Paper $27.95 ISBN: 9781783603022 Published August 2015 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781783603039 Published August 2015 For sale in North and South America only

The New War on the Poor

The Production of Insecurity in Latin America

John Gledhill

The New War on the Poor

John Gledhill

Distributed for Zed Books

240 pages | 5 x 9 | © 2015
Paper $27.95 ISBN: 9781783603022 Published August 2015 For sale in North and South America only
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781783603039 Published August 2015 For sale in North and South America only
While governments and the media present the often violent, repressive actions of governments as something wholly distinct from—and certainly better than—the actions of criminals, to those who suffer the consequences of the contemporary public security state, the difference isn’t always so clear.

In The New War on the Poor, John Gledhill presents that perspective, linking the experiences of labor migrants crossing Latin America’s international borders; indigenous Mexicans defending their territories against capitalist mega-projects, drug wars, and paramilitary  violence; Afro-Brazilians living on the urban periphery of Salvador; and farmers and business people tired of paying protection to criminal gangs. Through these close-up accounts of life lived on the margins, Gledhil reveals the too-close relationship between public power and private interest, and the unintended consequences and resistance that such repressive actions are beginning to generate.
Contents
Introduction: Securitization, the State and Capitalism
1. A history of the Privatization of Public Power in Brazil
3. Controlling the Urban Periphery
4. Political Cliques, Organised Crime and National Security
5. Paramilitaries, Autodefensas and the Social Cost of Development in Mexico
Conclusion: Achieving Human Security
Review Quotes
Choice
“A carefully argued work from a Marxist theoretical framework, the book challenges conventional thinking about how modernizing societies can extend their participating populations and work toward more inclusive and democratic societies. . . . Highly recommended.”
 
Environment and Urbanization
“This book highlights the author’s decade-long, largely ethnographic research on securitization efforts in the two largest economies in Latin America, Brazil and Mexico. The book reveals how states, with their particular national and local history, and embedded in transnational and global processes, define particular groups of people as threats to society, and what that means for the states’ and citizens’ security.”
 
Wil G. Pansters, Utrecht University and University of Groningen
“Displaying his hallmark combination of deep ethnography and expansive theory, Gledhill compellingly lays out how the contradictions of neoliberal capital accumulation and securitization affect the livelihoods and politics of ordinary people in violence-ridden Brazil and Mexico, and, above all, how these people struggle to build spaces of popular sovereignty and dignity.”
Dimitrios Theodossopoulos, University of Kent
“A powerful analysis that uncovers the relationship between securitization, neoliberal views of development, and repressive intervention. The book will interest—and inspire—a wide readership concerned with suffering and inequality.”
Trevor Stack, University of Aberdeen
“Drawing on his own extensive fieldwork, and with a passionate sense of justice, Gledhill shows how contemporary news stories on Latin America—violent drug trafficking, dramatic electoral battles, and the excitement of emerging markets—are best viewed as scenes in a broader canvas of predation, which in recent years has rendered a bitter irony: that security policy is tending to undermine the security of many Latin Americans, and especially the most vulnerable.”
Charles R. Hale, University of Texas at Austin
“Drawing on decades of field research in Mexico and Brazil, Gledhill pries apart recent processes of 'securitization' from the ostensibly similar notion of human security. Equal parts searing critique and sensible call to action, this book speaks truth to powerful actors.”
Alejandro Isla, Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences (FLACSO), Argentina
“Gledhill shows that behind the discourses of 'war' against drug traffickers hides a war against the poor. He brilliantly articulates two new ethnographies of Mexico and Brazil, providing insight into the trans-nationalization of criminal networks in the Americas.”
Daniel Goldstein, author of Outlawed: Between Security and Rights in a Bolivian City
“Sweeping and compelling, John Gledhill takes us inside the wars that states wage on inconvenient populations. The result is a powerful critique of contemporary global capitalism.”
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
Google preview here