Special Issues

2018 Elections in Brazil: Political Reorder or ‘Gatopardism’?

This post is the introduction to our virtual special issue on the 2018 Brazil elections. The issue was edited by Adrián Albala and André Borges, from the University of Brasilia, who also wrote this introduction.


Brazil’s 2018 Election have widely been commented for three main reasons. First, the emergence, or better said the meteoric ascension, of a hardcore right-wing populist to the presidency. Second,   the unprecedented and dramatic polarization of the electorate, conducing to a centrifuged electoral campaign. Finally, as a consequence of the two previous points, the emergence of a far-right political force and the decline of traditional central political parties (namely the MDB and PSDB).

If the conflagration in 2014 of the Lava Jato corruption scandal constitutes the main background to this hinge electoral contest, the potential effects of this election are still unclear and unpredictable. However, the proposal of this virtual issue consists in highlight some explanatory elements that may further an understanding of the emergence of Jair Bolsonaro’s electoral linkages, and the impacts on the Brazilian political system.