The late twentieth century witnessed the birth of an impressive number of new democracies in Latin America. This wave of democratization since 1978 has been by far the broadest and most durable in the history of Latin America, but many of the resulting democratic regimes also suffer from profound deficiencies. What caused democratic regimes to emerge and survive? What are their main achievements and shortcomings? This volume offers an ambitious and comprehensive overview of the unprecedented advances as well as the setbacks in the post-1978 wave of democratization. It seeks to explain the sea change from a region dominated by authoritarian regimes to one in which openly authoritarian regimes are the rare exception, and it analyzes why some countries have achieved striking gains in democratization while others have experienced erosions. The book presents general theoretical arguments about what causes and sustains democracy and analyses of nine compelling country cases.
Frances Hagopian is the Michael P. Grace II Associate Professor of Latin American Studies in the Department of Political Science, and former Director of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, at the University of Notre Dame. She is the author of Traditional Politics and Regime Change in Brazil (Cambridge University Press, 1996), which was named a Choice Outstanding Book in Comparative Politics, and several articles on democratization that have appeared in World Politics, Comparative Political Studies, and several other publications. Her current research focuses on economic liberalization and political representation in Brazil, Argentina, Chile, and Mexico. Hagopian previously taught at Harvard, Tufts, and MIT, and she has held fellowships from the Center for Latin American Studies and Howard Heinz Endowment of the University of Pittsburgh, the Social Science Research Council and the American Council of Learned Societies, and the U.S. Department of Education (the Fulbright-Hays program). She is a member of the Council of the American Political Science Association, and the editorial boards of PS: Political Science and Latin American Politics and Society. Scott P. Mainwaring is Eugene Conley Professor of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame and Director of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. Among his books are Democratic Accountability in Latin America, Christian Democracy in Latin America, Rethinking Party Systems in the Third Wave of Democratization: the Case of Brazil, Presidentialism and Democracy in Latin America (Cambridge University Press, 1997) and Building Democratic Institutions: Party Systems in Latin America. He received a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship in 2000 for work on a project on authoritarianism and democracy in Latin America, 1945-2000.