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Intellectual Foundations of the Nicaraguan Revolution

Intellectual Foundations of the Nicaraguan Revolution
January 1986
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396 pages | 2 b&2 illus. |

In this critical study of the thought of Augusto Cesar Sandino and his followers, Donald C. Hodges has discovered a coherent ideological thread and political program, which he succeeds in tracing to Mexican and Spanish sources. Sandino's strong religious inclination in combination with his anarchosyndicalist political ideology established him as a religious seer and moral reformer as well as a political thinker and is the prototype of the curious blend of Marxism and Christianity of the late twentieth-century Nicaraguan government, the Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional.

  • Abbreviations
  • Preface
  • Part One. Sandino
    • 1. The Making of a Revolutionary
      • The Mexican Experience
      • The Struggle in Nicaragua
      • Revitalizing an Ailing Cause
      • Understanding Sandino
    • 2. Activating Ideologies
      • The Legacy of Mexican Anarchism
      • Spiritualist, Freemason, Theosophist
      • The Spiritism of the Magnetic-Spiritual School
      • The Anarchism of Austere Rational Philosophy
      • Sandino’s “Rational Communism”
      • The Coming “Proletarian Explosion”
    • 3. Strategy for Subversion
      • Appeals to Patriotism
      • Sandino’s Liberalism
      • The Turn toward Populism
      • Sandino and the Comintern
    • 4. The War in Nicaragua
      • The Yankee “Machos”
      • The Bankers of Wall Street
      • The “Whited Sepulcher”
      • Nicaragua’s Political Leaders
      • The Defending Army of National Sovereignty
      • Stimson or Sandino?
  • Part Two. The Sandinistas
    • 5. From Sandino to Sandinismo
      • Recovering Sandino’s Thought
      • Transmitting Sandino’s Example
      • The Marxist Influence
      • Promoting the New Marxism
      • What Is Sandinismo?
    • 6. Political Assessments
      • Nicaragua’s Neocolonial Status
      • The Rise of a Bourgeois Opposition
      • The Emergence of a Proletarian Vanguard
      • The Development of a Revolutionary Situation
    • 7. Reflections on Strategy
      • The Original “Foco” Strategy
      • The Strategy of Prolonged People’s War
      • The Strategy of Popular Resistance
      • The Strategy of General Insurrection
    • 8. Ideologies of the Revolution
      • The Cult of the New Man
      • The Defense of Human Rights
      • The Religious Policy of the FSLN
      • Ernesto Cardenal’s Tour de Force
      • The Ideological Pluralism of the FSLN
  • Conclusion
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Index

“[Intellectual Foundations of the Nicaraguan Revolution] is an enormously enlightening and original study. . . and should constitute a landmark work. . . on a socio-political and historical event of immense significance. . . . the book is so careful and systematic in making its case that I expect it to define a new paradigm regarding Sandino, and regarding the contribution of anarchist theorists to modern revolutionary thought and practice.”
John A. Booth, author of The End and the Beginning: The Nicaraguan Revolution and co-author of Understanding Central America.