The Allure of the Foreign:
Imported Goods in Post-Colonial Latin America


"ůsubtly reveals the role of imports as markers of cultural and social superiority, among unconquered Indian nations as well as in the capitals of the new republics. A collection rich in new and persuasive insights on the complex and turbulent early history of societies groping toward their self-definition as modern nations."
--Tulio Halperin, History, University of California at Berkeley

"This collection offers some fascinating glimpses of the links between national identity, modernity, and material life. It thus contributes to the valuable conversation between anthropology and development economics while anchoring our sense of the postcolonial in a refreshing picture of the empire of commerce. In addition, by placing Latin American modernities in a wider comparative frame, it contributes richly to the cultural study of the logic of demand. The essays are a welcome sign of the revitalization of economic anthropology."
--Arjun Appadurai, Anthropology, University of Chicago

"This is a uniquely important collection. Not only does it provide fascinating detail on the significance, dynamics, and political implication of European goods, but it demonstrates the importance of recognizing the centrality of a key symbol--in this case 'Europe'--in the pragmatics and politics of value. These authors have demonstrated across a useful range of case studies that economic analysis must always attend to the political context in which goods acquire moral and social meaning. I would urge both Europeanists and specialists in Latin America, but also scholars interested in the shifting significance of 'Europe' in the world, to read this book with close attention to its marvelously telling details as well as to these broader concerns."
--Michael Herzfeld, Anthropology, Harvard University

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