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Elites and violence in Latin America: logics of the fragmented security state

Pearce, Jenny (2018) Elites and violence in Latin America: logics of the fragmented security state. Violence, Security and Peace Working Papers (1). London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

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While Latin America’s high levels of chronic violence are mostly carried out by poor young men and mostly cost the lives of poor young men, the conditions for its reproduction are generated by logics of elite power and wealth accumulation. Drawing on more than 70 interviews with oligarchic elites from Colombia and Mexico, the paper offers propositions for further empirical research into these logics. It discusses why it makes sense to use the term “oligarchic elites” to analyse both the failure to invest in the rule of law and also the elite preference for a fragmented security state whose permeability facilitates influence trafficking. It studies the direct and indirect relationships between elites and varied forms of violence, exploring how they have affected the nature of the state in Latin America, the diffusion of criminal violences, and the emergence of micro criminal orders in many parts of the region. Latin America’s history of social action against violences – not least disappearances, feminicide, forced displacement, and state torture – should extend to de-sanctioning violence as a phenomenon. This could open up spaces for social and political participation to create the conditions of social justice which reduce violence.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2018 The Author
Divisions: IGA: Latin America and Caribbean Centre
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
Date Deposited: 16 Sep 2019 11:03
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 12:16

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