Latin America : blockages to development.
It is argued that, so far, all theories of the Latin American process have
been biased by an external approach. Examining the theoretical foundations of
these theories, it is concluded that these cannot explain the class and
production structures existing in the region, neither can predict the emergence
of qualitatively new phenomena. Having citicised the discourses of under development,
dependency, development, and world system theories, the analysis then
proceeds with the argument that a theory of the Latin American process must
conceptualize the social organization of the continent as an entity in itself,
and not as an appendage to the development of capitalism in the industrialized
countries. SUch a theory must be centered on the internal dynamics of the Latin
American social structure, and then assess the actual role played by capitalism
and imperialism in its policy.
It is argued that Latin American development, as based on a restricted,
limited, and upper-class oriented type of market, and a fragmented society,
is possible because it corresponds to a particular organiaation of the labour
process, which, in turn, is the product of a particular mode of production.This
particular mode of production is the outcome of the fusion of different modes
of production in the region. In this context, the international capitalist
system -at its imperialist stage- is not a cause, but a profiteer and supporter
of the contemporary social structure in Latin America. This particular organization
of the labour process sets the boundaries (limits) withim which Latin
America's social structure, political organization and organization of labour
can vary. At an abstract level, it is argued, unlike modern Marxian scholars,
that even when the relations of production are the genesis of the social structure,
the latter can, in some historical situations, persist after the former
subside, and adapt themselves to new forms of relations of production .
It is concluded that the main barrier to development in the region lies not
in its economic structure but in its social structure. Therefore, revolutionary
change there must start at the social level and not at the economic level.
The thesis is a starting point for further field research, aiming to constl~
ct a general theory of the social and economic reality of Latin America.