Ideas of modernization and territorial transformation: The case of the Upper Huallaga Valley of Peru

Maritza Paredes, Hernán Manrique

Producción científica: Capítulo del libro/informe/acta de congresoCapítulo de librorevisión exhaustiva

3 Citas (Scopus)


The chapter shows how the diffusion of ideas of agricultural modernization and the resistance of elites to land redistribution in Peru shaped agrarian reform via colonization programs. During the 20th century, the Peruvian state promoted the colonization of the Amazon rainforest as a solution to highland land conflicts, and to this end built roads and provided incentives for migrants to move into “free land.” The failure of these initiatives, however, contributed to massive deforestation and the formation of an enclave of poor peasants with almost no access to markets and reliant upon state intervention to make new local economies sustainable. The ideas and resources that promoted these transformations, however, were not new or unique to Peru. The colonization of the Amazon rainforest was heavily influenced by the Cold War politics of the United States and spearheaded by international development agencies seeking to use land reform to counter potential communist mobilization of the rural poor in the early 1960s. This chapter examines how developmentalist ideas and resources spread by agencies like Economic Commission for Latina America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) were decisive in promoting this form of tropical colonization. Yet the unexpected failure of these colonization policies ultimately contributed to the formation of areas of drug production, such as the Upper Huallaga Valley, where during the 1970s peasants shifted their dependence on the state to illegal coca production.

Idioma originalInglés
Título de la publicación alojadaThe origins of cocaine
Subtítulo de la publicación alojadaColonization and failed development in the Amazon Andes
EditorialTaylor and Francis Ltd.
Número de páginas31
ISBN (versión digital)9780429951749
ISBN (versión impresa)9780429489389
EstadoPublicada - 2018
Publicado de forma externa

Nota bibliográfica

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 selection and editorial matter, Paul Gootenberg and Liliana M. Dávalos; individual chapters, the contributors.


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