This new book by Jane M. Rausch confirms her claim to be one of the leaders of Latin American frontier historiography. Building upon her earlier studies of the Colombian Llanos Orientales between 1531 and 1930 and comparative work on Latin America in general, Rausch has undertaken a thorough investigation into the Llanos frontier between 1930 and the onset of the Violencia. She begins from assumptions that frontiers are zones of multiethnic transculturation, rather than the barriers that, in Frederick Jackson Turner’s view, separate savagery and civilization. The outcome is an imaginative, carefully crafted work, based on diverse primary and secondary sources, that makes a substantial contribution to both frontier studies and the new regional historiography that is advancing so rapidly in Colombia. The book contains several exemplary maps.

The period broached is critical to the evolution of the Llanos Orientales. Colombian policymakers, who...

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