in: Democratization (2019), 26:5, 815-831.
This article analyses negotiations on democracy promotion by looking at the case of the Inter-American Democratic Charter. It argues that Venezuela contested the concept of representative democracy during the Charter negotiations, advancing the notion of “participatory and protagonist democracy” and that, even if it was unsuccessful in its demands, the country contributed to deepening the debate on the concept of democracy, on which there is far from worldwide consensus. The article suggests that the main drivers of the negotiation process and the final agreement were domestic political changes in Venezuela, specific features of the negotiations, and the structural position of Venezuela in the field of democracy promotion in the global and regional contexts, which were, at the time, favourable to a compromising attitude to conclusion of the Charter, even if not to the concept of democracy.
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