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Opposition at the Margins: Strategies against the Erosion of Democracy | Events – MIT News

MIT Political Science
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Laura Gamboa
Assistant Professor in the Political Science Department, University of Utah
October 6, 2021 12:00PM Zoom
We are delighted to invite you to the first meeting of the Latin American Working Group of the semester. At this session, Laura Gamboa will present her forthcoming book, “Opposition at the Margins: Strategies against the Erosion of Democracy.”
 
WHO: Laura Gamboa is an Assistant Professor in the Political Science Department at the University of Utah. She holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Notre Dame and an MA in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas – Austin. Her research focuses on institutions, regime and regime change in Latin America. Her forthcoming book studies opposition strategies against the erosion of democracy. She also has other work analyzing right wing parties and party system institutionalization, corruption and voting behavior, polarization and de-polarization in Latin America. Dr. Gamboa’s work has been published in journals such as Comparative Politics, Political Research Quarterly, Journal of Democracy, and Latin American Research Review.
 
WHAT: Gamboa will present her forthcoming book “Opposition at the Margins: Strategies against the Erosion of Democracy” (under contract with Cambridge University Press), which seeks to understand why some potential autocrats successfully erode democracy while others fail. Unlike most work that examines the macro-level predictors of democratic backsliding or the strength of the executive, Gamboa engages this question by highlighting the role of the opposition. Focusing on the cases of Hugo Chávez in Venezuela and Alvaro Uribe in Colombia, she shows that the strategies the opposition uses and the goals it uses them for are key to understanding why some executives successfully erode democracy while others fail. By highlighting the role of the opposition, this book brings front and center an actor overlooked by the literature. Rather than focusing on the correlation of forces between government and opposition, it emphasizes the importance of agency for understanding democratic backsliding and shows that weak oppositions can also defeat strong potential autocrats.
 
WHEN: Wednesday, October 6 from 12:00 – 1:30 PM Eastern
 
WHERE: The presentation and discussion will take place remotely over Zoom.
 
We would also like to make you aware of other upcoming speakers we have planned for this semester. We will confirm the dates for these presentations soon:
Paula Muñoz and Tomas Dosek on Peru’s recent election and political context
Isadora Araujo Cruxen: “Against the Local Grain: Finance and the Centralization of Urban Water Governance in Brazil”
Latin American Working Group
MIT Political Science
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
30 Wadsworth Street E53-470
Cambridge, MA 02142
[email protected]
+1 617 253 5262

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