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Chile and the Pacific World

Summary and Keywords

Since the early 1800s, Chileans have imagined their nation’s history and destiny through an ever-changing array of transoceanic connections with the rest of the planet. At a deeper level, Chile’s relationship with the Pacific Ocean is built upon myriad collective memories and aspirational identities. The long arc of Chile’s linkages with the Pacific World—or the peoples and ecosystems in and around the Pacific Ocean—has yet to be fully explored by historians. This article fills this lacuna by analyzing five diverse historical episodes that span more than two centuries: first, Valparaíso’s growth into a Pacific commercial hub during the early 1800s; second, Chile’s role in the Californian and Australian gold rushes of the mid-1800s; third, the Chilean victory in the late-19th-century War of the Pacific; fourth, Chile’s burgeoning commercial relationship with China, which began in the years following the Second World War; and, finally, the emergence of a Chilean-Pacific variant of neoliberal ideology in the final decades of the 20th century. These five developments reveal a litany of ambiguities and antagonisms in Chile’s complicated, ongoing association with its western ocean.

Keywords: Pacific Ocean, Chile, Valparaíso, Talcahuano, California gold rush, War of the Pacific, China, Asian financial crisis, Salvador Allende, Augusto Pinochet, neoliberalism

Benjamín Subercaseaux, a 20th-century Chilean writer who was enthralled with the idiosyncrasies of his birthplace, dubbed Chile “tierra de océano”—“land of the ocean.” Subercaseaux saw in his slender, territorially secluded nation “a country, which, by its geographic structure and its position, has neither other objectives, nor better wealth, nor a better destiny—better yet—no other salvation than the sea. Chile was born unto the sea; on the sea its natives fed themselves; by the sea its Conquest consolidated itself; over the sea its Independence held fast; from the sea it will have to extract its sustenance; without the sea, its commerce does not make sense.”1 Although Chile’s average width is a mere 110 miles (177 km), its 3,990-mile (6,435 km) Pacific coastline has given the South American nation unprecedented access to an array of commercial relations, imperial acquisitions, cultural contacts, and biological exchanges.

Among elites, the broad strokes of this narrative cartography suggested commercial and military ascendency in 19th-century Latin America. In the early decades of the 1800s, Valparaíso experienced a period of protracted development into a major Pacific port city. During the first five years of the California gold rush (1848–1853) and the Australian gold rushes of the 1850s, Chile engaged in wide-ranging economic exchanges with transpacific trading partners. The War of the Pacific (1879–1883), in which Chile defeated the allied powers of Bolivia and Peru, marked a phase of rapid military expansion in the Pacific realm. Likewise, commercial links that emerged with China in the years after World War II exhibited the growing strength of Chile’s maritime presence in its western ocean. In the late 20th century, the discourse of a Chilean Pacific played a significant role in informing the nation’s fraught relationship with a neoliberal model of capitalist development imposed under Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship (1973–1990). Rhetorical and material linkages between Chile and its Pacific neighbors continue to this day.

Valparaíso: Pacific Port City of the 1800s

As early as the 1840s, many South Americans recognized Valparaíso’s prominent position among the Pacific’s major entrepôts. In 1842, Juan Garcia del Río, a political émigré from Colombia, wrote in the short-lived magazine El Museo de Ambas Americas, “Valparaíso has been the principal market of the South Pacific. Stocked in it are the commercial products needed by the merchants of Bolivia, Perú and Ecuador, as well as Central America and México.”2 The rise of the port of Valparaíso to its premier status along the continent’s west coast was not a foregone conclusion during the 16th-century Spanish conquest of the Americas. The city’s ascent to preeminence was a lengthy process, which took many centuries. Spanish conquistador Juan de Saavedra founded Valparaíso (Valley of Paradise) in 1536, naming it after his birthplace near Cuenca, Spain. In 1543 Pedro de Valdivia permanently established the city as the Spanish colony’s principal port. Located 62 miles (100 km) west of Santiago, Valparaíso served as the major entry point for global commerce with the inland capital.

Although it held great strategic importance for Spain, the coastal settlement got off to a rough start. British and Dutch privateers found that Valparaíso was a convenient pillaging stopover during their raids on the Manila Galleons. Sir Francis Drake sacked the fledgling harbor town in 1578, sailing off with “2,500 to 3,000 jugs of wine, salted meat, flour, agricultural and livestock products ready for shipment to Lima and Potosí.”3 The bounty captured by Drake’s men demonstrated that a vibrant transpacific trade among the South American provinces had already emerged by the 16th century.

Despite these signs of economic connections to other parts of the Virreinato del Perú (Viceroyalty of Peru)—as most of Spanish-ruled South America was then known—restrictive Spanish trading policies hindered the development of the commercial outlet. Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, Valparaíso amounted to little more than a cluster of primitive dwellings and rudimentary storehouses at one end of an austere shoreline. By 1800, its population scarcely reached four thousand.4 Vicente Pérez-Rosales, a diplomat and adventurer extraordinaire who would later memorialize the Chilean role in California’s gold rush, visited Valparaíso as a boy. The youngster was unimpressed by the paltry settlement. With only a knot of merchant houses, a church, and a castle inhabited by the governor, “the whole beach, from that end of the bay to the other, was deserted but for the visiting of the tides; drawn up on it, among the Sargasso and near some stakes where fishermen would hang their nets to dry, you could see some of those shapeless hollowed-out tree trunks that we still call canoes.”5 The city grew steadily after Chile officially declared national independence from Spain in 1818. In the ensuing years, many regional merchants relocated to Valparaíso to supervise exports of hides, tallow, and wheat and to oversee imports of manufactured goods, sugar, and tobacco.

Likewise, a European merchant class established itself in Chile’s burgeoning port city. During the 1820s, a recently widowed British captain’s wife, Maria Callcott, was pleasantly surprised to find many of her compatriots running businesses along Valparaíso’s bustling seaside streets. Arriving during the summer of 1822, she recounted, “English tailors, shoemakers, saddlers, and inn-keepers, hand out their signs in every street; and the preponderance of the English language over every other spoken in the chief streets, would make one fancy Valparaiso a coast town in Britain.”6 For most of the 19th century, Britain acted as Chile’s principal source of foreign capital and merchandise. In return, Chilean merchants supplied Britain with crucial raw materials for their industrial enterprises.7

Valparaíso began to attract sizable volumes of foreign commerce after independence, but meager customs enforcement standards meant that the young Chilean government collected little of the potential revenue from increased maritime traffic at its docks. Captain Joubert, a Frenchman who sailed into Valparaíso harbor in 1826, noted, “When a merchant ship arrives in a Chilean port, there is only one customs officer to look after everything; he is usually on friendly terms with the ship’s captain. Although his job is to see that nothing leaves the ship without his authority, he cannot be everywhere at once. While he sleeps or lingers over his meals, many opportunities occur for unloading goods illicitly and warehousing them nearby. The customs officer is frequently led astray by the captain’s attentions, so that he neglects his duties in daytime as much as at night.”8

This state of affairs soon changed. In the 1830s, a tightfisted reformer dispensed with the insubstantial administrative approaches of the previous decade. At the end of a short civil war (1829–1830), a young former Valparaíso businessman named Diego Portales led a conservative coalition to power in Santiago. In a dramatic political shift from the chaos of the 1820s, Portales brought the traditional views of his constituents to the epicenter of Chilean politics. His supporters, known as the pelucones (“bigwigs”), included well-to-do merchants, the landed oligarchy from Chile’s Central Valley, the Catholic clergy, and the military elite of Concepción.9

Maritime commercial interests benefited immensely from Portalian policy initiatives. Following Portales’s advice, Manuel Rengifo—the finance minister during the presidency of José Joaquín Prieto Vial (1831–1841)—established almacenes fiscales (“bonded warehouses”) in Valparaíso, which provided merchants with duty-free storage for their goods. Rengifo, known to Portales as “Don Proyectos” (“Mister Plans”), also standardized Chile’s archaic colonial and early republican trade laws, a move that created an efficient economic bureaucracy and made maritime commerce more feasible.10

Shipping traffic increased exponentially. In 1830, 298 ships totaling 57,558 tons called at Valparaíso Harbor. By contrast, in 1838, 474 ships totaling 96,893 tons arrived at the port. Between 1835 and 1854, Valparaíso’s population grew from thirty thousand to fifty-two thousand.11 The city was so fundamentally linked to its oceanic identity as Chile’s most prominent port that its residents became known throughout the country as porteños, or “people of the port.”

Nevertheless, the rising tide of commerce did not float all of Valparaíso’s boats. Although the porteños were unified in their identification with the sea, various groups of port dwellers experienced considerably dissimilar degrees of prosperity and poverty. In Valparaíso, the vertical geography of class stratification was evident to most visitors. After arriving in the city on November 12, 1851, Prussian traveler Frank Lecouvreur depicted the social hierarchy of the city’s terraced foothills:

Thus even nature divides Valparaiso into two parts: the lower and the upper city: (1) the city of wealth and (2) the city of poverty; of extreme luxury and pomp, of wide, well paved streets with magnificent stores and residences and steep, crooked, rocky mountain alleys between low, miserable huts; below, the splendid carriages and the glittering of silk dresses; above, the climbing of half-fed donkeys and mules, and half-naked women and children tramping in mud. The only things which the upper and lower Valparaiso have in common are the mud during the rainy season, and the endless dust in summer time; innumerable barking dogs, fleas of immense size and bedbugs during all seasons.12

La Fiebre del Oro (Gold Fever)

At midcentury, an unforeseen event in the Northern Hemisphere brought Valparaíso’s porteños—along with many other Chileans—into a wider world of transpacific encounters and commercial opportunities. After sawmill operator James W. Marshall discovered gold in California’s American River in January 1848, prospectors from around the world converged on the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. During the five years that followed, at least eight thousand Chileans departed for San Francisco to search for their fortunes in the icy mountain streams and commercial boomtowns of California. By December 1849, 92 of Chile’s 119 registered ships lay at anchor in San Francisco Bay. Their passengers and crews were trekking to the mines or testing their entrepreneurial skills in California’s emerging frontier towns.13

The gold fever that consumed North America’s Pacific coast also created a surge of new interactions between travelers from the United States and residents of Chile. The turbulent aquatic corridor at the southernmost tip of the Americas was one of the three main routes that Yankees from North America’s Eastern Seaboard took to California. Migrants who chose not to traverse the steamy, disease-infested Isthmus of Panama in dugout canoes (the canal would not be completed until 1914) or endure the perilous overland trek across the United States in covered wagons secured maritime passage to the Pacific World by sailing southward across the equator and along the eastern coastline of South America.

Captains generally opted against an encounter with the narrow, rocky Strait of Magellan, heading instead around Cabo de Hornos (Cape Horn), the headland of Chile’s Tierra del Fuego archipelago. They would then set a course northward toward San Francisco. Ships navigating from New York to San Francisco via the Cape Horn route logged between 17,000 and 18,000 nautical miles and required four to eight months to reach their final destination. Frequently, their California-bound vessels called at the Chilean ports of Talcahuano or Valparaíso to replenish their stocks of fruits and vegetables, take on fresh water, and allow passengers to stretch their sea legs or receive medical treatment.

Upon arriving at the Pacific coast’s premier seaport in 1849, U.S. Navy Lieutenant Isaac Strain waxed eloquent about the multinational fleet of ships at anchor in Valparaíso: “Almost every maritime nation appeared to have their representatives, and the gaff-ends would have furnished the rough materials of a coat of many colours, not only for the patriarch son of the favoured wife, but for his less deserving brethren, and half a generation of their descendants.”14 Such awe-inspiring sights were common experiences for Yankees en route to California. Between December 7, 1848, and December 31, 1849, 762 ships from Canada and the United States rounded Cape Horn on their way California. Of this total, 430—or 56 percent—stopped in a Chilean port.15

The thousands of travelers who disembarked at Talcahuano or Valparaíso encountered a mixture of familiar and foreign elements. Chile was a constitutional democracy, which had achieved its independence through revolutionary struggles similar to those of Britain’s North American colonies. English-speaking merchants ran shops, inns, saloons, and trading houses in Chile’s bustling port cities, creating a comfortable linguistic backdrop for Yankee visitors. In addition, a host of U.S. expatriates had taken up residence in Chile’s coastal cities, swapping life in the Northern Hemisphere for the temperate climate and vibrant mestizo culture of South America’s “ocean land.” On the other hand, the public religiosity of Chilean Catholicism, the bewildering Castilian Spanish of locals and authorities, the hierarchical organization of the countryside into sprawling semifeudal estates, and the behavior of women less constricted by Protestant propriety caught many Anglo travelers off guard.

The administration of General Manuel Bulnes (1841–1851) went out of its way to accommodate North American visitors to Chilean ports during the first few years of the gold rush. “The Americans are treated with great respect by the government,” wrote Dr. James Morison upon arriving at Valparaíso port in 1850. The New Hampshire native recorded in his journal, “A law prevails that no boat shall leave the shore for any ship after nine o’clock at night. By order of the commander of the port Americans are exempted from this regulation and the boatmen are required to convey them at all hours of the night on board of their vessels for the usual fare two reales [25 cents.]. This distinction is made between Americans and others on account of the great number of vessels now going to California, most of which call at this port.”16 Some Yankees acknowledged their appreciation of this preferential treatment, while others abused the privileges and courtesies extended to them by their Latin American hosts. Not all Chileans found these unruly foreigners to their liking. Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna, a prominent Chilean diplomat and historian, referred to such interlopers as “those gangs that in 1849 and 1850 flooded Valparaíso during their journeys to San Francisco, who were not even Americans, but the garbage of the world, which our dockworkers did well in sweeping away with the magic of their oars.”17

Two hundred miles to the south of Valparaíso, the Bay of Talcahuano offered another popular source of respite for ships rounding Cape Horn. The Royal Governor of the Reino de Chile (Kingdom of Chile), Antonio de Guill y Gonzaga, declared Talcahuano an official port on November 5, 1764. Since then, Talcahuano Bay had served as the commercial harbor for the inland city of Concepción, a frontier settlement that delineated the informal boundary between Spanish Chile and the territory under the control of Mapuche Indians.

Upon arrival at the harbor, North American forty-niners—as California-bound prospectors called themselves—found their compatriots everywhere. George D. Dornin reached the Chilean port onboard the steamship Panama in May of 1849 and discovered that six hundred other Yankees were also ashore at Talcahuano.18 A Massachusetts forty-niner remarked, “The Port of Talcahuano is well known and visited every year by many vessels (principally whalers) from the U.S.” He predicted, “By the time this California excitement has raged a year or two, it, and the character of its people, will be as familiar as household words to American ears.”19 To some, Talcahuano seemed like a well-established North American rendezvous spot. When Ephraim W. Morse’s ship the Lenore dropped anchor in Talcahuano Bay on Saturday, May 12, 1849, the Bostonian “went on board the Charlotte one eve, and found quite a number of old friends.”20 Likewise, Dr. R. J. Whitely, the attending physician aboard the brig Cameo out of New York, was pleasantly surprised when “a small boat came alongside from the ‘Rising Sun’ and much to my astonishment I shortly afterwards had the pleasure of shaking hands with an old friend and townsman, W. John R. Van Houten. He had left home since ourselves, having made the passage in the Rising Sun from New York to Talcahuana [sic] direct in 95 days.”21

Once ashore, these travelers discovered that their surroundings displayed both recognizable and peculiar elements. To outsiders, Talcahuano presented itself as an odd amalgam of backwater colonial outpost and cosmopolitan seaport. New arrivals to the city could hardly overlook the striking disparity between the Chilean villagers’ rudimentary mud huts, clustered along the shore, and the row of comfortable, at times extravagant, hillside homes of North American traders who managed the port’s lucrative shipping businesses. Although New England’s whaling and sealing ships had called at Talcahuano in the years preceding the gold rush, the exponential growth in California-bound sea traffic from 1849 onward left an indelible mark on waterfront real estate. The California Hotel, American Hotel, American House, New Bedford House, Tremont House, New York Restaurant, and Eagle Hotel were just a few of the establishments run by entrepreneurial American expatriates.22

Talcahuano was not only an important maritime stopover for Yankee migrants, it was the source of a lucrative export trade during California’s mining bonanza and subsequent gold rushes in other parts of the Pacific. Throughout the 19th century, Talcahuano sent its wheat to the world. An observer from Maryland remarked in 1849, “A vast quantity of wheat is raised in Chili [sic], and its flour, usually packed in bags of about 100 lbs., has a high reputation.”23 During the mid-1800s, 72,575 metric tons of Chilean wheat flour fed San Francisco’s burgeoning population. Chile also supplied trigo (wheat) and harina (flour) to Australia during its gold rushes of the 1850s; these commodity exports to Chile’s South Pacific neighbor peaked in 1855 at 32,361 metric tons, worth 2.7 million pesos/dollars. In the 1870s an ephemeral, but large-scale agricultural export trade to Britain continued the expansion of markets for Chilean wheat farmers.24

These new export demands produced dramatic land-use changes in Chile. Hacendados—a cluster of elite landlords who owned the vast majority of Chile’s cultivated land—cleared hundreds of thousands of acres of native southern beech (Nothofagus glauca) forests in Central Chile to cultivate wheat.25 Such land-use changes consolidated the controlling share of farm production held by these landowners and made it hard for small farmers to subsist without falling into the permanent sharecropping arrangement known as inquilinaje. Hacendados expanded their acreage under cultivation without instituting major improvements in farming techniques or reforming long-standing labor regimes.26

The War of the Pacific

Wheat was not Chile’s only prominent 19th-century export. By the end of the century, the South American nation had become the world’s foremost supplier of sodium nitrate (NaNO3), a nitrogen-rich fertilizer mined from extensive deposits in the Atacama Desert. Because of its usefulness as a soil amendment and its utility as an essential ingredient in explosives manufacturing, sodium nitrate became the strategic object of conquest during the Guerra del Pacífico, or the War of the Pacific (1879–1883).

In this conflict, Chile defeated the allied forces of Peru and Bolivia, thereby achieving hegemony over a vast stretch of South America’s Pacific coast. Chile obtained the provinces of Tarapacá, Tacna, and Arica in the 1883 Treaty of Ancón. The following year, Bolivia forfeited its access to the Pacific when it ceded the seaport of Antofagasta to Chile. Chile’s victory gave it exclusive control over the valuable nitrate mines in the northern Atacama Desert, a 600-mile (1,000 km) strip of land on the Pacific coast of South America.

Naval confrontations played significant roles in the five-year conflict. The sea campaign’s decisive encounter was the Battle of Angamos in the waters near the Peninsula of Mejillones (Antofagasta Region). On October 8, 1879, the Chilean navy, under the command of Commodore Galvarino Riveros and Captain Juan José Latorre, surrounded and captured Peru’s ironclad monitor Huáscar, commanded by Rear Admiral Miguel Grau Seminario. This victory, along with the Chilean navy’s successful blockade of Callao—in which it set the Peruvian fleet on fire and devastated the defenses of the Peruvian port—marked turning points in the naval struggle among the three powers.

Two years before the formal conclusion of hostilities, Chile’s growing military prowess in the Pacific was already stirring apprehensions throughout the Americas. In 1881, Colombian writer Adriano Páez published La Guerra del Pacífico y deberes de la América (“The War of the Pacific and the Duties of America”), warning his continental neighbors, “Chile … will have a coastline more extensive than that of Brazil on the Atlantic. And since neither Ecuador nor Colombia has a fleet, Chile will dominate from the Strait [of Magellan] to the Panamanian Isthmus.” Páez continued, “[Chile] will dominate commerce in the Pacific with the largest naval fleet in the Americas, with the exception of the United States.”27

Victory in the War of the Pacific not only proclaimed Chilean naval superiority along South America’s western shores, it also gave Chile a monopoly over the world’s supply of mineral nitrogen fertilizer. Between 1875 and 1929, Chile exported nearly 80 million metric tons of sodium nitrate (known as salitre in Spanish). Prior to the era of industrial ammonia synthesis, which began during the decades following the First World War, Peruvian guano (1840s–1870s) and Chilean sodium nitrate (1870s–1930s) were Europe’s and North America’s most widely used commodity fertilizers, providing the crucial infusions of nutrients for what I have called “the First Green Revolution” in agricultural production.28

Once again, a transpacific market in California emerged to accelerate demand for a Chilean commodity. By the early 1900s, California’s dry, sun-drenched Riverside and San Bernardino Counties—also known as the state’s “Inland Empire”—had become a hotbed of citrus fruit cultivation, with Valencia oranges and Washington navel oranges leading the way. California’s orange production underwent phenomenal growth in the last three decades of the 19th century. In 1873, the state had only a few dozen orange trees. By 1900, California had 5.5 million of them. This unprecedented citriculture expansion was facilitated by sodium nitrate from the Atacama Desert. Between 1880 and 1924, the United States imported more than 4.3 million metric tons of Chilean fertilizer. Over 30 percent of this total went directly into California’s fruit farms.29

Forging a Copper Connection with China

Sodium nitrate was only one of several commodities that propelled Chile’s 20th-century economic growth. Copper was another. Its unusually high thermal and electrical conductivity, malleability, and corrosion resistance have made copper a crucial element in electrical wiring, plumbing, and industrial applications. Chilean copper deposits at Chuquicamata, Escondida, Collahuasi, and El Teniente rank among the planet’s most extensive reserves of the red metal, and Chile was the world’s leading copper exporter for most of the 20th century. Testifying to the integral place of copper in the Chilean economy, Chileans refer to it as el sueldo de Chile (“Chile’s salary”) or oro rojo (“red gold”).30

Following the Second World War, China emerged as a major destination for these copper exports. In the wake of the 1949 Chinese Revolution, the two countries established a series of transpacific treaties to facilitate commercial and cultural exchanges. In 1952, Chile became the first Latin American country to sign a trade agreement with the People’s Republic of China. That same year, the two nations opened the Chinese Cultural Institute in Chile (Instituto Chileno-Chino de Cultura). In 2006—just over half a century after these pioneering trade and cultural accords emerged—China concluded a free-trade agreement with Chile, the first such pact it forged with a Latin American nation. Six years later, 80 percent (US$14 billion) of Chile’s copper exports went to China.31

Declining ore grades at many Chilean mines, battles between extractive operations and local communities over limited water supplies, China’s own expansion of smelting and refining capacity, questions about the solvency of Chile’s state-owned National Copper Corporation of Chile (Corporación Nacional del Cobre de Chile, or CODELCO), and the relative strength of Chile’s labor movement in the 21st century will all play a role in determining the future of Chile’s copper output and its relationship to Chinese demand.32 What remains clear is that the postwar decades of the 1950s and 1960s marked a new stage of westward, transoceanic trade expansion for the Chilean economy.

A Neoliberal Menagerie: Kangaroos, Tigers, and Jaguars

A new era in Chile’s relations with the Pacific World began on September 11, 1973, when a military coup d’état overthrew the democratically elected socialist government of socialist president Salvador Allende. Allende, the winner of a three-way election in 1970, had instituted an agenda known as la vía chilena al socialismo (the Chilean path to socialism). This program of land reforms, industrial nationalizations, literacy campaigns, increases to the minimum wage, low-income housing initiatives, expansions of workers’ rights, and the establishment of a government-administered health care system had raised the ire of domestic elites and foreign opponents, including U.S. President Richard Nixon and his national security adviser Henry Kissinger. Between 1970 and 1973, the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency spent US$8 million on covert action campaigns to sabotage Allende’s social and economic agendas.33

The U.S.-backed coup of 1973—or el golpe de Estado to Chileans—ended civilian rule and swept General Augusto Pinochet to power. Pinochet’s government wasted no time enacting repressive measures against its opponents, killing thousands of dissidents and imprisoning and torturing tens of thousands of others. The Pacific served as a watery grave for the bodies of several hundred regime opponents who were “disappeared” by the dictatorship.34 Exemplifying a vision of the Pacific “from below,” the exiled Chilean folk group Inti-Illimani composed a tribute song, “Vino del mar” (“She Came from the Sea”), to Marta Ugarte Román, a leftist professor who was murdered by the dictatorship’s secret police and whose corpse they dumped into the ocean off the coast of Valparaíso.35

Meanwhile, under the tutelage of Milton Friedman and Arnold Harberger of the University of Chicago Department of Economics and Friedrich Hayek of the Mont Pelerin Society, a group of University of Chicago–trained technocrats returned to Chile in 1975 and implemented an aggressive program of neoliberal economic and social restructuring. This cohort, known as the “Chicago Boys,” replaced Allende’s social democracy with an agenda of tariff reductions, austerity measures, and the privatization of state-run industries.

The ideological justifications for such policies became known as “neoliberalism.” In the words of geographer and social theorist David Harvey, “Neoliberalism is in the first instance a theory of political economic practices that proposes that human well-being can best be advanced by liberating individual entrepreneurial freedoms and skills within an institutional framework characterized by strong private property rights, free markets, and free trade.”36 During the 1970s and 1980s, right-wing governments led by Ronald Reagan (United States), Margaret Thatcher (Great Britain), Helmut Kohl (Germany), and Brian Mulroney (Canada) pursued the privatization of public goods and services, while advocating for the management of social functions through free-market mechanisms. In its Chilean manifestation, neoliberalism proved eminently compatible with the harsh realities imposed by the military dictatorship. One of Friedman’s students who went on to serve as Pinochet’s minister of the economy remarked in 1980: “I have no doubts that as of 1973 and for many years before in Chile an authoritarian government—absolutely authoritarian—that could implement reform despite the interests of any group, no matter how important it was, was needed.”37 In a 1982 Newsweek editorial, Friedman concurred, stating that Pinochet’s junta “has supported a fully free-market economy as a matter of principle. Chile is an economic miracle.”38 The miracle was chimerical to most Chileans, who suffered through very real poverty, draconian suppression of dissent, and an ever-expanding array of murders, tortures, and disappearances.

Following decades of popular resistance from social movements within Chile and ones directed from foreign shores by the nation’s exiles, the dictatorship collapsed under the weight of its own contradictions. In February 1988, an alliance of left and center parties—the Concertación de Partidos por la Democracia (Alliance of Parties for Democracy), or simply the Concertación—defeated Pinochet in a popular referendum over whether he should extend his rule for another eight years; two years after the plebiscite, Christian Democrat Patricio Aylwin Azócar became Chile’s first post-dictatorship president, formally ending nearly seventeen years of autocratic rule. Four sequential Concertación governments—those of Aylwin, Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle, Ricardo Lagos Escobar, and Verónica Michelle Bachelet Jeria—championed a truth-and-reconciliation process and oversaw significant civil liberties reforms but posed few major challenges to the neoliberal economic policies instituted during the dictatorship.39

Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, prominent advocates of neoliberalism contended that the Pacific region would be the proving ground for their radical program of social marketization. “But you cannot help but feel that the great Pacific Basin, with all its nations and all its potential for growth and development—that is the future,” wrote Ronald Reagan on May 9, 1984.40 Just six months later, another avowed neoliberal champion, Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone, declared in a radio broadcast, “The Pacific era is a historical inevitability.”41

International consensus on Chile’s admission to this laissez-faire fantasy was not a foregone conclusion. Cultural studies theorist Rob Wilson and historian Arif Dirlik have remarked on “the glibly economistic habit by which Latin America is reified as an impoverished ‘South’ and thus excluded from contemporary Pacific Rim Discourse, even though Chile has the longest coastline of any country in the Pacific.”42 Undeterred by such exclusionary narratives, Chilean elites stubbornly asserted their place in this emerging ideological realm. During the late 1980s, the nation’s newspapers featured cameos of a popular cartoon character, a kangaroo wearing a cowboy hat with dollars and financial documents in its pouch. As a New York Times reporter noted, “The kangaroo is a sign of the times as Chile’s fast-growing, free-market economy increasingly looks across the Pacific—to Asia, Australia, and New Zealand—for trade and investments.”43

Signifying a newfangled boldness, aggressive predators soon supplanted amicable kangaroos in the neoliberal menagerie of animal metaphors. Beginning in the 1990s, political pundits in Chile and abroad began referring to the country as a “jaguar,” South America’s feline counterpart to the “Asian Tiger Economies” of South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, and Hong Kong.44 In 1995, a reporter for the Boston Globe remarked, “Stretched along the Pacific Ocean on an area roughly twice the size of California, Chile has become the Latin American jaguar, an economic powerhouse that in the past decade has recorded the world’s fourth-fastest growth rate.”45 Chile had seemingly gained admission to a select taxonomic order of Pacific “big cats.”

The inexorable Pacific Century hit an impasse in July 1997, when the world awoke to the “Asian financial crisis.” Investor panic, widespread bank insolvencies, and currency depreciations tore across Southeast Asia. Amid accusations of “crony capitalism,” sharp declines in gross domestic production ravaged the Asian economic miracle. As Robert A. Manning noted in the Los Angeles Times, the financial crisis “zapped the once buoyant confidence of Asian tigers who boasted of a coming ‘Pacific Century,’ plunging these nations into uncharted waters, with little more than the International Monetary Fund as a compass.”46 Writing in the Washington Post, diplomat and former State Department official Morton Abramowitz concurred: “Asia’s economies ran ahead of their political and institutional growth, and aspirations to regionalism ran ahead of their development as nation states.”47 Chile’s neoliberal woes were also a product of rhetoric outpacing reality. “There has been a loss of confidence in the free market because the benefits of ‘modernity’ have been concentrated in a small minority who enjoy First World standards of living while the general population remains firmly ensconced in the Third World,” remarked economist José Cademartori in 2003.48

Despite widespread obituaries of its neoliberal variant, the concept of a “Pacific Age” has been extraordinarily resilient over the past two centuries.49 The version of a Chilean Pacific espoused by national elites acquired new life with Chile’s campaign to join the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, a free-trade bloc centered on the capitalist economies of the Pacific World. When the Sixteenth APEC Economic Leader’s Meeting occurred in 2004, Chile became the first Latin American nation to host this summit of twenty-one Pacific Rim nations.50 Reflecting on such linkages, Chilean political scientist and politician Ignacio Walker wrote in 2006, “We have discovered a new neighbourhood. Our natural neighbourhood is Latin America. But, Asia, the Asia- Pacific basin, and what it represents in world economics and in politics today is a very promising region.… Chile, with 4,000 miles of coasts, looks face to face with Asia and the Asia-Pacific.”51

More recently, proponents of Chile’s Pacific destiny have asserted their nation’s hegemony in the Southern Cone, a disputed geopolitical zone and cultural area comprising Argentina, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay, and southern Brazil. Since at least 2008, the Chilean government has affirmed its regional superiority, reminding its continental neighbors that Chile is un país tricontinental (a tricontinental country), with territory in South America, Oceania, and Antarctica. The concept of Chile’s tricontinental distinctiveness originated in a 1990 article by Hernán Santis Arenas, the founder of the Institute of Geography at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, but this notion did not appear in official government publications and grade-school curricula until the first decade of the 21st century.52 Among Chile’s Pacific Island possessions is Isla de Pascua (Easter Island), also known by its Polynesian name, Rapa Nui. Located just below the Tropic of Capricorn, Isla de Pascua is some 2,237 miles (3,600 km) west of Chile’s mainland port of Caldera. Likewise, Chile maintains an Antarctic territorial claim through its Antártica Chilena Province. Chile’s claim to this zone, stretching from 53 W to 90 W, is recorded in the Main Antarctic Treaty of June 23, 1961.53


Chilean poet Gabriela Mistral (1889–1957), Latin America’s first Nobel Laureate in literature, offered a synopsis of Chile’s stunningly diverse landscapes: “It starts with the desert, which is like beginning with a sterility that loves no man. It is humanized in the valleys. It creates a home for living beings in the ample fertile agricultural zone. It takes on a grandiose sylvan beauty at the end of the continent, as if to finish with dignity, and finally crumbles, offering half life, half death, into the sea.”54 Indeed, for centuries, the sea has been a source of life and death for Chileans. As both a realm of contested aspirations and an aquatic causeway facilitating linkages to other peoples and places, the Pacific Ocean has remained among the dominant features of the nation’s geographical imagination.

Discussion of the Literature

Although historians have been studying human relations with the world’s largest ocean for decades, only since the beginning of the 21st century have they begun treating the Pacific as a coherent unit of analysis equivalent to its Atlantic, Mediterranean, and Indian Ocean counterparts. Recent books—most notably Ryan Tucker Jones’s Empire of Extinction (2014), David Igler’s The Great Ocean (2013), Gregory Cushman’s Guano and the Opening of the Pacific World (2013), Matt Matusda’s Pacific Worlds (2012), Kornel Chang’s Pacific Connections (2012), and Stuart Banner’s Possessing the Pacific (2007)—have introduced readers to the emerging field of Pacific World studies, which takes as its spatial and conceptual framework the peoples and ecosystems in and around the Pacific Ocean. My own book, Strangers on Familiar Soil: Rediscovering the Chile-California Connection (2015), consciously follows—and critiques—some of the trajectories established by these scholars.55

Chile’s connection to Pacific World history long predates the nation’s founding. Provocative new evidence suggests that many centuries before 19th-century Chilean criollos (people of Spanish ancestry born in the colonies) achieved independence from their Iberian rulers, pre-Hispanic Mapuche peoples along South America’s west coast experienced prolonged transpacific contact with Polynesian mariners. If it stands up to ongoing scientific scrutiny, chicken bone DNA from an archaeological site in southern Chile dated to the 14th century corroborates earlier “soft” evidence from linguistic cognates, similar material cultures, and analogous maritime technologies to suggest extensive pre-Columbian exchanges in the Pacific World before Captain James Cook’s arrival in the late 18th century.56

Nineteenth-century Chilean connections to the Pacific World are documented in a diverse array of sources. The observations that Vicente Pérez-Rosales made during his visit to California have become a classic of Chilean travel literature. They were republished and excerpted many times. The best-known Spanish-language edition is Vicente Pérez Rosales, Diario de un viaje a California (1971). Very little has been written about the stopovers that Yankee travelers made in Latin American while on their way to California. Several of the quotes used in this article come from previously unpublished materials housed at the Huntington Library in San Marino, California. The only prior treatments of these Yankees’ visits to South American during the gold rush are Brian Roberts, “‘The Greatest and Most Perverted Paradise,’ The Forty-Niners in Latin America,” in Riches for All: The California Gold Rush and the World, an edited volume published in 2000, and John J. Johnson’s “Talcahuano and Concepción as Seen by the Forty-Niners,” a 1946 article published in the Hispanic American Historical Review. Roberts’ chapter, while it is incomplete in many ways, provides a useful summary of the wide-ranging Yankee encounters with Latin America. In contrast, Johnson’s article relies, rather unfortunately, upon only six sources. This limits the author’s ability to extrapolate general conclusions from the anecdotal evidence of so few travelers. For British travel accounts of life in Valparaíso and Santiago at the beginning of the 19th century, see S. Samuel Trifilo’s 1969 article, “Early Nineteenth-Century British Travelers in Chile: Impressions of Santiago and Valparaiso.”57

A general account of the War of the Pacific can be found in William F. Sater’s 2007 book, Andean Tragedy: Fighting the War of the Pacific, 1879–1884. Bolivia still disputes the territorial divisions that followed the war, which eliminated its access to the Pacific Ocean. For a Bolivian interpretation of events, see Roberto Querejazu Calvo, Guano, salitre, sangre (1979). For a Peruvian perspective, see Heraclio Bonilla, Un siglo a la deriva (1980).58

Diego Lin Chou’s Chile y China: Inmigración y relaciones bilaterales, 1845–1970 (2004) is the most comprehensive study of Chinese immigration to Chile and the long-term relations that developed between the two nations prior to Allende’s election in 1970. The first pulse of Chinese migration to Chile came via Peru. Between 1847 and 1874, at least one hundred thousand “coolies” from China came to Peru to work on coastal sugar and cotton plantations and to mine guano on the Chincha Islands. As the occupying Chilean army marched through Peru during the War of the Pacific, many of these Chinese debt peons revolted against their masters, sacking plantations and destroying estates. In the process, several thousand of them joined the invading Chilean army and helped ensure its victory over Peruvian and Bolivian forces. In the 1880s, these Chinese immigrants founded the Chinatowns that continue to exist in many Chilean cities. For more on this wartime diaspora, see Humberto Rodríguez Pastor, Hijos del Celeste Imperio en el Perú (1850–1900): Migración, agricultura, mentalidad y explotación.

Comprehensive critiques of the “Chilean miracle” can be found in Peter Winn’s edited volume Victims of the Chilean Miracle (2004). For a detailed exploration of struggles over the legacies of Pinochet’s rule during the post-dictatorship period, see Steve Stern’s Reckoning with Pinochet (2010).59

Primary Sources

Chile’s Biblioteca Nacional (National Library) and Archivo Nacional (National Archives) are located in Santiago. These institutions contain the vast majority of primary source materials on the nation’s history. In addition, each of Chile’s provinces has its own separate archive. Hundreds of accounts written by travelers to California during the gold rush are housed at the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley, and the Huntington Library in San Marino, California.

Links to Digital Materials

Many online resources provide extensive supplementary material the offerings of Chile’s archives.

Further Reading

Benavides, Juan, Marcela Pizzi, and María Paz. Valenzuela, ciudades y arquitectura portuaria: Los mayores del litoral chileno. 2nd ed. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1994.Find this resource:

    Bruey, Alison J. “Limitless Land and the Redefinition of Rights: Popular Mobilisation and the Limits of Neoliberalism in Chile, 1973–1985.” Journal of Latin American Studies 44.3 (2012): 525–552.Find this resource:

      Chou, Diego Lin. Chile y China: Inmigración y relaciones bilaterales, 1845–1970. Santiago, Chile: Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Instituto de Historia: Centro de Investigaciones Diego Barrios Arana, 2004.Find this resource:

        Fernández Jilberto, Alex E., and Barbara Hogenboom, eds. Latin America Facing China: South-South Relations beyond the Washington Consensus. Oxford: Berghan Books, 2012.Find this resource:

          Finn, Janet L. Tracing the Veins: Of Copper, Culture, and Community from Butte to Chuquicamata. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998.Find this resource:

            Garretón, Manuel Antonio. Neoliberalismo corregido y progresismo limitado: Los gobiernos de la Concertación en Chile, 1990–2010. Santiago, Chile: ARCIS-CLACSO, 2012.Find this resource:

              Klubock, Thomas Miller. Contested Communities: Class, Gender and Politics in Chile’s El Teniente Copper Mine, 1904–1951. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1998.Find this resource:

                Korhonen, Pekka. “The Pacific Age in World History.” Journal of World History 7.1 (Spring 1996): 41–70.Find this resource:

                  Kornbluh, Peter. The Pinochet File: A Declassified Dossier on Atrocity and Accountability. New York: New Press, 2003.Find this resource:

                    Lorenzo Sch., Santiago, Gilberto Harris Bucher, and Nelson Vásquez Lara. Vida, costumbres y espíritu empresarial de los porteños: Valparaíso en el siglo XIX. Viña del Mar, Chile: Instituto de Historia, Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, 2000.Find this resource:

                      Melillo, Edward D. Strangers on Familiar Soil: Rediscovering the Chile-California Connection. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2015.Find this resource:

                        Roberts, Brian. “‘The Greatest and Most Perverted Paradise’: The Forty-Niners in Latin America.” In Riches for All: The California Gold Rush and the World. Edited by Kenneth N. Owens, 71–89. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2000.Find this resource:

                          Salazar Sparks, Juan. Chile y la comunidad del Pacífico. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitario, 1999.Find this resource:

                            Trifilo, S. Samuel. “Early Nineteenth-Century British Travelers in Chile: Impressions of Santiago and Valparaiso.” Journal of Inter-American Studies 11.3 (July 1969): 391–424.Find this resource:

                              Winn, Peter, ed., Victims of the Chilean Miracle: Workers and Neoliberalism in the Pinochet Era, 1973–2002. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2004.Find this resource:


                                (1.) Benjamín Subercaseaux Zañartu, Tierra de océano: La epopeya marítima de un pueblo terrestre, 4th ed. (Santiago: Empresa Ercilla, 1961), 12.

                                (2.) Juan Garcia del Río, as quoted in Henry Varonius, F.S.C., “Chilean Forty-niners,” in Academy Scrapbook, vol. 5 (Fresno, CA: Academy Guild Press, 1959), 115.

                                (3.) Brian Loveman, Chile: The Legacy of Hispanic Capitalism, 3rd ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2001), 84.

                                (4.) Simon Collier and William F. Sater, A History of Chile, 1808–1994, 1st ed. (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 20.

                                (5.) Vicente Pérez-Rosales, Times Gone By: Memoirs of a Man of Action, trans. John H. R. Polt (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003), 24.

                                (6.) Maria Dundas Graham Callcott, Journal of a Residence in Chile during the Year 1822, and a Voyage from Chile to Brazil in 1823 (London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, Brown, and Green, and John Murray, 1824), 131.

                                (7.) Michael Monteón, “The British in the Atacama Desert: The Cultural Bases of Economic Imperialism,” Journal of Economic History 35.1 (March 1975): 117.

                                (8.) Captain Joubert, as quoted in Jean Randier, Men and Ships around Cape Horn, 1616–1939, trans. M. W. B. Sanderson (New York: D. McKay, 1969), 131.

                                (9.) Steven S. Volk, “Mine Owners, Moneylenders, and the State in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Chile: Transitions and Conflicts,” Hispanic American Historical Review 73.1 (February 1993): 68–69, and Loveman, Chile, 108–109.

                                (10.) Daniel Martner, Estudio de política comercial Chilena e historia económica nacional (Santiago, Chile: Imprenta Universitaria, 1923), 164–165, and Arnold Bauer, “Expansión económica en una sociedad tradicional: Chile central en el siglo XIX,” Historia (Universidad Católica de Chile), 9 (1970): 137–141.

                                (11.) Statistics are from Eduardo Cavieres, Comercio chileno y comerciantes ingleses, 1820–1880, 2nd ed. (Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1999), 89; and Michael L. Conniff, “Chile,” in Las ciudades latinoamericanas, ed. Richard M. Morse, vol. 2 (Mexico City: Secretaría de Educación Pública, 1973), 164.

                                (12.) Frank Lecouvreur, From East Prussia to the Golden Gate, ed. Josephine Rosana Lecouvreur (New York: Angelina Book Concern, 1906), 145.

                                (13.) Edward D. Melillo, Strangers on Familiar Soil: Rediscovering the Chile-California Connection (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2015), 31, 37. On the often violent social encounters that characterized the Chilean presence in 19th-century California, also see Fernando Purcell, “Hanging Bodies, Slashed Ears and Bottled Heads: Lynching, Punishment and Race in the California Gold Rush, 1848–1853,” HAGAR: Studies in Culture, Polity and Identities 6.2 (2006): 85–97.

                                (14.) Isaac G. Strain, Cordillera and Pampa: Sketches of a Journey in Chili and the Argentine Provinces, in 1849 (New York: Horace H. Moore, 1853), 14.

                                (15.) These figures are based on my own calculations using the extensive data from John Bartlett Goodman III, The Key to the Goodman Encyclopedia of the California Gold Rush Fleet, ed. Daniel Woodward (Los Angeles: Zamorano Club, 1992).

                                (16.) James Morison, By Sea to San Francisco, 1849–50: The Journal of Dr. James Morison, ed. Lonnie J. White and William R. Gillaspie (Memphis, TN: Memphis State University Press, 1977), 20. President Manuel Bulnes served his second term from 1846 to 1851. Chile used Spanish currency until 1835. Under that system, eight reales were equal to one peso, and two pesos were equivalent to one escudo. From 1835 until 1960, Chile used the decimal system, in which 100 centavos were worth ten décimos, or one peso.

                                (17.) Benjamín Vicuña Mackenna, “Páginas de mi diario durante tres años de viaje, 1853–1854–1855,” in Obras completas de Vicuña Mackenna, vol. 1 (Santiago, Chile: Universidad de Chile, 1936), 254.

                                (18.) George D. Dornin, 1849–1879, Thirty Years Ago (Berkeley, CA: G. D. Dornin, 1879), 16.

                                (19.) George F. Kent, “Journal of a Gold-hunting Expedition to Upper California,” Monday, May 28, 1849, Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

                                (20.) Ephriam W. Morse, “Diary of a Voyage from Boston to California, by Way of the Horn, on the Ship Lenore and Mining Experiences on the Yuba River,” February 3–July 5, 1849, 89, Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

                                (21.) R. J. Whitely, “Log of Dr. R. J. Whitely,” 1849, 76, Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

                                (22.) Oscar Lewis, Sea Routes to the Gold Fields: The Migration by Water to California in 1849–1852 (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1949), 145.

                                (23.) S. M. Schaeffer, Sketches of Travels in South America, Mexico and California (New York: J. Egbert, 1860), 24.

                                (24.) On Chilean wheat exports, see Mario Barros, Historia diplomática de Chile (Barcelona, Spain: Ediciones Ariel, 1971), 191–193; Sergio Sepúlveda G., El trigo chileno en el mercado mundial: Ensayo de geografía histórica (Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1959), 48; and Francisco Antonio Encina and Leopoldo Castedo, Resumen de la historia de Chile, 3rd ed., vol. 2 (Santiago, Chile: Zig-Zag, 1959), 1176.

                                (25.) Melillo, Strangers on Familiar Soil, 143.

                                (26.) Arnold J. Bauer, “Chilean Rural Labor in the Nineteenth Century,” American Historical Review 76.4 (October 1971): 1059–1083.

                                (27.) Adriano Páez, La Guerra del Pacífico y deberes de la América (Colón, Panama: Oficina del Canal, 1881), 9–10.

                                (28.) Edward D. Melillo, “The First Green Revolution: Debt Peonage and the Making of the Nitrogen Fertilizer Trade, 1840–1930,” American Historical Review 117.4 (October 2012): 1028–1060 (export statistic on 1053).

                                (29.) For details on the fundamental role of Chilean sodium nitrate in California’s orange boom, see Melillo, “The First Green Revolution,” 1051–1052; and Melillo, Strangers on Familiar Soil, 102–106.

                                (30.) Marian Radetzki, “Seven Thousand Years in the Service of Humanity: The History of Copper, the Red Metal.” Resources Policy 34.4 (December 2009): 176–184; and Nicholas Arndt and Clément Ganino, Metals and Society: An Introduction to Economic Geology (New York: Springer, 2012), 92–93.

                                (31.) Claudia Labarca, “Identidad e institucionalización como estrategias de construcción de confianza: El caso sino-chileno,” Revista de ciencia política 33.2 (2013): 489–511; Alex E. Fernández Jilberto, “Neoliberalised South-South Relations: Free Trade between Chile and China,” in Latin America Facing China: South-South Relations beyond the Washington Consensus, ed. Alex E. Fernández Jilberto and Barbara Hogenboom (Oxford: Berghan Books, 2012), 77–98; and Diego Lin Chou, Chile y China: Inmigración y relaciones bilaterales, 1845–1970 (Santiago, Chile: Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Instituto de Historia: Centro de Investigaciones Diego Barrios Arana, 2004), 332. The 2012 statistic is from Patricia Rey Mallén, “Trade between Chile and China Grew 22 Percent in 7 Years as China Became Chile’s Biggest Trading Partner,” International Business Times, September 6, 2013.

                                (32.) Laura Ebert and Tania La Menza, “Chile, Copper and Resource Revenue: A Holistic Approach to Assessing Commodity Dependence,” Resources Policy 43 (March 2015): 101–111. On the lives of workers in the Chilean copper mining sector, see Janet L. Finn, Tracing the Veins: Of Copper, Culture, and Community from Butte to Chuquicamata (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998); and Thomas Miller Klubock, Contested Communities: Class, Gender and Politics in Chile’s El Teniente Copper Mine, 1904–1951 (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1998).

                                (33.) United States Congress, Covert Action in Chile, 1963–1973: Staff Report of the Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities, United States Senate (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1975), 148.

                                (34.) Mary Helen Spooner, The General’s Slow Retreat: Chile after Pinochet (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2011), 189–190. The Rettig Report (published in 1991) and the Valech Report (originally published in 2004 and revised in 2005) established the bases for these numbers.

                                (35.) A performance of the song by Inti-Illimani.

                                (36.) David Harvey, A Brief History of Neoliberalism (New York: Oxford University Press, 2005), 2.

                                (37.) Pablo Barahona, quoted by Genaro Arriagada Herrera and Carol Graham, “Chile: Sustaining Adjustment during Democratic Transition,” in Voting for Reform: Democracy, Political Liberalization, and Economic Adjustment, eds. Stephen Haggard and Steven B. Webb (New York: Oxford University Press for the World Bank, 1994), 245.

                                (38.) Milton Friedman, “Free Markets and the Generals,” Newsweek, January 25, 1982, 59.

                                (39.) On the continuation of neoliberal policies under the Concertación governments, see Andrés Solimano, Chile and the Neoliberal Trap: The Post-Pinochet Era (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012); and Manuel Antonio Garretón, Neoliberalismo corregido y progresismo limitado: Los gobiernos de la Concertación en Chile, 1990–2010 (Santiago: ARCIS-CLACSO, 2012).

                                (40.) Ronald Reagan, “Written Responses to Questions Submitted by the Far Eastern Economic Review, May 9, 1984, Ronald Reagan Presidential Library Archives.

                                (41.) Yasuhiro Nakasone, as quoted in Li Xing, Jacques Hersh, and Johannes Dragsbœk Schmidt, “The New ‘Asian Drama’: Catching-up at the Crossroads of Neoliberalism,” in Rethinking Development in East Asia: From Illusory Miracle to Economic Crisis, ed. Pietro P. Masina (New York: Routledge, 2001), 29.

                                (42.) Rob Wilson and Arif Dirlik, “Introduction: Asia/Pacific as Space of Cultural Production,” Boundary 2 21.1 (Spring 1994): 14–16.

                                (43.) Shirley Christian, “Chile’s Growing Trans-Pacific Ties,” New York Times, March 28, 1988, D10.

                                (44.) Mario Sznajder, “The Chilean Jaguar as a Symbol of a New Identity,” in The Collective and the Public in Latin America, eds. Luis Roniger and Tamar Herzog (Portland, OR: Sussex Academic Press, 2000), 285–298; Carlo Pietrobelli, Industry, Competitiveness and Technological Capabilities in Chile: A New Tiger from Latin America? (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1998); Mario Sznajder, “Dilemmas of Economic and Political Modernization in Chile: A Jaguar That Wants to Be a Puma,” Third World Quarterly 17.4 (1996): 725–736; Raymundo Riva Palacio, “Chile: La otra cara del jaguar: La ilusion neoliberal,” El Norte (Monterrey, Mexico), October 13, 1996, 14; and Ricardo A. Baeza-Yates et al., “Computing in Chile: The Jaguar of the Pacific Rim?” Communications of the ACM 38.9 (1995): 23–28.

                                (45.) Diego Ribadeneira, “A Jewel in an Economic Rough: Revitalized Chile Looks to Join NAFTA,” Boston Globe, January 18, 1995, 39.

                                (46.) Robert A. Manning, “Asia Crisis: Now for the Hard Part,” Los Angeles Times, January 4, 1998, 2.

                                (47.) Morton I. Abramowitz, “Asia: Look Out for More Surprises,” Washington Post, January 4, 1998, C7.

                                (48.) José Cadematori, “The Chilean Neoliberal Model Enters into Crisis,” Latin American Perspectives 30.5 (September 2003): 79.

                                (49.) Pekka Korhonen, “The Pacific Age in World History,” Journal of World History 7.1 (Spring 1996): 41–70.

                                (50.) Founded in 1989, the Asian Pacific Economic Community (APEC) initially brought together member nations, including Australia, Brunei, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and the United States.

                                (51.) Ignacio Walker, Chile and Latin America in a Globalized World (Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2006), 25.

                                (52.) Hernán Santis Arenas, “Significado y contenido de Chile: País marítimo y tricontinental,” Revista chilena de geopolítica (Santiago, Chile) 6.3 (August 1990), 81–92. Chile’s Ministry of Education has published an online curricular guide for teaching about the nation’s tricontinental territorial claims.

                                (53.) Óscar Pinochet de la Barra, La Antártica chilena (Santiago, Chile: Editorial Andrés Bello, 1976).

                                (54.) Gabriela Mistral, quoted in Peter Winn, ed. Americas: The Changing Face of Latin America and the Caribbean, 2nd ed. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999), 317.

                                (55.) Ryan Tucker Jones, Empire of Extinction: Russians and the North Pacific’s Strange Beasts of the Sea, 1741–1867 (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014); David Igler, The Great Ocean: Pacific Worlds from Captain Cook to the Gold Rush (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013); Gregory T. Cushman, Guano and the Opening of the Pacific World: A Global Ecological History (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2013); Matt Matsuda, Pacific Worlds: A History of Seas, Peoples, and Cultures (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012); Kornel Chang, Pacific Connections: The Making of the US-Canadian Borderlands (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2012); and Stuart Banner, Possessing the Pacific: Land, Settlers, and Indigenous People from Australia to Alaska (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2007). See also Melillo, Strangers on Familiar Soil and the chapters in Pacific Histories: Ocean, Land, People, eds. David Armitage and Alison Bashford (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014).

                                (56.) Evidence for such contacts has been summarized in José Miguel Ramírez-Aliaga, “The Mapuche Connection,” in Polynesians in America: Pre-Columbian Contacts with the New World, eds. Terry L. Jones, Alice A. Storey, Elizabeth A. Matisoo-Smith, and José Miguel Ramírez-Aliaga (Lanham, MD: AltaMira Press, 2011), 95–109. For a contrarian view, see Vicki A. Thomson et al., “Using Ancient DNA to Study the Origins and Dispersal of Ancestral Polynesian Chickens across the Pacific,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 111.13 (April 1, 2014): 4826–4831.

                                (57.) Brian Roberts, “‘The Greatest and Most Perverted Paradise,’ The Forty-Niners in Latin America,” in Riches for All:The California Gold Rush and the World, ed. Kenneth N. Owens (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2000), 71–89; John J. Johnson, “Talcahuano and Concepción as Seen by the Forty-Niners,” Hispanic American Historical Review 26.2 (May 1946): 251–262; and S. Samuel Trifilo, “Early Nineteenth-Century British Travelers in Chile: Impressions of Santiago and Valparaiso,” Journal of Inter-American Studies 11.3 (July 1969): 391–424.

                                (58.) William F. Sater, Andean Tragedy: Fighting the War of the Pacific, 1879–1884 (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2007); Roberto Querejazu Calvo, Guano, salitre, sangre: Historia de la Guerra del Pacífico (La Paz, Bolivia: Editorial Los Amigos del Libro, 1979); and Heraclio Bonilla, Un siglo a la deriva: Ensayos sobre el Perú, Bolivia y la guerra (Lima, Peru: Instituto de Estudios Peruanos, 1980).

                                (59.) Peter Winn, ed., Victims of the Chilean Miracle: Workers and Neoliberalism in the Pinochet Era, 1973–2002 (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2004); and Steve J. Stern, Reckoning with Pinochet: The Memory Question in Democratic Chile, 1989–2006 (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010).