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Latin American Populism in the Twenty-First Century

Paperback
, 416 pages
ISBN:
9781421410098
May 2013
$30.00

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Latin American Populism in the Twenty-First Century

Venezuela’s Hugo Chávez, Bolivia’s Evo Morales, and Ecuador’s Rafael Correa have brought the subject of Latin American populism once again to the fore of scholarly and policy debate in the region. Latin American Populism in the Twenty-first Century explains the emergence of today’s radical populism and places it in historical context, identifying continuities as well as differences from both the classical populism of the 1930s and 1940s and the neo-populism of the 1990s.

Leading Latin American, U.S., and European authors explore the institutional and socioeconomic contexts that give rise to populism and show how disputes over its meaning are closely intertwined with debates over the meaning of democracy. By analyzing the discourse and policies of populist leaders and reviewing their impact in particular countries, these contributors provide a deeper understanding of populism’s democratizing promise as well as the authoritarian tendencies that threaten the foundation of liberal democracy.

Carlos de la Torre is the director of international studies and a professor of sociology at the University of Kentucky, Lexington. He is the author of Populist Seduction in Latin America. Cynthia J. Arnson is the director of the Latin American Program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. She is the editor of In the Wake of War: Democratization and Internal Armed Conflict in Latin America.

"This is an excellent edited volume on populism in Latin America, one that nicely updates the scholarly literature on the region. It facilitates a much broader scholarly conversation that is long overdue and provides a timely description of all of the best-known, recent populist movements in the region, while situating these in a longer trajectory of populism."

"De la Torre and Arnson bring together an outstanding cast of contributors to examine the causes of populism and its various—and double-edged—consequences for democracy. More than any other book on the subject, Latin American Populism in the Twenty-first Century spans historical eras, from the 'classical' populism of the 1930s and 1940s, to 'neoliberal' populism of the 1990s, to the more radical forms of populism that emerged in the contemporary era. For this reason, it is likely to be of enduring value for students of Latin American politics."

" Latin American Populism in the Twenty-first Century does a remarkable job in providing a fresh perspective on one of the region's most recurrent and controversial political phenomena. Its breadth of theory and empirical case studies mean that it will be a must-read not only for researchers interested in populism, but also for anyone interested in the politics of the poor and marginalized more generally."

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