In the name of of Allah the Merciful

Democracy without Parties in Peru: The Politics of Uncertainty and Decay

Omar Sanchez-Sibony, 978-3-030-87579-4, 978-3-030-87578-7, 3030875784, 978-3030875787, 9783030875787, B0B3HKDH8B

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English | 2022 | PDF

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This book provides an in-depth look into key political dynamics that obtain in a democracy without parties, offering a window into political undercurrents increasingly in evidence throughout the Latin American region, where political parties are withering.  For the past three decades, Peru has showcased a political universe populated by amateur politicians and the dominance of personalism as the main party–voter linkage form.  The study peruses the post-2000 evolution of some of the key Peruvian electoral vehicles and classifies the partisan universe as a party non-system. There are several elements endogenous to personalist electoral vehicles that perpetuate partylessness, contributing to the absence of party building.  The book also examines electoral dynamics in partyless settings, centrally shaped by effective electoral supply, personal brands, contingency, and iterated rounds of strategic voting calculi.  Given the scarcity of information electoral vehicles provide, as well as the enormously complex political environment Peruvian citizens inhabit, personal brands provide readymade informational shortcuts that simplify the political world.  The concept of “negative legitimacy environments” is furnished to capture political settings comprised of supermajorities of floating voters, pervasive negative political identities, and a generic citizen preference for newcomers and political outsiders.  Such environments, increasingly present throughout Latin America, produce several deleterious effects, including high political uncertainty, incumbency disadvantage, and political time compression.  Peru’s “democracy without parties” fails to deliver essential democratic functions including governability, responsiveness, horizontal and vertical accountability, or democratic representation, among others.