Destroying the Opposition’s Livelihood: Pathways to Violence in Bolivia since 2000

William T. Barndt

Abstract


During the first decade of the 2000s, Bolivia occasionally turned violent. Yet the causes of these episodes of sustained violence have not yet been identified. To this end, this article tests which mechanisms theorized by existing scholarship produced two prolonged episodes of violence. It concludes that both episodes emerged from the same causal pathway: the national government provoked violence by seeking to raze the economic foundations of well-organized sectors – sectors that represented the mass bases of ascendant political oppositions. This finding not only sheds light on political order in Bolivia, but also opens up new directions in research on violent confrontation in Latin America.

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