The Left and the Challenge to Market Orthodoxy in Latin America
Chapter 1 discusses the book’s relevance and novelty regarding its contributions to three main topics: the left, economic reforms, and party systems. It also provides an overview of the arrival of the left to power in Latin America at the turn of the 21st century amid the dominance of market orthodoxy as the prevailing economic paradigm. It discusses the reasons why the rise of the left seemed extremely unlikely—from the threat of military intervention to the disrepute of import-substitution industrialization (ISI)—as well as the domestic and international changes—including people’s habituation to democracy, the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the United States’ democracy promotion abroad—that allowed for a succession of electoral victories that seemed impossible only a decade earlier. Additionally, key concepts used throughout the book are defined, including the left, pro-market reforms, and statist reforms.
Keywords: definition of the left, leftist candidates, neoliberalism, market orthodoxy, import-substitution industrialization (ISI), left’s electoral victories, Soviet Union, United States, pro-market reforms, statist reforms
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