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The Life and Times of Raul Prebisch, 1901-1986

Raul Prebisch was a leader in economic development theory and international economic policy, an institution builder, and an international diplomat. "The Life and Times of Raul Prebisch, 1901-1986" provides the first book-length account of his life and work, a story cast against the backdrop of Latin America, the Cold War, the rise of the United Nations, and the struggle for equity between First and Third Worlds. A wunderkind, Prebisch occupied key positions at the Argentine Ministry of Finance in his twenties and was the general manager of the Argentine Central Bank before age forty. Exiled by Juan Peron after World War II, he became arguably the most influential Latin American official at the UN, heading such international organizations as the Economic Commission for Latin America and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. He was the first to conceptualize the relationship between developed countries and Latin America in terms of 'center-periphery' - a foundational concept in structuralist economics. Edgar Dosman has used archival research and interviews with family, friends, and associates to look at the historical and political contexts of Prebisch's career, providing new information on such topics as the creation and development of international networks, the tensions within international bureaucracies, and the constitution of a Latin American field of social sciences. Many of Prebisch's ideas were originally rejected as unorthodox but are now taken for granted. His life and work remain an enduring symbol of leadership for Latin America and the global community.
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Promotional Information

The first book-length biography of the Argentinian economist who transformed our thinking about first and third world relations.

About the Author

Edgar J. Dosman, senior research fellow, Centre for International and Security Studies, York University, has written extensively on Latin America, and was the founding director of FOCAL (Canadian Foundation for the Americas).


"Raul Prebisch was a remarkable man with a remarkable career. Edgar Dosman's Life effectively covers his lifelong efforts to increase people's welfare in Latin America and low-income countries in general...He is particularly good in showing how Prebisch e "Dosman has given us an important book that not only immortalizes a great man, but also starkly illuminates the repetitive patterns of inter-American relations." Foreign Affairs "In rescuing Prebisch for a new generation, and above all in allowing the reader to separate the man from the myth, Dosman has performed a valuable service for all those interested in economic thinking in Latin America and in the field of international development in general." The Economist

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