Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 9-1-2012

Journal / Book Title

Latin American Politics and Society


In the last half-decade, the “rise of the left” in Latin America has been studied extensively by many scholars. Whether framed as one, two, or many lefts, its various party leaders have been vocal in opposition to neoliberalism, although the orientation of their policies and governments toward neoliberalism has been mixed (Panizza 2009). The most influential and visible case of an anti-neoliberal government is that of Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez Frías.

The five books reviewed here, drawing on research on Venezuela, share a common scholarly interest in liberalism, pluralism, and account- ability, although some defend liberalism (Brewer-Carías, Corrales and Penfold), while Fernandes aims to move beyond liberalism. They make significant improvements in the contours and concepts used to explore contemporary Venezuelan politics and hint at incipient possibilities for understanding the contemporary liberalism and the possibility of a post-liberal politics in Latin America (see Arditi 2008, 80; Oxhorn and Postero 2010,12). This latter point is particularly crucial as it is a scholarly terra incognita that will need to receive more attention in coming years.


DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-2456.2012.00169.x

Published Citation

Spanakos, Anthony Peter. "Liberalism and Postliberalism in Bolivarian Venezuela." (2012): 197-206.