Latin America’s Indigenous Peoples

Issue Date October 2007
Volume 18
Issue 4
Page Numbers 127-141
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Among the key influences shaping the quality of democracy in Latin America today are the recent political mobilization and formal incorporation of indigenous peoples. In countries where such peoples make up a large share or even a majority of the populace, their legal and political incorporation into the state signifies a major power shift and the weakening of institutions that had been built to exclude them. Where indigenous peoples constitute a smaller share of the electorate, their recent inclusion denotes a more generalized opening of the political system to excluded and vulnerable sectors of society.