Plurinationalism as Democracy:Contextualizating Ecuadors Indigenous Movement

Evan Charles Marcus


Over the last two decades, Ecuador has come to be considered one of the most unstable democracies in Latin America. The Ecuadorian state has seen over ten different heads of state in just the last decade. At the heart of this tumultuous era lies the highly organized Indigenous Movement. Led by arguably the most effective indigenous social organization in the western hemisphere, CONAIE (Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador), the movement has seen both a drastic rise in international visibility and, more recently, a spiraling decline of influence within national politics.
This paper attempts to contextualize the Indigenous Movement within the broader socio-economic portrait of the Ecuadorian state. I argue that the movement and the indigenous idea of ‘a plurinational
state’ represent a dramatic, even revolutionary, new democratic force in Ecuadorian history with the potential to bring sustainable prosperity to the Ecuadorian Republic.


indigenous people, Latin America, social movements, International Affairs

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