This bound collection by James Dunkerley is a mixed bag (written or delivered over a period of 30 years) of biographical delights and personal vignettes woven together by the scholarly conventions of Latin Americanist political history as it is practiced in Britain. The volume is published by what used to be the Institute for Latin American Studies (ILAS), now the Institute for the Study of the Americas (ISA); Dunkerley is the former director of both. Most of the chapters were previously published by the institute as working papers or delivered at the institute as lectures.

Dunkerley’s witty and erudite reflections stroll “in receding chronological order” (p. xi) across the whole historical plane of the modern Bolivian political imagination, from Evo Morales and “the third Bolivian revolution” to Frank Burdett O’Connor and the first revolution that invented Bolivia. The opening two chapters on the...

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