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Failing States or Failing Policies? Interpreting the Andean Crisis

In an age when we are focused on the war on terrorism, the wars from previous decades get pushed off the front page. Yet, in the Andean region, the war on drugs continues to be waged against guerrilla fighting groups. Though the media's focus may have shifted to the Middle East, the United States remains heavily involved in eradicating drug trafficking in Latin America. What are the consequences of continued U.S. participation in the region? Catherine M. Conaghan is a specialist on Latin American politics whose research interests include politics in the Andes, parties and interest groups in Latin America, political corruption, and U.S.-Latin America relations. Her field research has included work in Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia.

Conaghan serves as the associate director of the Centre for the Study of Democracy at Queen's University in Canada. She has held research posts at the Woodrow Wilson Center, Princeton University; the Kellogg Institute of the University of Notre Dame; the North-South Center of the University of Miami; and the Instituto de Estudios Peruanos. In 2000 Conaghan held the Knapp Chair of Liberal Arts at the University of San Diego. Her latest book is entitled The Permanent Coup: Deception and the Public Sphere in Fujimori's Peru (University of Pittsburgh Press, forthcoming 2005).

Professor Conaghan's current research includes work on democratization in Latin America, a project sponsored by the United Nations, and ongoing collaboration in the Social Science Research Council (New York) workshops, "Crises in the Andes." Conaghan's appearance at the Athenaeum is part of the series Democracy in Latin America and is sponsored by the Keck Center for International and Strategic Studies and the Athenaeum.