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date: 04 December 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the ‘Washington Consensus’ in Latin America, policies laid out by John Williamson in 1989. For its advocates, the Consensus reflected a doctrine of economic freedom that was best suited for the political democracies to which many Latin countries had returned after a long spell of military dictatorships. For its opponents, the Consensus was an unjust set of neoliberal policies, imposed on hapless countries by the Washington-based international financial institutions. Williamson's policies rode on a global wave that transformed the conventional wisdom in favor of free-market economics, which included the rise of neoclassical economics and the rational expectations revolution among academic macroeconomists.

Keywords: John Williamson, economic freedom, political democracies, Latin America, neoclassical economics, free-market economics

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