Class Year


Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

Summer 2004


Latin America is a unique continent in many respects. Its vicious colonial history, characterized by the enslavement of indigenous peoples and the extraction of limitless wealth by occupying powers, left modern society to cope with a legacy of oppression. However, many critics believe that post-colonial marginalization of Native Latin Americans is largely equivalent to the oppression attributed to the colonial architects. Much of this abuse has occurred in the name of development: expansive industrialization projects that overtake indigenous lands and decimate cultures. However, in Latin America, which is a patchwork of nations plagued by large populations of rural and urban poor, development is both a right and a responsibility of all national governments.