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Archive for the month “May, 2014”

Much Ado about Nothing: The Times’ Non-Story about Eduardo Galeano’s Non-Apology

Tropics of Meta

galeano open veins of latin america cover

Last Friday TheNew York Times published an article claiming that Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano now “disavows” his seminal work, Las venas abiertas de América Latina (Open Veins of Latin America). The book, originally published in 1971, “argued that the riches that first attracted European colonizers, like gold and sugar, gave rise to a system of exploitation that led inexorably to ‘the contemporary structure of plunder’ that he held responsible for Latin America’s chronic poverty and underdevelopment.” For generations of Latin American leftists and students of Latin America Las venas abiertas has been “the canonical anti-colonialist, anti-capitalist and anti-American text.” It has been widely used in university classes, “has been translated into more than a dozen languages and has sold more than a million copies,” according to the Times. And now, its author—one of the most important living writers and thinkers on the Latin American left—has supposedly changed his…

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