Revised Blog (Caudillos Love em or Hate em! )

I have chosen to revise this post located here.

Just in case the link did not work here it is again. http://lesliemodernlatinamerica.wordpress.com/category/caudillos/

Throughout this post there will be several pictures of famous Caudillos.

Caudillos are discussed in Wood and Chasteen’s book Problems in Modern Latin American History. The authors devote an entire chapter to the topic of Caudillos so it is apparent that this is very important to the history of Latin America.

So what are Caudillos?

Juan Manuel de Rosas- Argentina

Caudillo is the Spanish word for leader. This word usually describes a political and/ or military leader. In Problems in Modern Latin American History an entire section is devoted to Caudillos. (Insert Picture Here) Oxford Dictionary defines a caudillo as a military or political leader.[1] Although this is a correct definition of a caudillo this simple definition does not begin to tell what Caudillos really are.

Simon Bolivar

So, what makes them so important and why are they different from any other political/ military leaders?

Caudillos are powerful. They are political leaders who know how to “work” a crowd. Wood and Chasteen say that historians either love Caudillos, or they simply do not. [2]

Wood and Chasteen discuss in this section that historians either love Caudillos with high praises, or just the opposite.

Francisco Fracno

Caudillos were charismatic men. They could take full advantage of a large crowd. They knew their strengths when it came to public speaking and they acted upon those and used them to their advantage. Their intense charisma is one of the reasons why people followed these political leaders.

Caudillos have been an important factor in Latin American history. They represent a time period where a man was standing up and supporting the middle class.

Jorge Eliecer Gaitan Ayala

Caudillos have an army, are conservative leaders, and gain support through family and friend networking. Also, in Problems in Modern Latin American History a defining quality of a caudillo is how masculine he acts. [3]Machismo is a common theme in the history of men throughout Latin America. Machismo is an attitude. It is an attitude that exhibits masculinity in everything he does. Caudillos have machismo attitudes.

Caudillos gain political control through force. Force comes in different ways depending on the caudillo. Social, economic, and through culture are some of the ways caudillos gain political power and control. In order to gain force Caudillos must first have a way in with the society. Mention before in the previous paragraph caudillos gain support through family and networking. Many of Caudillos befriend those with land, those in government, and also those of high power. With those people on their side caudillos can gain support from the upper class. Caudillos appeal to the middle class. He preaches about the middle class being the core of economy in their society.

Are there modern examples of a Caudillos is a common question when studying Caudillos. When thinking about how charismatic these Caudillos were it is hard not to think of the current president of the United States, Barack Obama. Barack Obama has several caudillo qualities. His ability to capture crows with charisma that is nearly impossible to teach, but rather just born with.  To say the Obama has every quality that caudillos would be false, but he does posses the charisma that Caudillos represented.

Works Cited

Primary

Oxford English Dictionary

Paintings and Photographs of Caudillos

Secondary

Wood, James A, and John Charles Chasteen. “Caudillos .” In Problems in modern Latin American history: sources and interpretations. 3rd ed. Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2009. 57-81.


[1] Caudillo,

Second edition, 1989; online version March 2011. <http://www.oed.com:80/Entry/29072&gt;; accessed 11 May 2011. First published in A Supplement to the OED I, 1972.

[2] Wood, James A, and John Charles Chasteen. “Caudillos .” In Problems in modern Latin American history: sources and interpretations. 3rd ed. Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2009. 57.

[3] Wood, James A, and John Charles Chasteen. “Caudillos .” In Problems in modern Latin American history: sources and interpretations. 3rd ed. Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2009. 66.

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