Land reform as a feature of the reformist efforts

  1. Why is land reform appealing to reformers?
  2. Indeed, why has even the US, the defender of the right to property, often a supporter of land reform? Cf. Japan, Korea, Taiwan

specific features of Peruvian land reform

  1. style: Cynthia McClintock argues that the military government preceded stealthily, not revealing its intentions until it engaged in actual reforms
    1. e.g., the first expropriation was of the very large sugar complexes on Peru's northern coast (1969)
    2. worrying about it, the hacendados began subdividing their estates
      1. why:
      2. what did the government do about it? Ruled subdivisions annulled
      3. in the meantime, the hacendados had not decapitalized their estates (cf. Chile)
    3. then, large haciendas were expropriated (1971-73)
    4. only after 1973 were smaller haciendas expropriated
    5. in the areas of greatest peasant unrest, expropriation didn't come until 1974 and 1975, rather counterintuitively
  2. Beneficiaries:
    1. generally, those permanently attached to estates as peons; they usually formed CAPs, or Agrarian Production Cooperatives
    2. i.e., not those living in "communities," called comuneros, who often had little or no land and who often worked as day-laborers, called eventuales
  3. When progressives within the government tried to extend land reform to the more disadvantaged peasants, they alienated the earlier beneficiaries of land reform
    1. these progressive reformers sought to "intensify" the agrarian reform from around 1973 to 1975
    2. they generally promoted a sense of "social property" which cooperative members thought meant the formation of state-owned and managed farms
    3. in some cases, they sought to introduce seasonal workers into the enterprises already set up by cooperative members
      1. cooperative members didn't like this; why not?
    4. progressives within the government also sought to promote "Central Cooperatives," a second-level cooperative of cooperatives which would permit coordination of marketing, processing of agro-industrial goods, and ownership of capital (e.g., tractors and other farm equipment)
      1. cooperatives tended to see this differently depending on their circumstances
      2. better off cooperatives which seemed to be on the ascendancy didn't particularly care for them; why?
  4. McClintock argues that all of this produced sufficient uncertainty on the part of potential allies of the reform project that when opposed by more conservative elements in the military in a putsch carried out in 1975, the Velasco government had no effective allies to support it
  5. Problems this also created in the countryside; who are the players?
    1. beneficiaries of land reform
    2. those not yet benefiting who now work as laborers for other peasants (instead of for landlords)
    3. some individuals who try to benefit by owning their own property within this new system of cooperatives and state farms
      1. e.g., the landlords who effectively claim to be peasants
      2. peasants who seek to become landlords
      3. merchants
      4. truck owners
      5. sometimes 2, 3, and 4 are the same