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The struggle for land and livelihood: Peasant differentiation and survival during the agrarian transition in Tungurahua, Ecuador.


This study examines the impact of capitalist development on peasant agriculture in Ecuador's central sierra and on the peasant community of Santa Lucia in Tungurahua Province. It argues that the region's peasantry remained strong by controlling community textile obrajes through the seventeenth century. While the local colonial elite was relatively modest, dynamic commercial entrepreneurs actively consolidated property during the nineteenth century. They also developed irrigation and fruiticulture, ultimately facilitating smallholders' survival.