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January 1985
384 pages  
32 b&w illustrations
6 1/8 x 9 1/4
9780822953722
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The Hovering Giant (Revised Edition)
U.S. Responses to Revolutionary Change in Latin America, 1910–1985
Blasier, Cole
In this revised edition of The Hovering Giant Cole Blasier updates his comprehensive study of revolutionary change in Latin America. The book now includes a discussion about the revolt in El Salvador and U.S.-Cuban relations in addition to earlier revolutions in Mexico, Chile, and Guatemala.

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Cole Blasier, Professor of Political Science at the University of Pittsburgh, is author of The Giant’s Rival: The USSR and Latin America. Blasier studied or taught at Universities in Chile, Colombia, and Mexico and served as a career foreign service officer in Belgrade, Bonn, Moscow, and Washington. Because of long first-hand experience in official Washington and Moscow and extensive residence in Latin America, Blasier is uniquely qualified to appraise this complex arena of conflict.
“Honest, well-argued study which presents the complexities of U.S. responses to revolutions with a high degree of skill and fairness.”—American Historical Review

“The book is well related to the literature on international and hemispheric relations and the case studies are used to develop broader insights. It is a book that is to be recommended for its capacity to link domestic and international politics, for its insights into how foreign policy decisions get made, and for its analysis of how policy change occurs.”---Merille Grindle, Latin American Research Review, vol. 16, no. 1, 1981

“[S]tudents of inter-American relations will find it a very useful and readable addition to the literature on their subject.”---Gordon Connell-Smith, Journal of Latin American Studies, vol. 12, no. 2, 1980

“[T]his volume constitutes a useful contribution, serving to pierce the veil of partisan and ideological rhetoric that often mars analses of this question to indicate additional operative factors.”---Kenneth J. Grieb, The Americas, vol. 36, no. 3, January 1980

“This is, in many ways, an extremely satisfying book. It is well written, insightful, balanced in interpretation, and superbly documented primarily from American and German archives. Though his book is diplomatic history at its best, Blasier’s central aim is that of a political scientist, generating ‘propositions’ about ‘official behavior.’”---Yale H. Ferguson, Political Science Quarterly, Summer 1977

“A political scientist and founder of the Center for Latin American Studies at the University of Pittsburgh, Blasier has combined the methodological techniques of political science and the examples of history in a book that is informative, interpretive, and imaginative.”----Lester D. Langley, Hispanic American Historical Review, May 1977

“Students of U.S. policy toward Latin America will find the book balanced, thoroughly researched, interesting and informative. So, too, will students of U.S. foreign policy generally. One hopes, probably without much basis, that U.S. foreign policy-makers will read and learn from The Hovering Giant.”---James D. Cochrane, Social Science Quarterly, March 1977

“The book is fastidiously researched, carefully reasoned and basically well-organized. . . . [T]he analysis is carefully drawn and cleanly argued. . . . Blasier’s book features a splendid comparative analysis of the United States’ Latin American policy. It is “must” reading for all students of interamerican and Latin American politics and highly recommended for those interested in foreign policy and comparative revolutionary change.”----Edward J. Williams, American Political Science Quarterly,1978

“Drawing upon his university experiences in Latin America and his foreign service background in Europe and Washington, he has produced a volume both timely and provocative --- immensely useful to students of inter-American relations and worthy of intensive study by Washington policy makers.”---Harold F. Peterson, World Affairs, vol. 139, no. 3, Winter 1976-7

“This excellent book is the first comparative analysis of revolutionary change in Latin America.”----Choice, October 1976

“High-quality scholarship marks this comprehensive study of U.S. reactions to the perceived challenges of revolutionary politics in the Latin American region. The author’s comparative approach and analytic treatment offer far more insight than does the typical descriptive case study.”----Orbis, Summer 1976

“[T]his is a work of incontestable richness . . . the revised edition is a great good thing for all those who, like you and me, are interested in the past and the future of the continent.”----Yvon Grenier, Etudes Internationales, vol. 18, no. 1

Complete Description Reviews
Pitt Latin American Series
Latin America/Politics
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In the first edition of The Hovering Giant, Cole Blasier analyzed U.S. response to revolutions in Latin America from Madero in Mexico to Allende in Chile. He explained why U.S. leaders sponsored paramilitary units to overthrow revolutionary governments in Guatemala and Cuba and compromised their own differences with revolutionary governments in Mexico and Bolivia. The protection of private U.S. interests was part of the explanation, but Blasier gave greater emphasis to rivalry with Germany or the Soviet Union. Now in this revised edition, Blasier also examines the responses of the Carter and Reagan administrations to the Grenadian and Nicaraguan revolutions and the revolt in El Salvador. He also brings up to date the interpretation of U.S.-Cuban relations. Blasier stresses U.S. defense of its preeminent position in the Caribean Basin, as well as rivalry with the Soviet Union, to explain these later U.S. responses. Seemingly unaware of historical experience, Washington followed patterns in Central America and Grenada similar to earlier patterns in Guatemala, Cuba, and Chile even though the latter had adverse effects on U.S. security and economic interests.
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