These are useful books for the Latin Americanist interested in modern Bolivia and in Latin American political parties. They are basic in any research of the Bolivian scene. Each book deals with a different communist party of Bolivia—Bolivia has three of them (PIR, POR, Partido Comunista). The PIR means Partido de la Izquierda Revolucionaria, which was founded in 1940 and came to an end in 1952. It was a powerful party of leftist persuasion without openly admitting that it was communistic. Later the most radical wing of the PIR converted itself into the Bolivian Communist Party. The PIR constituted the most potent chapter of Bolivian politics during the forties.

In 1956 some veterans (more moderate) of the dead party revived it and are desperately trying to make it go and assume a powerful opposition force to the long governing MNR without truly communizing Bolivia. The new leaders are highly pro-Castro. So far it has been most unsuccessful. This book has all the basic data—from the PIR point of view—of the party’s history, platform, its death and re-creation. It is made up of valuable documents and comments.

Lora, the author of the second book, is the leader of the Bolivian Partido Obrero Revolucionario (POR) which is the Trotskyite party. Bolivia and Ceylon are the only countries in the world where the Trotskyites are still quite active. The Bolivian Lora is a dogmatic theoretician but also an engaging character.

This is a fascinating booklet. Lora develops, sometimes clearly, other times most confusingly, the Trotskyite theory (or is it his own?) of revolution in Bolivia and his analysis of the MNR and its one decade of rule.