Visit our Christmas Gift Finder
Poverty of Democracy: The Institutional Roots of Political Participation in Mexico (Paperback)
  • Poverty of Democracy: The Institutional Roots of Political Participation in Mexico (Paperback)

Poverty of Democracy: The Institutional Roots of Political Participation in Mexico (Paperback)

Paperback 296 Pages / Published: 30/11/2010
  • We can order this

Usually dispatched within 2 weeks

  • This item has been added to your basket
Political participation rates have declined steadily in Mexico since the 1990s. The decline has been most severe among the poor, producing a stratified pattern that more and more mirrors Mexico's severe socioeconomic inequalities. Poverty of Democracy examines the political marginalization of Mexico's poor despite their key role in the struggle for democracy. Claudio A. Holzner uses case study evidence drawn from eight years of fieldwork in Oaxaca, and from national surveys to show how the institutionalization of a free-market democracy created a political system that discourages the political participation of Mexico's poor by limiting their access to politicians at the local and national level. Though clean elections bolster political activity, Holzner shows that at the local level, and particularly in Mexico's poorest regions, deeply rooted enclaves of authoritarianism and clientelism still constrict people's political opportunities. To explain this phenomenon, Holzner develops an institutional theory in which party systems, state-society linkages, and public policies are the key determinants of citizen political activity. These institutions shape patterns of political participation by conferring and distributing resources, motivating or discouraging an interest in politics, and by affecting the incentives citizens from different income groups have for targeting the state with political activity. Holzner's study sheds light on a disturbing trend in Latin America (and globally), in which neoliberal systems exacerbate political and economic disparities and create institutions that translate economic inequalities into political ones.

Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press
ISBN: 9780822960782
Number of pages: 296
Weight: 458 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 23 mm


"An excellent study of the paradoxical decline in political participation among Mexico's poor in the wake of democratization and decentralization. The author combines qualitative and quantitative methods in a clear and accessible way, and the interview data is especially rich and illuminating."
--Katrina Burgess, Tufts University

"Well written and clearly structured. . . . provocative and significant findings."

--Bulletin of Latin American Research

"Holzner has crafted a challenging, thoughtful, and provocative interpretation contradicting theories that suggest democracy increases political participation among the poor. This work is particularly relevant to Mexico, but Holzner's conclusions have widespread implications for any society completing the transition to a democratic model. A welcome, fresh insight to the consequences of democratic transitions in the region."
--Roderic Ai Camp, Claremont McKenna College

You may also be interested in...

Wars, Guns and Votes
Added to basket
Theories of the Democratic State
Added to basket
The Last Vote
Added to basket
Defending Politics
Added to basket
Models of Democracy
Added to basket
Politics without Democracy
Added to basket
Patterns of Democracy
Added to basket
The Democratic Paradox
Added to basket
Ruling the Void
Added to basket
On Democracy
Added to basket
The Athenian Constitution
Added to basket
Democracy in America
Added to basket
Democracy At Work
Added to basket


Please sign in to write a review

Your review has been submitted successfully.