Democracy and the Dependent Capitalist State in Latin America

Authors

  • Kenneth Roberts

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.14452/MR-037-05-1985-09_2

Keywords:

History, Political Economy

Abstract

It is an intriguing paradox of Latin American political systems that instability often appears to be their most enduring and dependable feature. Regimes that legitimize their authority—or even consolidate it to the extent of institutionalizing political structures and procedures—are aberrations in Latin America. Historically, alternations between democratic and authoritarian forms of government have occurred not only within nations, but within the region as a whole from one time period to the next. The authoritarianism of the 1950s gave way to a process of democratization in the late 1950s and early 1960s, only to yield before a new wave of military authoritarianism, which Guillermo O'Donnell labeled bureaucratic authoritarianism with respect to the most advanced Latin American nations, during the 1960s and 1970s. In recent years, Latin America appears to be experiencing a democratic renewal, as the praetorian guards return to the barracks and relinquish formal political authority to elected civilian officials.

Published

1985-10-02

Issue

Section

Articles