Maggie Reuter



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In today’s world, free trade is seen as a forgone conclusion in the march towards economic development. The origin of free trade agreements rests in the neoliberalist surge of the twentieth century based upon finding a middle ground between central planning and laissez-faire capitalism. As the twentieth century progressed, neoliberalism and the ideas associated with it fell more to the side of laissez-faire capitalism. Free trade agreements between developed and developing countries demonstrate a play of power on behalf of the developed countries that seems unfair. There are stories that are not told about free trade agreements. Economic data analysis in the years since the implementation of the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) demonstrates the inequality that exists in the creation of free trade agreements between developed countries—in this case the United States—and developing countries like Guatemala.

Publication Date


Project Designation

Honors Thesis

Primary Advisor

Simanti Dasgupta

Primary Advisor's Department

Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work


Stander Symposium poster


Arts and Humanities | Business | Education | Engineering | Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences | Physical Sciences and Mathematics | Social and Behavioral Sciences

Free Trade as Neocolonialism: CAFTA, the United States and Guatemala