Chapter

Types of Latin American Peasantry

Eric R. Wolf

in Pathways of Power

Published by University of California Press

Published in print January 2001 | ISBN: 9780520223332
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520924871 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520223332.003.0015
Types of Latin American Peasantry

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This chapter employs the concept of “types,” each built up around a cultural core formed by the functional interdependency of features in a structural relationship. Similar interdependencies are most likely to be the outcomes of local ecological adaptations and similar levels of socio-cultural integration, and can be compared in order to ascertain cross-culturally recurrent regularities. The chapter draws distinctions among groups of peasants involved in divergent types of urban culture, and recognizes the effects of the Industrial Revolution and the growing world market on peasant segments. These have changed both the cultural characteristics of such segments and the character of their relations with other segments. The chapter distinguishes between peasants, who retain effective control of land, and tenants, whose control of land is subject to an outside authority. Various kinds of large-scale agricultural enterprises have grown up to compete with the peasant for economic resources and opportunities.

Keywords: socio-cultural integration; peasant segments; agricultural enterprises; Industrial Revolution; economic resources

Chapter.  9200 words. 

Subjects: Theory and Practice of Anthropology

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