Latin America's cinematic traditions have enjoyed a long lineage, although it was not until the 1960s and 1970s that its films became the object of international research, criticism, critical theory, and acclaim. Latin American filmmakers broke their isolation by forging a powerful cinematographic movement as oppositional social practice. They jostled for a place in the emerging New Latin American Cinema movement that conceived of cinema, especially documentaries, as an instrument of revolutionary polemic, political action, and social transformation.

Thanks to Bolivia's deep strain of popular politics and revolutionary sensibilities, the country took pride of place in that movement. Notably, Jorge Sanjinés's provocative films chronicling Bolivia's militant mine workers under fire or tracking an Indian peasant uprising placed him at the forefront. Sanjinés not only helped redefine cinema's social purpose and aesthetics but created a new methodology to collapse the space between filmmaker,...

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