Venezuela after the Caracazo: Forms of Protest in a Deinstitutionalized context



Protest has become in recent years one of the most visible features of everyday life in urban Venezuela. Since the middle eighties, but in particular after the Caracazo of 1989, the Caraqueños as well as residents of other cities of the country have had to adjust themselves to the hundreds of demonstrations that are held every year. In this article I shall present the most common forms of collective action over the last ten years, relating them to the process of deinstitutionalization that has developed during the decade. I shall discuss why extra-institutional forms of collective action of a confrontational and violent nature have spread from marginal actors to organizations that in the past had at their disposal alternative channels for presenting their complaints and demands.