Waiting for Mestizaje to come
The aim of this study is to analyze the influence of the political discourse in the construction of racial identities in the city of La Paz. Focusing on the debate generated about the Law against Racial Discrimination and all kinds of Discrimination, approved in October of 2010 as a case study, an analysis of the political discourse reflected on TV broadcasts has been made and used to see in which ways it influences, or not, the construction of racial identities in the population of the city of La Paz. Focus groups have been used to pick up the thoughts and insights of such population. The research concludes that even though the political discourse does influence racial constructions, people still challenge official racial discourse and keep their agency regarding the racial constructions that shape their social world. The title has been inspired on Javier Sanjines’ book “Mestizaje Upside-down” in which the author explains that “mestizaje never arrives for Bolivians”. This idea can be reflected on this research which shows that the ideal and the concrete expressions of mestizaje are a long way apart.
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