Democratic Brazil Revisited

Democratic Brazil Revisited

Peter R. Kingstone
Timothy J. Power
Copyright Date: 2008
Pages: 360
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  • Book Info
    Democratic Brazil Revisited
    Book Description:

    As the world's fifth-largest country, Brazil presents a compelling example of democracy in action. In this sequel to their landmark studyDemocratic Brazil, editors Peter Kingstone and Timothy Power have assembled a distinguished group of U.S.- and Brazilian-based scholars to assess the impact of competitive politics on Brazilian government, institutions, economics, and society.The 2002 election of Lula da Silva and his Worker's Party promised a radical shift toward progressive reform, transparency, and accountability, opposing the earlier centrist and market-oriented policies of the Cardoso government. But despite the popular support reflected in his 2006 reelection, many observers claim that Lula and his party have fallen short of their platform promises. They have moved to the center in their policies, done little to change the elitist political culture of the past, and have engaged in "politics as usual" in executive-legislative relations, leading to allegations of corruption.Under these conditions, democracy in Brazil remains an enigma. Progress in some areas is offset by stagnation and regression in others: while the country has seen renewed economic growth and significant progress in areas of health care and education, the gap between rich and poor remains vast. Rampant crime, racial inequality, and a pandemic lack of personal security taint the vision of progress. These dilemmas make Brazil a particularly striking case for those interested in Latin America and democratization in general.

    eISBN: 978-0-8229-7347-8
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Figures and Tables
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. Preface
    (pp. ix-xii)
  5. List of Acronyms
    (pp. xiii-xvi)
  6. 1 Introduction
    (pp. 1-12)
    Peter R. Kingstone and Timothy J. Power

    On January 1, 2007, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva celebrated the inauguration of his second term as president of Brazil. His reelection in October 2006 was an impressive achievement for the young democracy: more than one hundred million voters cast their vote in the largest turnout in the history of Latin America. Lula drew 61 percent of the second-round vote—a reflection of his ability to claim credit for a widespread improvement in the country’s economic performance and a general increase in living standards, especially for the poorer segments of Brazilian society. The vote, the fifth direct election since the...

  7. Part I: The Workers’ Party in Power
    • 2 The Partido dos Trabalhadores: Still a Party of the Left?
      (pp. 15-32)
      Wendy Hunter

      The largest leftist party in Latin America, the Partido dos Trabalhadores (Workers’ Party, PT) has attracted much attention in the academic literature and popular press. It played an important role as an opposition party from its founding in 1980 until the election of its candidate, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, in 2002, following his fourth bid for the presidency. Noted for being different in many important respects from most of its catchall counterparts, the PT focused on programs rather than on patronage and personalities, notwithstanding Lula’s highly visible public image. It also maintained internal organizational norms and characteristics—such as...

    • 3 Organized Civil Society in Lula’s Brazil
      (pp. 33-54)
      Kathryn Hochstetler

      In 1980, an alliance of unions, social movements, intellectuals, the progressive church, and other opponents to the military government chose to push forward the process of political change by forming the Workers’ Party (Partido dos Trabalhadores or PT). A quarter century later, in 2003, the PT gained its first national president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (Lula). The civil society organizations (CSOs)—a term used here to refer to a full array of nongovernmental, nonprofit voluntary associations, including social movements and unions—that had historically worked with the PT and now generally greeted Lula’s election with enthusiasm.¹ Over his first...

  8. Part II: The Institutional Debate in Brazil
    • 4 Political Institutions and Governability from FHC to Lula
      (pp. 57-80)
      Fabiano Santos and Márcio Grijó Vilarouca

      The predominant view about Brazilian political institutions until the 1990s, the decade in which Peter Kingstone, Timothy Power, and collaborators were preparingDemocratic Brazil, was that it consisted of a dysfunctional political system. Institutional choices made during the National Constituent Assembly of 1988 were viewed as imposing serious constraints on governability. Authors focused on the combination of presidentialism with open-list proportional representation, which was thought to steer the system toward personalism, ad hoc coalitions and measures, clientelism, and pork-barrel politics (Power 2000). Taking an opposing tack—which subsequently stimulated a wealth of important studies on Brazilian congressional politics—Argelina Figueiredo...

    • 5 Centering Democracy? Ideological Cleavages and Convergence in the Brazilian Political Class
      (pp. 81-106)
      Timothy J. Power

      In the presidential election of 1989, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva was considered a leftist firebrand, propounding radical socialism at every turn. The campaign was laden with ideology, brinksmanship, and drama. “If I win, someone has to lose,” Lula often remarked, in a thinly veiled warning to what he then referred to as theburguesia. Theburguesiawas grateful when Lula and the PT (Partido dos Trabalhadores) were defeated by Fernando Collor de Mello, a neoliberal populist whose economic proposals could not have been more different from Lula’s. In 1994 and 1998, Lula was again defeated, both times by Fernando...

    • 6 The Quality of Elections in Brazil: Policy, Performance, Pageantry, or Pork?
      (pp. 107-134)
      Barry Ames, Andy Baker and Lucio R. Rennó

      Political scientists rarely speak directly of the “quality” of voter choice and elections, but our work often betrays a vague sense that some determinants of voter choice are more likely than others to produce outcomes beneficial for the public good. Candidates’ policy proposals, for example, are more important than their personal attributes. Success in guiding the national economy is more desirable than a history of providing clientelistic goods to particular groups. Policy-oriented (“issue”) voting not only requires knowledge of candidates and issues; it also indicates the voter’s commitment to a policy stance and to an overall perception of elections as...

  9. Part III: The Policy Challenges of an Unequal Society
    • 7 The Limits of Economic Reform in Brazil
      (pp. 137-160)
      Aline Diniz Amaral, Peter R. Kingstone and Jonathan Krieckhaus

      The election of the Workers’ Party (PT) candidate Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva in 2002 was a watershed in Brazilian history. The very fact that Brazilians chose a former union leader whose socialist leanings had stirred talk of coups only thirteen years earlier says a great deal about the achievements of Brazil’s young democracy. His reelection in 2006 was impressive as well. The scale of his achievement, however, has been marred by serious accusations of corruption, as well as by widespread disappointment among the PT faithful over his sharp turn to the right on economic policy. This shift was a...

    • 8 Unexpected Successes, Unanticipated Failures: Social Policy from Cardoso to Lula
      (pp. 161-184)
      Marcus André Melo

      The evaluation of progress made in the area of social policy under Cardoso and Lula requires a careful consideration of at least three puzzles. The first is that, notwithstanding severe fiscal constraints, Brazil has improved its social indicators significantly over the last decade, and several of its social programs—such as Fundef and Bolsa Família—have acquired international recognition. This success, in fact, was not anticipated by contributors toDemocratic Brazil, who, writing in the late 1990s, shared a strong pessimism about Brazil’s ability to overcome its social problems and institutional fragmentation (Kingstone and Power 2000). Admittedly, one of the...

    • 9 Public Security, Private Interests, and Police Reform in Brazil
      (pp. 185-208)
      Anthony W. Pereira

      “Security yes, omission no!” “Fight violence with justice.” “Security is the responsibility of the state.” “Peace without voice is not peace—it’s fear.” “Down with impunity.” “Our right is to live without fear.” These were some of the slogans shouted and broadcast over loudspeakers in Recife, Brazil, on February 19, 2006. The occasion was a protest of some 250 people organized by the Antônio Carlos Escobar Institute (Instituto Antônio Carlos Escobar, IACE), founded in December of 2005 in the wake of the killing of a prominent psychiatrist. Lamenting the recent deaths of thousands of people in the state of Pernambuco...

    • 10 Afro-Brazilian Politics: White Supremacy, Black Struggle, and Affirmative Action
      (pp. 209-230)
      Ollie A. Johnson III

      Afro-Brazilians are increasingly rewriting the history of Brazil and working to change the structures that have exploited them. This process has been controversial, because activists and scholars are criticizing white privilege more directly than ever and highlighting the centrality of black life in the Brazilian experience. They are also advocating affirmative action, quotas, and other public policies to disrupt the monopoly whites have held and continue to hold on positions of power and influence. At the same time, some whites are joining blacks in recognizing the need for new thinking and action to challenge pervasive racial inequality and discrimination.


  10. Part IV: Views of Democracy from Below
    • 11 Core Values, Education, and Democracy: An Empirical Tour of DaMatta’s Brazil
      (pp. 233-256)
      Alberto Carlos Almeida

      In chapter 6, Barry Ames, Andy Baker, and Lucio Rennó analyzed the extent to which Brazilian voters are democratic. However, for 364 days out of the year, Brazilians are not voters. Therefore, in order to understand the broader sociocultural conditions for democratic sustainability in Brazil, we also need to explore whether democratic values exist outside the political sphere as traditionally defined. To what extent do Brazilians exhibit values that are compatible with democratic practice at the micro level: that is, in their interpersonal relationships and day-to-day lives? How do they view the notions of equality, universalism, and the rule of...

    • 12 Redemocratization Viewed from Below: Urban Poverty and Politics in Rio de Janeiro, 1968–2005
      (pp. 257-280)
      Janice E. Perlman

      What does Brazilian democracy look like from the viewpoint of the urban poor? Have the favela residents been included as full citizens since the return of democracy to Brazil?¹ How do the people who have been marginalized assess the changes in their lives since the end of the dictatorship? How have their political attitudes and behaviors changed over time from the height of the military dictatorship in 1968–1969 to the present? Are there systematic differences across generations in political saliency, knowledge, perceptions, and participation?

      This chapter addresses these questions by looking at Brazil’s democracy from the viewpoint of the...

  11. Notes
    (pp. 281-300)
  12. Bibliography
    (pp. 301-326)
  13. Contributors
    (pp. 327-330)
  14. Index
    (pp. 331-342)