Latin America

The rise and fall of South America’s Pink Tide

lula pink tide unasur chavez bachelet
Pink Tide leaders during the 2nd Unasur Summit

By the end of the 1990s, South America was desperate for change. A debt crisis drove most countries in the region to elect neoliberal governments before subsequent periods of hyperinflation and banking crises caused unemployment and poverty to rise. A groundswell of dissatisfaction was latched onto by galvanized social movements, clearing the decks for what we know today as the Pink Tide.

The Pink Tide was a historical moment, beginning in 1999, in which throughout South America, left-wing and center-left governments came into power. It was so named as even though the leaders in question...

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