Hugo Chavez won re-election in the 2012 Venezuelan presidential election, despite a closer margin between candidates than in previous elections. The results were puzzling for those who believed that Chavez's government had long ago reached its limits, while Chavez's supporters were struck by the growth of the opposition vote. Thus understanding the Venezuelan election of 2012 has proved to be challenging, with various recent studies focused upon it. Luis F. Angosto Ferrandez's book advances two ideas not previously discussed: the relationship between electoral behavior in Venezuela and contemporary Latin American geopolitics, and the way that relationship is projected through the candidates' appeal to narratives that situate Venezuela at the core of a heroic Latin American tradition and of a new regional process of integration. This edited volume first contextualizes and explains the results of the last re-election of Hugo Chavez in terms of its geopolitical conditionings and implications. Contributors tackle Latin American geopolitics by analyzing Venezuelan foreign policy and the country's role in continental projects of supra-national integration.
Contributors also examine electoral strategy and tactics in order to show how the two main candidates built their campaign on emotional grounds as much on rational ones. This will be connected to the investigation of new narratives of national identification in contemporary Venezuela and how they may have practical implications in the design of policies addressing issues such as indigenous rights, community media and national security. Compiling state-of-the-art research on Latin American and Venezuelan politics, this book will appeal to academics and professionals who specialize in Latin American studies, international relations, democracy, and indigenous peoples.
1. Democracy, Revolution and Geopolitics in Latin America: Venezuelan Politics and the International of Discontent; Luis Fernando Angosto-Ferrandez 2. Chavez and American Integration; Tim Anderson 3. "Ploughing the Sea" in a World of Regions: Venezuela's Role in Reviving Latin American Regionalism for the 21st Century; Anthea McCarthy-Jones 4. Petrocaribe: A project for Development in the Caribbean and Central America?; Rodrigo Acuna 5. The Right to Information: Indigenous Media and the Bolivarian Revolution; Kathryn Lehman 6. Indigenous Peoples, Populist Logics and Polarization: Understanding the Pivotal Role of Indigeneity in Venezuelan Elections; Luis Fernando Angosto-Ferrandez 7. Hope and Fear in Venezuelan Democracy: Violence, Citizen Insecurity and Competing Neoliberal and Socialist Urban Imaginaries; Michael Humphrey and Estela Valverde 8. Ordering Discontent: Domestic and International Dynamics of the Bolivarian Revolution; Luis Fernando Angosto-Ferrandez