Alexander Main and Gustavo Codas
NACLA Report on the Americas, Volume 48, Issue 4, December 2, 2016


Recent defeats of progressive governments in Latin America represent a setback for Left projects of regional integration and economic justice, but they don’t mean a return of right-wing hegemony.

In a July 2015 talk he gave at an international conference organized by the Brazilian Landless Workers’ Movement (MST), near São Paulo, Paraguayan economist and activist Gustavo Codas became one of the first thinkers on the left to discuss the challenges facing Latin America’s “progressive cycle.” Since then, he has written extensively on the subject for a variety of Latin American periodicals. In late September 2016, NACLA editorial committee member Alexander Main spoke with Codas, who currently resides in Brazil, about the current political conjuncture and the dynamics of Left-Right politics in the region, more specifically.

ALEXANDER MAIN (AM): Before we jump into the debate on whether recent defeats or struggles of the political Left in Latin America represent the end or the decline of a “progressive cycle,” maybe you could begin by first describing how you understand Latin America’s progressive cycle of the last decade and a half—what some have referred to as the “pink tide.”

GUSTAVO CODAS (GC): Latin America’s progressive cycle was a response to the crisis of neoliberalism and a counter-proposal to neoliberalism.

Read the rest of the article here at NACLA Report on the Americas.


Alexander Main is senior associate for international policy at the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) where he focuses primarily on U.S. policy toward Latin America and the Caribbean. He also serves on NACLA’s editorial committee.