CfP: International, Transnational, and Global Histories of the Nicaraguan Revolution, 1977–1990

Call for papers, deadline 1 October 2020

On 19 July 1979, Nicaraguan guerrillas from the Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional (Sandinista National Liberation Front, or FSLN) overthrew the regime of Anastasio Somoza. Their victory ended the decades-long dictatorship and ushered in an era of dramatic revolutionary change. Indeed, the Nicaraguan Revolution was a defining moment, not only for Latin America and the Caribbean, but also for the United States, Europe, and many countries in the global South. Twenty years after Fidel Castro’s band of revolutionaries triumphed in Cuba in 1959, left-wing armed revolutionaries in Latin America had succeeded in toppling dictatorial rule.

The Sandinistas’ success inspired peoples and governments around the world even before Somoza’s overthrow. In Europe and the Americas local activists and organisations collected money so that guerrillas could buy weapons, medicine, and food. Latin American governments pressured the United States to denounce the Somoza regime. After the revolution triumphed, solidarity and support for the FSLN increased as human rights groups, labour unions, and church organisations cooperated with the Sandinistas to make the revolution a success. The Ronald Reagan administration’s determination to destabilize the FSLN, however, posed an existential threat to the revolutionary government, and throughout the 1980s Nicaragua was the focal point of a destructive Cold War struggle. This battle was fought not only by Nicaraguans on a local level but also by diplomats, activists, musicians and artists on a global stage.

More than forty years after the revolutionary triumph, we still know surprisingly little about the global, international, and transnational dimensions of the Nicaraguan Revolution. Yet in recent years increased collaboration between scholars working in the US and Europe and their Nicaraguan and Central American counterparts and recent declassifications of Nicaraguan archival material have opened up the possibility of writing a broader history of the Nicaraguan Revolution. Moreover, the recent crackdown on opposition figures and protesters in Nicaragua – where Daniel Ortega and the FSLN returned to power in 2007 – has resulted in a reavaluation of the country’s revolutionary past and its contemporary legacies.

We are soliciting essays for a proposed peer-reviewed edited volume that seeks to advance understanding of the international, transnational, and global dynamics of the Nicaraguan Revolution. The volume particularly hopes to cover the following topics:

- The international origins of the revolution
- Transnational connections and networks
- Foreign relations and diplomacy
- Internationalisation and politicisation of everyday life
- Human rights and solidarity activism
- The Cold War
- Women and gender
- Guerrillas and counterinsurgency
- The Global South
- Indigenous networks and activism
- The influence of religion and religious networks

The volume will be academic in approach, but essays should be written in accessible, jargon-free language. Essays from all disciplines and fields are welcomed. This invitation to submit does not guarantee your submission will be published.

Submission Requirements:

500-word Abstract of essay and CV
Final essays will be between 5000-8000 words and in Chicago footnotes citation style.

Timeframe/Deadline:

Abstract submissions are due October 1, 2020
Essay submissions will be due January 2021

Please send abstracts to w.m.schmidli@hum.leidenuniv.nl.

Posted: 
14/09/2020