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3778 - Saving Civilization with Jesus and the Americas: Interwar Christian Pacifism, Anti-Communism, and the Latin American Left

This presentation addresses key topics from my doctoral work, which examines the context of production of Indoamérica, APRA’s vision of continental integration. S tarting in the early 1920s, many actors—Christians, pacifists, and communists alike—saw in the young Peruvian exiles an opportunity to bring about change in Latin America. Their contrasting hopes and political goals, this essay suggests, contributed to shaping the rise of the Indoamerican project. While highlighting the significance that communist influences had on APRA, this essay explores the relationships that bonded Christian groups with leftist and anti-imperialist Latin American organizations during the interwar period. In the aftermaths of the First World War, various Protestant actors sought to actively promote spiritual and cultural cooperation in the Americas. They struggled against materialism and positivist philosophies, drawing their arguments within continental perspectives. They fiercely opposed communism and combated Moscow’s authority within the hemisphere. With similar zeal, they also denounced definitions of Panamericanism that exclusively focused on commercial exchange. A spiritual revolution should first occur in the Americas, Evangelical circles argued, in order to better orient the social revolution that was expected to follow. In the midst of these interwar debates about how best to fight communism and achieve continental integration, the young Peruvian exiles, about to become Apristas, naturally rose as coveted allies for a variety of Christian pacifist actors. As a result, these actors offered intellectual and spiritual inspiration for APRA. In the face of ongoing persecution, they also provided political leverage and material support to Aprista leaders.          

Palavras-chaves: Anti-Imperialism, APRA, Protestantism, Interwar Pacifism, Inter-American Cooperation

Autores: Dorais, Geneviève (University of Wisconsin--Madison, Ud States of Am / USA)

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