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Nicaragua: The Chamorro Years

David Close
Nicaragua: The Chamorro Years
ISBN: 978-1-55587-643-2
ISBN: 978-1-62637-140-8
1999/244 pages/LC: 98-27844

"David Close has carefully recaptured the 1990-96 period in Nicaragua.... The Nicaraguan case will continue to be a source of important comparative lessons, and this book makes a valuable contribution to understanding some of the complexities of regime transition."—Richard Stahler-Sholk, The Americas

"David Close has written a valuable, nuanced study of a country now once again, after a profusion of works in the 1980s, suffering from its traditional scholarly and media neglect. His assessments, moreover, are in the main eminently balanced, sensible and judicious."—Philip Chrimes, International Affairs


In 1990, Nicaraguans voted out the revolutionary Sandinista regime and replaced it with the conservative government of President Violeta Chamorro. Chamorro's term of office was marked by constitutional, economic, partisan, and social conflict, as her administration attempted to replace the revolutionary system with representative government and market economics.

Close examines these conflicts and assesses their impact on Nicaragua's political actors and governmental institutions. He concludes with an analysis of the 1996 Nicaraguan elections and with a provocative exploration of the impact of the revolution on Nicaragua today.


David Close is professor of political science at Memorial University of Newfoundland (Canada). His numerous publications include Nicaragua: Politics, Economics, Society and Legislatures and the New Democracies in Latin America.


Introduction: Sandinista to Post-Sandinista Nicaragua. The (Not So Very) Old Regime: The Sandinistan Legacy. Changing Governments, Changing Regimes. The New Political System: Framework, Actors, Institutions. How the System Worked. Getting the Economy Right?. The Big Issues: The Constitution and Property. Ending the Chamorro Years: The 1996 Elections. Nicaragua’s Continuing Transition.