Serving God and Man: Evangelicals and Electoral Politics in Latin America


Tuesday, October 17, 2017, 12:00pm to 2:00pm


CGIS South, S250, 1730 Cambridge Street


Speaker: Taylor Boas, Custer Visting Scholar, DRCLAS; Associate Professor of Political Science and Latin American Studies, Boston University

Moderator: Steven Levitsky, Professor of Government, Harvard University

In this study of Brazil, Chile, and Peru, I argue that evangelicals’ motivations to enter the electoral sphere explain why they have gained a formidable legislative presence in some Latin American countries but remain largely relegated to the sidelines in others. I focus on historical struggles for legal equality with the Catholic Church and more recent battles over abortion and same-sex marriage as factors that have served to politicize this community.

Taylor Boas is Associate Professor of Political Science and Latin American Studies at Boston University. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley and has been a Visiting Fellow at the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, University of Notre Dame. Boas’s research examines electoral politics and political behavior in Latin America, focusing on Brazil, Chile, and Peru. Specific research topics include religion and politics, electoral campaigns, accountability, and the mass media. His book Presidential Campaigns in Latin America: Electoral Strategies and Success Contagion was published in 2016 by Cambridge University Press. He has published articles in American Journal of Political Science, Journal of Politics, and World Politics, among other outlets. He is also co-author of Open Networks, Closed Regimes: The Impact of the Internet on Authoritarian Rule.