Democratic Citizenship as Uruguayan Cultural Heritage

in Democratic Theory
Author: Robin Rodd 1
View More View Less
  • 1 James Cook University robin.rodd@jcu.edu.au
Restricted access

Abstract

Amidst a global turn towards authoritarianism and populism, there are few contemporary examples of state-led democratization. This article discusses how Uruguay's Frente Amplio (FA) party has drawn on a unique national democratic cultural heritage to encourage a coupling of participatory and representative institutions in “a politics of closeness.” The FA has reinvigorated Batllismo, a discourse associated with social justice, civic republicanism, and the rise of Uruguayan social democracy in the early twentieth century. At the same time, the FA's emphasis on egalitarian participation is inspired by the thought of Uruguay's independence hero José Artigas. I argue that the cross-weave of party and movement, and of democratic citizenship and national heritage, encourages the emergence of new figures of the citizen and new permutations for connecting citizens with representative institutions. The FA's “politics of closeness” is an example of how state-driven democratization remains possible in an age described by some as “post-democratic.”

Contributor Notes

Robin Rodd teaches anthropology and critical theory at James Cook University in Townsville, Australia. He has worked with the Piaroa ethnic group in Venezuela on shamanism and drug use, and in Uruguay and Argentina on questions of memory and democracy. He is currently researching the banality of evil in Australia and the southern cone. E-mail: robin.rodd@jcu.edu.au

Democratic Theory

An Interdisciplinary Journal

  • Arditi, Benjamin. 2008. “Arguments about the Left Turns in Latin America: A Post-Liberal Politics?Latin American Research Review 43 (3): 5981.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Arias, Cecilia, and Sylvia Rodríguez. 2013. “El concepto de justicia social en el discurso de Luis Batlle Berres: Justicia social y profundización de la democracia en la sociedad uruguaya de mediados del siglo XX.” [The concept of social justice in the discourse of Batlle Berres: Social justice and the deepening of demcoracy in mid-twentieth century Uruguayan society]. Revista de la facultad de derecho 35 (July–December): 3954.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Baiocchi, Gianpaolo. 2005. Militants and Citizens: The Politics of Participatory Democracy in Porto Alegre. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Balderocchi, Claudio. 2016. “Problems and Contradictions of Participatory Democracy: Lessons from Latin America.” Contemporary Politics 22 (2):164177.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Balibar, Étienne. 2015. Citizenship. Cambridge: Polity Press.

  • Barber, Benjamin. 2003. Strong Democracy: Participatory Politics for a New Age. Berkeley: University of California Press.

  • Bobbio, Norberto. 2005. Liberalism and Democracy. London: Verso.

  • Brown, Wendy. 2015. Undoing the Demos: Neoliberalism's Stealth Revolution. New York: Zone Books.

  • Caetano, Gerardo. 2011. La república Batllista. Montevideo: EBO.

  • Collier, David, and Steven Levitsky. 1996. Democracy with Adjectives: Conceptual Innovation in Comparative Research. Working paper 230, Berkeley University.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Crouch, Colin. 2004. Post-democracy. London: Polity Press.

  • Couriel, Alberto. 2016. “Que es ser izquierda?”[What is it to be left?] República, 31 August. http://www.republica.com.uy/que-es-ser-de-izquierda

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Danemark, David, Robert Mattes, and Richard Niemi, eds. 2016. Growing Up Democratic: Does It Make a Difference? Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • De Sousa Santos, Boaventura, and Leonardo Avritzer. 2007. “Introduction: Opening Up the Canon of Democracy.” In Democratizing Democracy: Beyond the Liberal Democratic Canon, ed. B. de Sousa Santos, xxxivlxxiv. London: Verso.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Diamond, Larry, and Marc Plattner. 2015. Democracy in decline? Baltimore, MD: John Hopkins University Press.

  • Economist Intelligence Unit. 2018. Democracy Index 2017. https://www.eiu.com/topic/democracy-index.

  • Escobar, Arturo. 2010. “Latin America at a Crossroads.” Cultural Studies 24 (1): 165.

  • Esposito, Roberto. 2013. Terms of the Political: Community, Immunity, Biopolitics. Trans. N. Welch. New York: Fordham University Press.

  • Freedom House. 2018. “Freedom in the World 2018: Democracy in Crisis.” https://freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-world/freedom-world-2018#fiw-key-findings.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Freitas, Ruben Correa. 2013. “El ideario Artiguista en la formación constitucional Uruguaya.” [Artigist thought in the formation of the Uruguayan constitution]. Revista de derecho público 22 (44): 4357.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Gadea, Carlos. 2013. “La ‘izquierda política’ en América Latina: El ‘Lulismo’ en Brasil y la ‘izquierda’ en el Uruguay.” [The ‘political left’ in Latin America: ‘Lulism’ in Brazil and the ‘left’ in Uruguay’]. Espacio abierto 22 (3): 377392.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Gallo, Adriana, and Julieta Bartoletti, J. 2012. “Partidos de gobierno en la era posneoliberal: Paradigmas antagónicas y límites para una agenda de izquierda en América del Sur. Los casos del Frente Amplio, Alianza País y el Frente para la victoria.” [Political parties in the post-neoliberal age: Conflicting paradigms and the limits of a left agenda in South America]. Elecciones 11 (12): 3569.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ganuza, Ernesto, Gianpaolo Baiocchi, and Nicole Summers. 2016. “Conflicts and Paradoxes in the Rhetoric of Participation.” Journal of Civil Society 12 (3): 328343.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • García Bouzas, Raquel. 2001. La justicia de los doctores. [The justice of the doctors]. Montevideo: Fundación de Cultura Universitaria.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Giaudrone, Carla. 2014. “Milonga del asimilado: Batllismo, nativismo y tolerancia en el Centenario.” [Milongo of assmilation: Batllismo, nativism and tolerance one hundred year on] In Más allá de la tolerancia? Ciudanía y diversidad en el Uruguay contemporáneo, [Beyond tolerance? Citizenship and diversity in contemporary Uruguay] ed. L. Gioscia, 2545. Montevideo: Trilce Editores.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • González, Ariosto. 1962. Las primeras formulas constitucionales en los países del Plata (1810–1814) [The first constitutional forms in the countries of the River Plate (1810-1814). Montevideo: Barreiro y Ramos.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Hendriks, C. 2017. “Citizen-Led Democratic Reform: Innovations in Indi.” Australian Journal of Political Science 52 (4): 481499.

  • Huntington, Samuel. 1991. “Democracy's Third Wave.” Journal of Democracy 2 (2): 1234.

  • Keane, John. 2016. “Los nuevos despotismos: Imaginando el fin de la democracia.” [New despotisms: Imagining the end of democracy] Recerca 19: 137154.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Latinobarómetro. 2016. Informe 2016. http://www.latinobarometro.org/latContents.jsp.

  • Laville, Jean-Louis. 2016. “Defending Democracy, Reinventing the Left.” Opendemocracy.net. https://opendemocracy.net/jean-louis-laville/defending-democracy-reinventing-left.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lorey, Isabell. 2013. “On Democracy and Occupation: Horizontality and the Need for New Forms of Verticality.” In Institutional Attitudes: Instituting Art in a Flat World, ed. Gielen. Amsterdam: Valiz. Pp. 7799.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Luna, Juan Pablo. 2007. “Frente Amplio and the Crafting of a Social Democratic Alternative in Uruguay.” Latin American Politics and Society 49 (4): 130.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • MacPherson, C. B. 1975. The Life and Times of Liberal Democracy. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

  • Mainwaring, Scott, and Timothy Scully. 1995. Building Democratic Institutions: Party Systems in Latin America. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Marchesi, Aldo. 2014. “Revolution beyond the Sierra Maestra: The Tupamaros and the Development of a Repertoire of Dissent in the Southern Cone.” The Americas 70 (3): 523553.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Moreira, Constanza. 2004. “Resistencia política y ciudanía: Plebiscitos y referéndums en el Uruguay de los 90.” [Political resistance and citizenship: Plebiscites and reforms in 1990s Uruguay] America Latina hoy 36: 1745.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Motta, Sara. 2011. “Populism's Achilles’ Heel: Popular Democracy beyond the Liberal State and the Market Economy in Venezuela.” Latin American Perspectives 38: 2848.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Mouffe, Chantal. (2000) 2009. The Democratic Paradox. New York: Verso Books.

  • Mouffe, Chantal. 2013. Agonistics: Thinking the World Politically. New York: Verso.

  • Müller, Jan-Werner. 2016. What Is Populism? Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.

  • Nahum, Benjamin. 1993. Empresas públicas Uruguayas: Origen y gestión. [Uruguayan public enterprises: Origen and development]. Montevideo: Ediciones de la Banda Oriental.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Neblo, Michael, Kevin Esterling, Ryan Kennedy, David Lazer, and Anand Sokhey. 2010. “Who Wants to Deliberate – And Why?American Political Science Review 104 (3): 566583.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Panizza, Francisco. 1999. Uruguay, Batllismo y después: Pacheco, militares y Tupamaros en la crisis de Uruguay Batllista. [Uruguay, Batllismo and afterwards: Pacheco, the military and Tupamaros in the crisis of Batllista Uruguay] Montevideo: Ediciones de la Banda Oriental.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Pateman, Carole. 2012. “Participatory Democracy Revisited.” Perspective on Politics 10 (1): 719.

  • Petit Muñoz, Eugenio. 2000. “Valoración de Artigas.” [Assessing Artigas]. Revista de la Facultad de Derecho (Universidad de la República, Uruguay) 18: 283306.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Piria, Francisco. (1900) 2011. El Socialismo Triumfante: Lo que será de mi país dentro de 200 años. [Socialism triumphant: What will become of my country in 200 years]. Montevideo: Zonalibro.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Rancière, Jacques. 1999. Disagreement: Politics and Philosophy. Trans. J. Rose. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

  • Rabuffetti, Mauricio. 2014. José Mujica: La revolución tranquila. [José Mujica: The peaceful revolution]. Montevideo: Aguilar.

  • Roberts, Kenneth. M. 1998. Deepening Democracy? The Modern Left and Social Movement in Chile and Peru. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Rodó, José Enrique. (1900) 2009. Ariel. Madrid: Ediciones Catédra.

  • Rodó, José Enrique. 1964. Liberalismo y jacobinismo. [Liberalism and jacobinism] Montevideo: Ministerio de Instrucción Pública y Previsión Social.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Siapera, Eugenia. 2017. “Reclaiming Citizenship in the Post-Democratic Condition.” Journal of Citizenship and Globalisation Studies 1 (1): 2435.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Silva Valdés, Fernán. 1926. Libro de centenario de Uruguay. [Centenary yearbook, Uruguay]. Montevideo: Capurra & Compañía.

  • Sitrin, Marina. 2012. Everyday Revolutions: Horizontalism and Autonomy in Argentina. New York: Zed Books.

  • Stolovich, L. 1992. “Uruguay: The Paradoxes and Perplexities of an Uncommon Left. Social Justice 19 (4): 18152.

  • Tani, Ruben. 2012. Pensamiento y utopía en Uruguay: Varela, Rodó, Figari, Piria, Vaz Ferreira y Ardao [Thought and utopia in Uruguay: Varela, Rodó, Figari, Piria, Vaz Ferreira y Ardao]. Montevideo: HUM.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Tockman, Jason. 2017. “The Hegemony of Representation: Democracy and Indigenous Self-Government in Bolivia.” Journal of Politics in Latin America 9: 121138.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Turner, Bryan. 2017. “Contemporary Citizenship: Four Types.” Journal of Citizenship and Globalisation Studies 1 (1): 1023.

  • UNDP. 2013. Uruguay, el futuro en foco: Desigualdad multidimensional y dinámica de la pobreza en Uruguay en los años recientes. [The future of Uruguay in focus: Multidimensional inequality and the dynamics of recent poverty]. http://www.uy.undp.org/content/dam/uruguay/docs/cuadernosDH/CUADERNO%20DH02.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • UNDP. 2016. “Human Development Report.” http://hdr.undp.org/en/2016-report.

  • Vaz Ferreira, Carlos. 1908. Conocimiento y acción. [Thought and action] Montevideo: Cámara de Representantes.

  • Vaz Ferreira, Carlos. (1909) 1962. Moral para intelectuales. [Morality for intellectuals]. Buenos Aires: Ediciones Losada.

  • Wolin, Sheldon. 2008. Democracy Inc.: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Wolin, Sheldon. 2016. Fugitive Democracy and Other Essays. Ed. N. Xenos. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Metrics