Working Papers - 1995 (#212 - #215)

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The Origins and Transformations of the Chilean Party System

J. Samuel Valenzuela

Working Paper #215 - December 1995

Abstract

This paper analyzes the Chilean party system from its inception to the present. It presents three polarities as basic to the constitution of the Chilean parties: in addition to the state/church conflicts and the divisions over socioeconomic programs, it shows that for long periods of its history the party system contained parties devoted to supporting specific political leaders or their legacies. The coalitional behavior of the Chilean parties during many decades cannot be explained without taking this polarizing (or unifying) factor into account. It was in evidence between 1856 and 1874 given the impact of the montt-varistas, between 1894 and 1925 due to the balmacedistas, between 1936 and the mid-1950s given ibañismo, and since 1985 as a result of the military government and its effects on the formation of a new party of the Right. The argument also reveals the extent to which the Chilean party system has nineteenth-century origins and emphasizes the importance of electoral rules in molding its transformations. The paper concludes by pointing to the fact that the Chilean electorate has considerable loyalty to party tendencies but less loyalty to specific party labels.

Resumen

Este ensayo analiza el sistema partidario chileno desde sus orígenes hasta el presente. Señala que se ha constituído en torno a tres polaridades: además de los conflictos clericales/anticlericales y de derecha/izquierda, el trabajo indica que por largos períodos el sistema ha generado además partidos dedicados a apoyar y a líderes políticos específicos o sus legados. Los patrones de formación de las coaliciones partidarias no se pueden entender durante muchas décadas sin tomar en cuenta el efecto polarizante (o agluti-nante) de estos últimos partidos. Ello ocurrió entre 1856 y 1874 por efecto de los montt-varistas, entre 1894 y 1925 por cuenta de los balmacedistas, entre 1936 y mediados de los cincuenta con el ibañismo, y desde 1985 como resultado del gobierno militar y su impacto en la formación de un nuevo partido de derecha. El artículo también revela hasta qué punto el sistema partidario chileno tiene orígenes decimonónicos, y enfatiza la importancia de las reglas electorales en moldear sus transformaciones. Concluye notando que el electorado chileno tiene una lealtad considerable por la tendencias partidarias, pero menos lealtad por las etiquetas partidarias.


J. Samuel Valenzuela is a Fellow of the Kellogg Institute and Professor of Sociology at the University of Notre Dame. He is the author of Democratización vía reforma: La expansión del sufragio en Chile (IDES, 1985) and editor of a volume on Labor Movements in Transitions to Democracy (University of Notre Dame Press, 1988). He contributed to the third edition (1994) of the Library of Congress's Chile: A Country Study and coedited and contributed to Issues in Democratic Consolidation: The New South American Democracies in Comparative Perspective (Kellogg Series with Notre Dame Press, 1992), Military Rule in Chile: Dictatorships and Oppositions (Johns Hopkins, 1986), and Chile: Politics and Society (Transaction Books, 1976). His articles on comparative labor, development theory, and political change have appeared in English, Spanish, Italian, and French publications.

This paper is now available in Fernando J. Devoto and Torcuato S. Di Tella, eds., Political Culture, Social Movements, and Democratic Transitions in South America in the Twentieth Century (Milano: Feltrinelli Foundation, 1997): 47-99.

This paper owes much to the invaluable assistance and advice of Erika Maza Valenzuela. I gratefully acknowledge it here. My appreciation as well to Scott Mainwaring for his comments on an earlier draft that improved its presentation. I wrote the bulk of this text while at St. Antony's College, Oxford University, as Senior Associate Fellow. I thank St. Antony's, in particular Alan Angell, for its invitation and its collegiality.


Catholicism, Anticlericalism, and the Quest for Women's Suffrage in Chile

Erika Maza Valenzuela

Working Paper #214 - December 1995

Abstract

Catholic countries typically enfranchised women later than Protestant ones, and analysts have long argued that this delay was due to the influence of Catholic political and Church leaders as well as to the effects of a Catholic culture. By examining the history of the extension of suffrage to women and women's political participation in Chile since the mid-nineteenth century, this paper challenges that widely held notion. It shows that Catholic and Conservative leaders were the earliest voices in favor of extending suffrage to women. It also shows that Catholic women were involved in political and social affairs from an early date in the country's history as an independent nation, and that they developed feminist views. The paper concludes that the delay in enacting a women's suffrage bill for national elections in Chile (1949) was caused by the wariness of the anticlerical parties regarding the effects of such a measure on the balance of electoral forces, especially since the elections were very competitive and the electorate was small. Given the long-standing and visible association of socially prominent and politically influential women with the Catholic Church and Catholic beneficence institutions, there was a widespread expectation-which proved to be correct as seen in the municipal elections in which women first voted beginning in 1935-that women voters would tend to favor the Conservative Party.

Resume

Debido a que típicamente en los países católicos las mujeres obtuvieron el derecho al sufragio después que en los protestantes, los analistas han atribuído este retraso a la influencia de una cultura católica sobre los líderes políticos y eclesiásticos. Basándose en un estudio de la historia del sufragio femenino y la participación política de las mujeres en Chile desde el siglo XIX, este artículo rechaza dicha noción. Fueron líderes católicos y conservadores los primeros en favorecer la extensión del sufragio a la mujer. Las mujeres católicas participaban en la vida política y en las instituciones sociales chilenas desde los comienzos de la República, y prontamente desarrollaron posiciones feministas. Este ensayo concluye que el retraso en aprobar el proyecto de ley de sufragio femenino en las elecciones presidenciales y parlamentarias (1949) se debió a la resistencia de los partidos anticlericales: temían que el voto femenino alteraría el equilibrio de las fuerzas electorales, efecto que podía magnificarse porque las elecciones eran muy competitivas y el electorado pequeño. Dado el vínculo histórico altamente visible entre la Iglesia y mujeres políticamente influyentes y de rol protagónico en las instituciones educacionales y de beneficencia católicas, era previsible que el voto femenino favoreciese al Partido Conservador, resultado que se produjo en las elecciones municipales en que participaron las mujeres a partir de 1935.


Erika Maza Valenzuela, Academic Coordinator of the Kellogg Institute, completed her dissertation on "Women's Suffrage and Party Politics in Chile, 1874-1953," at Saint Antony's College, Oxford University.

The author is very grateful to her thesis supervisor Alan Angell for his advice and many incisive comments on previous drafts of this paper. She also wishes to express her gratitude to Samuel Valenzuela for sharing his knowledge of Chilean history and for his encouragement and belief in the significance of this research. Her gratitude extends as well to many professors, colleagues, and friends at the Latin American Centre of Saint Antony's College, at the Kellogg Institute, and in Chile, especially Alan Knight, Juan Maiguashca, Eduardo Posada, Carlos Malamud, Iván Jaksic, Caroline Domingo, Robert Pelton, CSC, Robert Fishman, Sol Serrano, and Carolina Fernández. A Spanish version of this paper, "Catolismo, anticlericalismo y la extensión del sufragio a la mujer en Chile," is now available in Estudios Públicos 58 (Fall 1995).


Under- and Overinstitutionalization: Some Ideal Typical Propositions Concerning New and Old Party Systems

Andreas Schedler

Working Paper #213 - March 1995

Abstract

The weakness of democratic institutions represents the core problem faced by processes of democratic consolidation. The present paper, which confines its attention exclusively to party systems, starts by diagnosing a double deficit. First, the concept of institutional 'under-development' appears to be somewhat underdeveloped itself. It requires further clarification and elaboration. Second, the debate on democratic consolidation takes the 'old' consolidated democracies as its normative model and assumes that the strength of institutions and the quality of democracy are positively related. This normative horizon might be distorted. We argue instead that institutions may be too weak-but also too strong (section 1). The paper therefore contrasts two ideal types of party systems: 'underinstitutionalized' versus 'overinstitutionalized'. After sketching some defining elements of institutions (section 2), the essay portrays differences and commonalties between these two party system extremes. It discusses the following dimensions: aggregate electoral volatility (section 3), the translation of electoral uncertainty into policy styles and popular expectations (section 4), the barriers of access to the political market (section 5), degrees of interparty competition (section 6), horizontal accountability (section 7), the scope of horizontal linkages (section 8), and the credibility of party politicians (section 9). We conclude with some hints at the dynamics of change within both systems (section 10).

Resumen

La debilidad de las instituciones democráticas representa el problema central que enfrentan los procesos de consolidación democrática. El presente artículo, que concentra su atención exclusivamente en los sistemas de partidos, comienza diagnosticando un doble déficit. Primero, el concepto de 'subdesarrollo' institucional parece estar, él mismo, 'en vías de desarrollo.' Requiere mayor claridad y elaboración. Segundo, el debate acerca de la consolidación democrática toma las 'viejas' democracias consolidadas como modelo normativo, y presupone que la fuerza de las instituciones y la calidad de la democracia están positivamente relacionadas. Este horizonte normativo podría estar distorsionado. Nosotros, en cambio, argumentamos que las instituciones pueden ser demasiado débiles, pero también demasiado fuertes (Primera Sección). Este artículo, entonces, contrasta dos tipos ideales de sistema de partidos: 'subinstitucionalizados' versus 'sobreinstitucionalizados.' Después de bocetar algunos de los elementos definitorios de las instituciones (Segunda Sección), este ensayo presenta las diferencias y semejanzas entre estos dos tipos extremos de sistema de partidos. Se discuten las siguientes dimensiones: volatilidad electoral agregada (Tercera Sección), traducción de la incertidumbre electoral en estilos de políticas y expectativas populares (Cuarta Sección), barreras de acceso al mercado político (Quinta Sección), grados de competencia interpartidaria (Sexta Sección), responsabilidad (accountability) horizontal (Séptima Sección), alcance de las vinculaciones horizontales (Octava Sección) y la credibilidad de los políticos enrolados en partidos (Novena Sección). Concluimos con algunas referencias a las dinámicas de cambio en ambos sistemas.


Andreas Schedler, Guest Scholar of the Kellogg Institute for the month of February 1994, is Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Vienna and Director of the Vienna Dialogue for Democracy. He obtained his PhD from the University of Vienna, having written his doctoral thesis on Mexican external debt management. He has done research at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and the Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales (FLACSO) in Santiago, Chile. Schedler is the author of numerous articles on social concertation, electoral theory, political culture, and party system institutionalization.

This paper was originally prepared for presentation at the Joint ECPR and ÖGPW workshop, "The Development of the New Europe," held at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Vienna, Austria, 47 November, 1993. During my research stay at the Kellogg Institute in February 1994, I had the opportunity to revise the paper. I want to express my gratitude to the Kellogg Institute and its members for the productive and pleasant scholarship they facilitated in an overwhelmingly charming and generous way. I am also indebted to all colleagues and friends who provided me with helpful comments on an earlier draft. Above all, I thank Guillermo O'Donnell for his (decisive) encouragement and J. Samuel Valenzuela for his highly insightful (both comprehensive and detailed) criticism. As usual, however, the author assumes the exclusive responsibility for all the surviving errors and obscurities.


Network Capital in Capitalist, Communist, and Post-Communist Societies

Endre Sik

Working Paper #212 - February 1995

Abstract

The term 'network capital' comprises the use of a wide variety of personal networks: for example, altruistic, long-lasting, multipurpose relations; balanced, short-term patron-client relations; instrumental barter; and exploitative unequal exchanges such as bribery and corruption. Every society can be characterized by a particular level and form of network capital, based on its culture and on its historically and structurally determined organizational framework. The scope and role of network capital is a simultaneous function of already existing network capital and the changing economic situation. This paper's first hypothesis is that the size of network capital is greater under communism than capitalism because of the differences in cultural, historical developments and because there are greater socioeconomic pressures in communist societies that give network capital more opportunities to operate. The second contention is that in the course of transition from communism to capitalism-i.e., in the postcommunist period-networking actually becomes more widespread, although the previous hypothesis might seem to suggest that it would diminish.

Resume

El término 'capital de red' comprende una amplia variedad de redes personales: por ejemplo, relaciones de múltiples propósitos, altruistas y duraderas; relaciones patrón cliente, equilibradas y de corto plazo; trueque instrumental; intercambios desiguales y de explotación tales como cohecho y corrupción. Toda sociedad puede ser caracterizada de acuerdo con un nivel y forma particular de su capital de red basado en su cultura y en su marco organizacional histórica y estructuralmente determinado. El alcance y rol del capital de red es una función simultánea del capital de red ya existente y de la cambiante situación económica. La primera hipótesis de este artículo es que el tamaño del capital de red es mayor bajo el comunismo que bajo el capitalismo, como resultado de diferencias en los respectivos desarrollos culturales e históricos y porque en sociedades comunistas existen presiones socioeconómicas más grandes, dando así mayores oportunidades para operar al capital de red. La segunda afirmación es que en el curso de la transición de comunismo hacia el capitalismo-es decir, en el período post-comunista-la constitución de redes deviene más frecuente y extensa, aunque la hipótesis previa parecería sugerir que disminuiría.


Endre Sik, Visiting Fellow at the Institute during the fall semester 1993 and professor at the Budapest University of Economics, is also senior advisor at the Social Science Informatics Centre (TRKI) in Budapest, Hungary. Professor Sik is well known for his works on the informal economy, informal networks, households' economic behavior, and immigration and refugees in Hungary. His publications include his chapter "Reciprocal Exchange of Labour: the Hungarian Case" in R. E. Pahl, ed., On Work (Blackwell, Oxford, 1988); "Invisible Incomes," with P. Galasi, Social Justice 15 (3-4); "The Vulture and the Calamity or Why Were Hungarian Taxi Drivers Able to Rebel against Increased Gasoline Prices?" in A. Toth and L. Gábor, eds., Beyond the Great Transformation in Hungary (Budapest, 1991); "Transylvanian Refugees in Hungary and the Emergence of Policy Networks to Cope with Crisis," Journal of Refugee Studies 5 (1); and "From the Second to the Informal Economy," Journal of Public Policy 12 (2).

Earlier versions of this paper were presented in November 1992 at the Fourth International Karl Polanyi Conference, "Beyond State and Market," Concordia University, Montreal, and in February 1993 at the 13th International Sunbelt Social Network Conference in Tampa, Florida. The first version was sponsored by the Wissenschaftzentrum Berlin fur Sozialforschung (WZB, Germany) for the project "The Role of Informal Networks in the Transition of the Hungarian Economy." This paper is now available in International Contributions to Labout Studies 4 (1994): 73-93.