Anti-poverty Programs and Vote-Buying Strategies: Lessons from Northeast Brazil

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In a context where personal relationships play a central role in structuring political life—some kind of personalist politics that is often identified as “clientelist” or as “patronage politics”—how do you make the distinction between “normal” and “deviant” political behavior? Which, and under what circumstances, illegal activities are considered a normal part of the electoral process? This chapter addresses these questions from a socio- anthropological perspective, analyzing the use of anti-poverty programs for vote-buying purposes in Northeast Brazil. More specifically, the goal of this chapter is to describe the mobilization of a political machine involving anti-poverty programs during election times. The aim here is to describe the dynamics of vote buying in Northeast Brazil in order to identify the actors involved and how they take part in the political machine.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCorruption and Norms
Subtitle of host publicationWhy Informal Rules Matter
EditorsIna Kubbe, Annika Engelbert
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-319-66254-1
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-66253-4
Publication statusPublished - Jan-2018
Externally publishedYes

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