Autocracy Rising in Venezuela, with comparisons to Nicaragua, Colombia, and Ecuador

Professor Javier Corrales

Amherst College

April 7, 2021 12:00PM

We are delighted to invite you to another meeting of the Latin American Working Group. On April 7, Javier Corrales will present his talk titled: "Autocracy Rising in Venezuela, with comparisons to Nicaragua, Colombia, and Ecuador."


WHO: Javier Corrales is the Dwight W. Morrow 1895 professor and chair of Political Science at Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts.  He obtained his Ph.D. in government from Harvard University in 1996. His book, Fixing Democracy (Oxford University Press, 2018), focuses on constituent assemblies and presidential powers in Latin America.  He is the co-author with Michael Penfold of Dragon in the Tropics: Venezuela and the Legacy of Hugo Ch├ívez, second edition (Brookings Institution Press, 2015), with Daniel Altschuler of The Promise of Participation:  Experiments in Participatory Governance in Honduras and Guatemala (Palgrave Macmillan 2013), and with Carlos Romero of U.S.-Venezuela Relations since the 1990s:  Coping with Midlevel Security Threats (Routledge, 2013).  He is also the co-editor (with Mario Pecheny) of The Politics of Sexuality in Latin America (University of Pittsburgh Press 2010).  He was a Fulbright scholar in Colombia in 2016 and in Venezuela in 2005. He is on the editorial board of Latin American Politics and Society, the European Review of Latin America and the Caribbean, and Americas Quarterly.


WHAT: Autocracy Rising in Venezuela, with comparisons to Nicaragua, Colombia, and Ecuador


Scholars have offered theories about the causes of democratic backsliding leading to semi-authoritarianism, but less is known about what happens next.  Some semi-authoritarian regimes go deeper into autocracy, others stabilize, and still others experience some liberalization. To explain this variation in outcomes, this talk will focus on two variables, asymmetrical party fragmentation and control of state institutions.  My focus will be Venezuela, Nicaragua, Colombia, and Ecuador since the mid 2000s.