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Volume 51 / Social Sciences

GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS: THE CARIBBEAN AND THE GUIANAS


ANDRES SUAREZ, Professor Emeritus of Political Science, Center for Latin American Studies, University of Florida

THE COLLAPSE OF AUTHORITARIAN REGIMES in Latin America has allowed political science practitioners to concentrate their attention on a process conceptualized as "Transition to Democracy," the final outcome of which is not altogether clear. One should point out that Caribbean regimes such as Castroism, Duvalierism and the short experiment in Grenada are very different from the typical bureaucratic-authoritarian regime that prevailed in the rest of Latin America. Moreover, democracy has persisted for decades in the rest of the Caribbean.

These may be the reasons why students of the Caribbean have been unable to formulate a new model and have persisted in examining traditional topics such as development, imperialism, and dependency. This lack of originality is reflected in the literature under review in this HLAS 51. Nevertheless, there are exceptions and three merit particular attention: an article by Evelyn Huber Stephens and John D. Stephens on Jamaica (item bi 90009927); Córdova's book on the interactions between Castro and the labor movement from 1959-61 (item bi 88001925); and, finally, the excellent paper by Packenham which compares Cuban dependency under American capitalism with its dependency under Soviet "socialism" (item bi 90009914).


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