutions, I focus on the nation’s eventual failure to do so. This, I argue, is a result of the executive, the civil society and the politicization of human rights violations. I offer a critical reading on transitional justice and the justice cascade as explanatory frameworks to understand how societies confront their authoritarian past. Although these concepts both seem relevant, they are inadequate in the Uruguayan context. The project was undertaken using a historical research methodology focusing on archival research. I conclude that Uruguay has not experienced a unique water-shed moment because the military has never been fully discredited. This has hindered the process to reach an enduring reconciliation.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Alexander Dawson
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: International Studies
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

The Argentine wine industry: creating new spaces for coordination?

Date created: 
2013-02-14
Abstract: 

The purpose of this study is to understand the effects of public policies and institutional support in the development of the wine industry of Argentina. It is concerned principally with understanding how interaction and coordination among actors within this sector aids the developments of this industry. It relies upon the Triple Helix approach of university /research-industry-government interaction to compare and examine the institutional arrangements in the wine industry of three Argentine provinces and at the national level. It finds that this approach is useful for understanding the institutional foundation for innovation, knowledge diffusion, and economic success; however, it struggles to explain how different actors make sense of coordination and how the latter is achieved. This study demonstrates that it is necessary to first build a sense of collaboration and coordination among the relevant institutional spheres to reproduce a Triple Helix framework in practise.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Anil Hira
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: Latin American Development Studies
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Promotoras in Nicaragua: Community development, women, participation, and empowerment

Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This thesis examines the impact of women promotoras on community development in Nicaragua. Promotoras have become crucial catalysts and mediators of local development by enhancing community outreach, broadening participation, enabling individual/collective empowerment, and finding creative ways to collaborate with community members. Their work expands women's leadership roles, while contributing to overall project sustainability. Key to the promotoras' success is their own process of personal transformation through community work based on popular education and capacity building. However, organizational, cultural and economic limitations present challenges to the promotoras' approach; for instance, traditional machista attitudes question women's ability to occupy leadership positions, while economic constraints force promotoras to leave their voluntary positions in favour of better-remunerated work. The contributions and limitations of promotoras' work are relevant for policy-makers, practitioners and funders of community development, especially that oriented towards poor women.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Latin American Studies Program - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

The contributions of participation toward efficacy of community economic development (CED) projects in Morelos, México

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

Why do some Community Economic Development (CED) projects succeed while others fail? This study examines the performance and experiences of 5 CED rural projects in Morelos, Mexico. Our results show that Receptivity, Institutions and Evaluation (RIE) were largely important in determining success. 1) Receptive attitudes are reflected in the lack of interest toward entrepreneurial activities. 2) Institutions are important variables because institutions influence stability and trust. Without stability and trust, it is difficult to achieve economic efficiency and growth. 3) Evaluation affects success by optimizing the decision-making process. In contrast to the RIE schools of thought, we argue that RIE frameworks largely ignore the importance of participation as a key element for achieving success. From our perspective, RIE becomes RIPE (Receptivity, Institutions, Participation, and Evaluation), to acknowledge that participation is also an influential element. Our study provides sustained evidence that as CED projects become more participatory the likelihood of success increases.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Latin American Studies Program - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Full-fledged gender inclusion in participatory budgeting in Villa El Salvador: participation, representation and political equality

Author: 
Date created: 
2010
Abstract: 

This study assesses the degree of gender inclusion in Empowered Participatory Governance (EPG) in Villa El Salvador, Peru. Research consisted of ethnographic investigation, field observation, and semi-structured interviews. The thesis analyzes gender inclusion around three concepts: participation, representation, and political equality. Limitations to full-fledged inclusion are unravelled, and discussed in relation to gender. In Villa El Salvador, norms of gender equity, embodied in quotas for registration and representation in power structures, are in place. However, quotas do not guarantee equal attendance to workshops or equal representation of women. The variables limiting full-fledged gender inclusion relate to gendered productive and reproductive roles, social and cultural aspects of machismo, and the male-dominated nature of the membership of organizations. Quotas are a step in the right direction, but the study concludes that as long as other limitations are not addressed, full-fledged gender inclusion remains an unfulfilled aspiration.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
E
Department: 
Latin American Development Studies - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Advancing towards food sovereignty in El Alto, Bolivia: revitalizing the consumption of native, nutritious and agro-ecological food in urban centers

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

Most field research on food sovereignty focuses on food production, circulation and consumption systems in rural communities and on the role of local organizations in sustaining local food systems, livelihoods and the environment. This thesis takes the question of food sovereignty into an urban, consumer-focused context in El Alto, a large city in Bolivia where traditional diets, based on foods of plant origin and low meat consumption, have been replaced by energy dense foods, the so-called “nutrition transition”. This thesis presents food sovereignty as a strategy to counteract the “nutrition transition” in El Alto. The thesis examines the local and structural factors that affect the viability of revitalizing the consumption of native, nutritious and agro-ecological food in the schools of El Alto.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
H
Department: 
Latin American Studies Program - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Informal institutions and party organization: a case study of the MAS-IPSP in urban areas of La Paz and El Alto

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

The Movement Towards Socialism (MAS) emerged in Bolivia’s rural areas in the 1990s. Born of peasant social movements, it has spread to the cities and become the country’s dominant political force, as its leader, Evo Morales, was elected to the Presidency in 2005. Drawing on primary data collected through fieldwork in the cities of La Paz and El Alto, this thesis focuses on two aspects of the MAS. Firstly, it studies how the MAS is organized internally, and argues that its rural origins have indelibly shaped its contemporary structure. The MAS is currently at a movement stage and is building a base-level infrastructure, which is informal and barely institutionalized. Secondly, this thesis examines how the MAS operates in La Paz and El Alto. It reveals that while the MAS is an innovative representational institution, it has not innovated much in terms of political practices and organization in these two cities.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
E
Department: 
Latin American Studies Program - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

“We are not just the future, we are the present.” Exploring the developmental needs of young Garifunas in rural and urban Honduras

Peer reviewed: 
No, item is not peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2009
Abstract: 

This thesis explores the developmental needs of Garifuna young people living in rural and urban Honduras. Employing both qualitative and quantitative methods, the research traces the individual, familial and community development needs expressed by this highly migratory segment of the Afro-indigenous population. The study utilizes the Positive Youth Development (PYD) framework to understand both the data obtained from the interviewees and the programs offered by non-governmental organizations (NGOs) working with youth in the rural and urban settings. At both research sites young people identify access to education, traditional and alternative, as their principal need. Interviewees confirm that obtaining an education, often via urban migration, is a process which simultaneously facilitates personal development and a young person’s ability to contribute to their family, Garifuna community and culture. This thesis demonstrates the applicability of PYD to contexts outside of North America, while concurrently highlighting themes and questions that PYD fails to address

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
E
Department: 
Latin American Studies Program - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

An analysis of Bolivia's new framework for social, political and economic regional integration

Author: 
Date created: 
2008
Abstract: 

Bolivia’s approach to a post-neoliberal political economy includes reimagining practices of trade and integration. Drawing on indigenous and economic nationalist ideological currents, Bolivian social movements were successful in demonstrating against existing trade agreements and inserting alternative proposals into Bolivian integration policies under the Morales government. These include incorporating principles of cooperation, solidarity, complementarity and national sovereignty into existing trade fora and Bolivia’s 2006 TCP-ALBA accord with Venezuela and Cuba. This agreement generated expanded social programs and several development projects, but has not demonstrated significant economic improvements. This thesis argues that Bolivia’s new paradigm for integration is limited by endogenous structural, institutional and political impediments. Additionally, the integration strategy proposed by the Morales government risks a new form of dependency, centered on Venezuelan support and high energy rents. However, this study also suggests it is possible to advance a redistributive agenda at the margins in the emergent multi-polar world.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
H
Department: 
Latin American Studies Program - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)

Argentina Arde: Art as a tool for social struggle

Author: 
Date created: 
2005
Abstract: 

This study focuses on artistic representations of the Argentine crisis of 2002, as produced by the art collective Argentina Arde. The photographic, documentary video, performance works and texts produced by Argentine Arde give an indication of the ways in which the 'nation' is being envisioned by new social movements in Argentina. This study provides insight into their strategic use of nationalist discourse in organizing and mobilizing various sectors of the population. I look into the role played by Argentina Arde within the resistance movements that surfaced as a result of the national crisis, and by extension, the role played by the artists' politico-cultural production itself in counteracting hegemonic discourses of the state and the mass media channels it controls. Through this study I argue that groups of this kind may have great significance for the expression and proposal of alternative solutions to national problems in Argentina and Latin America.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Department: 
Latin American Studies Program - Simon Fraser University
Thesis type: 
Thesis (M.A.)