Start Submission

Reading: Searching for Status: New Elites in the New Bolivia

Download

A- A+
dyslexia friendly

Explorations | Exploraciones

Searching for Status: New Elites in the New Bolivia

Author:

Ton Salman

VU University Amsterdam, NL
About Ton
Ton Salman studied philosophy and anthropology and did his PhD in 1993 on grass root organizations in Chile under Pinochet. He is specialized on Latin America, and does research on social movements, democratization, urban culture, and citizenship. At present he is Associate Professor at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the VU University Amsterdam.
X close

Abstract

This essay argues that those strategies enabling the recognition and distinction of the elite in Bolivia have collapsed since Evo Morales assumed the country’s presidency in early 2006. Not only have new political elites taken power, the established and inherited societal stratifications have also been affected. Reviewing three emergent groups potentially occupying new elite positions – the progressive blanco-mestizos, the wealthy urban indigenous sectors, and the social movement leaders with their politicized cadres – it is argued that in today’s Bolivia, the political dimensions of anti-elitism have raided the traditional material and culturalsymbolic domains of elite distinction. The political dimensions of anti-elitism might have altered or even largely disqualified the indicators traditionally considered valid in the material and culturalsymbolic domains. 

Resumen: A la búsqueda de status: las nuevas élites en la nueva Bolivia

En este ensayo se sostiene que en Bolivia las estrategias que permiten el reconocimiento y prestigio de las élites se han derrumbado desde que Evo Morales asumiera la presidencia del país a principios de 2006. No solamente nuevas élites políticas han asumido el poder, sino además se han visto afectadas las estratificaciones sociales establecidas. En la revisión de tres grupos emergentes que ocuparán potencialmente las posiciones de la nueva élite – los mestizos blancos progresistas, los sectores indígenas urbanos ricos y los líderes de movimientos sociales con sus cuadros politizados –, aquí se sostiene que en la Bolivia de hoy las dimensiones políticas del anti-elitismo se han apropiado del material tradicional y los dominios culturales y simbólicos de las distinciones de élite. Las dimensiones políticas del anti-elitismo pueden haber alterado e incluso descalificado en gran parte los indicadores considerados tradicionalmente válidos en los dominios material y simbólico-cultural.
DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/erlacs.9613
How to Cite: Salman, T. (2009). Searching for Status: New Elites in the New Bolivia. ERLACS, (86), 97–105. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/erlacs.9613
6
Views
2
Downloads
Published on 15 Apr 2009.
Peer Reviewed

Downloads

  • PDF (EN)