© 2019

Capitalism, Class and Revolution in Peru, 1980-2016


  • Combines historical, economic, and social processes with political action in a unique theoretical and empirical analysis exploring the failure of the Peruvian socialist Left

  • Examines the relationship between neoliberalism, class structure, and political power

  • Provides a framework for the study of the political and economic consequences of neoliberalism, applicable beyond Peru and Latin America


Part of the Social Movements and Transformation book series (SMT)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxiv
  2. Jan Lust
    Pages 1-10
  3. Jan Lust
    Pages 25-46
  4. Jan Lust
    Pages 277-289
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 291-299

About this book


In an analysis of political, economic, and social development in Peru in the years between 1980 and 2016, this book explores the failure of the socialist Left to realize its project of revolutionary social transformation. Based on extensive interviews with leading cadres in the struggle for revolutionary change and a profound review of documents from the principal socialist organizations of the 1980s and 1990s, the volume reveals that the socialist Left did not fully comprehend the deep political and social implications of changes to the country’s class structures. As such, the Left failed to develop and implement adequate strategic and tactical responses to the processes that eroded its political and social bases in the 1980s and 1990s, ultimately leading to its loss of social and political power.  Lust concludes that the continued political and organizational agony of the Peruvian socialist Left and the hegemony of neoliberalism in society is a product of the dialectical interplay between the objective and subjective conditions that determine Peruvian capitalist development.


neoliberalism class struggle class structure class actors social change social transformation socalist left social movements development studies capitalism

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Universidad Ricardo PalmaLimaPeru

About the authors

Jan Lust is a professor in the Faculty of Economic and Business Sciences of the University Ricardo Palma, Peru. He is the author of Lucha revolucionaria: Perú, 1958-1967 (2013), a path-breaking work on the early history and revolutionary struggle of the Peruvian Left. His academic interests encompass international and Peruvian political and economic issues, class, social movements and guerrilla struggle.

Bibliographic information