In this episode, I’m joined by Dr Raul Sanchez-Urribarri, Senior Lecturer in Crime, Justice and Legal Studies at La Trobe University in Melbourne. In this discussion, Raul and I explore populist politics in Venezuela and the United States, and what trends in those countries might portend for politics here in Australia. We get into Venezuela as a petro-state and discuss environmental vulnerabilities in the Caribbean, in the context of Hurricanes Ida and Katrina. We also reflect on Raul’s experiences leading undergraduate students on study tours to the US, and the challenges teaching during the COVID pandemic.
00:02:55 Populisms in this world-historic moment.
00:08:29 Rise and fall of the Chavizmo system in Venezuela.
00:10:52 Top-down and bottom-up elements of Chavismo.
00:14:45 Nicholas Maduro and Venezuela's post-populist moment.
00:16:21 The global populist moment.
00:17:19 Populism and the Trump presidency in the United States.
00:20:40 Erosion of the norm of 'loyal opposition'.
00:22:25 Precarity and the 'fuck you' impulse in the United States.
00:27:55 Inequality and precarity in Venezuela.
00:29:45 Culture wars.
00:32:17 The Faustian pact of the petro-state in Venezuela.
00:36:37 Ida, Katrina and the hurricane vulnerability of New Orleans.
00:40:19 Climate change and institutional fragility in the Caribbean.
00:41:17 Leading a New Orleans-Memphis undergraduate study tour.
00:43:38 New Orleans as an example of where the best music comes from the margins.
00:45:22 Extraordinary geography of New Orleans and the Mississippi delta.
00:47:54 Challenges and opportunities for international short-program study post-COVID.
00:51:40 Teaching in times of (ongoing) catastrophe(s), a tale from Melbourne.
00:54:17 Humility in the face of the evaporation of 'normality'.
Dr Raul Sanchez-Urribarri is a Senior Lecturer in Crime, Justice and Legal Studies at the Department of Social Inquiry, La Trobe University (Melbourne, Australia). During 2020-2021, he is a Visiting Scholar (non-resident) at the American Bar Foundation (Chicago, IL) and at the Center for the Study of Law & Society (UC Berkeley School of Law, Berkeley, CA). He holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of South Carolina, an LL.M. from Cambridge University and a Law Degree from Universidad Catolica Andres Bello (Caracas, Venezuela). His research focuses on democracy, rule of law and comparative judicial studies, with an emphasis on Latin America and Venezuela in particular. His work has been published in a variety of outlets, including The Journal of Politics, Law and Social Inquiry, the Annual Review of Law and Social Sciences, and International Political Science Review. He is a Non-Resident Research Fellow at Tulane University’s Center for Inter-American Policy and Research, and a Commissioning Editor at Thesis Eleven Journal. Currently, he serves as Chair of the Section on Venezuelan Studies (SVS) of the Latin American Studies Association.