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The Costa Rica Reader: History, Culture, Politics (The Latin America Readers) Paperback – October 29, 2004


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The Costa Rica Reader: History, Culture, Politics (The Latin America Readers) + The Ticos: Culture and Social Change in Costa Rica + Costa Rica: A Traveler's Literary Companion (Traveler's Literary Companions)
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Product Details

  • Series: The Latin America Readers
  • Paperback: 383 pages
  • Publisher: Duke University Press Books (October 29, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0822333724
  • ISBN-13: 978-0822333722
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.2 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #79,506 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"a poignant resource for anyone with an eye on the country, whether traveler, grizzled Costa Rica oldtimer, flash-in-the-pan tourist, historian, or Costa Rican national." The Tico Times

About the Author

Steven Palmer is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Windsor in Ontario. He is the author of From Popular Medicine to Medical Populism: Doctors, Healers, and Public Power in Costa Rica, 1800–1940 (published by Duke University Press).

Iván Molina is Professor of History at the University of Costa Rica in San José. He is a coauthor of Stuffing the Ballot Box: Fraud, Electoral Reform, and Democratization in Costa Rica.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By David A. Baer VINE VOICE on September 22, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Rarely does an anthology of original documents of historical value mingled with insightful interpretative essays come together as a coherent work. Steven Palmer and Iván Molina, against those odds, have put the ball in the back of the net with just such a book.

THE COSTA RICA READER'S three-part subtitle (`History, Culture, Politics') is honored along the way with an even touch. Everyone with an interest in Costa Rica as more than a tourist destination with great beaches will find between the covers of this recent collection the stuff that builds insight and understanding. This reviewer lived for sixteen years in 'tiquicia', together with its four million 'ticos', 'nicas', and assorted hangers-on. The West Virginia-sized patch of mountainous land with its sought-after beaches (I rarely found time to visit them) continues to maintain its grip on my soul. I wish this 2004 Duke University Press publication had been available about 1988. It would have rendered easier learning the lessons of tiquicia that had to come the hard, honest way.

No matter, it's here now. The editors guide us through a nuanced qualification of `Costa Rican exceptionalism', finding in the tico experience--whether lived by the indigenous groups who were not quite so few and compliant as the national mythology suggests in the face of conquest and marginalization or by the 19th century coffee lords with their debt to German mercantilism or the 1980s Nicaraguan refugee whose task it is to decide with which of her divergent constituencies to identify herself--deep continuities with the rest of Latin American experience as well as a dollop of the country's celebrated idiosyncrasies.

The seventy-odd pieces are brief, illuminating, and usually excerpted from something larger.
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Bookworm on August 18, 2006
Format: Paperback
By using variouus annotations on short stories the reader lives through many people which have helped create this nation. Events are told in first person that give realism to both their suffering and accomplishments. Interesting information about the United States influence/involement in the Central American zone and the indirect effect on Costa Ricans gives pause to think about current events.
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By Jeb Bolding on February 10, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Lots of information. A little hard to read.
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By Michelle Herrera on November 3, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good condition, very detailed.
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6 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Ronald Mackenzie on February 12, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love sociology. This is a great reader presenting different points of view of a complex society. So you know a little about me to judge the (short) review...I've done immersion study in CR and am a master's level student in the us. US born. Also over 40.
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More About the Author

Ivan Molina-Jimenez (Alajuela, Costa Rica, 1961) is a Professor of History at the Escuela de Historia and a Researcher at the Centro de Investigacion en Identidad y Cultura Latinoamericanas (CIICLA), both at the Universidad de Costa Rica. He is author of many books on Central American history, and science fiction short stories. His books have been reviewed by important academic journals, and The New York Review of Books.

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The Costa Rica Reader: History, Culture, Politics (The Latin America Readers)
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