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Alianza Popular Revolucionaria Americana

Peruvian reformist political party. While in exile in Mexico, Peruvian politician Victor Raúl Haya de la Torre founded the Peruvian reformist party Alianza Popular Revolucionaria Americana (APRA), also known as the Partido Aprista, in May 1924. The revolutionary platform of the APRA called for major social reform, political unification of Latin America, and the establishment of worldwide solidarity of the oppressed. Despite the lower-class, populist overtones of his impassioned oratory, Haya de la Torre maintained that it was the oppressed middle class who would lead the movement.

After his return to Peru in 1931, Haya de la Torre ran unsuccessfully for the presidency. When a radical APRA member assassinated Sánchez Cerro, the newly elected president, in April 1933, the government retaliated with military force to subdue the APRA. Because the APRA was at times guilty of violent radicalism, the authorities outlawed it from 1941 through 1945 and from 1948 through 1956. Nonetheless, the APRA continued to influence politics in Peru. After decades of struggle, the APRA finally succeeded in electing Alan García president in 1985; he went on to lose a subsequent election to Alberto Fujimori in 1990.

Although APRA leaders never controlled the country for any significant period of time, their early activities created consensus within the Peruvian reform movement. Unfortunately, they were not able to foster the continuation of that consensus, and the APRA ultimately failed to achieve its goals.

Lisa Miles Bunkowski


Further Reading
Graham, Carol. "Peru's APRA Party in Power: Impossible Revolution, Relinquished Reform." Journal of InterAmerican Studies & World Affairs 32(3) (1990): 75–115.; Graham, Carol. Peru's APRA: Parties, Politics, and the Elusive Quest for Democracy. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner, 1992.
 

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