Synopses & Reviews
A Path of Our Own tells the story of Pomatambo, a village in one of the poorest parts of Peru’s highlands. Adam Webb brings to life the experiences of three generations of these humble peasants as they have been confronted by the modern world and tried to find a place in it. Through a land reform, a bloody Maoist insurgency, and the economic turbulence of more recent years, Pomatambo has looked for a way to break out of dire poverty while staying true to its own values and identity.
But this is much more than the story of one village. Pomatambo’s tale of hard times mirrors how traditional communities all over the world have been ill served by the dominant ideologies of the twentieth century. Webb’s poignant and insightful narrative demonstrates that the governments and movements of both right and left have not only failed to deliver for the rural poor, but also have assaulted much that they hold dear. He maps out a vision of how traditional communities like Pomatambo can reclaim the future rather than surrender to others’ plans for them. And he imagines an economy of values that at last could bring a just and decent prosperity to the countryside of the global South—and elsewhere.
About the Author
Adam K. Webb grew up in England, Spain, and the United States. After attending Harvard as an undergraduate, he received a Ph.D. in politics from Princeton in 2002. He has taught at Princeton, Harvard, and the Johns Hopkins–Nanjing Centre and has been a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The author of Beyond the Global Culture War, Webb’s interests span the impact of globalization, social and political thought, and critiques of the modern world.