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Transpacific Developments

Transpacific Developments
  • Author: Monica DeHart
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press
  • ISBN: 9781501759444
  • Page: 228
  • View: 176

Transpacific Developments intervenes in the debates of China's growing presence in Latin America with original ethnographic research that challenges conventional thinking about who and what constitutes Chinese development in Central America ...

Transpacific Developments intervenes in the debates of China's growing presence in Latin America with original ethnographic research that challenges conventional thinking about who and what constitutes Chinese development in Central America, how it is perceived locally, and what it portends for the future. Monica DeHart makes visible the history of transregional encounters and relations that have produced local development, including Central America's partnership with Taiwan, the formative role of the Chinese diaspora, and US interventions. That history illuminates how Orientalist formulations of racial and cultural difference continue to shape local perceptions of Chinese initiatives despite the presence of multiple forms of Chineseness. Interviews with politicians, bureaucrats, entrepreneurs, labor leaders, development consultants, ethnic associations and everyday citizens in Guatemala, Costa Rica and Nicaragua, highlight the centrality of trade, infrastructure, and corruption as key arenas for debating Chinese influence. Transpacific Developments shows why current development collaborations with Beijing cannot be perceived as wholly new or unique, nor its outcomes predetermined. Instead, a longer history of transpacific relations and ideas of difference define local expectations for what Chinese development might mean for Central American futures and the forms of identity and sovereignty on which they will rely.


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