in: Third World Quarterly, 38: 4, 882-899.
Since 2009 the USA and the Bolivian government have been trying to fix their broken diplomatic relations. These negotiations culminated in 2011 in the signing of a bilateral agreement but, ultimately, failed to establish a basis for mutually acceptable development aid relations. This article analyses these negotiations and suggests a partial explanation that accounts for their dynamics and results. Specifically it shows how the negotiations have pitted Bolivian demands for state sovereignty and mutual respect, based on an egalitarian understanding of inter-state relations, against the US emphasis on common obligations and universal rights, informed by a non-egalitarian notion of liberal hegemony.
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