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Life after Dictatorship

Book description

Life after Dictatorship launches a new research agenda on authoritarian successor parties worldwide. Authoritarian successor parties are parties that emerge from authoritarian regimes, but that operate after a transition to democracy. They are one of the most common but overlooked features of the global democratic landscape. They are major actors in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America, and they have been voted back into office in over one-half of all third-wave democracies. This book presents a new set of terms, definitions, and research questions designed to travel across regions, and presents new data on these parties' prevalence and frequent return to power. With chapters from leading Africanists, Asianists, Europeanists, and Latin Americanists, it asks: why are authoritarian successor parties so common? Why are some more successful than others? And in what ways can they harm - or help - democracy?

Reviews

‘This is an agenda-setting volume that will shape scholarly debates about parties and democracy for many years to come. New democratic regimes often inherit parties founded by previous authoritarian rulers, yet the impact of such parties on the quality and stability of democracy is poorly understood. This volume makes an original empirical contribution by documenting the prevalence of authoritarian successor parties in new democracies, as well as the frequency by which they return to power by electoral means. It also breaks new ground theoretically by exploring how the institutional legacies of authoritarian rule shape subsequent patterns of democratic governance. Loxton and Mainwaring have brought together many of the leading experts in the study of parties and democracy in different world regions, and together they have produced a first-rate book that is a must-read for scholars who seek to understand how party systems emerge in new democracies.'

Kenneth M. Roberts - Cornell University, New York

‘This volume represents an important contribution to the study of democratic transition and consolidation. We typically assume that successful democracies make sharp breaks from their authoritarian pasts. But James Loxton and Scott Mainwaring demonstrate conclusively that this is not the case. In fact, parties that emerge from authoritarian regimes - authoritarian successor parties - have been prominent in three quarters of third-wave democracies. Such parties have been voted back into office in over half of new democracies. While a lot has been written about individual cases in particular regions, this is the first volume to analyze this phenomenon globally. The chapters in this volume - written by the top political scientists in the world today - are path-breaking but also accessible to a broad audience inside and outside academia.'

Lucan Way - University of Toronto

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