Llamas, Weavings, and Organic Chocolate

Multicultural Grassroots Development in the Andes and Amazon of Bolivia

Kevin Healy

From the Helen Kellogg Institute for International Studies

"Llamas, Weavings, and Organic Chocolate offers an intricate and intimate portrait of the struggles and evolution of a diverse set of visionary and successful NGO organizations in Bolivia over a twenty-year period. Dr. Healy, perhaps America’s most knowledgeable student of Bolivian rural development, provides the reader with a ground’s-eye view of how grassroots groups can shape an alternative social vision, give it strength by tying it to Andean culture, beliefs and practices, fail occasionally, and yet battle against all odds to succeed in making that vision real." – Ray Offenheiser, Director, OXFAM America

“Kevin Healy has given us a vital tool in this absorbing, lucid account that challenges so many stereotypes and brings us face-to-face with complex but soluble realities. This is an engaging blend of professional expertise and manifest love for a country, Bolivia, and its people, but there are many wider lessons and applications that can be drawn from the text.” – James Dunkerley, Director, Institute of Latin American Studies, University of London

"The people of Bolivia, Andeanists in general, and the development community of practitioners, policy makers, scholars, and teachers welcome Healy’s long-awaited book. Fascinating, authoritative, wide-ranging and inspiring, it shows us that substantive development springing from local people themselves requires a commitment to particularity and a fairly long time-frame but not vast sums of money. The people themselves ‘know how’."–Grace Goodell, Professor and Director, Program on Social Change and Development, Johns Hopkins University, S.A.I.S.

“Llamas, Weavings, and Organic Chocolate is a powerful intellectual hybrid that integrates personal narratives of the struggle for economic development and social justice among grassroots organizations in Bolivia with a nuanced, rigorous account of development history, theory and practice. Although focused on grassroots development in Bolivia, one of the poorest nations in the Western hemisphere, Kevin Healy’s book has great relevance for the general analysis of development discourse, policies and methods generated within the Anglo-European world, and particularly in the United States. His testimony to the power and problems of grassroots organizing reveals an exquisite sensitivity to the ethnography of the dispossessed, as well as a clear-eyed, pragmatic vision of equitable economic development in the social context of intensifying globalization.” –Alan L. Kolata,Neukom Family Professor of Anthropology, University of Chicago

“Because Kevin Healy has carefully watched, chronicled, and analyzed a set of Bolivian community organizations for almost twenty years, he brings an unusual longitudinal perspective to bear on our understanding of these groups. The resulting insights are fresh and nuanced, belying the categories and dichotomies prevalent in the more typical moment-in-time discussions in the literature of development studies.” –Judith Tendler, author of Good Government in the Tropics, Professor of Political Economy, Department of Urban Studies & Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Kevin Healy is a Development Sociologist on the staff of the Inter-American Foundation, and teaches in the graduate program at George Washington University.


“_Llamas, Weavings, and Organic Chocolate_ will be of great interest to scholars, students, and development practitioners. . . . [Healy’s] work examines several areas of social and economic activity and delves into a broad range of issues relevant to the understanding and pursuit of local development initiatives in Latin America and, indeed, many other parts of the world . . . an admirable and highly informative work.” — Canadian Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Studies

“Kevin Healy’s book . . . provides both insight and inspiration for anyone concerned with development where people matter.” — Native Americas

Llamas, Weavings, and Organic Chocolate: Multicultural Grassroots Development in the Andes and Amazon of Bolivia is the story of Bolivian rural development and cultural change. Contains a history of anti-indigenous discrimination and narratives of nine development strategies.” — Cultural Survival Quarterly

“. . . [F]ascinating book on multicultural grassroots indigenous development initiatives in the Andes and Amazon regions of Bolivia.” — Human Rights Quarterly

“Kevin Healy’s book tells us how they did it and provides both insight and inspiration for anyone concerned with development as if people mattered.” — Grassroots Development, Journal of the Inter-American Foundation

“[A]n important corrective to recent development debates. Healy’s impressive work indicates what is possible, and is, therefore, a political contribution in the best sense of the term.” —_American Anthropologist_