Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Contesting Trade in Central America: Market Reform and Resistance

November 20th, 2015
4:00 PM

Location
100A Jones Hall, Greenleaf Conference Room

Please join us for a lecture by Dr. Rose J. Spalding, Professor of Political Science, DePaul University. Dr. Spalding will present her recent book Contesting Trade in Central America: Market Reform and Resistance (University of Texas, 2014). Refreshments will be served.

Contesting Trade analyzes the debate over the 2004 adoption of the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) by the United States, five Central American countries, and the Dominican Republic. It is the first book-length study to focus on the region’s decision and the resistance it generated from social movements. It draws on nearly two hundred interviews with representatives from government, business, civil society, and social movements to analyze the relationship between the advance of free market reform in Central America and the parallel rise of resistance movements. Dr. Spalding views this dynamic through the lens of Polanyi’s “double movement” theory, which posits that significant shifts toward market economics will trigger oppositional, self-protective social countermovements. Examining the negotiations, political dynamics, and agents involved in the passage of CAFTA, she argues it served as a high-profile symbol against which Central American oppositions could rally. This shows that post-neoliberal reform requires building sustainable and inclusive political coalitions that prioritize the quality of social bonds over raw economic freedom.

Rose J. Spalding received her Ph.D. in political science from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She has been at DePaul University since 1980, where she is Professor of Political Science, a department she chaired from 2000-2003. She also currently directs the university honors program. Her previous books include Capitalism and Revolution in Nicaragua and The Political Economy of Revolutionary Nicaragua. She is the author of numerous book chapters in edited volumes as well as scholarly articles, both in English and in Spanish, which have appeared in multiple journals including Comparative Politics, Comparative Political Studies, World Development, and Latin American Research Review, among others. Dr. Spalding is the recipient of numerous grants and awards. Her current research focuses on mining conflicts in Central America.

To RSVP or for more information, please contact cipr@tulane.edu

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