Social Progress and Sustainability: Central America and the Caribbean
by Judy Boyd
Central America and the Caribbean may be best known as world-class tourist destinations, but in spite of being top vacation spots, the countries of these tropical regions still suffer the lingering effects of Europe's plantation-style colonization including income inequality, corrupt leadership, and discrimination against native peoples and the descendants of slaves.
The regions are home to the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and one of the richest. Rich or poor, most countries have high rates of poverty and many areas are controlled by organized criminals and violent street gangs. Only two of the twelve most populated countries have poverty rates below 25 percent and only one scored a high level of social progress in the Social Progress Index.
Challenges ahead include addressing extreme poverty, eliminating government corruption, stopping the spread of increasingly violent criminal organizations, and working toward ecosystem sustainability in the face of population growth and climate change. Each title in this series contains a forward from the Executive Director of the Social Progress Imperative, color photos throughout, maps, charts, and back matter including: a special "Countries at a Glance" statistical section, an index, and further reading lists for books and internet resources. Key Icons appear throughout the books in this series in an effort to encourage library readers to build knowledge, gain awareness, explore possibilities and expand their viewpoints through our content rich non-fiction books. Key Icons in this series are as follows: Words to Understand are shown at the front of each chapter with definitions. These words are set in boldfaced type in that chapter, so that readers are able to reference back to the definitions--building their vocabulary and enhancing their reading comprehension. Sidebars are highlighted graphics with content rich material within that allows readers to build knowledge and broaden their perspectives by weaving together additional information to provide realistic and holistic perspectives. Text-Dependent Questions are placed at the end of each chapter. They challenge the reader's comprehension of the chapter they have just read, while sending the reader back to the text for more careful attention to the evidence presented there. Research Projects are provided at the end of each chapter as well and provide readers with suggestions for projects that encourage deeper research and analysis. And a Series Glossary of Key Terms is included in the back matter containing terminology used throughout the series. Words found here broaden the reader's knowledge and understanding of terms used in this field."
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