Military Government in Latin America, 1959–1990

Brian E. Loveman

in Latin American Studies

ISBN: 9780199766581
Published online October 2011 | | DOI:
Military Government in Latin America, 1959–1990

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Regional and Area Studies
  • History of the Americas


Show Summary Details


Latin America’s armed forces have played a central role in the region’s political history. This selective annotated bibliography focuses on key sources, with varying theoretical, empirical, and normative treatments of the military governments in the region, from the Cuban Revolution (1959) until the end of the Cold War (1989–1990). The article is limited to those cases in which military governments or “civil-military” governments were in power. This excludes personalist dictatorships, party dictatorships, and civilian governments in which the armed forces exercised considerable influence but did not rule directly. No pretense is made of comprehensiveness or of treating the “causes” of military coups (a vast literature) and of civil-military relations under civilian governments. Likewise, the closely related topics of guerrilla movements during this period, human rights violations under the military governments, US policy and support for many of the military governments, and the transitions back to civilian government are not covered in depth, but some of the selections do treat these topics and direct the reader to a more extensive literature on these subjects. Long-term military governments, with changing leadership in most cases, controlled eleven Latin American nations for significant periods from 1964 to 1990: Ecuador, 1963–1966 and 1972–1978; Guatemala, 1963–1985 (with an interlude from 1966–1969); Brazil, 1964–1985; Bolivia, 1964–1970 and 1971–1982; Argentina, 1966–1973 and 1976–1983; Peru, 1968–1980; Panama, 1968–1989; Honduras, 1963–1966 and 1972–1982; Chile, 1973–1990; and Uruguay, 1973–1984. In El Salvador the military dominated government from 1948 until 1984, but the last “episode” was from 1979 to 1984. Military governments, though inevitably authoritarian, implemented varying economic, social, and foreign policies. They had staunch supporters and intense opponents, and they were usually subject to internal factionalism and ideological as well as policy disagreements. The sources discussed in this article reflect that diversity.

Article.  13021 words. 

Subjects: Regional and Area Studies ; History of the Americas

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.