1-5 April 2021
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Rebellion in the veins: Bolivia's revolution in 1952


About this session

There are few places in Latin America where the class struggle has developed to a greater extent or reached greater heights than in Bolivia. In April 1952, the Bolivian working class overthrew a military dictatorship, destroyed the armed forces and swept away the old ruling class. The populist government that was brought into government confronted a situation of dual power, and was reluctantly forced to carry through extensive structural reforms. That the Trotskyists within the working class movement were never able to transform this dual power into workers' power was the great tragedy of the Bolivian Revolution.

Yet nowhere else in Latin America has a workers' movement achieved so much, carried the struggle for socialism so far forward, and won, by unremitting efforts, so much valuable historical experience. Much of this experience has been neglected and forgotten, overshadowed by the legacy of reformism in Bolivia, but it is experience we cannot afford to neglect.

Recommended Reading

Rebellion in the Veins: Political Struggle in Bolivia, 1952-1982 (Chapters 1 - 3)by James Dunkerly
Revolution and Boliviain International Socialism, 2, 18: 60-86 by John Newsinger
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