Manana Es San Peron: A Cultural History of Peron's Argentina (Latin American Silhouettes)
The regime of Juan Per-n is one of the most studied topics of Argentina's contemporary history. This new book_an English translation of a highly popular, critically acclaimed Spanish language edition_provides a new perspective on the intriguing Argentinian leader. Mariano Plotkin's cultural approach makes Per-n's popularity understandable because it goes beyond Per-n's charismatic appeal and analyzes the Per-nist mechanisms used to generate political consent and mass mobilization. Ma-ana es San Per-n is the first book to focus on the cultural and symbolic dimensions of Per-nism and populism. Plotkin also presents important material for the study of populism and the modern state in this region. Ma-ana es San Per-n explores the creation of myths, symbols, and rituals which constituted the Peronist political imagery. This political imagery was not designed to reinforce the legitimacy of a political system defined in abstract terms, but to assure the undisputed loyalty of different sectors of society to the Peronist government and to Per-n himself. The evolution of the institutional framework that made the creation of this symbolic apparatus possible is also discussed. This well-researched book shows the methods designed by the Per-nist regime to broaden its social base through the incorporation and activation of groups which had traditionally occupied a marginalized position within the political system-non-union workers, women, and the poor. Plotkin investigates how Per-n used the education system to build his popularity. He examines the public assistance programs financed through the Eva Per-n Foundation, and demonstrates how they were used to politicize women for the first time. He explains how Eva Per-n and the Per-nist regime not only tried to gain the support of women as voters but also as potential 'missionaries' who would spread the Per-nist word in the privacy of their homes. This well-written and engaging account of one of Latin America's most colorful and appealing leaders is an excellent resource on Argentina and Latin American history and politics.