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Volume 64 / Humanities


JOHN BRITTON, Gasque Professor of History, Francis Marion University

GLOBALIZATION HAS PRODUCED A MIXTURE of optimism and anxiety, of consensus and controversy over the last two decades. Latin American historians have played a role in efforts to understand this complex process. Mary Kay Vaughan and Barbara Weinstein, former editors of the Hispanic American Historical Review, evaluate the role of globalization in Latin American history and the place of Latin America in global history in the Aug. 2004 issue of this journal. They assemble the work of five contributors: Langer (item #bi2005002184#), Adelman (item #bi2005002185#), Besse (item #bi2005002186#), Benton (item #bi2005002187#), and Seigel (item #bi2005002188#), who examined the historiographical, conceptual, and pedagogical dimension of this interaction.

While globalization is a central theme in a wide range of publications in this biennium, there is a seemingly contradictory trend in the large number of studies at the national level and the institutions and culture of the nation- state. Gutiérrez Viñuales (item #bi2006000218#) deals with the creation of public monuments in the 1890–1940 period and Soihat, Bicalho, and Gouvêa (item #bi2007000643#) offer an edited volume on various manifestations of political culture. Several collections of articles examine nation building in the aftermath of the wars of independence under the editorship of the following: Calderón and Thibaud (item #bi2007000642#), Annino and Guerra (item #bi2006000229#), Mínguez and Chust (item #bi2006000233#), Colom González (item #bi2006000220#), and Rodríguez García (item #bi2008000912#). Earle's article (item #bi2005001960#) focuses on national commemorations of independence in the 1800s, Rachum (item #bi2005002892#) examines the origins of the "Día de la Raza" celebrations in the same century. Pérez Vejo (item #bi2005002258#) reviews the historiography of nation building throughout the region as a whole. The role of women in state formation and the evolution of citizenship are stressed in two collections: one edited by Cicerchia, Thompson, and Nash (item #bi2007002425#) and a second assembled by Gutiérrez Chong (item #bi2007002422#).

The focus on globalization has brought attention to the importance of communications and travel and their connections with institutions, ideas, and language. Calzadilla (item #bi2006000230#) produced an anthology of European travel accounts from the colonial era. Earle (item #bi2007000062#) examines transatlantic love letters in the colonial period to obtain a new perspective on marriage. Rueda Ramírez (item #bi2006000219#) documents the culture and business of the colonial book trade. Immigration and cultural mediation are the central themes in two edited works, one by Meyer Cosío and Salazar Anaya (item #bi2007000646#) and a second by the Congreso Internacional las Cuatro Partes del Mundo (item #bi2007003311#). Guerra's article (item #bi2005004409#) examines the emergence of the popular press and provides examples of propaganda in the independence era, and Roldán Vera (item #bi2006002273#) delves into the publication of Spanish language books in the same period by a British publishing house. Brown (item #bi2007000432#) analyzes the publications of British writer Richard Vowell on Spanish America also in the independence period. Editor de Palacio Montiel (item #bi2004003555#) assembles several studies in the history of the Latin American press in the 19th and 20th centuries. López Morales (item #bi2006000237#) explores the evolution of the Spanish language in the Americas. Murphy (item #bi2008000918#) traces the literary responses to the Monroe Doctrine in the 19th century, and Brett (item #bi2006003336#) reviews the coverage of the Central American crises of the 1980s in the Catholic press of the US. Guevara's Motorcycle Diaries (item #bi2005004500#) combines a travel account with ideological explorations.

The arrival, settlement, and endurance of the Jewish people in Latin America received attention in this biennium. Four edited works brought together collections of scholarly articles, literary essays, and creative literature over a wide range of topics. The volumes edited by Milgram (item #bi2006000231#) and Ruggiero (item #bi2007002417#) document personal and cultural responses to the Holocaust and the Jewish diaspora of the Nazi years. Agosín's collection (item #bi2005000395#) examines the Jewish experience from a country-by- country perspective. AMILAT's contribution (item #bi2007000928#) combines specialized and general studies. Galiana (item #bi2008000921#) provides an extensive survey history of anti-Semitism that includes a large section on Latin America.

Global convergence invites comparative studies, and five examples illustrate this approach to history. Elliot (item #bi2006000517#) compares the Spanish and British empires, while articles assembled by Calderón and Thibaud (item #bi2007000642#) offer comparative perspectives on the independence movements. Three books examine the condition of democracy in several Latin America countries. Sala de Touron (item #bi2005004834#) looks at the roots of democratic ideas, and Artigas (item #bi2006000216#) probes the problems in democratic practices. Finally, Waisman, Rein, and Gurrutxaga Abad (item #bi2006000228#) compile studies of the transition from dictatorship to democracy.

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