American Ethnological Society
Oral Presentation Session
Bolivia has lived important political changes during the last 10 years as a result of a decade of indigenous social movements. One of these changes is a new Constitution that recognizes the State not as a National but as a Plurinational one. That means that the new constitution is giving equal recognition to all nations within the State. It improves democracy in a sense that allows Indigenous participation in the State by recognizing their political forms. This paper is aimed to understand what happens when Indigenous people, with no modern and collective forms of doing politics, enter and participate in a still modem State. What changes? Which contradictions and tensions appear? Which one Indigenous people get? Indigenous people participate in a broader or narrow manner? This paper looks at Bourdieu's study of the State as the basis for understanding indigenous participation within the Plurinational Legislative Assembly in Bolivia.