The market imperative—that is, the need to institute market mechanisms as solutions for a variety of social problems—seems to dominate current political debate in Latin America. Administrations as diverse as those of Collor de Mello, Fujimori, Menen, and Salinas de Gortari have been implementing economic reforms based on neoconservative principles. Privatization of public enterprises, national economies opened to foreign competition, the freeing of financial markets, and the compliance with International Monetary Fund (IMF) guidelines are now accepted goals among parties and leaders that, just a decade ago, contributed to building interventionist, redistributionist, and developmentalist coalitions. Broad segments of the political class now believe that only the wholesome implementation of free-market principles can lift Latin America from its decade-old crisis. Among the left, this apparent hegemony of market ideology has engendered confusion and pessimism. The heritage of authoritarian regimes, the protracted regional economic crisis, and, more recently, the revolutions of Eastern and Central Europe seem to have defeated the viability of alternative discourses about the crisis and its solutions.