This 1996 book is about politics in Brazil during the military regime of 1964–85 and the transition to democracy. Unlike most books about contemporary Brazilian politics that focus on promising signs of change, this book seeks to explain remarkable political continuity in the Brazilian political system. It attributes the persistence of traditional politics and the dominance of regionally based, traditional political elites in particular to the manner in which the economic and political strategies of the military, together with the transition to democracy, reinforced the clientelistic, personalistic, and regional basis of state-society relations. The book focuses on the political competition and representation in the state of Minas Gerais.
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'Why has Brazil's return to civilian rule been marked by unrepresentative politics and poorly performing governments? Hagopian's path-breaking research demonstrates that the persistence of the power and influential style of politics of traditional elites is a key explanation. She sheds light on the modern political economy of traditional elites and the contemporary implications of rampant patronage politics. She explains as well how clientelism riddled the military dictatorship (1964–85) and thus limited its own impact on Brazil. Hagopian's book helps us understand the political dilemmas of both authoritarian and democratic politics in Brazil in novel ways.' Jorge I. Domínguez, Harvard University
'A pioneering study that will radically revise our understanding of how the military and civilian sectors interacted during Brazil's military government.' Thomas E. Skidmore, Brown University
'No book has taken on such broad questions so successfully about Brazil. I am confident that the book will make a big mark in our understanding of Brazil - and to some degree Latin America as a whole. I am equally confident that it will be one of the rare masterpieces that will stand the test of time. Few political science works are read for two decades; this book is likely to be one of them.' Scott Mainwaring, University of Notre Dame
This 1996 book is about the persistence of traditional politics in Brazil after 1964. It focuses on the dominance of regionally based, traditional political elites in the authoritarian regime of 1964 to 1985 and on the process of democratization.
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