The Origins of Post-Independence Political Instability and Violence in Colombia and Venezuela: Analysis and Application of Three Theoretical Frameworks.
Wegen, P. van
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The South American countries of Colombia and Venezuela have vibrant histories. Ever since the 1960s Colombia has been engaged in a civil war against several guerrilla movements. Only recently does the tide seem to change, as the Colombian government engaged in peace talks with the notorious guerrilla movement FARC. The late Hugo Chávez had led the country since the late 1990s, wrecking the democratic institutions that were developing in the decades before. His successor, Nicolas Maduro, is clinging on to emergency powers, but many Venezuelans have taken to the streets of Caracas in protest within the last few months. Examining political instability and violence, this thesis examines the histories of Colombia and Venezuela from the colonial period onto the end of the twentieth century. Since the two neighboring countries have followed such different of political development, the sources of these differences will be examined at the hand of three theoretical frameworks. Ultimately, this thesis seeks to assess the worth of the frameworks as presented by North et al., Tilly and Mahoney. Examining different periods of history with these frameworks in mind will give insight why these countries developed so differently.