Paternalism and Class in Latin America Research Paper by kitty needs nicotine

Paternalism and Class in Latin America
Discusses how paternalistic overtures and the positioning of the elite as a benign force in the lives of the poor have formed the path of class conflict in Latin America.
# 29947 | 3,677 words | 8 sources | MLA | 2003 | US

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This paper analyzes the motives and methods behind the class overtures in Latin America and how these methods have clashed with the pure-force tactics also employed by those in power. It discusses how paternalism has both hindered and facilitated force and violence in class struggle in Latin America. The writer also explores this topic through looking at missionaries, industry and politics in the region, using specific examples such as factories in Chile and Columbia, Peronism in Argentina and Isabellan legislation in the New World.

From the Paper:

"The modern era has seen the rise of class conflict to the forefront of the political and economic arenas of the world. Nowhere is this more clearly seen than in the socially stratified sphere of Latin American history. From violent strikes to repressive politics, Latin America has seen class struggle pit the poor against the rich, labor against capital, peasants against landlords, the people against the government, and the masses against the elite. And yet, class conflict and the lines between the sides involved have never been so clear-cut in reality as in words. In many instances, the powers that be, the elites of politics and the factory owners of industry, have positioned themselves not as the enemies, but as the protectors, of the poor. From European missionary rhetoric to paternalistic factory politics to populist politics, those in power have forged as a much of a legacy in positioning themselves as a benign force in the lives of the lower class as they have in abusing and antagonizing those less fortunate. Incidences of paternalism, control by those in power to mold the lower classes into a way of living deemed or advertised as better than their current status, in Latin America are not only deviations from the them-vs.-us portrait of class struggle; paternalism complexifies and deepens the reality of class relations itself by at times intensifying the exploitation of elite goals, and at other times offering the lower classes genuine help from the above. Often, though, the effects of paternalism have been somewhere in between, both building bridges and burning them in the war between classes. In analyzing the motives behind paternalistic actions and rhetoric, whether they derive from need for control or power, or a genuine conception or misconception of how to improve the lives of the lower class, students of Latin American history can see that the reasons behind paternalistic efforts have been varied and unclear, while the effects of these efforts have touched all aspects of social, economic and political identity in Latin America. "

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Paternalism and Class in Latin America (2003, August 17) Retrieved September 26, 2021, from

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"Paternalism and Class in Latin America" 17 August 2003. Web. 26 September. 2021. <>