This book is a compelling study of indigenous politics in the first half of the nineteenth century in Argentina. Author Silvia Ratto tries to argue against most accepted historical interpretations of the political and ethnic relationships between Mapuche people and Argentineans in the frontier region of Buenos Aires. In general, historiography on colonial and early national ethnic relationships in Chile and Argentina is based on a dichotomy of war and peace. Some historians say Mapuches and creoles from both countries were permanently engaged in war and violence. Other historians have said that war among Mapuches and Spanish descendants is a myth, and that frontier regions were built on peaceful commercial and cultural exchanges. Ratto, in contrast, argues that ethnic relationships in the frontier regions were complex and diverse, not just a matter of war and peace but a sophisticated web of social practices and political negotiations based on interethnic marriages,...

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