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The double movement in the Andes: land reform, land markets, and indigenous mobilisation in Highland Ecuador (1964-1994)

Goodwin, GB; (2014) The double movement in the Andes: land reform, land markets, and indigenous mobilisation in Highland Ecuador (1964-1994). Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This thesis explores land reform, land markets and indigenous mobilisation in Highland Ecuador (1964-1994) through the lens of Karl Polanyi’s concept of the “double movement”. The concept suggests modern capitalist societies comprise two forces: the movement towards the creation, expansion and liberalisation of markets (commodification) and the countermovement towards the regulation of markets, the strengthening of the state, and the promotion of non-market forms of organisation (decommodification). The thesis adopts a radical reading of the concept which sees the double movement as a fundamental contradiction in modern capitalist societies. The empirical investigation offers support for this reading and provides fresh insights into the use of the concept. The value of narrowing the lens of the double movement to examine struggles that emerge around specific economic issues and involve particular social groups is also demonstrated. The thesis also sheds new light on Ecuadorian land reform and the role indigenous peoples performed in the process. Greater clarity is provided on the impact of land reform in the highland region and the land redistributed to indigenous families and communities. One of the central points to emerge from the analysis is that the collective organisation and mobilisation of indigenous peoples were required to secure land through agrarian reform. The relationship between indigenous peoples and land markets is also explored. A new concept is developed which provides insights into the opportunities and threats land markets created for indigenous peoples. The thesis places the 1990 and 1994 indigenous levantamientos within a long-term struggle over land which contrasts with accounts that interpret the uprisings as reactions to structural adjustment and neoliberal reform. The contemporary relevance of the research is demonstrated through the analysis of recent developments in Ecuador, concentrating on indigenous and peasant attempts to bring the use and distribution of land under social control.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: The double movement in the Andes: land reform, land markets, and indigenous mobilisation in Highland Ecuador (1964-1994)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Keywords: Land reform, land markets, state-society relations, indigenous movements, social movements, countermovements, fictitious commodities, double movement, Rafael Correa, Karl Polanyi
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > VP: Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > VP: Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > VP: Health > Academic Careers Office
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1452990
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