Another Rebellion? The Participation of the popular sectors
to the Spanish-American Wars of Independence
The participation of the subaltern groups to the Spanish-American independent movements is at the centre of this article. Though historiography has always underestimated their contribution to the wars that liberated Spanish American territories from Spain, subaltern sectors (indigenous, free coloured people and slaves) played indeed a very important and active role during this period. Not only they participated to the armies that defeated the Spanish, but they also had significant political objectives to be attained. Like the elites, they understood that the collapse of the Spanish monarchy opened some possibilities of action that were unimaginable before 1808. Wars led de facto to an improvement of the social and political conditions of popular groups: for the free coloured meant the access of citizenship; for slaves, the acquisition of freedom; for the indigenous people, the defence of their lands.
Keywords: Subaltern groups, Latin America, insurrection, monarchy collapse