In the mid-2000s, Latin America could be seen as the laboratory of a left who — from Ecuador to Brazil and Bolivia — embarked on an original process of exercising power, claiming both the fight against poverty, the mobilisation of the state for new forms of economic growth and even the empowerment of indigenous peoples. This was echoed by movements. Ten years later, the scene changed dramatically. All left-wing governments are failing. Pierre Salama, who specialises in development issues and the finder of knowledge of Latin American economies, focuses here on the choices which — from priority to exploitation of raw materials to accommodating the rise in inequality, not to mention the instrumentalisation of corruption — are, beyond the effects of the financial crisis arising in 2008, to the background of this reversal.