Constructing Democratic Governance in Latin America / Edition 4

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After more than a century of assorted dictatorships and innumerable fiscal crises, the majority of Latin America's states are governed today by constitutional democratic regimes. Some analysts and scholars argue that Latin America weathered the 2008 fiscal crisis much better than the United States. How did this happen? Jorge I. Domínguez and Michael Shifter asked area specialists to examine the electoral and governance factors that shed light on this transformation and the region's prospects. They gather their findings in the fourth edition of Constructing Democratic Governance in Latin America.

This new edition is completely updated. Part I is thematic, covering issues of media, constitutionalism, the commodities boom, and fiscal management vis-à-vis governance. Part II focuses on eight important countries in the region—Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru, and Venezuela.

Already widely used in courses, Constructing Democratic Governance in Latin America will continue to interest students of Latin American politics, democratization studies, and comparative politics as well as policymakers.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Editorial Reviews


This book is pioneering in its approach and striking in its findings. It is essential reading for anyone interested in economic development in Mexico and Latin America or development economics.

Foreign Affairs - Richard Feinberg

Solid, well-informed... the writing is sophisiticated enough to interest specialists but accessible enough for lay readers.

Foreign Affairs
Takes a close look at the status of democratic regimes in Latin America and the Caribbean... A remarkable collaborative achievement and provides a quick, authoritative, and handy reference that will be invaluable to students.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781421409795
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 8/1/2013
  • Series: An Inter-American Dialogue Book
  • Edition description: fourth edition
  • Edition number: 4
  • Pages: 408
  • Sales rank: 702,761
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 5.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Jorge I. Domínguez is the Antonio Madero Professor for the Study of Mexico at Harvard University. He is the author of numerous books, including Consolidating Mexico's Democracy: The 2006 Presidential Campaign in Comparative Perspective and Democratic Politics in Latin America and the Caribbean, both published by Johns Hopkins. Michael Shifter is president of the Inter-American Dialogue and adjunct professor of Latin American studies at Georgetown University.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Table of Contents

Acronyms and Abbreviations

Pt. I Introduction

1 Emerging Trends and Determining Factors in Democratic Governance Michael Shifter Shifter, Michael 3

Pt. II Themes

2 The Fading Regional Consensus on Democratic Convergence Laurence Whitehead Whitehead, Laurence 13

3 The Backlash against Market Reforms in Latin America in the 2000s Javier Corrales Corrales, Javier 39

4 Political Inclusionand Social Inequality: Women, Afro-descendants, and Indigenous Peoples Mala Htun Htun, Mala 72

Pt. III Country Studies

5 Argentina:Democracy and Institutional Weakness Steven Levitsky Levitsky, Steven 99

6 Bolivia: EvoMorales and Democracy Eduardo A. Gamarra Gamarra, Eduardo A. 124

7 Brazil: Democracy under Lula and the PT David Samuels Samuels, David 152

8 Chile: The End of the Unfinished Transition Peter M. Siavelis Siavelis, Peter M. 177

9 Colombia: Democratic Security and Political Reform Fernando Cepeda Ulloa Ulloa, Fernando Cepeda 209

10 Mexico: Dysfunctional Democracy Denise Dresser Dresser, Denise 242

11 Peru: A Missed Opportunity Carlos Ivan Degregori Degregori, Carlos Ivan 264

12 Venezuela: Delegative Democracy or Electoral Autocracy? David J. Myers Myers, David J. 285

Pt. IV Conclusion

13 Three Decades since the Start of the Democratic Transitions Jorge I. Dominguez Dominguez, Jorge I. 323

Notes 353

Index 401

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Reading Group Guide

This comprehensive [book] takes a close look at the status of democratic regimes in Latin America and the Caribbean . . . This is a remarkable collaborative achievement and provides a quick, authoritative, and handy reference that will be invaluable to students.
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