Historical Context – Simón Bolívar

Just as the historical events outlined in my last post such as the Caracazo and Chávez’s 1992 coup attempt were cornerstones of Chávez’s overall narrative, Simón Bolívar, El Libertador, was also a central figure. Indeed, as the revolutionary who led the fight for freedom from Spanish rule in Venezuela, Bolivia, Colombia, Panama, Ecuador and Peru,…

Origins III – Narrative Theory

In my last post, I explored the relationship between socialism and democracy and how the two sides of the debate on Venezuelan education viewed legislation on its reform as either inherently democratic or inherently undemocratic, depending on their overall beliefs about socialism. I ended my post by quoting Georg Sørensen, who in “Democracy and Democratization”…

Origins II – Venezuelan Education Reform

On December 23, 2010, Venezuela’s National Assembly passed the controversial Ley de educación universitaria (University Education Law, LEU). Their passage of the bill came just days before the Christmas recess and the beginning of the 2011-2015 term, in which the almost entirely pro-Chávez assembly would be replaced by one in which the opposition had gained…

Origins I – Why Chávez?

I began working with former Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez Frías for one of the required courses in UWM’s Master of Arts in Language, Literature & Translation program. In the course, Comparative Systems, students chose a country in which their source language was spoken to be the focus of their research for that semester. I chose…