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Honduras in Dangerous Times

Resistance and Resilience

James J. Phillips

Honduras in Dangerous Times: Resistance and Resilience explores how the people of Honduras use cultural resources to resist and to change the conditions of their society, to critique those conditions, and to create the pieces of a better future in the midst of a dangerous present. The book explores ideas and practices which support systems of dominance and submission in Honduras and the ways in which people have slowly developed a broad culture of resistance and resilience. This culture includes struggling for land and environmental preservation against extractive industries, promoting natural local food and sustainable technology to replace foreign agribusiness, bringing a corrupt legal and political system to account by invoking concepts of human rights and laws routinely ignored, bending institutional religion to issues of social justice, and expressing protest and visions of a better society through popular culture. The book highlights the special contribution of the country’s indigenous peoples in resistance; it also discusses the powerful role of the United States in shaping Honduran economic, political, and military life, and what people-to-people solidarity with Hondurans means for citizens of the United States. The book concludes by presenting Honduran popular resistance in a context of late neoliberalism in Honduras and in relation to other Latin American social movements. Honduras in Dangerous Times shows that Hondurans resist in the face of violence and oppression not only because they are resilient, but also that they are resilient because they resist. Resistance keeps hope alive and change possible. « less more »
Lexington Books
Pages: 290Size: 6 x 9
978-0-7391-8355-7 • Hardback • October 2015 • $95.00 • (£65.00)
978-1-4985-2947-1 • Paperback • May 2017 • $49.99 • (£32.95)
978-0-7391-8356-4 • eBook • October 2015 • $94.99 • (£65.00)
James Phillips is adjunct assistant professor of anthropology and international studies at Southern Oregon University.
About the Author
Honduras did not receive much media attention until a 2009 military coup removed Manuel Zelaya’s elected government from power. Since then, the Central American country has been firmly at the forefront of Latin American activist and academic attention. Strong and well-organized popular resistance to the coup altered how many outside observers thought about the country. The resilience of this resistance, however, came as no surprise to anthropologist Phillips, who has accompanied social movements in that country for more than 40 years. In this important and compelling book, Phillips documents a range of Indigenous, religious, cultural, legal, and political forms of resistance to long-standing patterns of exploitation and domination. A final chapter examines US governmental intervention in Honduras, and international people-to-people solidarity movements that counter political and economic interference in the country’s internal affairs. . . .Summing Up: Recommended. All levels/libraries.

Written with clarity and grace, Honduras in Dangerous Times does a beautiful job of evoking and analyzing social movements in modern Honduras. Phillips takes us deep into the Resistance movement that exploded in response to the 2009 coup, and its back story as well, with an especially rich understanding of the role of religion. At the same time he is able to pull back to larger theoretical questions in an accessible and compelling manner.
Dana L. Frank, University of California, Santa Cruz

After the 2009 coup d’état in Honduras, the massive oppositional movement that emerged surprised almost everyone. Working with four decades of experience in the country, James Phillips masterfully documents the cultures of resilience and resistance behind the struggle. This book is essential reading for understanding contemporary Central America.
Mark Anderson, University of California, Santa Cruz