Catalogue


The rule of law in nascent democracies : judicial politics in Argentina /
Rebecca Bill Chavez.
imprint
Stanford, Calif. : Stanford University Press, 2004.
description
xii, 255 p.
ISBN
0804748128 (alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Stanford, Calif. : Stanford University Press, 2004.
isbn
0804748128 (alk. paper)
contents note
Constructing the rule of law -- Argentina's shifting executive-judicial balance of power -- Monolithic party control and critical junctures : the erosion of the rule of law under Peron and Menem -- A tale of two provinces : judicial autonomy in San Luis and Mendoza -- Monolithic party control and executive dominance in San Luis -- Party competition and the rule of law in Mendoza -- The politics of reform coalitions.
catalogue key
5210973
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Excerpts
Flap Copy
This book explains how the rule of law emerges and how it survives in nascent democracies. The question of how nascent democracies construct and fortify the rule of law is fundamentally about power. By focusing on judicial autonomy, a key component of the rule of law, this book demonstrates that the fragmentation of political power is a necessary condition for the rule of law. In particular, it shows how party competition sets the stage for independent courts. Using case studies of Argentina at the national level and of two neighboring Argentine provinces, San Luis and Mendoza, this book also addresses patterns of power in the economic and societal realms. The distribution of economic resources among members of a divided elite fosters competitive politics and is therefore one path to the requisite political fragmentation. Where institutional power and economic power converge, a reform coalition of civil society actors can overcome monopolies in the political realm.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2004-12-01:
A necessary criterion for a true democracy is judicial independence. How well is this developed in the growing number of emerging democracies? This book, a revised doctoral dissertation (Stanford) by a young professor at the US Naval Academy, uses Argentina, a federal state, as a test case to answer the question. It is clearly written, well organized, and based on multiple sources. Chavez presents evidence that competitive politics promotes judicial autonomy, while "monolithic party control" leads to its erosion. The Argentine federal government plus two selected provincial governments (Mendoza and San Luis) are used as examples. The book delves thoroughly into modern Argentinian history, especially the Peron (but no mention of President Isabel Peron!) and Menem periods. In the concluding chapter comparisons are made with Chile, the US federal government, and the state of Louisiana under Governor Huey Long where judiciary independence was endangered. There are 45 pages of notes and an extensive bibliography. This book deserves attention from those interested in democracy, human rights, or Latin America, especially Argentina. It will need an update for the present government of the strong willed President Nestor Kirchner, who previously was a powerful provincial governor. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above. C. W. Arnade University of South Florida
Reviews
Review Quotes
"This book is a welcome addition to a young but growing body of scholarly work on rule-of-law construction in new democracies from a political science perspective. Rebecca Bill Chavez develops a persuasive study of the conditions under which rule of law is more likely to emerge, through an analysis of judicial politics at the national level in Argentina and in two of its provinces, San Luis and Mendoza."Perspectives on Politics
"In her excellent book, Rebecca Bill Chavez intertwines legal, political, and historical analysis of Argentina to explore the conditions in which an independent judiciary emerges, consolidates, and endures. The book is not only timely but also important as a contribution to the literature....The skillful field research and historical insight coupled with theoretical analysis make this book a valuable and reliable piece of work."Latin American Politics and Society
"In her excellent book, Rebecca Bill Chavez intertwines legal, political, and historical analysis of Argentina to explore the conditions in which an independent judiciary emerges, consolidates, and endures. The book is not only timely but also important as a contribution to the literature....The skillful field research and historical insight coupled with theoretical analysis make this book a valuable and reliable piece of work."-- Latin American Politics and Society
"In her excellent book, Rebecca Bill Chavez intertwines legal, political, and historical analysis of Argentina to explore the conditions in which an independent judiciary emerges, consolidates, and endures. The book is not only timely but also important as a contribution to the literature....The skillful field research and historical insight coupled with theoretical analysis make this book a valuable and reliable piece of work."--Latin American Politics and Society
"This book is a welcome addition to a young but growing body of scholarly work on rule-of-law construction in new democracies from a political science perspective. Rebecca Bill Chavez develops a persuasive study of the conditions under which rule of law is more likely to emerge, through an analysis of judicial politics at the national level in Argentina and in two of its provinces, San Luis and Mendoza."--Perspectives on Politics
"This book is a welcome addition to a young but growing body of scholarly work on rule-of-law construction in new democracies from a political science perspective. Rebecca Bill Chavez develops a persuasive study of the conditions under which rule of law is more likely to emerge, through an analysis of judicial politics at the national level in Argentina and in two of its provinces, San Luis and Mendoza."-- Perspectives on Politics
"[A] very thought provoking work....[Chavez's] exploration of the interaction between the separation of powers and the role of courts over nearly a century and a half is elegant."--Latin American Research Review
"Chavez's work is well written and reasoned and is an important contribution to the literature on judicial development in emerging democracies. The evidence cited in her work is compelling: Political competition does make a difference as to whether a judiciary will be able to operate free from political domination."Comparative Politics
"Chavez's work is well written and reasoned and is an important contribution to the literature on judicial development in emerging democracies. The evidence cited in her work is compelling: Political competition does make a difference as to whether a judiciary will be able to operate free from political domination."--Comparative Politics
"Chavez's work is well written and reasoned and is an important contribution to the literature on judicial development in emerging democracies. The evidence cited in her work is compelling: Political competition does make a difference as to whether a judiciary will be able to operate free from political domination."-- Comparative Politics
"[A] very thought provoking work....[Chavez's] exploration of the interaction between the separation of powers and the role of courts over nearly a century and a half is elegant."-- Latin American Research Review
This item was reviewed in:
Reference & Research Book News, August 2004
Choice, December 2004
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Back Cover Copy
"This book is a welcome addition to a young but growing body of scholarly work on rule-of-law construction in new democracies from a political science perspective. Rebecca Bill Chavez develops a persuasive study of the conditions under which rule of law is more likely to emerge, through an analysis of judicial politics at the national level in Argentina and in two of its provinces, San Luis and Mendoza."Perspectives on Politics "Chavez's work is well written and reasoned and is an important contribution to the literature on judicial development in emerging democracies. The evidence cited in her work is compelling: Political competition does make a difference as to whether a judiciary will be able to operate free from political domination."Comparative Politics
Back Cover Copy
"This book is a welcome addition to a young but growing body of scholarly work on rule-of-law construction in new democracies from a political science perspective. Rebecca Bill Chavez develops a persuasive study of the conditions under which rule of law is more likely to emerge, through an analysis of judicial politics at the national level in Argentina and in two of its provinces, San Luis and Mendoza."--Perspectives on Politics "Chavez's work is well written and reasoned and is an important contribution to the literature on judicial development in emerging democracies. The evidence cited in her work is compelling: Political competition does make a difference as to whether a judiciary will be able to operate free from political domination."--Comparative Politics
Bowker Data Service Summary
This work explains how the rule of law emerges and how it survives in nascent democracies. By focusing on judicial autonomy, a key component of the rule of law, the book demonstrates that the fragmentation of political power is a necessary condition for the rule of law.
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations and Tablesp. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
Constructing the Rule of Lawp. 9
Argentina's Shifting Executive-Judicial Balance of Powerp. 28
Monolithic Party Control and Critical Junctures: The Erosion of the Rule of Law under Peron and Menemp. 53
A Tale of Two Provinces: Judicial Autonomy in San Luis and Mendozap. 80
Monolithic Party Control and Executive Dominance in San Luisp. 99
Party Competition and the Rule of Law in Mendozap. 116
The Politics of Reform Coalitionsp. 134
Conclusion: Competitive Politics and the Rule of Law in Presidential Systemsp. 157
A Spatial Model of Supreme Court Independencep. 167
Notesp. 171
Bibliographyp. 217
List of Interviewsp. 237
Indexp. 243
Table of Contents provided by Rittenhouse. All Rights Reserved.

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