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Latin America: Left, Right or Beyond?"
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economic History.
Universidad de la República Oriental del Uruguay.
2008 (English)Collection (editor) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

A wave of electoral victories ushering in so-called left-wing governments

has swept through Latin America. After decades of ‘right

wing’ military regimes and neo-liberal oriented coalitions, this political

shift has fuelled an intense debate around how to interpret the

region’s new geography of power. We welcome this debate, but also

acknowledge the need to bring in different points of view, including

cross-country comparisons, that challenge the more or less established

concepts around this ‘left turn’ in Latin America.

Some caveats can be raised here. First of all, there may be a risk

that research is trapped into analysing ‘the left’ without taking into

account other dimensions, such as the ‘right’ or the ‘center’. Secondly,

the notion of a ‘left-right’ dichotomy can be tied to different contextual

circumstances, such as the historical period or the institutional

environment in which it is analysed. This leads us to a third element,

namely, the need to bring research into historical perspective

by analysing the ideological changes and continuities over the long

term that might enrich the understanding of the current Latin American

political landscape. Finally, it is of great importance to take into

account the impact of systemic elements that influence currents of

opinion and ideological positioning in the region.

With these factors as points of departure, we ask questions such

as: (1) what is the meaning of left and right in the current systemic

and regional context? (2) is there a beyond the distinction of left

and right? (3) are national, regional, or sub-regional definitions of

left and right compatible? (4) to what extent is the content of local

ideological positioning conditioned by systemic changes at the global


Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm University: Institute of Latin American Studies, Stockholm University , 2008. , 153 p.
, Stockhom Review of Latin American Studies, ISSN 1654-0204 ; 3
Keyword [en]
Latin America, Left, Right, Ideology, Development, Politics, Political parties
National Category
Humanities Economic History
Research subject
History Of Sciences and Ideas; Economic History; Econometrics; Economic History
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-26061OAI: diva2:202321
Available from: 2009-05-22 Created: 2009-03-09 Last updated: 2009-07-07Bibliographically approved

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