chapter  8
16 Pages

Closure of bars, cantinas and brothels

Practices of civil in/security, state formation and citizenship in urban Bolivia1 1
WithHelene Risør

The fire was the culmination of a demonstration, or marcha, organized by students of the FES (Federation of Secondary Students of El Alto). Cholita hawkers and their customers, workers, young professionals and Alteos in general watched the youngsters rally for computers and chemistry laboratories for their school as well as for the closure of illegal bars, cantinas and brothels. This chapter analyses the clausura with regards to state formation in contemporary Bolivia and it also represents citizen-formation, which allows for the coming into being of novel political actors and subjectivities, in case of youth. The clausura as a kind of political action only makes sense when analysed in relation to similar forms of popular protests, growing unrest and political participation that have marked Bolivia since 2000. The chapter indicates how concerns civil insecurity constitute a privileged arena where state-citizen relations are re-negotiated in such a way that state and community organizations are mutually strengthened.