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Democracy in Latin America Political Change in Comparative Perspective



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Oxford University Press
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  • Democracy in Latin America Political Change in Comparative Perspective
    Democracy in Latin America Political Change in Comparative Perspective
  • Democracy in Latin America Political Change in Comparative Perspective
    Democracy in Latin America Political Change in Comparative Perspective


Democracy in Latin America, 2e examines processes of democratization in Latin America from 1900 to the present. Thoroughly revised and expanded, this new edition provides a widespread view of political transformation throughout the entire region. In clear and jargon-free prose, the book: Traces the origins and evolution of democracy in Latin America Examines the adoption and reform of electoral institutions Assesses the policy performance of contemporary democracies Explores the political representation of women, workers, and indigenous peoples Evaluates trends in public opinion Reveals the prevalence of "illiberal democracy" Adroitly blending qualitative and quantitative approaches, Democracy in Latin America 2e offers an innovative view of the "dialectic" of democratic change in Latin America. This interpretation draws upon new material concerning the rise of the "new Left," the relationship between social status and satisfaction with democracy, the effectiveness of antipoverty policies, changing roles of the judiciary, and the impact of the international environment. Readability is enhanced by the inclusion of numerous photographic illustrations and brief "boxes" with portraits of personalities, explanations about methodology, and comments on conceptual approaches.

Author Biography

Peter H. Smith is Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Simn Bolvar Professor of Latin American Studies at the University of California, San Diego. A former president of the Latin American Studies Association, he is the author of more than twenty books, including Talons of the Eagle: Latin America, the United States, and the world, Third Edition (OUP, 2007) and coauthor of Modern Latin America, Seventh Edition (OUP, 2009).

Table of Contents

Tables, Figures, and Mapsp. xiii
Prefacep. xvii
Introduction: Dimensions of Democracyp. 1
A Tale of Two Presidentsp. 1
Definitions of Democracyp. 6
Electionsp. 8
Rightsp. 10
Overview: Focus and Themesp. 12
Interpretive Argumentsp. 13
Analytical Perspectivesp. 14
Historical Perspectives, 1900-2000
Cycles of Electoral Democracyp. 19
Legacies of Independencep. 20
Cycles and Trendsp. 23
Global and Comparative Perspectivesp. 31
Democratic Dominoes?p. 34
Subregional Variations and the Colossus of the Northp. 35
Lessons over Time: Prior Experiencep. 38
Democracy and Instabilityp. 40
Transitions and Continuitiesp. 43
Starting Pointsp. 44
Economic Requisites?p. 47
Social Forcesp. 52
Cycle 1:1900-1939p. 54
Cycle 2:1940-1977p. 57
Cycle 3:1978-2000p. 59
End Games and Elite Bargainsp. 63
The Bargaining Processp. 63
Getting to Casesp. 66
Patterns of Change in Perspectivep. 69
The Military: Heading for the Exits?p. 72
Forging Fatherlandsp. 73
Patterns of Participationp. 76
Missions and Regimesp. 79
Wars Against Subversionp. 83
Democrats' Dilemma: To Amnesty or Not?p. 89
Precedents from Argentinap. 91
Chilean Twistsp. 95
Modes of Interaction: The Armed Forces and Democracyp. 100
Has the Military Left?p. 104
Global Contexts, International Forcesp. 106
Imperialism and Democracyp. 107
The Anticommunist Crusadesp. 110
Stemming the Tides of Revolutionp. 113
Displacing Inconvenient Democraciesp. 115
Economic Issues: Debt and Structural Reformp. 118
The Political Economy of Globalizationp. 121
Drugs, Dictators, and U.S. Policyp. 121
International Organizationsp. 125
The Electoral Arena
Presidents or Parliaments?p. 135
The Terms of Debatep. 135
Envisioning Alternativesp. 137
Proparliamentary Argumentsp. 140
Counterargumentsp. 142
Semipresidentialism/Semiparliamentarism?p. 145
Attempts at Reformp. 145
Brazil: Voice of the Votersp. 146
Argentina: Calculating Political Oddsp. 148
Chile: A Pact for Presidentialismp. 150
Why Not?p. 152
Institutional Variationsp. 154
Executive Powerp. 155
Means of Electionp. 157
To Reelect or Not?p. 159
Sources of Powerp. 161
The Legislative Branchp. 163
Electoral Systems and Rules of Representationp. 165
Reelection and Term Limitsp. 169
Institutional Performancep. 171
Toppling Presidents?p. 173
Parties and Party Systemsp. 175
Taking the Measure of Partiesp. 175
Gauging Public Distrustp. 178
Elections: Voters, Winners, and Losersp. 180
Expanding the Electoratep. 181
Participationp. 184
Competitivenessp. 189
The Range of Choicep. 192
Impacts of Bureaucratic-Authoritarianismp. 193
Legacies of Military Populismp. 194
A Resurgence of the Leftp. 197
Digression: Schisms on the Leftp. 200
Dilemmas of Democracy: Representation vs. Governancep. 202
Qualities of Democracy
State Capacity and Policy Performancep. 211
The Latin American State: Roles and Capacitiesp. 212
Democracy vs. Dictatorship: General Hypothesesp. 216
The Politics of Economic Growthp. 218
Social Impacts: Health and Educationp. 223
The Problem of Povertyp. 226
Inequality and Income Distributionp. 231
The Politics of Social Equityp. 235
Losing Ground: The Working Classp. 237
Signs of Hard Timesp. 238
Zero-Sum Politicsp. 242
Women: Moving Upp. 243
Patterns of Participationp. 245
Political Representationp. 247
Positions and Policiesp. 251
Gathering Strength: Indigenous Peoplesp. 253
Bolivia: Party Politicsp. 254
Ecuador: Strength in Social Movementsp. 256
Guatemala: Civil War and Genocidep. 257
Freedoms, Rights, and Illiberal Democracyp. 263
Gradations of Democracyp. 264
Freedom of the Pressp. 266
Anidefamation Laws and Policiesp. 269
Analytical Overviewp. 271
The Uneven Rule of Lawp. 273
The Roles of Courtsp. 278
The Changing Content of Electoral Democracyp. 281
Pathways to Full Democracyp. 284
The People's Verdictp. 289
The Concept of Political Culturep. 290
Democracy in Principlep. 296
The Relevance of Social Classp. 298
Democracy in Practicep. 299
Case Study: Insights from Argentinap. 302
Political Ideologyp. 302
Trust in Institutionsp. 304
Roots of Disenchantmentp. 305
Activism and Protestp. 308
Democracy Considered
The Dialectic of Democracyp. 313
Findings in Reviewp. 314
Changing Shapes of Democracyp. 318
Democracy in the Era of Mass Politicsp. 320
1940-1977: Dangers of Democracyp. 321
1978-Present: Democracy Made Safep. 323
1998-Present: Democracy Turns Leftp. 326
Epilogue: The Future of Democracyp. 329
The International Environmentp. 329
Economic Dimensionsp. 332
The Crash of 2007-2009p. 332
Transnational Crimep. 333
Political Developmentsp. 335
Democratic Tendenciesp. 335
The Question of Consolidationp. 338
Deepening Democracy?p. 339
Survival, Institutionalization, and Legitimationp. 341
Alternative Scenariosp. 343
Standing Fastp. 343
Backslidingp. 343
Moving Aheadp. 344
Classification of Electoral Regimes, 1900-2000p. 345
Military Coups in Latin America, 1900-2000p. 352
Suggested Readingsp. 355
Indexp. 361
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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