The Political Right in Postauthoritarian Brazil: Elites, Institutions, and Democratization

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Overview

Brazil was an early case of a “conservative transition” from authoritarian rule, wherein civilian elites associated with the outgoing military regime assumed a commanding role in the early years of democracy. When this phenomenon was first theorized in the mid-1980s, there were few other comparable cases, with Turkey and South Korea perhaps the best known. In the past decade the proliferation of new democracies in Eastern Europe has drawn attention to the impressive survival skills of ex-authoritarian elites.

In this book Power examines this cohort of civilian politicians, showing how they adapted to competitive politics after the 1985 regime transition and how their socialization to politics in the 1960s and 1970s shaped their initially negative attitudes toward institution building in the 1980s and 1990s—with deleterious consequences for Brazil’s fledgling democracy. Power’s study sheds new light on the paradoxes, tradeoffs, and drawbacks of conservative transitions to democracy.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Power (political science, Florida International University) offers an appraisal of Brazilian democracy, focusing on implications of certain political continuities in the postauthoritarian era. He addresses tensions between authoritarian legacies and democratic institution-building in Brazil's New Republic (1985- ), and considers the juxtaposition of continuity and change as reflected in the world of professional politicians and in the institutions that politicians inhabit. He also poses questions concerning individual politicians' political survival in the transition from military dictatorship to democratic regime, and asks what effect their behavior and attitudes may have on the consolidation of democracy. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780271020105
  • Publisher: Penn State University Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/2000
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Meet the Author

Timothy J. Power is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Florida International University.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables
Acknowledgments
1 Continuities in Political Democratization: Politicians and Institutions in Postauthoritarian Regimes 1
2 Definitions and Concepts: Consolidation, Institutions, and the Right 21
3 ARENA and Its Ancestors: The Brazilian Political Right, 1946-1985 41
4 ARENA in the Afterlife: A Portrait of the Political Right in the New Republic 73
5 The Right in the Party System: Politicians Against Institutions 101
6 The Right in Congress: Implications for Legislative Institutionalization 147
7 Class Reunions: Collective Action within the ARENA/PDS Cohort, 1987-1999 183
8 The Impact of Conservative Democratization: Legacies and Lessons in the Brazilian Case 203
App. A Classification of the ARENA/PDS Cohort 241
App. B The 1990, 1993, and 1997 Surveys of Congress 245
Bibliography 265
Index 279
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