Edited by Gordon Crawford and Abdul-Gafaru Abdulai
Chapter 11: Democracy and development in Latin America
This chapter analyses how “democratization” and “development” have been reconceptualized in Latin America since the late 1990s, when a post-neoliberal movement started to gain institutional power in the continent. It examines five dimensions of the interrelationships between processes of democratisation and socio-economic development that facilitate the identification of current tendencies and frictions in Latin America. Those topics are: the question of populism in the analysis of the post-neoliberal shift; the definition of state/civil society relations in the configuration of development models; geopolitics, regionalism and sovereignty; neo-extractivism and alternative developments; and the role of production and access to information in debates on democratization. The post-neoliberal shift clearly brought ‘the state back’ into continental politics, but the extent to which state-centrism may consolidate as a lasting paradigm for social development is unclear, given the antagonistic forces that currently traverse the region.
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