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Reconstituting hegemony: US power and the New Left in Latin America

Biegon, Rubrick (2013) Reconstituting hegemony: US power and the New Left in Latin America. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent. (doi:10.22024/UniKent/01.02.94210) (KAR id:94210)

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In the first decade of the twenty-first century, and in stark contrast to the immediate postCold War period, Latin American politics was defined by the ascendency of leftist and centre-left forces. The emergence and consolidation of the 'New Latin Left', as this thesis terms these governments, signalled a profound challenge to the longstanding hegemony of . the United States in the Western hemisphere. In their foreign and domestic policies, the countries of the region began distancing themselves from Washington's geopolitical and economic agenda. This thesis examines the ways in which US foreign policy responded to the counter-hegemony manifested in the New Latin Left. Defining hegemony as an asymmetrical and dialectical relationship patterned by multiple and overlapping fOlIDS of power, it investigates US efforts to reconstitutJ its hegemonic position in the Americas. Building on Gramscian historical materialism, it Situates US hegemony alongside the political economy of the Post-Washington Consensus. The analysis utilises the taxonomy of power developed by Barnett and Duvall to examine the interplay of the different facets of US hegemony in Latin America, which, as the argument goes, are inextricably interlinked with on-going processes of neoliberalisation. Empirical chapters focus on: the coercive leverage of US compulsory power; as realised through. the Pentagon's resources and strategy in the region; the institutional power of the Organization of American States in relation to newly-created and Latin American-led mechanisms ofmuitilateral cooperation; the structural power of the US's multi-track free trade agenda; and the productive power expressed in the discursive construction of Latin American populisrri. By exploring the different facets of US power in the region, the thesis brings clarity to what remains an open and contested process of hegemonic reconstitution. In doing so, it contributes to critical International Relations/International Political Economy scholarship on US hegemony, US foreign policy and contemporary US-Latin American relations.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
Thesis advisor: Blakeley, Ruth
Thesis advisor: Stokes, Doug
DOI/Identification number: 10.22024/UniKent/01.02.94210
Additional information: This thesis has been digitised by EThOS, the British Library digitisation service, for purposes of preservation and dissemination. It was uploaded to KAR on 25 April 2022 in order to hold its content and record within University of Kent systems. It is available Open Access using a Creative Commons Attribution, Non-commercial, No Derivatives ( licence so that the thesis and its author, can benefit from opportunities for increased readership and citation. This was done in line with University of Kent policies ( If you feel that your rights are compromised by open access to this thesis, or if you would like more information about its availability, please contact us at and we will seriously consider your claim under the terms of our Take-Down Policy (
Subjects: J Political Science
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
SWORD Depositor: SWORD Copy
Depositing User: SWORD Copy
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2022 15:43 UTC
Last Modified: 27 Sep 2022 15:43 UTC
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