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Federalism and Democratization in Latin America: A Comparative Analysis and Partial Reform Agenda

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Type: Conference Paper
Author: Loveman, Brian
Conference: Coloquio II, Reflexiones sobre la Agenda Legislativa del Federalismo
Location: Oaxaca, Mexico
Conf. Date: December 5-7, 1996
Date: 1996
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/1308
Sector: Theory
Region: South America
Central America & Caribbean
Subject(s): federalism
institutional change
Abstract: "In Latin America, many referred to the 1980s as the 'lost decade,' years of negative economic growth, overwhelming debt burdens, authoritarian politics, and civil strife. Yet by decades end the cold war was over and there followed a new wave of political and economic liberalization.5 For U.S. ideological spinmasters, the magic date of 1989 signaled a monumental victory for the forces of 'freedom.' Some even referred to the 'end of history,'in which liberal capitalism would reign unchallenged. "This so-called 'end of history,' now referred to seemingly without irony as 'market democracy,' had other meanings for perhaps 80 per cent of the world's six billion people. Their daily lives and immediate future were not tied to international rhetoric and superficial political reforms. And their inability to control their immediate future was closely tied to the failure of political institutions-global, national, subnational, and local-in the face of dramatic social, economic, and technological change. In particular, it was tied to the myth and the claims of the nation-state."

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