Latin American “ Caudillismo ”

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Latin American Caudillismo . IB Americas Ryan Davidson The American School Foundation, Mexico City 2009. So independenceyeahabout that. Liberals and revolutionaries sought to strip the church of its immense power and supplant the state/individual with the power of the church - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


Latin American Caudllismo

Latin American CaudillismoIB Americas Ryan DavidsonThe American School Foundation, Mexico City2009So independenceyeahabout thatLiberals and revolutionaries sought to strip the church of its immense power and supplant the state/individual with the power of the churchThey insisted on: - civil cemeteries and civil wedding ceremonies - public schools to teach republican virtues - free speech - individualism - seeking to end slavery and Indian tributesChurch leaders (conservatives) thought these reformers were deranged and unstablebattle lines drawn between good and evil

Constitutions new on the scene since monarchical system involved centuries of teaching divine sanctionHigh turnover in constitutions which caused much confusion in early to mid 180ssSome places offered individual ownership of previously communal lands to the indiansThis backfired as whites and mestizos took advantage of the protection vacuum this createdSome countries even eliminated the tribute that indigenous populations paidThis caused problems as Bolivia and Peru had to restore it in the 1820s for government revenueResult? Reaction?Caudillos best described as a Latin American dictatorSome say Simon Bolivar and his style introduced caudillismoPortrait of a caudilloPersonalismo- ruling by the force of personalityMilitary- typically some kind of background whether official general or guerilla chiefCriollo/Mestizo- from old landed aristocracy or gaining power rising through military ranksPatron- many coming from environment of the hacienda system (though not necessarily as the landowner) where they were accustomed to large amounts of power and dispensed favors and justice in a patriarchal way

How did they rule:

Wealth seeking-sometimes acquiring it in subtle ways, other times stripping it from others (see Facundo Quiroga)Favor trading- entire families supported a caudillo in exchange for positions, exclusive contracts, and monopolies on imports (enforced by caudillo strength)Propaganda- monuments constructed, rallies and parades held, extravagant uniforms and military displays

Caudillo?The generals [and early caudillos] imposed arbitrary limits upon the peoples: they were the creators of the history of the Americas; they impressed the crowds with pomp and pageantry, by military displays as brilliant and gaudy as the processions of the Roman Catholic Church, by uniforms, medals, and military order. They labeled themselves Regenerators, Restorers,Protectors - Francisco Garcia Calderon (1883-1953), Peruvian historian

One word sums up the aggressiveness, insensitivity, invulnerability, and other attributes of the macho: power. It is force without the discipline of any notion of order: arbitrary power, the will without reins and without a set course Octavio Paz

The landowner wanted labor, loyalty, and service in peace and war. The peon wanted subsistence and security. The estanciero therefore was a protector, possessor of sufficient power to defend his dependents against marauding bands, recruiting sergeants, and rival hordes. He is also a provider, who developed and defended local resources, and could give employment, food, and shelterAnd these individual alliances were extended into a social pyramid, as patrons in turn became clients to more powerful men, until the peak of power was reached and all became clients of a super-patron, the caudillo.-John Lynch, Rosas

Time outCheck for understanding: 1) What did post-independence Liberals want? 2) What did Caudillos want? 3) Were Caudillos liberal or conservative? 4) Who would support Caudillos? Where? 5) Why would they give this loyalty?

Oklets look at a prime example ArgentinaArgentina independence came in 1816Until 1829, centralists tried to unite the new nation from Buenos Aires while people to the interior of the country wished to govern themselves in a loose federation of provinces*sound familiar?*Experienced a series of presidents and congresses between independence and 1829 while losing large sections of territory and fighting a war with Brazil

Bernardo Rivadavia (Liberal) A father of Argentine independ- ence and president from 1826-1827Believed in foreign contact, investment, free trade, and immigrationPromoted intellectual development supporting the founding of the University of Buenos AiresSought to separate church from state

Enter Juan Manuel de Rosas:

Not an independence hero like other caudillosAn estancia owner from the interior in gaucho territoryHad his own troops whom he protected and rewarded in return for servicein 1820 even fought the capitals authority with his small armyRosas rose to power in the late 1820s, as the large conservative elements in Argentina were suspicious of foreigners, Rivadavias centralizing Constitution of 1826, and liberal changes involving the Church and society

Rosass RuleBy 1835 Rosas had fought his way to the top by consolidating power and loyaltyRuled from Buenos Aires but allowed interior autonomy as far as it was convenient for him (and not allowing other rival Caudillos too much power there) Pressed for conquering of Indian lands which were then sold at low prices to estancierosAs you know, the dispossessed (poor) are always inclined to rise against the rich and powerful. SoI thought it important to gain a decisive influence over this class in order to control and direct it. Rosas in a letterEnforced labor discipline on estancias through strict punishment and tortureRecalled the Jesuits from exile and returned educational system to themUsed both written and parade propagandaHis wife Encarnacion Ezcurra was a public figure (somewhat like Eva Peron) who rallied support for RosasHe separated the world into rosistas and anti-rosistas and terrorized those who didnt support himConstantly trying to gain control of politics in Uruguay, fighting with Brazilian neighbors, and dealing with British and French blockades of Buenos Aires as reprisal for his tariffs and mistreatment of English and French citizens living in Argentina

Eliminated elements of free pressWanted to limit immigrationArbitrary arrests of opponentsViolence and executions reached a peak in 1838-1842 and were carried out by a secret society called the Mazorca

Need a Bill of Rights?!Question: Why would conservatives (wealthy elites and church) support the rule of Rosas?

Even Caudillos fall sometimesespecially when theyve made many enemiesWhile controlling Buenos Aires with a strong fist, still faced opposition from other caudillos like Justo Jose de Urquiza who overthrew him in 1852Urquiza was helped by a coalition of anti-Rosista interests including exiles from abroad, Uruguayans, British, French, and new immigrant businessmenalso pushed for reform by traditional farmers experiencing decline in the beef industryIronically Rosas fled to England where he lived as a country gentleman until his death in 1877

Reading ExcerptRead through these two pages describing Charles Darwins (yesthe same guy) visit with Rosass men in Argentina*may give you chills*

Whats wrong with Caudillos?So if Caudillos provided order and stability, AND provided food, shelter, employment, protection for people under themwhats the problem?

Thanks toA History of Latin America by Keen and HaynesA History of Modern Latin America by Clayton and Conniff