Outlawed: Between Security and Rights

COVER Outlawed Between Security and Rights in a Bolivian CityOutlawed: Between Security and Rights in a Bolivian City
Daniel M Goldstein
2012, Duke University Press
327 pages

VIOLENCE and insecurity are common in urban Latin America but serious scholarship of the responses of ordinary people to them is yet to catch up. Daniel Goldstein takes a significant step towards doing so with this study of how the indigenous residents of marginal neighbourhoods in Cochabamba cope. This must have been a hard book to write, exploring as it does a form of vacuum in which different forms of legality and alternative conceptions of justice fill the void left by a state that neither notice nor cares about large swathes of the urban poor. The author has explored how and why abandoned and neglected communities sometimes turn to vigilante justice to keep a lid on the criminality all around them, yet are criminalized for doing so. He explores how they are simultaneously required to comply with state and bureaucratic edicts in other areas of their lives, revealing the selective and exclusionary expressions of statehood that are so common throughout Latin America. Outlawed is an original contribution to scholarship on security in a region where the fate of democratic consolidation has routinely been tied to the ability of judicial systems to nurture the stability and attitudes that favour due process and that are seen by detached multilateral agencies as prerequisites for progress. Goldstein reveals that it is so much less simple than that, and that justice is a many-headed hydra. – GO’T

Latin American Review of Books – Latamrob www.latamrob.com

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