By Adam Jones
“A groundbreaking work… original and probing. Jones has done an excellent job of chronicling and analyzing the fascinating series of events that took place at Barricada.”
Kent Norsworthy, author of Nicaragua: A Country Guide
Throughout the 1980s, Barricada, the official daily newspaper of the ruling Sandinista Front, played the standard role of a party organ, seeking the mobilize the Nicaraguan public to support the revolutionary agenda. Beyond the Barricades, however, reveals a story that is both more intriguing and much more complex. Even during this period of sweeping transformation and outside military siege, another, more professional agenda also motivated Barricada’s journalists and editors.
When the Sandinistas unexpectedly fell from power in the 1990 elections, Barricada gained a substantial degree of autonomy that allowed it to explore a more balanced and nuanced journalism “in the national interest.” This new orientation, however, ran afoul of more orthodox party leaders, who gradually gained the upper hand in the bitter internal struggle that wracked the Sandinista Front in the early 1990s. The paper closed its doors in January 1998.
Adam Jones’s outstanding study offers an unprecedented behin-the-scenes looks at Barricada’s two decades of evolution and dissolution. It also presents an intimate portrait of a key revolutionary institution and the memorable individuals who were a part of it.
Adam Jones is a professor of international studies at the Center for Research and Teaching in Economics in Mexico City. He is the author of The Press in Transition: A Comparative Study of Nicaraqua, South Africa, Jordan, and Russia. More info →
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Business and Economics · Public Policy · Sandinistas · 20th century · Americas · Central America · Nicaragua · International Studies · Latin American Studies · Political Science · Latin American History · History · Labor History
Taking power in Nicaragua in 1979 as a revolutionary party, the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN) was willing to put its fate in the hands of the Nicaraguan people twice, in 1984 and 1990. The party wrote a democratic constitution and then, remarkably, accepted the decision of the majority by relinquishing power upon its defeat in the 1990 election.