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Terror in the Land of the Holy Spirit: Guatemala Under General Efrain Rios Montt, 1982-1983 - REL GLOBAL POLI (Paperback)
  • Terror in the Land of the Holy Spirit: Guatemala Under General Efrain Rios Montt, 1982-1983 - REL GLOBAL POLI (Paperback)
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Terror in the Land of the Holy Spirit: Guatemala Under General Efrain Rios Montt, 1982-1983 - REL GLOBAL POLI (Paperback)

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£24.49
Paperback 288 Pages / Published: 24/10/2011
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Waging a counterinsurgency war and justified by claims of 'an agreement between Guatemala and God,' Guatemala's Evangelical Protestant military dictator General Rios Montt incited a Mayan holocaust: over just 17 months, some 86,000 mostly Mayan civilians were murdered. Virginia Garrard-Burnett dives into the horrifying, bewildering murk of this episode, the Western hemisphere's worst twentieth-century human rights atrocity. She has delivered the most lucid historical account and analysis we yet possess of what happened and how, of the cultural complexities, personalities, and local and international politics that made this tragedy. Garrard-Burnett asks the hard questions and never flinches from the least comforting answers. Beautifully, movingly, and clearly written and argued, this is a necessary and indispensable book. - Francisco Goldman, author of The Art of Political Murder: Who Killed the Bishop? "Virginia Garrard-Burnett's Terror in the Land of the Holy Spirit is impressively researched and argued, providing the first full examination of the religious dimensions of la violencia - a period of extreme political repression that overwhelmed Guatemala in the 1980s. Garrard-Burnett excavates the myriad ways Christian evangelical imagery and ideals saturated political and ethical discourse that scholars usually treat as secular. This book is one of the finest contributions to our understanding of the violence of the late Cold War period, not just in Guatemala but throughout Latin America." -Greg Grandin, Professor of History, New York University Drawing on newly-available primary sources including guerrilla documents, evangelical pamphlets, speech transcripts, and declassified US government records, Virginia Garrard-Burnett provides aa fine-grained picture of what happened during the rule of Guatelaman president-by-coup Efrain Rios Montt. She suggests that three decades of war engendered an ideology of violence that cut not only vertically, but also horizontally, across class, cultures, communities, religions, and even families. The book examines the causality and effects of the ideology of violence, but it also explores the long duree of Guatemalan history between 1954 and the late 1970s that made such an ideology possible. More significantly, she contends that self-interest, willful ignorance, and distraction permitted the human rights tragedies within Guatemala to take place without challenge from the outside world.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199844777
Number of pages: 288
Weight: 428 g
Dimensions: 235 x 158 x 16 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
In a country still torn over the war by polarizing accusations amplified by righteous self-exculpation, Garrard-Burnett listens carefully to as many sides as her sources allow-the Left, the Right, Catholic activists, evangelicals, the US embassy-to conclude that states turn genocidal, not just because they can, but because both perpetrators and public come to see their self-preservation, if not salvation, at stake. In helping us understand better that self-preservation, this book also speaks with respect-and hope-to the survivors. We should all be listening carefully. * John Watanabe, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Dartmouth College *
This is a careful narrative and sober analysis of Mott's seventeenth-month regime in Guatemala. * Religious Studies Review *
Virginia Garrard-Burnett's examination of General Efrain Rios Montt is one of the best available historicalpolitical analyses of Guatemala's brutal armed conflict...Garrard-Burnett is arguably one of the most important contemporary historians of Protestantism in Latin America. In this slim volume, she not only demonstrates her deep and nuanced understanding of the evangelical movement in Guatemala but also explains the dynamics and contours of the political crisis that brought Rios Montt to power in 1982.. * American Historical Review *
This work secures a solid place among some of the dominant works in modern Latin American historiography, particularly in its positioning within the field of subaltern studies. While remaining sensitive to the voice and agency of the victims of the genocide, Garrard- Burnett relies heavily on truth commission reports to provide a clear analysis of the influences of evangelical rhetoric that saturated Guatemala's violent struggles of the late Cold War. This useful, insightful work deserves a wide reading among students and specialists alike.. * Hispanic American Historical Review *

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