Agrarian Reform in Theory and Practice
A Study of the Lake Titicaca Region of Bolivia
Published in 1999. Despite the attempts of a number of Latin American republics to redistribute land resources and carry out agrarian reform programmes, ’the land question’ remains a vital political issue throughout the region. This book focuses on Bolivia, where government proposals to replace a radical agrarian reform law of 1953 with a neo-liberal Ley INRA provoked heated public debate and violent campesino clashes with the police (witnessed by the author) in September/October 1996. The first five chapters are largely concerned with theoretical aspects and a review of Bolivia’s agrarian reform legislation: the remaining six chapters are devoted to an analysis, from the viewpoints of participant campesinos and the researcher, of agricultural change in Aymara communities beside Lake Titicaca, where the author has conducted research over nearly 30 years. Currently lakeside farming is under severe threat as a result of land degradation, limited cash resources, rural-urban migration, tourism and commuterisation.
Table of Contents
1. Agrarian Reform in Latin America. 2. Agricultural Systems in Pre-Columbian Bolivia. 3. The Domination of the Hacienda. 4. Bolivia’s Agrarian Reform Law of 1953. 5. Ley INRA (1996). 6. The Lake Titicaca Region. 7. The State of Agriculture in Lakeside Communities on the Eve of Agrarian Reform. 8. The Impact of the 1953 Agarian Reform Legislation. 9. Campensino Opinions on Agrarian Reform. 10. Some Conclusions to be Drawn from the Case Study. 11. The Crisis in Campesino Farming in the Lake Titicaca Region at the End of the Twentieth Century.
’...should be commended...’ British Bulletin of Publications ’At a number of points, the writer has assembled work which is not easily accessible elsewhere, and for this reason alone, the book should form part of any library on the region and the country of Bolivia...It is clearly written and intelligible and should form a standard source work for students of agrarian reform as well as for geographers in general.’ The Geographical Journal ’There will be few readers who will not have second thoughts concerning the land issues after having read this fine book...The book is full of intelligent observations and is very thought-provoking.’ Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture ’...Jane Benton’s forty-year analysis of the Bolivian Agrarian Reform brings a refreshing sense of present-day relevance to what might be considered the long term.’ Latin American Studies '...a useful, penetrating and updated perspective on Bolivia's pathbreaking agrarian reform, as it revisits its impact at various intervals over the last half century.' Mountain Research and Development