Current perspectives on Latin America’s role in the world tend to focus on one question: Why is Latin America always falling behind? Analysts and scholars offer answers grounded in history, economic underdevelopment, or democratic consolidation. Bagley and Horwitz, however, shift the central question to ask why and to what extent does Latin America matter in world politics, both now and in the future.
This text takes a holistic approach to analyze Latin America’s role in the international system. It invokes a combination of global, regional, and sub-regional levels to assess Latin America’s insertion into a globalized world, in historical, contemporary, and forward-looking perspectives. Conventional international relations theory and paradigms, introduced at the beginning, offer a useful lens through which to view four key themes: political economy, security, transnational issues and threats, and democratic consolidation. The full picture presented by this book breaks down the evolving power relationships in the hemisphere and the ways in which conflict and cooperation play out through international organizations and relations.
'Latin America and the Caribbean in Global Context provides state-of-the art analysis interpreting the transformations of the region’s place in world politics and the global economy through the lenses of contemporary theories of international relations. Fundamental issues such as the quality of democratic governance and transnational drug trafficking, the region’s quest for greater autonomy in a world scene marked by the war against terrorism, China’s rise as a global power and challenges to US hegemony receive particularly acute treatment.' - William C. Smith, Professor of Political Science, University of Miami, Editor, Latin American Politics and Society
'It is extremely fortunate that this book brings to the forefront a core argument that is seldom considered by mainstream IR studies and comparative policy: the relevance and contribution of Latin America and the Caribbean to both world politics and democratic dynamics. The authors combine theory and practice, a historical and contemporary perspective covering multiple key issues across the whole area, with a singular purpose that they have been able to achieve: to thoroughly demonstrate why the post Cold war changing reality of LAC is significant; first to itself, to the Inter-american system, and to global affairs. In the end, Bagley and Horwitz show that the study and understanding of the region can be academically rigorous and intellectually empathetic.' - Juan Gabriel Tokatlian, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Part I: Why Latin America and the Caribbean Matter? Chapter 1: Why Care about what Happens in Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC?) Chapter 2: The Insertion of Latin America and the Caribbean in World History: Chapter 3: A Theoretical Framework to Understand World Affairs: Part II: Latin America and the Caribbean: Power and Political Economy: Chapter 4: Economic Power: Commodity Booms and Busts: Chapter 5: Latin America and the Caribbean: Political Economy in the Twenty First Century: Part III: Security and Democracy: Chapter 6: Power: Political Institutions and Democracy: Chapter 7: Electoral Democracies in Latin America and the Caribbean: Chapter 8: Challenges to Democracy: Drug trafficking, Organized Crime and Terrorist Networks in LAC Part IV: Latin America and the Caribbean in the World Stage: Chapter 9: Latin America and the Caribbean and the Development of the Inter-American System: Chapter 10: We Should Care about Latin America and the Caribbean: Index