Latin America

Part II of III - Series on Marijuana in Latin America and the Caribbean

October 20, 2016

Part One of this series examines how marijuana arrived in the Western Hemisphere, who cultivated it locally, and why. Part Two looks at prohibitionist 20th century marijuana policies in Latin America and the Caribbean and their devastating social effects. Part Three looks at recent pro-marijuana activist efforts around the continent, as well as examples of progressive legislation that have begun to decriminalize the plant.

Filmmakers Julio Ramos and Alex Schlenker to Visit Pittsburgh

October 19, 2016

This Friday, April 11th, the University of Pittsburgh will host documentary filmmakers Julio Ramos and Alex Schlenker for screenings and discussions of selected films. “The Poetics of Rediscovery: New Paths in Latin American Documentary” symposium will take place from 10AM-6PM in the Frick Fine Arts’ Auditorium.

The following is a brief schedule of the event:

China-CELAC Agreement Strengthens Already Strong Ties

October 13, 2016

The economic relations between China and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) strengthened significantly as the two actors recently established a bilateral forum. This move will have substantial implications for development in Latin America as China has already promised USD 10 billion in credit to CELAC members and a USD 5 billion fund for Chinese-Latin American investments.1

The Rise of Corporation-Based Parties in Latin America: Evidence from Panama

October 12, 2016

While most eyes have been on the (re)emergence of viable leftist movements, parties, and governments in Latin America, new developments in the region’s conservative politics have gone unnoticed.1 Over the past quarter-century, a new conservative politics has emerged in Latin America, a politics in which powerful businesses – breweries, retail chains, industrial and agro-industrial firms, and financial and media conglomerates – are constructing their own parties and party factions.2 Parties sponsored by particular firms or conglomerate

US Foreign Policy on Cannabis in Latin America Needs Reform

October 12, 2016

As a result of the elections this November the legalization of marijuana has increased to four states in the U.S. as well as the nation’s capital. More than 17 million people can now use the drug recreationally, not factoring the 19 other states that have passed medicinal cannabis legislation. Reform advocates saw the election as a win and momentum for the legalization in more states to come. 

The Ebb and Flow of the Pink Tide

October 12, 2016

The ‘pink tide’ refers to the group of progressive governments elected in Latin America in the first decade of the 21st century. But it is an odd metaphor to use about elections. With its sense of powerful forces moving across the landscape, it is descriptive of how these new governments came to power – carried into the state by mass mobilisations from below. The question, however, is how far and in what direction can these governments go in transforming the region?

World AIDS Day: its Treatment in Latin America

October 12, 2016

On December 1st, people across the globe raised consciousness about HIV/AIDS through World AIDS Day. This year’s theme, “Close the gap for an AIDS-free generation,” is a reason to celebrate in Latin America since antiretroviral treatment has reached over 600,000 people in the past decade. The Pan American Health Organization recently released a press report that states that cases of antiretroviral treatment have increased from 210,000 in 2003 to 795,000 in 2013.1

Civil Society and Democracy in Times of Political Crisis

October 11, 2016

Last year, the Obama administration announced a new civil society initiative, Stand with Civil Society, calling for support of civil society groups across the world and acknowledging the role they play in pushing for citizen engagement, equity, transparency and accountability.  These positive perspectives of civil society pushing for more democratic governance contrasts with more skeptical views that civil society may actually negatively impact the prospects for d

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