Central America
Featured Items
Cruel Modernity
Cruel Modernity
Paperback      ISBN: 082235456x

In Cruel Modernity, Jean Franco examines the conditions under which extreme cruelty became the instrument of armies, governments, rebels, and rogue groups in Latin America. She seeks to understand how extreme cruelty came to be practiced in many parts of the continent over the last eighty years and how its causes differ from the conditions that brought about the Holocaust, which is generally the atrocity against which the horror of others is measured. In Latin America, torturers and the perpetrators of atrocity were not only trained in cruelty but often provided their own rationales for engaging in it. When "draining the sea" to eliminate the support for rebel groups gave license to eliminate entire families, the rape, torture, and slaughter of women dramatized festering misogyny and long-standing racial discrimination accounted for high death tolls in Peru and Guatemala. In the drug wars, cruelty has become routine as tortured bodies serve as messages directed to rival gangs.

Franco draws on human-rights documents, memoirs, testimonials, novels, and films, as well as photographs and art works, to explore not only cruel acts but the discriminatory thinking that made them possible, their long-term effects, the precariousness of memory, and the pathos of survival.

The Motorcycle Diaries: Notes on a Latin American Journey
The Motorcycle Diaries
Notes on a Latin American Journey
Paperback      ISBN: 1920888101

The book of the popular movie

STARRING GAEL GARCIA BERNAL NOW A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER The young Che Guevara's lively and highly entertaining travel diary.This new, expanded edition features exclusive, unpublished photos taken by the 23-year-old Ernesto on his journey across a continent, and a tender preface by Aleida Guevara, offering an insightful perspective on the man and the icon.

"As his journey progresses, Guevara's voice seems to deepen, to darken, colored by what he witnesses in his travels. He is still poetic, but now he comments on what he sees, though still poetically, with a new awareness of the social and political ramifications of what's going on around him."--January Magazine

"A journey, a number of journeys. Ernesto Guevara in search of adventure, Ernesto Guevara in search of America, Ernesto Guevara in search of Che. On this journey of journeys, solitude found solidarity, 'I' turned into 'we'." --Eduardo Galeano "When I read these notes for the first time, I was quite young myself and I immediately identified with this man who narrated his adventures in such a spontaneous manner... To tell you the truth, the more I read, the more I was in love with the boy my father had been..." --Aleida Guevara "Our film is about a young man, Che, falling in love with a continent and finding his place in it." --Walter Salles, director of "The Motorcycle Diaries." Also available in Spanish: DIARIOS DE MOTOCICLETA (978-1-920888-11-4) Features of this edition include:
  • A preface by Che Guevara's daughter Aleida
  • Introduction by Cintio Vintier, well-known Latin American poet
  • Photos & maps from the original journey
  • Postcript: Che's personal reflections on his formative years: "A child of my environment." Published in association with the Che Guevara Studies Center, Havana

Clandestine in Chile: The Adventures of Miguel Littin
Clandestine in Chile
The Adventures of Miguel Littin
Paperback      ISBN: 1590173406

In 1973, the film director Miguel Litt n fled Chile after a U.S.-supported military coup toppled the democratically elected socialist government of Salvador Allende. The new dictator, General Augusto Pinochet, instituted a reign of terror and turned Chile into a laboratory to test the poisonous prescriptions of the American economist Milton Friedman. In 1985, Litt n returned to Chile disguised as a Uruguayan businessman. He was desperate to see the homeland he'd been exiled from for so many years; he also meant to pull off a very tricky stunt: with the help of three film crews from three different countries, each supposedly busy making a movie to promote tourism, he would secretly put together a film that would tell the truth about Pinochet's benighted Chile--a film that would capture the world's attention while landing the general and his secret police with a very visible black eye.

Afterwards, the great novelist Gabriel Garc a M rquez sat down with Litt n to hear the story of his escapade, with all its scary, comic, and not-a-little surreal ups and downs. Then, applying the same unequaled gifts that had already gained him a Nobel Prize, Garc a M rquez wrote it down. Clandestine in Chile is a true-life adventure story and a classic of modern reportage.
Painting a Map of Sixteenth-Century Mexico City: Land, Writing, and Native Rule
Painting a Map of Sixteenth-Century Mexico City
Land, Writing, and Native Rule
Hardcover      ISBN: 0300180713

In 1975, the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library of Yale University acquired an exceptional mid-16th-century map of Mexico City, which, until 1521, had been the capital of the Aztecs, the Nahua-speaking peoples who dominated the Valley of Mexico. This extraordinary six-by-three-foot document, showing landholdings and indigenous rulers, has yielded a wealth of information about the artistic, linguistic, and material culture of the Nahua after the Spanish invasion. This book marks the first publication of both the complete map and the multi-disciplinary research that it spurred.

A distinguished team of specialists in history, art history, linguistics, and conservation science has worked together for nearly a decade; the scientific analysis of the map's pigments and paper in 2007 marks the most thorough examination of a pictorial document from early colonial Mexico to date. The result of their work, the essays in Painting a Map of Sixteenth-Century Mexico, not only focuses on the map but also explores the situation of the indigenous people of Mexico City in the 16th century and their interactions with Europeans.

Harvest of Empire: A History of Latinos in America
Harvest of Empire
A History of Latinos in America
Paperback      ISBN: 0140255397

A noted Hispanic journalist sheds new light on the history of Latinos in America, ranging from the first sixteenth-century colonies in the New World through the 1998 presidential election, and offers close-up portraits of distinguished Americans of Hispanic descent who have played a key role in the ever-evolving face of American life. Reprint.

Poverty Inequality Latin America
Poverty Inequality Latin America
Paperback      ISBN: 0268038686

In 1995, academics, politicians, entrepreneurs, union leaders and other civic leaders gathered to discuss the present and emerging challenges in resolving issues of poverty and inequality in Latin America. This resulting multidisciplinary study integrates analytical work with advice.

The Che Guevara Myth and the Future of Liberty
The Che Guevara Myth and the Future of Liberty
Paperback      ISBN: 1598130056

Nearly four decades after his death, the legend of Che Guevara has grown worldwide. In this new book, Alvaro Vargas Llosa separates the myth from the reality of Che's legacy, and shows that Che's ideals were a re-hash of notions about centralized power that have long been the major source of suffering and misery in the underdeveloped world. With testimonies from witnesses of Che's actions, Alberto Vargas Llosa's detailed account of the "real Che" sets the record straight by exposing the delusion at the heart of the Che phenomenon. Vargas Llosa shows that Che's legacy making the law subservient to the most powerful, crushing any and all dissent, and concentrating wealth under the guise of "social equality" is not the solution to poverty and injustice but is the core of the problem.
Besides exposing the dark truths of Che's ideology and actions, "The Che Guevara Myth and the Future of Liberty" elaborates on attempts by both the left and right to suppress liberty and examines the manifestation of Latin American spirit throughout the ages, from early indigenous trade to today's enterprising communities overcoming government impediments. In so doing, the book points to the real revolution among the poor the liberation of individuals from the constraints of state power in all spheres, public and private.
Whether you love or hate Che, "The Che Guevara Myth and the Future of Liberty" will not leave you untouched and will provide a powerful, new perspective on how to overcome the challenges facing the Third World.
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Dancing with the Devil in the City of God: Rio de Janeiro and the Olympic Dream
Dancing with the Devil in the City of God
Rio de Janeiro and the Olympic Dream
Paperback      ISBN: 1476756260

From prizewinning journalist and Brazilian native Juliana Barbassa comes a deeply reported and beautifully written account of the seductive and chaotic city of Rio de Janeiro as it struggles with poverty and corruption on the brink of the 2016 Olympic Games.

Juliana Barbassa moved a great deal throughout her life, but Rio was always home. After twenty-one years abroad, she returned to find her native city--once ravaged by inflation, drug wars, corrupt leaders, and dying neighborhoods--undergoing a major change.

Rio has always aspired to the pantheon of global capitals, and under the spotlight of the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games it seems that its moment has come. But in order to prepare itself for the world stage, Rio must vanquish the entrenched problems that Barbassa recalls from her childhood. Turning this beautiful but deeply flawed place into a pristine showcase of the best that Brazil has to offer in just a few years is a tall order--and with the whole world watching, the stakes couldn't be higher.

Library Journal called Dancing with the Devil in the City of God "akin to Charlie LeDuff's Detroit"--a book that "combines history and personal interviews in an informative and engaging work." This kaleidoscopic portrait of Rio introduces the reader to the people who make up this city of extremes, revealing their aspirations and their grit, their violence, their hungers, and their splendor, and shedding light on the future of this city they are building together.

Dancing with the Devil in the City of God is an insider perspective from a native daughter and "a fascinating look at the people who live in and aspire to change one of the world's most impressive cities" (Booklist, starred review).
The Path Between the Seas: The Creation of the Panama Canal, 1870-1914
The Path Between the Seas
The Creation of the Panama Canal, 1870-1914
Paperback      ISBN: 0671244094
The National Book Award-winning epic chronicle of the creation of the Panama Canal, a first-rate drama of the bold and brilliant engineering feat that was filled with both tragedy and triumph, told by master historian David McCullough.

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Truman, here is the national bestselling epic chronicle of the creation of the Panama Canal. In The Path Between the Seas, acclaimed historian David McCullough delivers a first-rate drama of the sweeping human undertaking that led to the creation of this grand enterprise.

The Path Between the Seas tells the story of the men and women who fought against all odds to fulfill the 400-year-old dream of constructing an aquatic passageway between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. It is a story of astonishing engineering feats, tremendous medical accomplishments, political power plays, heroic successes, and tragic failures. Applying his remarkable gift for writing lucid, lively exposition, McCullough weaves the many strands of the momentous event into a comprehensive and captivating tale.

Winner of the National Book Award for history, the Francis Parkman Prize, the Samuel Eliot Morison Award, and the Cornelius Ryan Award (for the best book of the year on international affairs), The Path Between the Seas is a must-read for anyone interested in American history, the history of technology, international intrigue, and human drama.
Covered Wagon Days: A Journey Across the Plains in the Sixties, and Pioneer Days in the Northwest, from the Private Journals of Albert Jerome Dickso
Covered Wagon Days
A Journey Across the Plains in the Sixties, and Pioneer Days in the Northwest, from the Private Journals of Albert Jerome Dickso
Paperback      ISBN: 0803265824

Albert Jerome Dickson was fourteen years old in 1864 when he left LaCrosse, Wisconsin, in a small caravan of covered wagons headed for Montana Territory. Thousands of emigrants had preceded him on the Oregon Trail, but none ever described the journey in sharper detail. "Covered Wagon Days" recreates the daily progress of Dickson's party, which included his guardians, Joshua and Rebecca Ridgley. The logistics of such a trip, the sights along a trail marked by ruts and fresh graves, the rigors of camping, the encounters with Indians and returning pilgrims and vigilantes running after road agents--all figure in Dickson's memoir. The payoff for the Ridgleys is not the gold being discovered in the mountains near Virginia City but a fine farm in Gallatin Valley. As vivid as any novel about the Oregon Trail and pioneering in the Northwest, "Covered Wagon Days," first published in 1929, is based on journals and materials that were edited by the author's son, Arthur Jerome Dickson.