Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent

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Monthly Review Press, Jan 1, 1997 - History - 360 pages
191 Reviews

Since its U.S. debut a quarter-century ago, this brilliant text has set a new standard for historical scholarship of Latin America. It is also an outstanding political economy, a social and cultural narrative of the highest quality, and perhaps the finest description of primitive capital accumulation since Marx.

Rather than chronology, geography, or political successions, Eduardo Galeano has organized the various facets of Latin American history according to the patterns of five centuries of exploitation. Thus he is concerned with gold and silver, cacao and cotton, rubber and coffee, fruit, hides and wool, petroleum, iron, nickel, manganese, copper, aluminum ore, nitrates, and tin. These are the veins which he traces through the body of the entire continent, up to the Rio Grande and throughout the Caribbean, and all the way to their open ends where they empty into the coffers of wealth in the United States and Europe.

Weaving fact and imagery into a rich tapestry, Galeano fuses scientific analysis with the passions of a plundered and suffering people. An immense gathering of materials is framed with a vigorous style that never falters in its command of themes. All readers interested in great historical, economic, political, and social writing will find a singular analytical achievement, and an overwhelming narrative that makes history speak, unforgettably.

This classic is now further honored by Isabel Allende's inspiring introduction. Universally recognized as one of the most important writers of our time, Allende once again contributes her talents to literature, to political principles, and to enlightenment.

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Review: Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent

User Review  - Goodreads

Intense read. Galeano anger is palpable on every page. It is too Marxist in interpretation for my taste. It is always someone else's fault and the Soviet Union is never criticized. The book was written in 1973 so it rather dated. Read full review

Review: Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent

User Review  - Rohan Traman - Goodreads

Eduardo Galeano is scathing in his assessment of the treatment of Latin America by Western Imperialists. Right from the time Columbus set foot on American land (read American, not US) to the US run ... Read full review

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About the author (1997)

EDUARDO GALEANO is the author of Open Veins of Latin America, Memory of Fire Trilogy, Book of Embraces and the forthcoming Upside Down/b.

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