The following text is the introduction to Eduardo Galeano's Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent, published by MR Press in August. In announcing publication we stated that "the author's magnificent achievement in this brilliant text is to have written a history of Latin America since Columbus—but a history which is at the same time a political economy, a social and cultural narrative of the highest quality, and perhaps the finest description of the primary accumulation of capital since Marx." Galeano is the author of Guatemala: Occupied Country and a frequent contributor to MR. The translation is by Cedric Belfrage. - The Editors
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