Skip to main content Accessibility help
  • Print publication year: 1991
  • Online publication date: March 2008

13 - Venezuela since 1930

Venezuela's political, economic and social development in the twentieth century has been unique in Latin America. Under the dictatorship of another Tachira caudillo, Juan Vicente Gomez, Venezuela's economy began to undergo a singular transformation with the discovery of rich oil fields in the western province of Zulia and in the eastern coastal region. When Gomez died, therefore, on 17 December 1935, the Council of Ministers named Lopez provisional president, an 'election' ratified by Congress on 2 January 1936. Medina extended Lopez's economic and social initiatives, and went so far as to endorse a modest social security programme through the Instituto de Seguro Social. Some of Medina's critics, including members of the newly formed Accion Democratica (AD) party, criticized the 1943 law for not going far enough. Venezuelans continue to debate whether the armed movement which removed President Medina Angarita from office on 18 October 1945 was necessary or deserves the name of 'revolution'.
Recommend this book

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this book to your organisation's collection.

The Cambridge History of Latin America
  • Volume 8: Latin America since 1930: Spanish South America
  • Edited by Leslie Bethell
  • Online ISBN: 9781139055246
  • Book DOI:
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to *
Arturo, Sosa A. and Lengrand, Eloi, Del garibaldismo estudiantil a la izquierda criolla (Caracas, 1981).
Brewer-Carías, Allan R., Las constituciones de Venezuela (Madrid, 1985).
Gil, José Antonio, ‘Entrepreneurs and Regime Consolidation’, in Martz, John and Myers, David (eds.), Venezuela, the Democratic Experience (New York, 1977).
Gómez, Alejandro, Rómulo Betancourt y el Partido Comunista de Costa Rica: 1931–1935 (Caracas, 1985)
McBeth, B. S.Juan Vicente Gómez and the Oil Companies in Venezuela, 1908–1935 (Cambridge, 1983).
Mu¯noz, Agustín Blanco, Testimonios violentos, 8 vols. (Caracas, 1980–3).