In Venezuela, two months of protests against the government of President Nicolás Maduro have claimed dozens of lives. A delegation of foreign ministers from the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) is visiting Venezuela this week for the second time, hoping to sponsor a dialogue between the government and opposition.
While the protests have proximate causes—rampant crime and economic turmoil—Venezuela’s levels of polarization reflect a deeper structural problem rooted in dramatically contrasting notions of democracy and governance. Understanding this problem requires unpacking the nature of populism in Latin America and its most recent radical manifestations.
Universidad Central de Venezuela
Carlos de la Torre
University of Kentucky
Cynthia J. Arnson
Latin American Program, Wilson Center