Comparative Analysis and Critique
Edited by Helena Alviar García and Günter Frankenberg
Chapter 7: Authoritarianism and the narrative power of constitutionalism in Venezuela
The chapter explores authoritarian constitutionalism through its iconography. Considering a popular picture of former Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, the chapter reveals how images can build a narrative to justify the necessary authority to enact a new constitution. Instead of focusing on the typical institutional problems of constitutional analyses –separation of powers and fundamental rights – the piece underscores that constitutions are important as they tell stories about the past and knit expectations about the future of a political community. The narrative power of constitutions might be grasped if we pay attention to the iconography that accompanies their enactment and their use. In the Venezuelan case, narratives of exclusion and the reconstruction of authority in 1999 were important for triggering constitutional reform, and they were made possible through the deployment of ordinary tools of modern law such as the invention of traditions, mythology and taboos.
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.
Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.
Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.