New issue of the Journal of Democracy covers developments in the Arab world, Latin America, Russia, and Kenya

Jul 12, 2013, 06:49 ET from Journal of Democracy

July Issue also features essays by Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way and by Donald Emmerson.

WASHINGTON, July 12, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- "Why have the pacts that budding transitions to democracy need proven so hard to make and sustain in the Arab World?" Georgetown's Daniel Brumberg sets about answering this timely question in "Transforming the Arab World's Protection-Racket Politics," one of four essays on the region in the new issue of the Journal of Democracy (JoD). Other essays explore developments in Algeria, Bahrain, and Jordan.

Three essays address "Latin America's Authoritarian Drift." In "The Threat from the Populist Left," Kurt Weyland notes that "the Chavez phenomenon has had strong demonstration and contagion effects beyond Venezuela," and that the current presidents of Bolivia and Ecuador, who are "eager to overcome instability and cement their own supremacy…have emulated" the late Venezuelan president's efforts to stifle democracy. In addition, Carlos de la Torre looks at Ecuador, while Miriam Kornblith asks whether chavismo can survive the death of Hugo Chavez in Venezuela.

The July issue also features a pair of articles on Russia's crackdown on civil society. The first, written by Leon Aron, paints a portrait of the civil rights movement that emerged in the aftermath of Russia's disputed 2011 parliamentary elections, drawing parallels to the historic movements led by Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. The second essay, by Miriam Lanskoy and Elspeth Suthers, details the insidious new laws that are designed to disempower or even eradicate opposition to the Putin regime.

Elsewhere in the issue are two essays on "Kenya's 2013 Elections." In "Choosing Peace over Democracy," James Long and his coauthors, using exit-poll data and interviews, analyze why Kenya's first balloting since the bloody 2007 elections was relatively peaceful despite its many problems. Joel Barkan, meanwhile, examines the shortcomings of the country's high-tech approach to counting the 2013 vote in his contribution, "Technology Is Not Democracy."

In "The Durability of Revolutionary Regimes," Steven Levitsky and Lucan Way ask why regimes such as those of Cuba, Iran, and North Korea have "survived the kinds of challenges that routinely felled other post–Cold War dictatorships." And Donald Emmerson critiques the work of Kishore Mahbubani in the review essay "Kishore's World."

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The Journal of Democracy is published quarterly in January, April, July, and October. Members of the press who wish to receive electronic access to the current issue should contact Brent Kallmer at To subscribe to the Journal of Democracy, visit more information, please visit the Journal of Democracy online or e-mail us at

SOURCE Journal of Democracy