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Studies of the Americas

The Violence of Democracy

Political Life in Postwar El Salvador

Authors: Montoya, Ainhoa

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  • Demonstrates anthropology’s ability to contribute to the study of democracy-making and explores how the notion of democracy can be imbued with diverse meanings
  • Ethnographically examines citizens’ practices and political subjectivities in the context of a post-war, liberal market democracy
  • Sheds light on the complexity of endemic violence in El Salvador and the relationship of this violence to the country’s gray domains of politics
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eBook 67,82 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-76330-9
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 85,59 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-76329-3
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover 85,59 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-09467-6
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This book offers novel insights about the ability of a democracy to accommodate violence. In El Salvador, the end of war has brought about a violent peace, one in which various forms of violence have become incorporated into Salvadorans’ imaginaries and enactments of democracy. Based on ethnographic research, The Violence of Democracy argues that war legacies and the country’s neoliberalization have enabled an intricate entanglement of violence and political life in postwar El Salvador. This volume explores various manifestations of this entanglement: the clandestine connections between violent entrepreneurs and political actors; the blurring of the licit and illicit through the consolidation of economies of violence; and the reenactment of latent wartime conflicts and political cleavages during postwar electoral seasons. The author also discusses the potential for grassroots memory work and a political party shift to foster hopeful visions of the future and, ultimately, to transform the country’s violent democracy.

About the authors

Ainhoa Montoya is Lecturer in Latin American Studies and ESRC Future Research Leaders Fellow at the School of Advanced Study, University of London, UK.

Reviews

“The relationship between violence and democracy has long troubled scholars from a range of disciplines. Democracy means the end of political violence, doesn’t it? Perhaps not. Ainhoa Montoya provides a rich ethnographic look at the nature of political violence in postwar El Salvador, violence that persists and even intensifies within and alongside the development of that country’s political democracy. Beautifully written and deeply troubling, Montoya’s ethnographic account explores the multiple meanings of both violence and democracy, revealing them to be intimately entangled in the lived experience of contemporary Salvadorans. The book makes a strong case for the importance of ethnography to the study of democratization, citizenship, and peacebuilding; it demonstrates the many ways in which violence is an inescapable part of political democracy, in El Salvador and elsewhere around the world.” (Daniel M. Goldstein, Professor of Anthropology, Rutgers University, USA)

“Ainhoa Montoya offers a lucid analysis of a puzzling paradox: how does the site of global hope for peace transform into one of the most dangerous spots in the world? Her rigorous ethnography of both political ritual and everyday life is unmatched in post-conflict studies. This book should be required reading for those who want to understand how violence became embedded in El Salvador’s democracy, indeed in many post-Cold War, liberal market democracies.” (Ellen Moodie, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA)


Table of contents (9 chapters)

Table of contents (9 chapters)
  • Introduction

    Montoya, Ainhoa

    Pages 1-37

  • The Fallacy of the Telos of Transition

    Montoya, Ainhoa

    Pages 41-67

  • The Postwar Gray Zone of Politics

    Montoya, Ainhoa

    Pages 69-95

  • Neoliberalization and the Violence Within

    Montoya, Ainhoa

    Pages 97-127

  • War Reenactment Through Elections

    Montoya, Ainhoa

    Pages 129-164

Buy this book

eBook 67,82 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-76330-9
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 85,59 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-76329-3
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover 85,59 €
price for Germany (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-09467-6
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Violence of Democracy
Book Subtitle
Political Life in Postwar El Salvador
Authors
Series Title
Studies of the Americas
Copyright
2018
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-76330-9
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-76330-9
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-76329-3
Softcover ISBN
978-3-030-09467-6
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XVII, 303
Number of Illustrations
1 b/w illustrations, 1 illustrations in colour
Topics